We are in store for a bright Christmas night as the moon will appear full on Christmas, but here is when to see the full Cold Moon.

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Photo by Jack Taylor on Unsplash
Photo by Jack Taylor on Unsplash
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Full Moons

There's just something special about a full moon. I always love looking up at the night sky and seeing which phase the moon is in, but during the winter season when the nights seem so long, it's nice to have a little extra brightness during full moons.  The final full moon of 2023 is the Cold Moon, so why is it called the Cold Moon and when can we see it?

December's Cold Moon is  Almost a full Christmas Moon

While full moons only happen once every lunar cycle, to our eyes the moon can appear full for a few days, and because of this, the moon will appear full on Christmas!  So when is the Cold Moon? The full Cold Moon will happen on December 26th and will peak around 7:33 EST which is 6:33 CST (Evansville time).

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Why is it called the Cold Moon?

Each full moon has its own nickname, and December's full moon is appropriately named the Cold Moon.  For many of us, December marks the start of the winter season, so that is why this moon is commonly called the Cold Moon.

Photo by Nataliya Smirnova on Unsplash
Photo by Nataliya Smirnova on Unsplash
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Here is what Farmer's Almanac has to say about the December Cold Moon:

The name “Cold Moon” is a descriptive label for the December full Moon, used by various native North American tribes and Celtic culture. In the Northern Hemisphere, December often marks the coldest day of the year, although temperatures can significantly vary, and record lows can happen at any point during the winter months. Since December signifies the official start of winter, it is often associated with the coldest temperatures, as the season settles and intensifies. This is also reflected in the Chinese name for this month’s Moon, “Bitter Moon,” which likely alludes to the bitter cold that arrives in December.

Since the moon will appear full for Christmas, look up in the sky, maybe you'll catch a glimpse of Santa's sleigh flying by the full moon!

LOOK: How Halloween has changed in the past 100 years

Stacker compiled a list of ways that Halloween has changed over the last 100 years, from how we celebrate it on the day to the costumes we wear trick-or-treating. We’ve included events, inventions, and trends that changed the ways that Halloween was celebrated over time. Many of these traditions were phased out over time. But just like fake blood in a carpet, every bit of Halloween’s history left an impression we can see traces of today.

Gallery Credit: Brit McGinnis

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