The longest lunar eclipse of the century will be this weekend

The moon is the farthest distance from the earth right now, or apogee, which makes it seem very small and results in the longest lunar eclipse of the 21st century.

Houston Museum of Natural Sciences Vice President for Astronomy and Physical Sciences Dr. Carolyn Sumners said this will be the most incredible lunar eclipse, but we won't get to see it. However, our small consolation prize is that we can see the small moon.

“If we can look up at the moon and it really is smaller than normal, like 12 percent smaller than your normal full moon,” said Sumners.

The lunar eclipse will last one hour and 43 minutes. The eclipse also features a 'blood moon,' a term used to refer to the red tinge on a fully eclipsed moon.

To see the blood moon, you need to be in Africa, Europe, Middle East, Australia, New Zealand, parts of Asia, even a part of Canada, but folks in the United States cannot see it.

Sumners said we'll only be able to see how small it is. But, this weekend, Mars is reaching its closest point to the Earth since 2003

“While you’re lamenting the fact that you’re not seeing the moon go blood red, you do have a blood red planet to look for in the southern sky, rising at sunset and setting at sunrise,” said Sumners.

Now, through next month, Mars is brighter than everything except Venus, the moon and the sun.

The planetarium will host an event for the Perseid Meteor Shower coming up on Sunday, August 12th.

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