The Lowdown on the Super Flower Blood Moon

What's behind all the adjectives?

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

If you're reading this, you're probably a little confused by the terms everyone is using to describe this month's moon. Like everything, there's rhyme to the reason ... depending on the season.

The month of May is known for its flowers, so Native Americans designated the term "flower" to denote this month's moon. For the purists who claim that the bloom is over, the term applies to the entire lunar cycle this month, not just during the time it's full.

The "super" part may be a little more familiar. We had a supermoon last month, where the moon appeared brighter and tracked closer (although I dare you to say you can tell the difference from other full moons). For those keeping track, this month, the moon will be a smidge closer in orbit — and therefore brighter — than last month. This will be the last supermoon of 2021.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the sun, Earth and full moon align. During the eclipse, the moon will have a reddish hue from all the sunrises and sunsets filtering through Earth's atmosphere, according to NASA. It's for that reason that many have labeled this a "blood moon."

We're not so lucky here in New England, however. We sit on the very edge of the eclipse path, and will only get the first moments when the moon begins to darken. The eclipse starts here at 4:47 a.m. Friday, but the moon sets at 5:16 — much too soon to get a front row seat.

Good news is eclipses are like the Sith from Star Wars. Always two there are. We'll be treated to partial solar eclipse on June 10.

Contact Us