So, obviously, strawberry moon = big red full moon, right? Sadly, no. Quick history lesson: The full moon of June was named by the Native American Algonquin tribe for the wild red berries that grow around the same time, so it’ll basically look the same as any other full moon but with a slightly orange tinge, according to Travel + Leisure.
Tonight's strawberry moon can also be called a "midsummer moon" for its timing at the halfway point of the calendar year, and right before the summer solstice (aka the longest day of the year), which takes place on June 21.
Budding astronomers would've been able to see the moon at its fullest at 4:30 a.m. ET this morning. However, you'll still be able to see the moon looking almost full for a few days after. Tonight, the evening of June 17, viewers will be able to see the moonrise at 8:39 p.m. PT on the West Coast and 8:54 p.m. ET on the East Coast, and it will be at its highest at 12:52 a.m. PT and 12:49 a.m. ET in the early morning of June 18, 2019. But the best time to see it isn’t actually when it’s highest in the sky (aka at its brightest) since it’ll be too bright to look at for too long.
Instead, interested viewers (and enthusiastic Instagram photo opportunists) should try to spot the moon just around sunset tonight, June 17 (at around 8 p.m. PT and 8:30 p.m. ET), since it won’t be fully illuminated (and therefore easier to look at for longer) and the sunset will provide a stunning backdrop.
"The best time to observe the full moon is when it rises or sets. As it appears on the southeastern horizon around sunset, it will be a delicate shade of orange, which eventually becomes a brighter yellow, brightening still as it rises above the horizon," according to Forbes.
And we thought our college astrology class would never come in handy…