'Super harvest moon': First day of fall meets full moon

Get ready for a night show. It’s tough to come to grips with the end of summer. Luckily, autumn will enter with a bang this year.

Not only will Northern America witness the beginning of autumn at 11:09 Eastern tonight, there will be a full moon in the sky. Put those two occurrences together and you’ll get the rare “super harvest moon.”

“The two sources of light will mix together to create a kind of 360-degree, summer-autumn twilight glow,” NASA Science writes.

When farmers relied on moonlight to extend harvesting hours, they started calling the full moon closest to the autumnal equinox the harvest moon. If the full moon fell on the first actual day of autumn, it became “super harvest,” or the “harvestest.”

The event has not occurred for 20 years, and probably will not reoccur until 2029.

As an added bonus, Jupiter will appear very close to the moon tonight. NASA’s Tony Phillips writes: “A Super Harvest Moon, a rare twilight glow, a midnight conjunction–rarely does autumn begin with such celestial fanfare.”

If you’re outside tonight, grab a camera and take a photo of the super harvest moon. Submit your photos to our Dropbox.

The Associated Press

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