July 4th 2020: Full moon and lunar eclipse to go with fireworks


CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) As a few fireworks displays go off, night owls will also be treated to seeing the full moon crossing from Saturday night into Sunday morning. This full moon is known as the Buck Moon among other names. The moon will actually reach full stage at 12:44 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time Sunday morning July 5, 2020.

The “Buck Moon” is named by Algonquin Native American tribes after the male deer who start to see their antlers grow and appear “in the velvet” as they are covered by a soft, fuzzy coating of fur this time of year.

Buck shortly after antlers lose “velvet”

The position of the Moon early Sunday morning is almost directly opposite the sun so part of the edge of the Moon will pass through a part of the shadow of the Earth. This shadow effect is called a partial penumbral eclipse, but it’s not exactly one to get hyped over because the shadow in this case is so dim that you’d be hard pressed to see it without instrumentation according to NASA.

Why the penumbral lunar eclipse is not very visual: the moon is in the “secondary shadow” of the Earth known as the penumbra. Illustration by NASA.GOV

This full moon also has several other names including the Thunder Moon, Hay Moon, Mead Moon and Rose Moon.

The name Thunder Moon comes from the fact that this is a time of frequent thunderstorms in the summer.

According to NASA, the other names are given because:

“Europeans called this full Moon the Hay Moon for the haymaking in June and July, and sometimes the Mead Moon (although this name and “Honey Moon” were also used for the previous full Moon). Mead is created by fermenting honey mixed with water, sometimes adding fruits, spices, grains, or hops.

Another European name is the Rose Moon, although some use this name for the previous full Moon. Some sources indicate the name “Rose Moon” comes from the roses that bloom in late June. Others report that the name comes from the color of the full Moon this time of year.”


Of course the StormTracker 13 meteorologists do like the name Thunder Moon because it allows them to remind you that you can get lightning alerts and storms alerts any time from the StormTracker 13 weather app. It’s free and you can download it here for iPhone or Android.

Follow Spencer Adkins on Facebook and Twitter for the latest weather developments.

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