The smallest full moon of 2016 will light up the night sky this weekend, and you can get a sneak preview of the lunar event in a free webcast from the Slooh community observatory tonight (April 21).
The full moon of April, which is traditionally known as the Full Pink Moon or Pink Full Moon, actually occurs on Friday night (April 22). This year, April's full moon will be the smallest of the year because the moon will be at the farthest point from Earth in its elliptical orbit. Slooh representatives have dubbed the event a "mini-moon" and will showcase live views of the full moon on Slooh.com beginning at 8 p.m. EDT (0000 GMT) tonight.
"As the Earth and moon move to their furthest points from each other, we'll all get a unique chance to see the full moon as it appears smallest to us here on Earth … a 'mini' moon, and a Pink Full Moon at that," Slooh representatives said in a webcast announcement. You can also watch the April full moon webcast on Space.com here , courtesy of Slooh. [The Full Moon Explained: Why It Happens (Video)]
During tonight's webcast, Slooh astronomer Bob Berman and host Paul Cox will be joined by Janice Stillman, editor of The Old Farmer's Almanac, to discuss the upcoming full moon, why it's known as a Pink Moon and why it is the smallest of its kind this year. Live images of the moon will be provided by Slooh's flagship observatory at the Institute of Astrophysics in the Canary Islands.
Viewers will be able to ask questions about the moon via Twitter by sending messages to @Slooh or by joining the webcast's live chat, Slooh representatives said.
You can find tips on how to observe the moon in our infographic. If you need some photography tips, check out Space.com's photo guide for moon observers by veteran night sky photographers Imelda Joson and Edwin Aguirre.
Editor's note: If you snap an amazing photo of the full moon tonight, or any other night sky view, and you'd like to share it with Space.com and our news partners for a story or gallery, you can send images and comments in to managing editor Tariq Malik at email@example.com.
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Tariq is the Editor-in-Chief of Space.com and joined the team in 2001, first as an intern and staff writer, and later as an editor. He covers human spaceflight, exploration and space science, as well as skywatching and entertainment. He became Space.com's Managing Editor in 2009 and Editor-in-Chief in 2019. Before joining Space.com, Tariq was a staff reporter for The Los Angeles Times covering education and city beats in La Habra, Fullerton and Huntington Beach. In October 2022, Tariq received the Harry Kolcum Award for excellence in space reporting from the National Space Club Florida Committee. He is also an Eagle Scout (yes, he has the Space Exploration merit badge) and went to Space Camp four times as a kid and a fifth time as an adult. He has journalism degrees from the University of Southern California and New York University. You can find Tariq at Space.com and as the co-host to the This Week In Space podcast with space historian Rod Pyle on the TWiT network. To see his latest project, you can follow Tariq on Twitter @tariqjmalik.