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Last-minute options to park in Chester for the Monday eclipse

  • Anchor Park along the riverfront in Chester is shown on Friday. Chester Police Chief Ryan Coffey stated the riverfront is a possible location for people to park for Monday's solar eclipse if spots at the Cohen Complex and Chester Welcome Center are unavailable.

    Anchor Park along the riverfront in Chester is shown on Friday. Chester Police Chief Ryan Coffey stated the riverfront is a possible location for people to park for Monday's solar eclipse if spots at the Cohen Complex and Chester Welcome Center are unavailable.
    Pete Spitler/Herald Tribune

 
 
updated: 8/18/2017 4:59 PM

In a city of a reported 8,000 residents - a significant amount of which are housed in Chester's state facilities - finding enough places to park on eclipse day may become a problem if visitor estimates are correct.

For those shut out of camping at Cole Park or parking at the Chester Welcome Center or Cohen Complex, there are two other potential options as of this writing - Water Street along the Mississippi River and 1st Class Auto on State Street.

"To an extent, if somebody wanted to park down on the riverfront, that may be a possibility," said Chester Police Chief Ryan Coffey. "We don't know what to expect. It's tough to suggest anything."

Camping is not allowed at the riverfront and Coffey is urging local citizens to use their own property to enjoy the event.

"Stay home, get out in the backyard and enjoy the eclipse," he said.

1st Class Auto owner Johnny Inman is selling 10x10 spots at his business for $35. Camping and RV parking are available.

To reserve your spot, call 1st Class Auto at 618-826-2849 and ask for Johnny.

"There will be spots for RV parking, tent camping in the grass, I've got a lot of room," he said, estimating around 30 spots would be available.

Chester Recreation Director Patti Carter has also working on adding a few extra spots to Cole Park.

"Depending on the size of what (visitors) have, we're trying to accommodate them," she said.

For those looking to just pull off to view the eclipse, there is the option of the Mary's River Covered Bridge on State Route 150 northeast of the city.

 
 
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