You'll see more than just fireworks in the sky this weekend.

By Kelly Vaughan
July 01, 2020
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On the Fourth of July, you can expect to see sailboats, fireworks, and American flags blowing through the breeze. But this weekend, there's going to be another spectacular sight: a buck moon lunar eclipse, which will be the first full moon of the summer. No matter where you live, you'll be able to see the full moon; however, some lucky individuals in the southern and western parts of Europe, parts of North and West Africa, parts of North America, South America, and Antarctica will get to see the eclipse, too.

Jani Riekkinen/EyeEm/Getty Images

So, where does the name "buck moon" come from? The nickname refers to the natural phenomenon in which male deer shed their antlers after mating season. "We follow the full Moon names that were used during Native American and Colonial times to help track the seasons," says the Old Farmer's Almanac.

The specific lunar eclipse, which will occur between July 4th and July 5th depending on your time zone, is known as a penumbral lunar eclipse. This kind of lunar eclipse happens when the sun, earth, and moon are all aligned. According to NASA, "the slight reduction in the moon's brightness will be difficult to notice with the human eye." However, on a clear night, you should be able to see the eclipse.

Wondering if the eclipse will pass over your area? You can use this map, which will help you pinpoint the best viewing time for your specific location. According to the Old Farmer's Almanac, the eclipse will begin at 11:04 P.M. EST on July 4th and end at 1:56 A.M. EST on July 5th.

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