LAKANA Today's winter solstice will feature full moon and meteor shower

Statue of Marie Curie holding atomic symbol with a white background

Winter trifecta: Solstice, full moon, meteor shower on Friday, Saturday

The moon is set to become officially full on December 22 at 12:49 p.m. EST.

It's the middle of winter today, and from now on, the days get a little bit longer as we continue our trip around the sun.

The first day of winter, Friday, Dec. 21, will not be your typical winter solstice.

Although the Northern Hemisphere's names for December's full moon sound chilly and awful, the Southern Hemisphere, which is about to enter the summer season, has much warmer names for it.

In Maine, much smaller winter solstice celebrations take place around the state, such as Harpswell Heritage Land Trust's Winter Solstice Lantern Walk, the Maine Audubon Winter Solstice Celebration with Spirit Passages at Gilsland Farm in Falmouth, and the Belfast Unitarian Universalist Church Winter Solstice event.

The December Solstice occurs when the Sun reaches its most southerly declination, that's when the North Pole is tilted furthest away from the Sun. This is the shortest day of the year, too - but with the moon this full, we've got plenty of reason to stay out howling. Fremont Art Council is holding a winter solstice feast, complete with decorations and costumes.

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The term "solstice" is derived from two Latin words "sol" which means sun, and "sistere", meaning standstill.

How fitting that on the longest night of the year, the moon will be shining brightly.

So what's going on with this full moon?

In some tribes, it was called the Long Nights Moon, given the long nights and short days of December.

We will also see our final meteor shower of the year.

The Ursids meteor shower will be visible tonight. You could possibly see 10 shooting stars every hour, depending on where you're watching from.

One caveat: That Cold Moon will be so bright that it could outshine some of the meteors as they streak in, making them harder to spot.

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