Current Moon Phase

Waxing Crescent
41% of full

Farmers Almanac
The 2014 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

Move Over Hunter’s Moon …

Move Over Hunter’s Moon …

It’s official; November’s full moon will now be named the “Thankful Moon!” Thousands of you voted to select the new name last month as part of our ongoing Name That Moon Contest. The winning name was submitted by Lynn Scholfield, who was the first of 10 people to suggest the name “Thankful Moon.”

Several others submitted variations, including “Thanksgiving Moon” and “Grateful Moon.” She will win a free 2011 Farmers’ Almanac.

Every year, the Farmers’ Almanac publishes the traditional names for each month’s full moon. These names, such as “Wolf Moon,” “Corn Moon” and “Sturgeon Moon,” date back to Native Americans who lived in what is now the northeastern United States.

The tribes kept track of the seasons by giving distinctive names to each recurring full Moon. Each moon name was applied to the entire month in which it occurred. Though there was some variation among the moon names used by various tribes, in general, the same ones were used by the Algonquin tribes whose territory stretched from New England to Lake Superior. When the European settlers arrived, they adopted the custom, and also created some of their own names. Since a lunar month is only 29 days long, on the average, the full Moon dates shift from year to year.

November’s traditional name is usually the “Full Beaver Moon,” because November was traditionally the time to set beaver traps before the swamps froze, to ensure a supply of warm winter furs. However, this year November’s traditional full moon name is the Full Hunter’s Moon. This is because the Harvest Moon came late (October rather than September), so when this happens, November’s moon becomes the hunter’s moon. There will be no beaver moon this year. (Another reason why our new full moon names may be easier to remember as there will be no special rules.)

Each month, until next September, we will ask for your suggestions for a new name for following month’s full moon. We will accept submissions through the 15th of each month, then post our four favorites for you to vote on through the end of the month. The winner will be announced on the first of the following month.

If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1910, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.