Posted at 8:35 AM on September 3, 2009
by Paul Huttner
The corn is ripe and ready for harvest in the fields. The full Corn Moon is ready to shine over the landscape tonight.
The moon is full at 11:03am CDT Friday. That means tonight is the closest time period to the actual full moon moment. The moon will rise at 7:09pm in the Twin Cities and shine brightly all night long.
Moon names come from various Native American tribes such as the Ojibway and Algonquin. Some are quite beautiful, and all are reflective of what's occurring in the landscape that month. It's amazing how observant Native Americans are and have been historically to monthly and seasonal changes in the landscape.
The Harvest Moon will be full on October 4th this year. The Harvest Moon is defined as the full moon nearest the Autumnal Equinox. This year the equinox falls on September 22nd. This will be the last time the Harvest Moon falls in October until the year 2017.
This year also features a Blue Moon on New Year's Eve! A Blue Moon has different definitions, but the most commonly known is the second full moon in the same month. Blue Moons occur on average every two and a half years.
Enjoy the bright full moon tonight!
Posted at 3:43 PM on September 3, 2009
by Paul Huttner
First maple leaves of the season showing color on the lawn at the Huttner Weather Lab.
It's that time of year.
Can you sense and see the subtle changes occurring in our landscape? The sun angle is a little lower. The sun doesn't quite have the oomph of a month ago. The sky is a lazy languid version of its former self. The grass is thriving on cooler dewy nights. The garden is full of nearly ripe tomatoes soaking up the early September sun.
Like it or not, we are moving into the last days of summer. We've lost two and a half hours of daylight since late June. Before you get too depressed about the changes underway, here's the good news.
The best two months of weather are still ahead. Yes, I wax a bit subjectively here, but there's a good case to be made. I submit the following items as evidence.
1) Average temperatures over the next two months are some of the most comfortable of the year. Our average high and low today is 76 and 55. By October 3rd they fall about 10 degrees to a nice comfy 66 and 44. By the first of November our averages dip to 50 and 31. Chilly yes, but that would still be a nice day in late March. Just perfect for cleaning up the last of thoise leaves or putting up (gulp!) Christmas lights.
2) We can still see many warm days. It is not uncommon to reach 80 degrees into the first part of October.
3) The heat and humidity of summer (or at least MOST summers) is gone. These are some of the best days of the year to enjoy outdoor activities.
4) The bugs are pretty much toast.
5) The kids are back at school.
6) The explosion of fall color is just around the corner. By early October the landscape will be ablaze with vibrant color.
If you think this is a bit unscientific, you may be right. In fact, I'm sitting here thinking this is what Minnesotans do this time of the year to convince ourselves that it's really great that our all too short summers are nearly over. This is the time of year when we say; "Oh, it's been a great summer."
I call this season Summerfall. Not quite summer, not quite fall. A little of both. You can still take a dip in your favorite lake, but it's cool enough at night to enjoy a bonfire. We weather people are forward focused individuals. We can see what's coming down the road. El Nino or not, we will still have winter this year.
Savor these last days and weeks of summer-like weather.