Halloween 2020: Rare Blue Moon Will Appear on Oct. 31

by Jon D. B.
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In a rare plus to 2020, this Halloween will feature a super-rare blue moon for a perfect holiday appearance October 31st.

If you’re planning to stay socially distanced outdoors for Halloween this year – have we got wonderful news for you. This Halloween holiday will feature the rare phenomenon known as a blue moon.

According to NASA, this particular moon only occurs roughly seven times every 19 years. As such, the rarity is a must-see for a holiday largely associated with full moons. The moon’s title comes not from its color, however, but its placing within the calendar month. If a second full moon appears within one singular month – then it is denoted a “blue moon”.

While the moon itself may not appear bluish in color, each comes as a striking display none the less.

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What is a Blue Moon, exactly?

To clarify, Space.com actually lists two phenomenons as blue moons:

A “Blue Moon” is a fairly infrequent phenomenon involving the appearance of an additional full moon within a given period. But which period? It turns out there are two definitions of the term, and one was borne out of a misunderstanding of the other.

The older meaning defines the lunar event as the third full moon in a season that has four full moons. Called a seasonal Blue Moon, this occurs about every 2.5 years, according to NASA. More recently, the term Blue Moon has been applied to the second full moon within a single calendar month. There are roughly 29.5 days between full moons, making it unusual for two full moons to fit into a 30- or 31-day-long month. (This means that February will [never host the phenomenon].)

Space.com

Is either correct over the other? “Not really,” says Space.com. “Take your pick!” This lunar phenomenon, however, can be either occurrence – and each is just as spectacular as the other.

Keep your eyes peeled for clear skies and a spectacular sight above this Halloween. It’s sure to be a moon you won’t want to miss.

[H/T NASA]

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