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It's the first full moon June solstice since 1967, when many in the U.S. were celebrating the Summer of Love. Image via yoganonymous.com.

June solstice full moon in 2016

Celebrate a June solstice full moon on June 20, 2016. It’s the Northern Hemisphere’s first summer solstice full moon since 1967, aka the Summer of Love.

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Summer solstice tale of 2 cities

On the June solstice, the sun sets at the same time in New York City and St. Augustine, Florida. But New York has an hour more of daylight. How’s that happen?

From the December solstice to the June solstice, the sunset makes its way north, as illustrated in this photo composite by Abhijit Juvekar.  Thanks, Abhijit!

All you need to know: June solstice 2016

It’s that beautiful time of year again in the Northern Hemisphere, when the June solstice – your signal to celebrate summer – is nearly upon us.

As the sun sets one the stark Martian landscape, stars come into view. Will future Mars colonists have a North Star to guide them? Image via NASA.

Does Mars have a North Star?

Earth’s north star – Polaris – is located nearly directly above Earth’s north pole. There’s a star above Mars’ north pole, too, but it’s very faint.

Sky wheeling around Polaris, the North Star.

Does the North Star ever move?

It’s a symbol for constancy, but, if you took its picture, you’d find that the North Star makes its own little circle around the sky’s north pole every day.

A geocentric - Earth-centered - plot of the orbit of Venus, 2016-2023, via Guy Ottewell.

Five petals of Venus

A word about the “pentagram” of Venus, a highly noticeable rhythm in the motion of Venus, as viewed from an Earth-centered perspective.

This still from Larry Koehn's recent video shows Venus and Jupiter in late, 2016, when these 2 brightest of planets will appear near each other in the west after sunset.  Visit Larry's website shadowandsubstance.com

Where is Venus?

Looking for Venus? It’s behind the sun. This video tracks Venus from when it reappears again in our evening sky in July, 2016 … to April, 2017.

Comet C/2013 X1 (PanSTARRS) captured on June 7, 2016 by Efrain Morales of the Sociedad de Astronomia del Caribe

Comet visible in binoculars, nearly closest

Comet C/2013 X1 (PanSTARRS) isn’t visible to the eye, but binoculars can pick it up. Charts and other info that can help you spot the comet in the coming weeks!

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Join the fun at ALCon 2016

ALCon 2016 is the national amateur astronomy convention, held this year from August 10-13 in Washington, D.C. Registration is now live!

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Jupiter at east quadrature June 4

It’s a hallmark in Jupiter’s appearance in our sky. At eastern quadrature, Jupiter is highest in the sky around the time of sunset.

Skywatcher, by Predrag Agatonovic.

June 2016 guide to the 5 bright planets

Three planets – Jupiter, Mars and Saturn – light up the evening sky all month long. Mercury is east before sunrise. Great month for planet-watching!

Photo by EarthSky friend Susan Jensen in Odessa, Washington

Find the Summer Triangle in June

Find the famous Summer Triangle asterism ascending in the east on June evenings. It’s a large star pattern made of 3 bright stars in 3 separate constellations.

As the Moon orbits Earth, its changing geometry with respect to the Sun produces the characteristic phases. This composite image is a mosaic made from 25 individual photos of the Moon and illustrates its phases over one synodic month. For complete details about this image, see Moon Phases Mosaic. The individual images included in this composite can be found in the Moon Phases Gallery. For more composites, see Moon Phases Mosaics. Photo copyright 2012 by Fred Espenak.

Moon in 2016

Pretty much everything you want to know about the moon in 2016 – including phases, cycles, eclipses and supermoons – from world-renowned astronomer Fred Espenak.

Jim Elliott of Powell, Ohio, contributed this photo. He wrote: “The moon over Jupiter over Columbus, Ohio, at the OSU planetarium star party. April 16, 2016.”

Astronomy festivals, star parties, workshops

Summertime star parties! We’ve added many new events to this list of astronomical events throughout the U.S. and Canada. Find one near you, join in and have fun.

Photo via Tim Geers

Only 2 full moons in a season possible?

The May 21 Blue Moon carries that name because it’s the 3rd of 4 full moons in a season. But can a season have just 2 full moons?

Image Credit: Luz Adriana Villa A.

Can you tell me the full moon names?

For both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, full moons have names corresponding to calendar months or seasons of the year.

Earth will between between the sun and Mars on May 22, 2016.  Then, the distance between our two worlds will be at its least for this two-year period, and Mars will appear brightest in our sky.  Image via Fourmilab.

Mars is bright! Here’s why

We’re beginning to get questions about that red “star” in the east each evening. It’s Mars! We’ll pass between Mars and the sun this weekend.

Most Blue Moons are not blue in color.  This photo of a moon among fast-moving clouds was created using special filters. Image via EarthSky Facebook friend Jv Noriega.

Upcoming Blue Moon near red Mars

The May 21 full moon is a seasonal Blue Moon – an older definition of the term. Watch for it this weekend, near brilliant Mars.

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Mars and Saturn in 2016

Video of this year’s oppositions of Mars and Saturn, in front of the constellations Libra and Scorpius. Notice Mars appearing larger around its May 22 opposition!

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Give me five minutes and I’ll give you Saturn in 2016

Saturn isn’t as bright as Mars, but it’s near Mars on the sky’s dome. It’ll soon be at its best for the year. Learn how to identify Saturn for the rest of 2016.