December 17, 2020
The Bright Side of Winter Solstice
We're always looking on the bright side of things, so we're determined to find the beauty and joy in the shortest day of the year. Lucky for us, there's a lot to work with. Turns out Mother Earth is a glass half full kinda gal, too.
Fun Facts About Winter Solstice
- Did you know Winter Solstice is actually a specific point in time? Most people count the whole day as Solstice (which, in the spirit of celebration, we're all for), but it's actually a singular moment when the Sun is exactly overhead the Tropic of Capricorn.
- The word "solstice" comes from the latin term solstitium, meaning "the Sun stands still." From Earth's perspective, the Sun appears to stand still over the Tropic of Capricorn before reversing directions. Trippy, right?
- The further north you are, the faster you'll see an increase in daylight hours after the Winter Solstice. Things happen a little more slowly in the Southern Hemisphere.
- The date of the Solstice actually varies. It can happen anywhere from December 20th - 23rd, though the next Solstice on the 20th won't happen until 2080 and Solstice on the 23rd won't happen until 2303.
- While the purpose of Stonehenge is still the subject of many debates, it's often tied to the Winter Solstice. Some have said that the position of the sun was religiously significant to the people who built Stonehenge, and that the stones were shaped and set up to frame the midwinter sunset at the Winter Solstice and the midsummer sunrise at the Summer Solstice. Today, thousands of people gather at Stonehenge to celebrate the occasion each year.
So, bundle up, get outside, and toast to Mother Nature's winter beauty. Turns out the shortest day isn't so bad, after all.