The moon has been waxing larger the past week and will finally be full the night of September 29-30th. The full moon closest to the autumnal equinox is known as the Harvest Moon.
Since the equinox fell on September 22nd, this moon will officially be the Full Harvest Moon.
The names are given to the moons based on traditions, time of year and even folklore. Since farmers would harvest during this time of year, the full moon was to signal the corn, pumpkins, beans and other items were ready to be gathered.
The farmers loved this moon, because it allowed them to pick a bit later after sunset. Normally, there's a dark period from when the sun sets and the moon rises, (gets later each night).
Because of the ecliptic (path of sun, moon and planets) there's less dark time between sunset and moonrise, and farmers could continue harvesting.
WILL IT SEEM BRIGHTER?
The moon can often play tricks on us. When it's on the horizon, you get a perspective of just how big it is, with mountains and buildings around it. Once it's higher in the sky, it's a bit tougher to tell its size. That's why it always seems bigger and brighter near the horizon.
WHAT COLOR WILL IT BE?
The moon can often appear to have different colors. Technically, the moon itself is always the same color, gray. Its interaction with the atmosphere can lead to different color changes.
The harvest moon can have a reddish tint as it comes over the horizon. This is because the moon is seen through much more of the atmosphere that it would once it's higher in the sky. The dust and dirt particles that are always in the atmosphere help give it that reddish tint.
We'd love to see your full harvest moon photos this weekend: Email them to: firstname.lastname@example.org