Celebrating the Summer Solstice

By daybreak on Wednesday, it will be summer by the astronomical definition.

Depending on who you ask, astronomers and scientists use the date of the June Solstice to mark the beginning of winter in the Southern Hemisphere and summer in the Northern Hemisphere.

For visitors to Stonehenge yesterday, it was a rare chance to get so close to the structure, as the site is fully accessible only on the solstice.

Our inconstant Sun - an analemma is made when you take a photo of the Sun at the same time every day. Our planet also rotates once per day around a tilted axis. "The temperature increase after the solstice occurs because the rate of heat input from the sun during the day continues to be greater than the cooling at night for several weeks, until temperatures start to descend in late July and early August".

Ultimately, when you see the sunrise, and the amount of daylight that day is a function of the atmospheric pressure at the time.

"And the farther north, the more sun!"

This year, the solstice comes in the midst of a scorching heatwave in the United Kingdom, with temperatures reaching as high as 30 Celsius.

Regardless of how to you plan on celebrating (or not celebrating) the solstice, the sun is shining in Ellwood City today and is expected to set at 8:56p.m.

THOUSANDS flocked to see the sun rise at Stonehenge and Avebury today on the summer solstice.

Pagans used the summer solstice as a market for planting and harvesting crops, celebrating the God and Goddess coming together.

Participants prepare before the Nude Solstice Swim, as part of the Dark Mofo winter festival, in Tasmania, Australia.

On this day, the countries falling in the Arctic Circle receives 24-hour daylight.

It's technically the longest day of the year by just a matter of seconds.

Here in the Northern Hemisphere, we hit our "peak" sunlight when the sun is directly overhead the Tropic of Cancer, located 23.5 degrees north of the equator. Earth's distance from the sun has very little effect on the seasons.

Christians will celebrate the new season on St John's Day, which falls on June 24. For instance, the solstice of 2975 fell on June 22.

Now, you're probably wondering, what is solstice exactly?

Wiltshire Police said the event passed peacefully, but that there were seven "mostly drug related" arrests.

  • Kyle Peterson