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August Moon Festival – August 1, 2023

August Moon Festival is a festival celebrated in Greece on the day of the full moon in August. This year, it falls on August 1. The August Moon is the brightest moon of the year, so much so that it almost rivals the sun, almost though. The day ushers in different festivals, with the most-awaited, being the Olympic games. The Olympic Games were held in Ancient Olympia in honor of Zeus, the king of the gods. They were usually held in August and done every four years. In modern times, however, it is a matter of luck if the opening night of the Olympics falls on the night of the August Moon.

History of August Moon Festival

Greek Mythology plays a huge role in the celebration of the August Moon Festival in Greece. As with most celebrations, it is a period where locals and tourists leave their busy lives and just have a day, or in this case, a night of fun. Different archaeological sites and museums are open throughout the night for celebrations of the August Moon Festival — an occurrence that is only associated with the August moon.

The August Moon Festival has its roots in Greek Mythology. Stemming from the story of the Titan goddess, Selene, which is also one of the Greek words for the moon. She was known to be the Titan Goddess of the moon and traversed the night sky in her silver chariot – the moon – which was drawn by two, snow-white, winged horses.

Selene had fallen in love with Endymion, a shepherd Prince who Zeus put into a never-ending state of sleep. She paid nightly visits to Endymion, who laid in his cave on Mount Latmos and eventually bore him fifty daughters. These 50 daughters represented the 50 lunar months of the Olympiad, or four years, and were used to mark the beginning of the Olympic Games which began in 776 B.C.

The full moon festival in August marks the only day of the year when visitors get free admission to participating archaeological sites and museums after sunset, a tradition that began in 1996.
Locals and tourists use this opportunity well as seeing the brilliant white marble of the Acropolis glowing in the moonlight, or the moon hanging low over the Temple of Poseidon at Sounion is a sight to behold.

August Moon Festival timeline

776 B.C.
The Olympic Games Are Born

The First Olympic Games are held in ancient Olympia.

1896 A.D.
The Olympic Games Are Reborn

The Olympic Games are reborn in Athens 1,500 years after being banned by Roman Emperor Theodosius I.

1996
First August Moon Festival

The first August Moon festival takes place as visitors get free admission to participating archaeological sites and museums after sunset.

2006
The 10th Anniversary

The August Moon Festival in Greece celebrates 10 years of its existence.

August Moon Festival FAQs

When is the August full moon in 2022?

The August Full Moon comes on August 27 this year.

What is a strawberry moon?

The June full moon is named the strawberry moon by Native American tribes for the strawberries harvested in parts of North America in June.

How do blood moons occur?

A blood moon occurs when the moon, the Earth, and the sun are all aligned.

August Moon Festival Activities

  1. Read about the day

    Celebrate August Moon Festival by reading about the day. As it is rich in history, it would be a good read.

  2. Go to a Museum in Greece

    Going to a Museum in Greece for the August Moon Festival is the best way to celebrate the day. The concerts in Museums and looking at ancient historical sites under the radiant moonlight are things you wouldn’t forget so easily.

  3. Spread awareness

    Spread awareness of the day by posting on social media. This brings others in on the celebration.

5 Facts About The Moon

  1. It’s Earth’s only natural satellite

    While some other planets have multiple satellites, Earth has just the Moon as its only natural satellite.

  2. It stabilizes Earth

    Without the Moon, the tilt of the Earth's axis would vary more and cause potentially strong climatic effects.

  3. Fifth-largest natural satellite in the solar system

    The moon is the fifth-largest natural satellite in the solar system, with the first being Ganymede of Jupiter.

  4. The moon has a very thin atmosphere

    The moon’s atmosphere is called an exosphere as it is too small and doesn't have a strong magnetic field to allow breezes.

  5. The moon always shows the same face

    The movement of the Moon is in synchronous rotation with the Earth and so it always shows the Earth the same face.

Why We Love August Moon Festival

  1. It brings to mind ancient history

    August Moon Festival is rich in history. It allows people to look through history, either by visiting museums, important locations or just reading stories from the past.

  2. It ushers in the Olympic Games

    The Olympic Games, held every four years, are one of the most important sporting events in the world. In its inception, the August Moon Festival was used to usher in upcoming events.

  3. It’s a night of fun

    So many celebrations take place in different places throughout Greece during the August Moon Festival. Locals and tourists get to enjoy musical performances, alongside a host of other fun activities.

August Moon Festival dates

YearDateDay
2022August 12Friday
2023August 1Tuesday
2024August 19Monday
2025August 9Saturday
2026August 28Friday
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