Look for Thursday night’s ‘wolf moon’ over New Jersey
A wolf moon is a full moon in the month of January, and Thursday night it will be at 100%. Should you miss it, Friday night's 99% will have to do. So why does a January full moon get such a wickedly cool nickname? According to Newsweek it's because wolves are often heard howling in the dead of winter.
It wasn't until I saw this NJ.com article that I realized every single month's full moon has a different nickname, and sometimes more than one.
February is a snow moon. The Old Farmer's Almanac says it's called that for the typically heavy snowfalls in this month. Pretty straightforward.
March a worm moon. The nickname was given because this is the month that earthworms tend to emerge from the ground as winter ends. But March's full moon has also been nicknamed a crow moon, a sap moon, a chaste moon, a sugar moon and a crust moon. Go figure.
April has a pink moon. The name comes from phlox, a pink flower that blooms this month. Like March's full moon (and like Calvin Broadus Jr. and Sean Combs), it's gone by many other nicknames as well.
May has a flower moon. More inclusive than April's full moon, the full moon in May is named for ALL the flowers that bloom this time of year. All flowers matter!
June is a strawberry moon. You can see where this is going of course, and you're right. It's because strawberries bloom in June.
July is a buck moon or a thunder moon. A deer buck's new antlers sprout around this time. As far as thunder, I'm going out on a wild limb and guessing it's because of the frequent thunderstorms this time of year.
August is a sturgeon moon. Named for the many fish in lakes where the Algonquin tribes fished.
September has a harvest moon or corn moon. Corn is harvested in September, but the harvest moon is the only name determined by the equinox which is usually in September but every three years falls in October.
October's full moon is called a hunter's moon. Traditionally people hunted this month to prepare for the long winter ahead, thus the name. Sometimes (every three years) the hunter's moon will also be that harvest moon.
November is a beaver moon or a frost moon. Beavers become active in November preparing for the winter. Frost is pretty self-explanatory.
Finally December's full moon is known as a cold moon, again, for the obvious reason of the temperatures dropping.
If all these nicknames are based on what's happening in a given month, should these be modernized and Jerseyfied?
Since a new legislative session starts in January should that be called a thief moon?
Elections fall in November. Scandal moon?
Can beach badge moon take over in May?
Well, again, look for the wolf moon Thursday night. And if you miss it, maybe you can catch next month's I-hate-Tom-Brady moon.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski. Any opinions expressed are Jeff Deminski's own.