Most of us learned in grade school that our Earth orbits around the sun on a tilted access. For this reason, the period March through September gets more direct exposure to the sun each day. For the remainder of the year, the southern hemisphere gets more sun.
The term “solstice” comes from the Latin words sol (sun) and sistere (to stand still). On Earth each year, the summer solstice falls in June—this year on June 21 at 12:54 a.m. CST. Earth is positioned so that the North Pole is leaning most toward the sun, meaning that the sun is directly overhead us, and we will have the longest day and shortest night in the northern hemisphere.
Different cultures have special ceremonies that fall on the summer solstice. Thousands believe that Stonehenge was the site of ancient Druid solstice celebrations and gather there to watch the sun line up with the stones. In ancient Egypt, it preceded the appearance of the Sirius star, which they believed was responsible for the annual flooding of the Nile River—which they relied upon for agriculture and irrigation. The Greek festival of Kronia, honoring Cronus, the god of agriculture, was celebrated on the solstice.
Although it may have been warm for quite a while, the summer solstice marks the actual beginning of summer. This is a perfect time to spend time outside enjoying the sun and relaxing in the weather.
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