Not only is a Supermoon coming on Sunday, but this larger than normal lunar light show will slowly be extinguished by the Earth's shadow providing a total eclipse for much of the Northern Hemisphere.
The Supermoon gets its name from the increased size and brightness. The moon takes an elliptical orbit around the Earth, which brings it 31,000-miles closer to the Earth at perigee (closest point) than its farthest orbit point called apogee.
This Sunday the moon will be at its nearest point and the result of the closer pass will provide onlookers a 14 percent larger and 30 percent brighter moon as seen by the human eye.
Providing WNY continues to enjoy mostly clear skies, all of WNY will have an opportunity to view this Supermoon event that has not occurred since 1982 and will not be seen again until 2033.
Key Times of the Supermoon Eclipse:
6:56pm Moonrise in the eastern sky
8:11pm Partial eclipse begins
10:11pm Total eclipse begins
72 min Duration of total eclipse
10:47pm Peak of total eclipse
11:23pm Total eclipse ends
1:23am Partial eclipse ends
7:38am Supermoon sets in western sky Monday morning
Right now the forecast for WNY calls for some fair weather clouds on Sunday evening which should provide enough of a break for Western New Yorkers to soak in the Supermoon and experience a once in in a generation eclipse.
If the clouds here in WNY do not part to allow a clear view, NASA will provide live video of the event at
How to Photograph the Supermoon Eclipse
- A Supermoon selfie with your phone won't work... it will likely be too dark and the moon will appear as a blurry dot.
- Make sure you have an object in the frame with the moon such as a tree, building or large topographic feature. Some examples can be as simple as a pine tree in your front yard, City Hall, the Ralph or a windmill.
- If using a digital SLR remember it will be a balance between the right exposure and shutter speed that will yield the best results. Fortunately in the digital age it doesn't cost any more to dozens of shots at different settings to get the perfect shot.
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