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By Roger Chambers

June Holidays and Observances
June 4 Trinity Sunday
June 5 World Environment Day
June 11 Trinity Sunday – King Kamehameha Day, Hawaii
June 14 Flag Day
June 17 Bunker Hill Day, Suffolk Co., Mass.
June 18 Corpus Christi – Father’s Day
June 19 Emancipation Day, Texas (also known as Juneteenth)
June 20 West Virginia Day
June 21 Summer Solstice
After Memorial Day, summer is in full swing with June and the solstice season. Saranac Wednesdays at the Savoy in Rome and Saranac Thursdays at At the Brewery on Varick Street in Utica are early starters to the summer season of many outdoor concerts in city and village parks.
If you are outside for an evening concert or event, remember to use bug repellent, mosquitoes can be brutal at dusk. In addition, be aware of ticks as well after excursions into meadows, fields, or woods. There is much public service information available on these issues at doctors or veterinarians offices.
There may still be some lavender from May, while iris and peonies come into bloom about Memorial Day to mid-June. The huge white catalpa tree blossoms are one of the last flowering trees around solstice time. June days are generally warm with temperatures mid-70s to 80s, nights ranging from cool to sultry, with fire flies flitting flames of blinking light.
Strawberry Fields Forever
Some coinsures may wish for the dream of that Beatles’ tune. It almost comes true in June when summer solstice and strawberries are synonymous. Summer’s heat and humidity hasten the ripening of the sweet red berries.
As the summer evenings lengthen to sunset between 8:30 and 8:45 p.m. and fireflies appear at dusk in yards and meadows, strawberry season is at hand. Many growers have “pick your own”- rates for the harvest. While throughout the region are numerous small church, lodge, school, and volunteer fire departments with a strawberry social with shortcake or ice cream.
While different from the large cultivated berries best known today, much smaller wild strawberries grow locally in small patches of woodland edges, fields, and even yards. Prior to the European settlement, these were numerous enough in season to call June’s Moon the Strawberry Full Moon, this year on June 9th. The fruit’s appearance in June inspired the Iroquois’ strawberry festival, a precursor to the strawberry festivals mentioned above.
Regional Events and Activities in June
Wednesdays Saranac Wednesdays at the Savoy, Rome
Thursdays Farmer’s Market, Clinton
Thursdays Saranac Thursdays, F.X. Matt’s Brewery, Utica
Saturdays Farmer’s Market, Union Station, Utica
June 4 Rhubarb Festival, Nellis Tavern, St. Johnsville
June 9-11 Violet Festival, Dolgeville
June 17 Herb & Flower Festival, Cornell Cooperative Extension, Oriskany
June 24 St. John’s Day Masonic Festival, Masonic Care Community, Utica
The sweetness of strawberries is complemented by the addition of rhubarb. This regional vegetable with reddish green stalks provides a sour addition to sweet berries in strawberry rhubarb pie. This regional dessert is featured by the slice or full pie at the Nellis Tavern, a mid 18th century structure in St. Johnsville on the first Sunday in June, at a small rhubarb festival. There is live music and a variety of pies and pastries for sale.
Another June festival is the Violet Festival the second weekend of June in the Adirondack foothill village of Dolgeville. There is a large parade, numerous vendors of flowers, herbs, and vegetables, and a wide variety of foods from pancake breakfasts to chicken barbecue.
Herb and flower festivals are common in spring. Cornell Cooperative Extension holds one annually in June. Herbs, flowers, and vegetables are also sometimes available at the Herkimer Home in Little Falls and at regional famers markets.
St. John the Baptist is recognized at the annual St. John’s Day Masonic Festival at the Masonic Care Community. this is a day state wide Masonic meetings and open house at this health care facility in Utica, with music, arts and crafts venders and fair food.p
In the Night Skies
Jupiter is very bright during its conjunctions with the Moon on
The 3rd and again on the 30th. Venus is in conjunction to the left of the Moon on the 20th and above the Moon on the 21st.
Saturn has a conjunction with the moon on the 9th appearing to the right of the Moon. This coincides with the Full Strawberry Moon. Saturn also has its brightest and closest appearance of the year on the 15th, and its rings are at an angle for best viewing with small telescope.
The summer solstice is on June 21st and summer begins.
Rise and Set Times for June 21, Summer Solstice
Sunrise 5:21 am Sunset 8:44 pm
Moonrise 3:31 am Moonset 5:51 pm
Venus rises 3:00 am
Mars sets 9:31 pm
Jupiter sets 1:42 am
Saturn sets 5:11 am
First Quarter Moon June 1
Full Strawberry Moon June 9
Last Quarter Moon June 17
New Moon June 23
First Quarter Moon June 30
Astrology Gemini May 21-June 20
Cancer June 21-July 22

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