What could be the perfect celestial addition to the nighttime sky on Halloween night? A full moon!
And guess what: This year, we'll have just that on the evening of October 31st.
You might not even remember the last time we had a Halloween full moon. That was back in October 2001.
Halloween full moons are a little rare. On average, we see one about every 18 to 19 years.
As a matter of fact, there will only be six Halloween full moons in the 21st century. As mentioned, one already occurred in 2001. One will occur this year in 2020.
The next full Halloween moon will happen in 2039. After that, there will only be three more Halloween full moons before the year 2100. Those October 31st full moons will occur in 2058, 2077 and 2096.
This is the second full moon for October 2020. The second full moon of a month is referred to as a "blue moon".
This trifecta of lunar events: A Halloween full moon, two October full moons and the blue moon, all time out within the 18-to-19 year cycle that we saw in 2001.
We're already seeing it in 2020, of course, and we will see it again four more times before the end of the century.
With the timing of the orbit of the moon around the Earth, any year we have a Halloween full moon, we see a full moon earlier in the month on the first and we also end up with a "blue moon" on October 31st.
The first full moon on October 1st was called the Harvest Moon. The full moon on October 31st will be called the Hunter's Moon.