Diadeloso and Eclipse Over Texas: What you need to know

Waco prepares for a large influx of tourists hoping to set their sights on the solar eclipse. Kassidy Tsikitas | Photo Editor

By Josh Siatkowski | Staff Writer

As Waco prepares to welcome a projected 100,000 visitors on Monday for Eclipse Over Texas, this year’s Diadeloso will be a uniquely busy one. But with all the buzz and excitement comes some confusion and questions. Here’s what you need to know about how the day is going to work.

What is free, and what costs money?

If you plan to stay on campus for the eclipse and the rest of the day, don’t worry about spending any money if you don’t want to. San Marcos senior Alyssa Solano, the Diadeloso chair for the Baylor Chamber of Commerce, said the free Diadeloso wristband will serve as your ticket to all of the attractions. These wristbands will also provide a free meal at Penland or East Village from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., whether you have a meal plan or not.

The only part of Diadeloso that is not free will be in the Morrison parking lot, where multiple food trucks will be open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. No food vouchers will be provided.

For those who want to attend the Eclipse Over Texas event at McLane Stadium, tickets for adults cost $20, children ages 4-17 cost $10 and children under 4 are free. There are no college student discounts. Tickets can be bought here.

What is traffic going to be like?

According to Carla Pendergraft, assistant director of tourism for the Waco convention and visitor’s bureau, roads are going to be extremely busy on Sunday, when most visitors will arrive, and Monday, when most visitors will leave. Pendergraft said she recommends people stay off Interstates 35 and 45, as well as Highways 6 and 84 during these two days. Pendergraft also said that although it will be a busy weekend in general, traffic will peak on Monday afternoon, right after the eclipse is fully over, around 3 p.m.

There will also be some minor road closures on campus on Monday. Fourth Street at the Penland Crossroads will be closed, as will Third Street around Moody Memorial Library and South Russell.

Will Baylor’s campus be full of visitors on Diadeloso?

While Solano said the Baylor Chamber of Commerce is prepared to welcome a large number of visitors to campus on Monday, they won’t be able to participate in any Diadeloso activities. Visitors would be able to purchase from food trucks, but Eclipse Over Texas — which is the event bringing most visitors to Waco — will have food trucks of its own. So, you may see a few strangers touring or grabbing a bite, but don’t expect to see them dancing to the silent disco or jumping in the space-themed bouncy castle.

There may be some curious visitors walking around, but most will have no need to be on campus, especially during the eclipse. However, with multiple eclipse-themed events happening on and around campus this weekend, don’t be surprised if campus gets busy on Saturday or Sunday.

How do I get a wristband?

Solano said faculty and staff may pick up their free Diadeloso wristbands from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday in the Bill Daniel Student Center. Students will be able to pick up their wristbands from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday.

To ensure that only students are participating in the events of Diadeloso, Solano said a student ID is required to receive a wristband. Students may also show their Canvas page if they forget their ID.

Can I still sign up for intramural tournaments and the Dia Cup?

Yes. Students can register for intramural spikeball, cornhole or tug-of-war tournaments here. Registration will be open until Sunday, but Solano said she recommends teams sign up as soon as possible.

Students can also sign up for the Dia Cup here — a tournament where teams will complete challenges and riddles throughout the day to win prizes. There are only 25 spots, so sign up fast.

Are Diadeloso and Eclipse Over Texas two different things?

Yes. Eclipse over Texas is an event put on by the City of Waco, Discovery and the Lowell Observatory that will take place at McLane Stadium, and it is open to the general public. Diadeloso is not affiliated with this event and will remain a student-centered day, as it has traditionally been.

When does everything start and end?

Eclipse Over Texas will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Diadeloso will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., with intramural tournaments running from 9 to 11 a.m. at Bear Park.

When will the solar eclipse happen?

Although there are only four minutes and 13 seconds of totality, the sun will be partially covered for a few hours. Starting at 12:20 p.m., the moon will make its first contact with the sun. From then until 1:38 p.m., light will gradually drop to dusk levels. From 1:38 to 1:42 p.m., Waco will experience totality. Then, light will steadily increase until 3 p.m., when we will return to normal afternoon light.

What happens if it’s rainy or cloudy?

As far as seeing the eclipse goes, cloud coverage would block the coveted view of the sun and its corona. However, the 360-degree sunset and drop in light levels will be visible with or without clouds.

For Diadeloso, Solano said the day will proceed normally if there is no thunderstorm. Lightning — which is not currently forecasted — would force the outdoor activities to be canceled, but the indoor ones in the SUB would remain open.

Pendergraft said a similar thing for Eclipse Over Texas. The event has been in the works for three years, so don’t expect a storm to shut it down.

Where should I watch the eclipse if I don’t go to Eclipse Over Texas?

Don’t feel that you’ll miss out on the eclipse if you don’t go over to McLane Stadium. In fact, Baylor physics professor Dr. Jared Fier will be giving a lecture at Fountain Mall from 1:15 to 1:45 p.m., right as the eclipse is happening. So, if you decide to stay on campus, Fountain Mall will be a great place to watch.

Is the Tuesday after Diadeloso an instructional Monday?