This egret couldn’t wait for the fish it had sushi instead. The picture was taken last Friday afternoon at a local farm pond. A Strawberry Moon was on the rise in the sky over Union County last Friday night. Maybe it’s just me, but I think the moon had more of a Pumpkin appearance about it...

Sushi...and a Strawberry Moon for dessert...

Please Read This...

Finally...after all of the build up and excitement...I heard my first cicadas last Sunday evening while sitting out on the front porch.

I had thought there were supposed to be something like billions and billions, maybe even trillions, of the bug-eyed bugs making an appearance this year in the Land of Lincoln. 

The last time such an occurrence happened was in 1803, when a fellow named Thomas Jefferson was president of the United States. A future president, a gentleman named Abraham Lincoln, who once paid a visit to Union County, wasn’t even born yet.

Anyway, I’ve been waiting to see...and hear...the six-legged onslaught. Until Sunday evening, I had seen exactly one cicada, which, strangely enough, was perched on one of the tires of the car I drive. 

I’m guessing I heard about half a dozen or so of the bugs Sunday evening...and again Monday evening. I still haven’t seen any more of them... 

To be honest, I’m thinking the cicadas came out of their holes in the ground...found out what was going on in the world around them...and went back in their holes...


So...there I was...sitting out in the dark last Friday night on our porch swing...waiting...waiting...

I was waiting for the full moon to make an appearance in the sky. Perhaps you saw that last week’s lunar display was called the Strawberry Moon. The fine folks at NASA, whom I assume know a little bit about the moon, shared on the website that the Strawberry Moon also is known as the Flower, Hot, Hoe or Planting Moon; the Mead or Honey Moon; the Rose Moon; Vat Purnima; Poson Poya; and the LRO Moon. No mention of a Cicada Moon...

My goal Friday night was to try to take a few pictures of the Strawberry Moon. That’s why I was waiting out in the dark, enjoying the humidity and the pleasant company of mosquitoes. 

I waited for a while to see the moon rising in the clear summer sky. As the 9 o’clock hour was closing in, I still had not caught a glimpse of the Strawberry Moon. I decided to take a walk to the downtown park in our hometown. Sometimes, from that vantage point, I can see the moon rising over a tree line off to the east. No such luck last Friday night.

I went back home, sat down on the porch swing again...and waited...and then went on another a different direction...and finally found a spot where I could see the moon rising, very low in the sky, through a line of trees.

By chance, I ended up finding a Smithsonian Magazine article online which explained that the Strawberry Moon apparently was experiencing something called a “major lunar standstill,” which was described as a “rare celestial spectacle.” 

The article shared that the standstill occurs over a period of about two years “when the moon rises and sets at more northerly and southerly spots along the horizon than normal.” Last Friday, the Strawberry moon rose and set at its southernmost points and traveled “very low across the sky.” 

At least I got to see the Strawberry Moon, which is more than I can say for the cicadas...

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158

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