Wednesday

October's full moon, the hunter's moon, and the Orionid meteor shower are on this week's celestial forecast, but you might only be able to catch one of them.

The hunter's moon will be fullest at 10:58 a.m. ET on October 20, and 99% full during the evenings of October 19 and 20, according to EarthSky. The full moon coincides with the peak of the Orionid meteor shower on the morning of October 21.

Because the best viewing conditions for meteor showers are dark skies, the full moon will significantly reduce the visibility of the meteor shower -- by about 75%, according to American Meteor Society adviser Robert Lunsford.

"During a normal year, we'd certainly be focused on the Orionids," Lunsford said.

Debris from Halley's Comet creates the Orionid shower, and meteors radiate from the constellation Orion the Hunter, which is how the event gets its name, according to EarthSky. The showers can produce up to 20 meteors per hour, and Orionids are known for their speed and brightness.

The Orionid meteor shower is active until November 7, so there's still a chance to see one of these shooting stars. NASA's advice to watch the Orionids is to lie on your back with feet facing southeast in the Northern Hemisphere and northeast in the Southern Hemisphere. Orionids are most common from midnight until dawn.

Photo Credit: Charles G. Summers

If you prefer an earlier stargazing activity, watching the full moon after sunset will be your best bet. Following September's harvest moon, the hunter's moon gets its name from Native Americans who welcomed hunting season at this time of year in preparation for the winter months, according to the Farmers' Almanac.

This full moon also marks the harvest festival Sharad Purnima for Hindus and the end of Vassa, a three-month period of fasting for Buddhist monks -- both of which signal the end of monsoon season, according to NASA.

The hunter's moon is not necessarily brighter or bigger than other full moons throughout the year, according to EarthSky. But when you catch a glimpse of the moon at moonrise or moonset near the horizon, it can appear larger and more orange.

The visibility of the night sky in the US will vary these days, with clouds and storm systems moving across the states, according to CNN Digital Meteorologist Judson Jones. Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, cloud coverage will impact California, Washington, the Gulf Coast and the Appalachian Mountains. Wednesday night, western storms will move into the northern Rockies and Midwest. Alabama, Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas will also see increased cloud coverage.

October Full Moon Names from different cultures Tugluvik (Inuit). Kentenha (Mohawk). Long Hair Moon (Hopi) Ten Colds Moon (Kiowa). Falling Leaves Moon (Arapaho). Corn Ripe Moon (Taos Native American). Hunter's Moon, Blood Moon (Neo-Pagan). Leaf Fall Moon (San Juan Native American). Blood Moon, Wine Moon (Mediaeval English). Blood Moon Falling :Full, Leaf Moon :Dark (Janic). Hunter's Moon, Travel Moon, Full Dying Grass Moon (Algonquin Native American/Colonia).

Other Moon names: Spirit Moon, Snow Moon, Shedding Moon, Winterfelleth (Winter Coming), Windermanoth (Vintage Month), Falling Leaf Moon, Moon of the Changing Season, White Frost moon

VIDEO Timelapse Captures Enormous Moon Rising Above Rhode Island

Friday

The White House on Friday issued the first-ever presidential proclamation of Indigenous Peoples’ Day, lending the most significant boost yet to efforts to refocus the federal holiday celebrating Christopher Columbus toward an appreciation of native peoples.

Biden also issued a proclamation of Columbus Day on Monday, Oct. 11, which is established by Congress.

“For generations, Federal policies systematically sought to assimilate and displace Native people and eradicate Native cultures,” Biden wrote in the Indigenous Peoples’ Day proclamation. “Today, we recognize Indigenous peoples’ resilience and strength as well as the immeasurable positive impact that they have made on every aspect of American society.”

In a separate proclamation on Columbus Day, Biden praised the role of Italian Americans in U.S. society, but also referenced the violence and harm Columbus and other explorers of the age brought about on the Americas.

“Today, we also acknowledge the painful history of wrongs and atrocities that many European explorers inflicted on Tribal Nations and Indigenous communities,” Biden wrote. “It is a measure of our greatness as a Nation that we do not seek to bury these shameful episodes of our past — that we face them honestly, we bring them to the light, and we do all we can to address them.”

"On Indigenous Peoples’ Day, we honor America’s first inhabitants and the Tribal Nations that continue to thrive today. I encourage everyone to celebrate and recognize the many Indigenous communities and cultures that make up our great country."

"I call upon the people of the United States to observe this day with appropriate ceremonies and activities. I also direct that the flag of the United States be displayed on all public buildings on the appointed day in honor of our diverse history and the Indigenous peoples who contribute to shaping this Nation." said the President.

On Indigenous Peoples’ Day, we honor America’s first inhabitants and the Tribal Nations that continue to thrive today.

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Monday

The full moon of September 2021 will be shining in the night sky this week, just in time for the official start of fall as the autumn equinox arrives.

Better known as the “harvest moon,” the September moon will officially reach its fullest phase at 7:54 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 20. But it will look big and bright for a few days.

The moon will be 98% full on Sunday, 100% full Monday and Tuesday, and 98% full on Wednesday, Sept. 22 — the first official day of fall, known as the autumn equinox or autumnal equinox. The equinox occurs when the sun rises directly over the equator, bringing an almost equal amount of daylight and darkness hours in the northern and southern hemispheres on that calendar day.

The best time to see the September harvest moon will be when it begins to rise in the eastern sky at about 7:15 p.m. Eastern time Monday, 20 minutes after the sun sets, and as it starts to rise at 7:36 p.m. on Tuesday.

