First time in nearly 70 years: Summer solstice and full moon on same day

Posted at 9:59 PM, Jun 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-20 06:35:16-04

Get ready to soak up some sun! Monday marks the summer solstice and first calendar day of summer, when we can expect to see the longest period of daylight in one day. But this year's solstice will be especially rare because it will be first time that the summer solstice and full moon have fallen on the same day in nearly 70 years.

The last time the two events have occurred together was in 1948.  It won't happen again until 2062.

Here are 5 things you should know about the summer solstice.

1.  Although the 2016 summer solstice is occurring on June 20th, the solstice can occur between June 20th and 22nd in the northern hemisphere depending on the year and time zone. This year, the summer solstice officially arrives Monday June 20th, at 6:34 PM EDT.

2. The summer solstice gives us the most daylight because that is when the tilt of the Earth's axis is closest to the sun and directly over the Tropic of Cancer. You can also think of it as the moment when the sun is at the highest position in the sky from our perspective.

3. The solstice marks the first day of summer. However, from this point forward , expect the days to get shorter. The shortest day of the year is the winter solstice on December 21st.

4. The word 'solstice' comes from the Latin word 'solstitum' which means 'sun standing still'.

5. On Monday, the sun will rise at 6:35 am and set at 8:27 pm, giving us 13 hours, 48 minutes and 33 seconds of daylight.

Happy Summer!