By Roger Chambers
June is a month of long days with over 15 hours of daylight, with the longest day on the summer solstice of June 20. A rare record low of 32° occurred in 1986, and a record high of 97° in 1953. Days are typically warm, with occasional hot days in the 90s.
Holidays and Observances for June
June 3 Corpus Christi Day
June 5 World Environment Day
June 11 King Kamehameha I Day in Hawaii
June 14 Flag Day; Corpus Christi
June 17 Bunker Hill Day in Suffolk County, Massachusetts
June 19 Juneteenth; Emancipation Day National Holiday
June 20 West Virginia Day / Father’s Day-3rd Sunday
June 20 Summer Solstice
Late May to mid-June is the peak time for planting tomatoes, peppers, beans, and corn, and frost-sensitive annual flowers. Iris and peonies peak in late May or early June. A major regional crop is strawberries, abundant about two weeks on either side of the summer solstice. The large cultivated red berries are available in many places for “pick your own.” Many churches and other organizations often have strawberry festivals from mid-June to early July.
June is a month of festivals related to strawberries, rhubarb, flowers, and herbs, as well as the arts, music, and sporting events. Many of these annual events are canceled or scaled back with social distancing due to the continuing Covid Pandemic. (Many larger outdoor events of and fall, such as the Remsen Barn Festival in September, Utica’s Boilermaker in July, and Honor America Days in Rome and regional county fairs have already been canceled or cut back. The fate of other summer festivals is uncertain as of this writing in mid-May).
June is also the month of high school graduations. Most large-scale graduation ceremonies are being planned on a smaller scale, ending this most unusual school year of limited face-to-face classroom study. This has been very disruptive to students and families alike with the long-term implications on schools, colleges, and universities and the mental health and normal development of children not yet fully realized.
June begins the summer vacation season. Many will limit travel due to the uncertainty of continued social distancing and mask-wearing. Those planning a summer vacation should be prepared for higher gas prices, and much higher rental car fees. Reserve early, as limitations at amusement parks, museums, and camping at state parks will continue. For international travel, many restrictions still apply, and cruises are largely unavailable.
With the uncertainty of the pandemic, outdoor activities close to home such as bicycling, hiking, fishing, boating, golf, tennis, and utilizing city and regional parks will provide various ways to still enjoy life in these difficult times.
June’s Annual Regional Festivals
Annual Rhubarb Festival, St. Johnsville
Annual Violet Festival, Dolgeville includes a parade and 5 K run
Cornell Cooperative Extension Herb & Flower Festival, Oriskany
Fathers Day Weekend Festival, Old Forge includes a car show, frog jumping contest an ugly tie contest
Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute Sidewalk Art Show
In the Night Skies
Venus is an evening star, about 8° above the horizon. It is seen on the 11th to the left of the thin waxing crescent Moon. An annular, or partial solar eclipse is on the 10th, with the Moon never fully blocking the Sun. This starts prior to sunrise, ending at about 9 a.m.
Fairly dim, Mars is seen below the Moon on the 13th. Saturn is just to the left of the Moon on the 26th, while Jupiter is just above the Moon on the 28th and 29th. The summer solstice is on June 20th at 11:32 p.m., formally beginning summer in the northern hemisphere. Just a few days prior to the solstice is the Full Strawberry Moon, sometimes called the Full Rose Moon, due to the peak of strawberries and roses occurring during June.
Rising and setting of the Sun, Moon, and visible planets on June 20, the Summer Solstice
Sun Rises 5:21 a.m. Sets 8:44 p.m.
Waxing Gibbous Moon Rises 4:47 a.m. east Sets 8:23 p.m. southwest
Venus (evening star) Sets 10:19 p.m, northwest
Mars Sets 11:00 p.m., northwest Jupiter Rises 12:06 a.m. southeast
Saturn Rises 11:11 p.m. southeast
Phases of the Moon for June
June 3 Last Quarter Moon Rises 2:27 a.m., east Sets 2:02 p.m., west
June 10 New Moon Rises 5:20 a.m., northeast Sets 9:20 p.m., northwest
June 17 First Quarter Moon Rises 12:18 p.m., east Sets a.m., 1:10 a.m., west
June 24 Full Strawberry Moon Rises 9:08 p.m. east Sets 4:55 a.m. west