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How to see the Harvest Moon, the last full moon of summer 2021

Nature: Full moon
Nature: Full moon 00:46

The Harvest Moon will light up the night sky Monday in a celestial sign that summer is nearing an end. The full moon closest to the autumnal equinox is known as the Harvest Moon because it rises near sunset and brightens the evening for farmers harvesting late summer crops. 

According to NASA, the full moon peaks at 7:55 p.m. EDT Monday, though it appears full for about three days, from Sunday evening through Wednesday morning. 

Harvest Moon Rises in New York City
The moon rises behind the midtown Manhattan skyline on September 19, 2021, as seen from West Orange, New Jersey. The full moon closest to the autumnal equinox is known as the Harvest Moon. Gary Hershorn / Getty Images

This year, the autumnal equinox in the Northern Hemisphere occurs on September 22 — the official beginning of fall.

"Depending on the year, the full Harvest Moon can occur anywhere from two weeks before the autumn equinox to two weeks after. The Harvest Moon is either the last full moon of the summer season, or the first full moon in autumn," the astronomy site EarthSky explains.

Other traditional names for the Harvest Moon include the Corn Moon, the Fruit Moon and the Barley Moon.

CBS Miami notes that the full moon will also increase the chance of higher-than-normal tides, called the "King Tides," in South Florida. Minor saltwater flooding will be possible around the times of high tide in low-lying, vulnerable coastal areas in Fort Lauderdale, Miami Beach and other coastal cities between Broward and Miami-Dade.

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