Harvest Moon Rises Tonight

Uranus should be visible, too
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 28, 2012 5:39 AM CDT
Updated Sep 29, 2012 11:43 AM CDT
Harvest Moon Rises Tomorrow
A hawk perched on a tree at the edge of Randleman Lake is framed by the harvest moon, near Branson Davis Road in Randolph County, N.C., on Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2010.   (AP Photo/News & Record, Joseph Rodriguez)

Reminder: If the night skies seem a bit brighter this weekend, it's because the annual harvest moon arrives tonight. As USA Today explains, this marks the first full moon nearest the autumnal equinox, this year being Sept. 22, and farmers of old used the light to bring in their crops. It's actually no different than other full moons, although the moon rises at closer intervals on successive nights this time of year, another boon to the farmers.

"In the days before tractors with headlights, having moonlight to work by was crucial to getting the harvest in quickly before rain caused it to rot," says an editor at Sky & Telescope. Sky watchers might also keep an eye out for Uranus this weekend, and Space.com has details on that. (More harvest moon stories.)

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