If you’ve been looking for a reason to stargaze this week, look no further than the upcoming strawberry moon.
According to NASA, the strawberry moon this year is the first full moon of summer.
Lifehacker reported that the strawberry moon is the last full moon of spring or the first full moon of summer.
If going by summer’s meteorological start date of June 1, then the strawberry moon is virtually always going to land in summer. However, if going off the summer solstice, it can be in either spring or summer, depending on it if falls before or after the solstice.
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This year, it will reach its fullest point on Thursday, June 24, at 2:40 p.m. EST. If you’re not in a position to be stargazing in the middle of the afternoon or want a view of it at night, the moon should be visible and appear full from Wednesday, June 23, to Saturday, June 26.
The strawberry moon isn’t a supermoon, but it barely misses the requirement. A supermoon is classified as a moon that peaks within 90 percent of its perigee (the point that it’s closest to Earth). This full moon is close to that, so NASA is classifying it as a “marginal supermoon.”
Supermoons generally look larger and brighter than other full moons since they’re closer to Earth, and this one should also appear a little brighter and larger.
The strawberry moon got its name from the Algonquin after they noticed that the moon was in sync with the strawberry-picking season, according to NASA. The moon is also called the mead moon or honey moon, specifically in European regions.