Summer officiall kicks off today! In the Northern Hemisphere the longest day and shortest night of the year occur today—the summer solstice—and this makes it the first day of summer. Today in the Northern Hemispher the North Pole is tipped more toward the sun than on any other day in 2012.
For a few days before and after the solstice, have you ever noticed that the sun at noon appears to stay in the same spot in the sky? That's because the noontime elevation of the sun does not appear to change very much during this period. At the time of summer solstice the sun is directly overhead at noon along the Tropic of Cancer—an imaginary line that circles the planet at about the latitude of Cuba.
Here's the solstice scoop according National Geographic.com:
This year's summer solstice takes place a day earlier than it's been for the past three years, due to the fact that 2012 is a leap year—this February got an extra day, to keep our calendar year of 365 days in sync with the astronomical year, which is about 365.24 days.
I plan on enjoying the longest day outside—including a late dinner on the deck. Do you have any solstice plans?
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