SALT LAKE CITY — A full moon on Halloween night means the spooky season is really here. As if 2020 isn’t weird enough, it’s a year with 13 full moons rather than 12, two of which occur in October.
How rare is a full moon on Halloween night?
Despite the evidence of motion pictures, a full moon on Halloween is a rare occurrence and only happens every 18 to 19 years according to Old Farmer’s Almanac.
To make this event even more spectacular, the full moon will be seen across the whole world. The last time an event like this happened was in 2001, but only the Central and Pacific time zones saw the moon. Additionally, the last time the whole world was able to see this was Halloween in 1944.
The Old Farmer’s Almanac predicts the next Halloween full moon, also a blue moon, will occur in 2039.
How did this moon receive its name?
October’s first full moon is called the “Harvest Moon” because it refers to the harvesting of crops in early autumn in North America. The moonlight created by the full moon helps farmers harvest their crops late into the night according to Old Farmer’s Almanac.
This year, the Harvest Moon rose on October 1. This full moon usually occurs in September; the full moon on September 2 was too early to be known as the Harvest moon. In 2019, the full Harvest Moon occurred on Friday, September 13.
The following full moon is called the “Hunter’s Moon” because, in North American folklore, tribes hunted meat for the long winter ahead. Since both the Harvest Moon, which usually occurs in September, and Hunter’s Moon are occurring in October it is known as a “once in a blue moon” experience.
No, unfortunately, the moon won’t actually be blue, but it will be a spectacular spectacle in the sky. While a blue moon seems rare, a full moon on Halloween across all time zones is even rarer.
So, if you prefer the full name of this moon, it is “Hunter’s Blue Moon on Halloween”.
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