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Harvest Moon 2017 shines tonight amid planetary show

Due to a celestial schedule quirk, October's full moon is also known as the 'Harvest Moon,' an event that only takes place every few years. But why is the 'Harvest Moon' so important? October's full Harvest Moon will shine all night tonight (Oct. 5) while passing by — or fully covering — Neptune in some parts of the world. In the predawn hours, you'll get another celestial show with Mars and Venus close together in the eastern sky. The moon reaches its full phase at 2:40 p.m. EDT (1840 GMT), but casual observers will see little difference later tonight. In North America, the Harvest Moon refers to the first full moon after the autumnal equinox, which took place on Sept. 22. The name of the moon, however, may vary, depending on which culture's literature you consult. Harvest moons are rare in October, and they are set to occur only 18 times between 1970 and 2050; usually the full moon occurs much closer to the autumnal equinox, which would make the Harvest Moon fall in late September.

Read More: Fox News

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