The moon will officially reach its full phase tonight, Monday, September 24, at 10:52 p.m. (EDT). This year’s Harvest Moon falls in September, although on occasion, it occurs in October, as it did last year when the full moon was on October 5.
What makes the Harvest Moon different from other full moons is that throughout the year, the moon generally rises an average of around 50 minutes later each day, but near the autumnal equinox, there’s only a 30-minute difference. The full Harvest Moon rises at sunset, then rises very near sunset for several nights in a row, making it appear as though there are full moons multiple nights.
Tonight’s Harvest Moon will in rise various locations in the United States as follows:
Eastport, Maine - 6:35 p.m. St. Augustine, Florida - 7:26 p.m. Tuscaloosa, Alabama - 6:32 p.m. Salina, Kansas - 7:37 p.m. Helena, Montana - 7:39 p.m. Los Alamitos, California - 6:59 p.m.
Sources: Joe Rao, Space.com, September 24, 2018, and The Old Farmer's Almanac.
On our Dark Shadows trips to Maine, I noticed that it seemed to get dark a lot earlier in the evening. Lee and Julia said that was because Maine should actually be in the Atlantic Time Zone. I just noticed that the moon rises almost an hour earlier in Maine than it does in Florida. I thought of this when I saw the moonrise times and I was reminded of last week's Mystery Location where the town is on a time zone boundary.