The near-full moon will be rising Sunday at 6:48 p.m. and Wednesday at 7:59 p.m.

September’s full moon has a nickname related to the growing season. During most years, it is called the “harvest moon,” but sometimes that nickname is reserved for the October full moon.

It all depends on which of those two full moons appears closest to date of the autumn equinox.

Because this year’s full moon will appear on the night of Sept. 20, two days before autumn arrives, it will be called a harvest moon.

Last year, the September full moon appeared on Sept. 1, followed by another full moon on Oct. 1. “Because October 1 was closer to the equinox, October’s full moon was called the harvest moon and September’s full moon took on its traditional name: the corn moon,” the Old Farmer’s Almanac noted.

In addition to those nicknames, some native American tribes call the September full moon the barley moon, “because it is the time to harvest and thresh the ripened barley,” the Old Farmer’s Almanac says.

Space.com says the September full moon was known as the “falling leaves moon” among the Ojibwe tribe in the Great Lakes region, while the Cree of Ontario referred to this moon as the “rutting moon” because September was the time when many animals, particularly deer, started their mating.

Learn Native American Names: Soaproot (Pomo). Corn Moon (Pueblo). Harvest moon (Hopi). Singing Moon (Celtic). Leaf fall Moon (Kiowa). Ripe Moon (San Juan). Maize Moon (Natchez). Acorns Moon (Wishram). Rice Moon (Anishnaabe). Hay Cutting Moon (Yuchi). Mulberry Moon (Choctaw). Deer Paw Moon (Omaha). Snow Goose Moon (Cree). Freshness Moon (Mohawk). Harvest Moon (Neo-Pagan). Harvest (Colonial American). Little Chestnut Moon (Creek). Corn Maker Moon (Abernaki). Drying Grass Moon (Arapaho). Yellow Leaf Moon (Assiniboine). Drying Grass Moon (Cheyenne). Autumn Moon (Passamaquoddy). Barley Moon (Mediaeval English). Calves Hair Growth Moon (Dakota). Yellow Leaf Moon(Taos Native American). Nut Moon, Black Butterfly Moon (Cherokee). Drying Grass Moon, Black Calve Moon, fScarlet Plum Moon (Sioux). Harvest Moon, Corn Moon, Barley Moon, Fruit Moon, Dying Grass Moon (Algonquin).

VIDEO

Friday

Shelby Elizabeth Mata, a tribal citizen of the Comanche Nation, was crowned Miss Native American USA 2021-2022 on Friday, Sept. 10 in a special ceremony.

“We are saddened to go another year without competition. This year would have been our 10th Anniversary scholarship pageant but we understand Indian Country is still at risk to the Covid-19 Delta Variant. We hope that calling upon our first runner-up demonstrates our commitment to continue representing Indian Country while providing opportunities to our former past contestants,” Tashina Atine (DinĂ©), founder and CEO of the pageant said.

“We look forward to welcoming Shelby and are grateful for her and her family. We would like to thank Comanche Nation Tribal Chairman Mark Woommavovah for accepting our invitation to crown Shelby Mata on our behalf this year,” Atine continued.

Mata is from Walter, Okla. A winner of eight previous tribal and powwow royalty titles with her tribe and community, she becomes the ninth crowned Miss Native American USA. She is a southern cloth and buckskin powwow dancer who has traveled extensively across the United States and abroad to represent her tradition and culture.

“I am honored and very excited for this upcoming year to represent the Miss Native American USA 2021-22,” Mata said. “I look forward to the new friendships, experiences, and opportunity to share my platform. I want to thank my parents for always being so supportive, my friends, and to all my supporters who have encouraged me and given me kind words along the way.”

Mata is Miss Native American USA’s first contestant titleholder from Oklahoma and was crowned at the Comanche Nation Complex’s Comanche Code Talker Room by Woommavovah.

During a competition two years ago, Mata said she upholds a platform that spreads the message of cultural knowledge and awareness. The platform focuses on identity, connection to culture, balancing tribal and American societal values in addition to encouraging one another.

The next competitive Miss Native American USA pageant is scheduled for the fall of 2022 at the Tempe Center for the Arts in Tempe, Ariz.

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Thursday

Shangani Mathebula, Emmanuel Mdhluli and Walter Hendrik Mangane were arrested in 2017 for killing three rhinos in Marula, in the south section of the Kruger National Park.

Three rhino poachers were sentenced to a combined 105 years in prison on Friday.

Shangani Mathebula, Emmanuel Mdhluli from Mozambique and Walter Hendrik Mangane from South Africa were arrested in 2017 for killing three rhinos in Marula, in the south section of the Kruger National Park.

Park spokesperson Ike Phaahla welcomed the hefty sentence and said it should serve as a deterrent to criminals.

More than 249 rhinos were poached for their horns across South Africa between January and June this year with 40 alleged poachers arrested within the Kruger National Park alone.

Managing executive of the KNP Gareth Coleman said: "These sentences should serve as a deterrent to those intending to come and kill our natural heritage and destroying the livelihoods of our people. We have in the past few months intensified our security efforts in the Park to good effect but successful convictions require that the prosecutorial and justice pillars in our society are operating effectively."

The southern region of the Kruger is defined by the shapes of smooth granite koppies, rare trees like the Cape chestnut, coral and fever-berry, and the prevalence of White Rhino.

South Africa holds the majority of the world’s rhinos and has been the country hit hardest by poaching criminals, with more than 1,000 rhinos killed each year between 2013 and 2017.

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