Coming up next week is the Blood Moon. Also called the MegaMoon. Or, the Mega Harvest Moon. Or, the Hyper Mega Harvest Blood Moon.
We could even label it a total lunar eclipse. But before we get to it, we’ve got the autumnal equinox.
The equinox arrives this coming Wednesday, September 23. I t’s at 4:21 AM EDT or 1:21 AM PDT.
You’ll go to sleep in summer and wake up in fall!
Autumnal Equinox Facts
- You often hear that days and nights are equal on the equinox. Except they’re not: There’s more minutes of sunshine than non-sun that day. That’s because the thick air near the horizon bends the sun’s image upward and gives each of us about six extra minutes of undeserved daily sunlight.
- But those other equinox rumors are true. The sun really does rise and set precisely due east and due west that day. So it’s a good time to see how your home is aligned with the cardinal points of the compass. Or, to position your sundial, that task you’ve been postponing for so long.
- Also, equinoxes are the only time when everyone on Earth, even those at each of the poles, see the sun shining. It’s a happy feel-good kind of thing even if it officially closes out our beloved summer season.
- Learn more about the autumnal equinox.
What we can’t do is celebrate the change of seasons with beating drums and human sacrifices like the Mayans did. These days that would violate local ordinances.
Photo Credit: NASA
However, we can quietly salute that nearest star while we get ready for next week’s total eclipse of the largest full moon of 2015—on the night of the Harvest Moon.