Spending your eclipse day downtown? Finlay Park is in easy walking distance, with perfect lawn space to spread your blanket or set up your chair. The Vista Greenway provides a link along an abandoned railway tunnel to the park from Lady Street. The Vista Greenway also extends to the Cottontown Neighborhood beside the Elmwood Underpass. Walk or bike away from traffic!
Finlay Park is an oasis in the heart of downtown. This beautiful 18-acre park has had two lives. It was first dedicated in 1859 as Sidney Park, named in honor of Algernon Sidney Johnson, a Columbia city councilman. Sidney Park had a short life as the Civil War broke out soon after. The park fell into disrepair after the Civil War and served as a rail yard and for commercial venue until the late 1900’s.
In 1990 the park was reopened is an oasis in contrast to the glass, asphalt and concrete in the surrounding city. It serves as the site for such events as Columbia Kids Day, The Summer Concert Series, Let’s Share, and countless community celebrations.
In 1992 the park was renamed Finlay Park, in honor of Kirkman Finlay, former Mayor of Columbia whose vision to re-energize Columbia’s Vista, between Main Street and the river, successfully changed the face of our city. You will find him seated on a bench beside the pond today.
The park is situated between Assembly, Taylor, Gadsden and Laurel Streets. It is across the street from the Governor’s Mansion and has one of the most photographed views of downtown.
This event will be handing out free eclipse glasses to guests courtesy of the City of Columbia, S.C.! Glasses will be handed to guests starting at 10am. Guests can come claim their spots as early as 7am. Rangers will be on site to set up amenities at 9am. Guests are encouraged to bring their picnics, plenty of hydrating beverages, sun shades and patience!
Located in Finlay Park in Columbia, S.C., hosted by City of Columbia Parks and Recreation Department.