CLEVELAND — Look up! The next full moon will be on Thursday afternoon, June 24, 2021, appearing opposite the Sun in Earth-based longitude at 2:40 p.m. EDT, and it will be your last chance to view a full supermoon this year.
Even though it will become full in the middle of the afternoon on Thursday, it will appear full for about three days around this time. Check it out from Wednesday through early Saturday morning.
CONDITIONS FOR VIEWING:
Wednesday Night: Partly cloudy. Milder temps| Low: 61º
Thursday Night: Even Warmer. Increasing clouds. Stray Shower.| Low: 67º
Friday Night: More Clouds. Showers and storms possible.| Low: 68º
WHAT IS A SUPERMOON?
The term "supermoon" was coined by the astrologer Richard Nolle in 1979 and refers to either a new or full moon that occurs when the moon is within 90% of perigee, its closest approach to Earth. It appears slightly larger and brighter than a typical full moon.
Supermoons have become popular over the last few decades. Depending upon how you interpret this definition, in a typical year, there can be two to four full supermoons in a row and two to four new supermoons in a row.
Different publications use slightly different thresholds for deciding when a full moon is close enough to the Earth to qualify as a supermoon. For 2021, some publications consider this full Moon the last of a series of four supermoons (from March to June). The full moons in April and May were nearly tied as the closest full moons of the year. The full moon on May 26, 2021, was slightly closer to the Earth than the full moon on April 26, 2021, but only by a slim 0.04%.
WHY IS IT CALLED THE "STRAWBERRY MOON"?
In the 1930s the Maine Farmer's Almanac began publishing Native American names for the full moons of the year. According to this Almanac, the Algonquin tribes called this the Strawberry Moon. The name comes from the relatively short season for harvesting strawberries in the northeastern United States.
An old European name for this full moon is the Mead Moon or Honey Moon. Mead is a drink created by fermenting honey mixed with water and sometimes with fruits, spices, grains, or hops. In some countries, mead is also called honey wine (though in others honey wine is different). Some writings suggest that the time around the end of June was when honey was ready for harvesting, which made this the "sweetest" moon.
The word "honeymoon" traces back to at least the 1500s in Europe. The tradition of calling the first month of marriage the "honeymoon" may be tied to this full moon because of the custom of marrying in June or because the "Honey Moon" is the "sweetest" moon of the year.
Another European name for this full moon is the Rose Moon. Some sources indicate the name "Rose Moon" comes from the roses that bloom this time of year.
For more information about supermoons and other celestial events this summer - head over to NASA's website.
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