The official start to summer in Clear Lake!
BY: RACHEL WUMKES
If you were awake with the birds this morning, you may have noticed the sun peek over the horizon rather early. That is because today is the summer solstice, the longest day and shortest night of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. The official start of this scientific phenomenon began at 5:14am EST when the sun was exactly over the Tropic of Cancer – as far north as it will appear in the sky all year.
Around the time of the summer solstice, the sun’s northward movement in the sky appears to pause briefly before reversing direction for the next six months.
The solstice signals a turning point as we now head toward shorter days and longer nights over the coming months. But don’t fret, my friends, the sunset is only a minute or two shorter each day. This means we have A LOT of long days still ahead of us before we turn those clocks back and wait for the winter solstice to flip us back the other direction.
That’s a lot of science, which can be rather confusing, really.
Here is a handy-dandy little graphic I found to help explain.
What does this mean, exactly?
Many people consider the summer solstice the first official day of summer. And when I say many, I mean all of them. In fact, my planner for the year has it printed in the box for today ‘First day of summer.”
Doesn’t get much more official than that, right?
While the majority of mainstream America considers the solstice the start of summer, there is ‘technically’ no official definition for the start and end dates of the season. Meteorologists and climatologist define summer as the warmest three months of the year, from June 1 to August 31.
Today is, however, the longest day of the year for those of us living in the Northern Hemisphere. I guess that means you’ll have to stay out a bit longer than normal to see that majestic ball of fire set in the west this evening. After the impressive temperatures these last few days, it will likely be a welcomed reprieve from the intense heat and humidity!
Whatever will you do with all your extra daylight today? Well, it seems like a great opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors! Plan a trip to the Clear Lake Aquatic Center. Enjoy a street treat from Charlie’s Soda Fountain or Cookies, etc. as you watch the gentle waves meet the shore. Take a stroll along the newly restored seawall or enjoy an afternoon cruise on the Lady of the Lake!
It’s a great day to take a moment to stop and smell the roses, which you can literally do inside Central Gardens.
Clear Lake has several establishments with outdoor seating. This evening, enjoy a meal or a drink as you soak up all the extra minutes of sunlight.
Or check out our full directory at https://clearlakeiowa.com/business-directory/
There’s not much better than these long, summer days, my friends. Take advantage of every ounce of sunlight. Savor it. Fill your tank to the brim with fun memories in Clear Lake!