Fireworks canceled this year? Watch the lunar eclipse 'Buck Moon' instead

If your family's Fourth of July fireworks plans are up in smoke because of the pandemic, watch the sky for a lunar eclipse instead.On July 4, just aft...

Posted: Jul 4, 2020 11:08 AM
Updated: Jul 4, 2020 12:30 PM

If your family's Fourth of July fireworks plans are up in smoke because of the pandemic, watch the sky for a lunar eclipse instead.

On July 4, just after 11 p.m. ET, the moon will begin its temporary new look. For exactly two hours and 45 minutes, the moon will pass through the feathered outer shadow cast from Earth, creating a partial penumbral lunar eclipse.

A penumbral lunar eclipse occurs when the moon passes through the faint penumbra shadow cast by Earth. The moon misses the Earth's umbral shadow, which is best known for creating total and partial lunar eclipses.

This event might not be as illustrious as a partial or total lunar eclipse where parts of the moon seem to disappear.

Still, a noticeable darkening of the moon's surface will be visible without a telescope. The eclipse will begin at 11:07 p.m. ET and last through 1:52 a.m. ET, with peak darkening occurring just after midnight.

It's also the Buck Moon

During this time, it will also peak as the full moon -- nicknamed the Buck Moon -- just after midnight on Sunday morning. It will appear opposite the Sun (in Earth-based longitude) at 12:44 a.m. ET, according to NASA.

'The Maine Farmer's Almanac first published 'Indian' names for the full Moons in the 1930's,' according to NASA. 'According to this almanac, as the full Moon in July and the first full Moon of summer, the Algonquin tribes of what is now the northeastern United States called this full Moon the Buck Moon.'

The July full moon also has been called Thunder Moon, Hay Moon, Mead Moon, Rose Moon, Guru Moon and Dharma Day.

This event is just the beginning of an astronomical month.

If the clouds get in the way of your lunar eclipse viewing, mark your calendar for these other July astronomical events.

Saturn and Jupiter make their closest approach to Earth

A great meeting of planets, known by astronomers as a conjunction, will occur every night this summer. In mid-July, Jupiter and Saturn will make their closest approach to Earth in 20 years.

Expect a brighter than usual illumination of the planets as they take center stage across the horizon. Jupiter takes the cake, though, as it's expected to outshine Saturn by 15 times.

The largest planets of our solar system will follow each other westward across the night sky.

They will be bundled brightly together overhead, creating their most dazzling display of the year.

July will end with dueling meteor showers

The capstone of the July astronomy calendar will be marked by two meteor showers peaking on the same night.

At their peak, the Alpha Capricornids and the southern Delta Aquariids will provide roughly 20 to 25 visible meteors per hour.

The event will happen on the evening of July 28, lasting into July 29.

The waning crescent moon and ideal summer temperatures will make for perfect viewing conditions for the dual July meteor showers.

Now we just need the clouds to participate, too, in hopes of clear skies to watch streaking meteors.

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2707049

Reported Deaths: 57343
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings34831910956
Queens32527210405
Suffolk2532123673
Nassau2243793326
Bronx2127096803
New York1757714661
Westchester1475492354
Erie1228872028
Monroe964171244
Richmond922471967
Orange61633944
Onondaga58795808
Rockland55201782
Dutchess37697507
Albany34056409
Oneida32768634
Niagara28265414
Broome27944432
Saratoga24180222
Schenectady19131243
Ulster18865288
Rensselaer17147192
Chautauqua14703189
Oswego13956132
Putnam13055101
Chemung12691174
St. Lawrence12634143
Steuben12268187
Ontario11499118
Jefferson11123105
Wayne10020101
Cattaraugus9824154
Cayuga9618112
Sullivan944390
Genesee8495143
Herkimer8165141
Clinton795346
Fulton7719109
Tompkins734161
Madison7246108
Warren713194
Livingston707975
Montgomery7073159
Washington652376
Tioga627473
Cortland604088
Allegany5896119
Columbia5617113
Chenango547995
Orleans539095
Franklin529125
Otsego527861
Wyoming519964
Greene487788
Delaware430151
Lewis414539
Seneca317167
Essex294637
Schoharie262324
Yates196733
Schuyler190020
Hamilton5103
Unassigned1422
Out of NY0336
Utica
Cloudy
30° wxIcon
Hi: 30° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 30°
Oneonta
Cloudy
25° wxIcon
Hi: 28° Lo: 24°
Feels Like: 19°
Herkimer
Cloudy
29° wxIcon
Hi: 32° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 29°
Old Forge
Mostly Cloudy
30° wxIcon
Hi: 23° Lo: 10°
Feels Like: 30°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
2022 WKTV Golf Card only $99.99
Game Day Deals - New Deals Each Week
Stuff the Bus Locations
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve