“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees…I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

The summer solstice (or equinox) in the northern hemisphere brings the longest day and shortest night of the entire year. It has been celebrated for millennia as a time of new beginnings, fertility, and fruitful harvests. With the solstice happening Thursday, this week we explore fascinating landmarks and celebrations that honor the summer equinox, across the United States and the world.

History behind summer solstice celebrations

The summer solstice at Stonehenge: England

The Festival of Saint Joan: Spain

Solstice marker at Puerco Pueblo: Arizona

Intihuatana, “hitching post of the sun”: Peru

Sun Tunnels by Nancy Holt: Utah

Summer solstice fires: Austria

“Woodhenge:” Ohio

The Sun Dance: The Great Plains, United States

In Alabama: Midsummer Night’s Eve on the Journal


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