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Blue moon, two supermoons to be visible in August in rare celestial event

August 2023 will see the rare celestial event occur not once, but twice, with one supermoon even serving as an elusive blue moon.

TEMPLE, Texas — The night skies will be full and bright this August, with not one, but two supermoons predicted to make an appearance.

One of these supermoons will even give stargazers a chance to see a rare blue moon.

According to NASA, two full moons are expected to light up the night in August 2023, with the first expected to be visible on August 1, and the second at the other end of the month of August 30, marking the appearance of the elusive blue moon.

The moon does not actually turn blue during a blue moon, unlike the "blood moon", where the moon actually does appear to have a reddish tint during a lunar eclipse. Instead, a blue moon is the term for the rare occurrence when two full moons appear during the same month.

Usually, a blue moon does not look any different from a regular moon, but this year, the Old Farmer's Almanac predicts that it will also be a supermoon, giving people a chance to see two rare astronomical events at once. 

Supermoons occur when the full moon lines up with the moon's closest point in orbit to Earth, making the moon appear much larger and brighter than usual.

Earth.com says supermoons, while not common occurrences, do typically happen around three or four times a year. Blue moons however, are much rarer, only occurring once every two and a half to three years. In fact, the last blue moon to occur was on Aug. 22, 2021.

The first full moon of August is also sometimes referred to as the Sturgeon Moon, referring to when the fish was most abundant to be caught in the Great Lakes.

So keep your eyes on the skies on these hot August nights, you might be in for a few rare sights.

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