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Supermoon Set to Light Up the Sky August 10th

Super Moon
Getty Images, Cameron Spencer

If you take some time to look at the sky this Sunday night (8/10), you can catch a somewhat rare, up close and personal view of a new  moon known as a Supermoon.

Sunday night, the moon will be its closest to the earth in its orbit, making it appear 14% larger than usual. It’s known as the moon’s perigee. This Thursday night’s perigee happens to coincide with a new moon, and it will appear very bright in the sky. Additionally, the fact that which gives this particular Super Moon the name ‘Black Moon’, according to EarthSky.org. This is the name commonly given to the second new moon in one month (the first was January 1st.)

Through history, it has been widely thought that a Super Moon can lead to a higher risk of catastrophic events, such as earthquakes and volcano eruptions, as well as odd behavior in people and animals. I also herd that some credit the Super Moon for the sinking of ships. But don’t worry. While the moon’s closeness to Earth will have a slightly increased effect on the tides, there is no hard evidence linking a Super Moon to any other natural disasters or ships sinking in the Atlantic.

There is a great place in west Texas to view the Supermoon. Fort Griffin State Historical Site, about 15 miles north of Albany on Highway 283. It is one of the three best public “dark areas” in Texas, meaning the light illuminating from the earth is minimal, making the sky easier to view. The forecast is calling for clear skies Thursday night, so you should be able to view the Super Moon pretty well with the naked eye, even if you don’t make it to a remote location.

If you don’t have the chance to go check out the Supermoon Sunday, don’t worry. There will be more in 2014, including the September 9th moon.

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