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  1. Life & Culture

A blue moon on Halloween? Spooky but true

The cool spectacle hasn’t happened since World War II.

It should be a perfect setup: Halloween falls on a Saturday, the weather is expected to be pleasant and it will feature the spooky spectacle of a rare “blue moon.”

A second-in-the-month full moon hasn’t been visible around the globe since 1944, according to NASA.

Related: Halloween 2020: A guide to safety, recipes, costume ideas and events in the Tampa Bay area

“When you look at the full moon on Halloween night, it won’t appear blue in color but you’ll be looking at something pretty uncommon,” according to the Farmers' Almanac. “A full moon on Halloween occurs roughly once every 19 years.”

Most recently, a full moon lit up the sky on Halloween night in 2001, but only in the Central and Pacific time zones. The next time a global full moon falls on Halloween isn’t expected until 2039, NASA said.

In the Tampa Bay area, the forecast calls for clear skies with a high near 85 on Saturday, so sky watchers have a good chance to see the full Halloween moon.

While the phrase “once in a blue moon” refers to something that rarely happens, the same definition rings true for the skies this Halloween. Having two full moons in a calendar month happens every two or three years. The last blue moon occurred on March 31, 2018.

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