Supermoon, Blue Moon, and Lunar Eclipse All Coming January 31
Sky watchers are in for a treat on January 31, as a very rare occurrence happens in the skies around the world. A Supermoon, a Blue Moon, and a Lunar eclipse will all be happening on the same day at the same time. Wowser! Better go get that telescope out of lay a way, because this will be a spectacular event.
I'm not an astronomer, but I'll break it down for those of us who just want to enjoy the spectacle. A Blue Moon happens about every 2½ years. It's when there is a second full moon in one calendar month. The first one occurred on January 1, 2018. The second will be around is 7:37 a.m. CST on Jan. 31. And just FYI, the Blue Moon will not actually look blue to the naked eye. Still cool, though!
According to NASA, a Supermoon is 'a full moon occurring near or at the time when the Moon is at its closest point in its orbit around Earth. It's also called a 'perigree'. This makes the moon look way closer, and much brighter, which is kind of awesome.
The Lunar Eclipse will begin around 3:48 AM Pacific Time, and will last about 3½ hours. Totality will be approximately 77 minutes, but by the time that happens, the moon will already have set in the Eastern time zones.
If you are wondering how rare this occurrence is, the last time it happened was just after the Civil War ended in March 1866. Wow!