When to see Wednesday’s Once-in-a-Lifetime Lunar Event in NYC

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For the first time in 150 years, a blue moon, supermoon and total lunar eclipse will cause a cause a “blood” moon on Wednesday. Here’s when and where to see this once in a lifetime lunar event in New York City.

On January 31, a blue moon, supermoon and total lunar eclipse converge to cause a “blood” moon. This astronomical coincidence hasn’t been recorded in over 150 years. Though the spectacle will be best seen on the west coast, where they will enjoy the phenomena from start to finish, it will still be worth catching here in New York. Gordon Johnson, blogger at NASA said:

“Unfortunately, eclipse viewing will be more challenging in the Eastern time zone. The eclipse begins at 5:51 AM ET, as the Moon is about to set in the western sky, and the sky is getting lighter in the east.”

…but challenging doesn’t mean impossible. In NYC, the darker part of the Earth’s shadow will begin to cover the moon with a reddish tint around 6:48 am, but you’ll have to be quick, as the moon will set less than a half hour later. It will be worth the effort, the last time a supermoon, blue moon and lunar eclipse coincided, was on March 31, 1866. The definition of a once in a lifetime event.

Tips and tricks

Firstly, don’t immediately check your phone or take pictures – The light from the screen will mess with your eye’s natural night vision.

The key to seeing these phenomena at their best is low light-pollution. I know, that’s not easy in NYC. Check out the light pollution map below:

Again, don’t despair, there are a few places where you’ll be able to enjoy the event, even with the cities light pollution problem, we’d recommend:

A Rooftop Bar or Rooftop Access would be ideal

Even though at 6.45am, it could be a challenge to find a rooftop, it goes without saying, this would be ideal. This may not be the best solution for people who live on Times Square or if you’re surrounded by high rises. Avoid rooftop bars in areas with more light pollution like Midtown and hit Downtown Manhattan or Brooklyn.

The High Line

This goes without saying really. There are already clubs of stargazers that hit up the High Line for the best views of the stars in the city. Sure, your view may be somewhat blocked in certain parts of the High Line, but it stretches from Gansevoort Street all the way to 34th Street, so you are bound to find a place with an unobstructed view.

Central Park

Find somewhere where the city lights aren’t in your immediate eye-line or you are far enough away from the light (Maybe Sheep Meadow) and central Park might just be the BEST place to do your stargazing!

The Brooklyn Bridge & Brooklyn Bridge Park

Stroll part or all of the way across it to watch the Supermoon.

Anywhere Along The East River

Go to South Street Seaport or the East River Park if you’re downtown or to the East River Walk if you’re closer to the Upper East Side.

Featured image source [Flickr | Anthony Quintano]