The night sky will bring extra pleasure this Halloween.
The night sky will bring extra pleasure to this Halloween, as there is a show that has not happened for nearly two decades.
This year, Halloween is shaping up very differently due to the coronavirus pandemic, with some communities choosing to cancel the trick or treatment to reduce the risk of the virus spreading from one household to another. But in neighborhoods where young masquerades will go from door to door to collect candy, they will have a bright full moon to help light the way.
This will also not be the typical full moon ̵
Contrary to its name, the blue moon does not look blue in color. This is simply the nickname given to the second full moon in a calendar month. However, the moon can acquire different colors such as orange and red when it is close to the horizon, just as the sky can acquire vivid colors when the sun is close to the horizon.
“The modern understanding of the Blue Moon only unfolded in the 1980s. It was the result of a much earlier mistake printed in Sky & Telescope magazine in 1946, and the term has since gone viral in the media.” explained the Old Farmer’s Almanac.
The first full moon in October rose on the first day of the month and was one of the most famous full moons of the year: the Harvest Moon. Harvest Moon is the nickname given to the full moon, closest to the autumnal equinox and usually shines in September, but 2020 was one of the cases when it appeared in early October.
Blue moons like this one happen about once every two and a half years, according to NASA. This irregularity is such that the phrase “once on a blue moon” has arisen.
Those who are superstitious may want to wear a lucky charm on October 31st and maintain it with Friday the 13th just around the corner in November.
The Halloween blue moon is advertised as a rare celestial event by some, leaving people wondering how unusual this event is compared to a typical blue moon.
“The moon is full on Halloween every 19 years,” NASA said. “Actually, every full moon for Halloween is a Blue Moon.”
The last time a full moon lit up the sky on Halloween night was in 2001; however, clouds obscured the ghostly view of people in the northeast, the northern plains, and the Interstate 5 corridor in the Pacific Northwest.
This year, she may have children of her own the next time a blue moon falls on Halloween, which will happen in 2039.
Where cloudless conditions prevail, there will be many more things in the sky than just the moon.
After nightfall, three bright planets will be visible, including Mars to the right of the moon and Jupiter and Saturn next to each other in the southern sky.
Placing a telescope and looking at these planets can be a fun evening for families who do not plan to mislead or treat this year because of the pandemic, although a telescope is not needed to see the trio of planets.
Even looking at the moon through a telescope or ordinary binoculars can reveal the countless craters that scatter the surface of the Earth’s natural satellite.
The second full moon in a calendar month is the most common definition of a blue moon, but there is another way for a full moon to qualify for this nickname.
Instead of looking at the number of full moons in a month, a blue moon can be found when looking at the number of full moons in a given season. There will usually be three full moons each season, but this is not always the case.
“If a season has four full moons instead, then the third full moon (not the fourth) of the season can be called the Blue Moon,” the Old Farmer’s Almanac said.
Like a calendar blue moon, seasonal blue moons appear every few years, with the next rising on August 22, 2021.
Since there are two types of blue moons, it is possible to have both a calendar blue moon and a seasonal blue moon in the same year, but it will be another 17 years before the stars carry the celestial double feature.