Bright Planets Accompany September’s Harvest Moon

by Sid Baglini

Saturday, September 10, 2022, 8:30 pm

This year’s Harvest Moon is ripe in September unlike last year when it fell in October. A Harvest Moon is whatever full moon occurs closest to the Autumn Equinox which is on September 22nd this year. The name is derived from the fact that the cool, clear nights combined with the full moon rising early in the evening, farmers can continue their harvest even after darkness falls. Those of us who have been walking under the full moon for several years are aware of how well you can see once your eyes become adjusted.. 

As usual, we have other names provided by the indigenous people relating to their livelihood. Since this is the time when they harvested as well, it is known as The Corn Moon, The Corn Maker Moon; and The Corn Harvest Moon..  You can take your choice of names relating to the changing colors on the trees: The Falling Leaves Moon; The Yellow Leaves Moon; Moon of Brown Leaves; and Leaves Turning Moon. Finally, because young animals are often weaned in September and October, it is called The Child Moon and with the youngsters finally demanding less attention, we have the deer, elk, moose, etc. thinking about next year’s offspring–hence, The Rutting Moon and The Mating Moon.

The Harvest Moon will peak at 5:58 A.M. on the 10th so if you are an early riser you can check it out before sunrise.  While there are no meteor showers congruent with our walk this month, there are several planets that will be visible in the evening.  Jupiter will be fairly high in the southeast and quite bright.  Saturn will be to Jupiter’s right but less bright.  Venus will ride low on the horizon in the west/southwest just after dusk but will probably not be visible by the time we walk. 

We hope you can join us for an evening stroll under The Harvest Moon.  We’ll have some fun facts to share including a bit of folklore involving a “Wooly Worm”.  You won’t want to miss that.  We will meet at the Baptist Church parking lot at the corner of First Avenue and Channing Avenue.   

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