'Strawberry Moon' expected to appear Wednesday night


Saturn will be at its closest point to Earth this week, allowing stargazers a pretty good look at the gas giant. NASA says the Strawberry Moon gets its name from the Algonquin tribe due to the "relatively short season for harvesting strawberries in northeastern North America".

A sweet celestial treat known as a "strawberry moon" will greet sky watchers across the Pacific Northwest on Wednesday night, weather permitting.

Now, if we could only come up with the flawless caption for our glorious strawberry moon 'Gram... We will have a full moon and a great view of Saturn.

And in a grand-scale optical illusion, the full moon will look bigger than usual, just as it begins to rise to the east, he added. If you don't have a telescope, though, you can still spot Saturn in the sky. At that time the Saturn could be seen effectively from the Earth, rising during the sunset and setting at the time of sunrise on the morning of Wednesday 27 June.

Just prior to the time when the Strawberry Moon would achieve its peak, the sixth planet, Saturn would be just at the opposite of the Sun.

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The moon won't necessarily look like a strawberry, but it can take on a reddish tint and appear unnaturally large.

Full moons traditionally represented new beginnings and new change, with Native American women using the moon to cleanse their spiritual selves.

But don't be fooled by the nickname, the full moon won't be sporting any extra color.

"Cloud-free conditions will lead to uninterrupted views of Saturn for much of the western and central United States on Wednesday night", the website reports.

This is the second of three oppositions in as many months, coming after the Jupiter opposition in May and preceding the Mars opposition in July.