Sunday marked the first day of Spring for those of us living in the Northern Hemisphere. Spring officially started at 7:21 PM ET Sunday, March 20, 2011. The vernal equinox or spring equinox occurs every year on either March 20 or March 21. What this means to us is that now our days are longer than our nights, for the next six months. Here are some interesting facts about spring equinox;
- In most parts of the world it is equal in daylight hours and nighttime hours, but there are places that already have more daylight.
- Fall and spring equinox are the only times when the sun rises due east and sets due west in a year.
- These are also the only days when a person on the equator can see the sun passing directly overhead.
- This day has been celebrated for thousands of years and it is celebrated all over the world.
- Some other names for spring equinox celebrations are Norouz in Iran, Chunfen in China, and Ostara in Europe.
- Many ancient structures were built to coincide with the sun’s position on vernal equinox like The Great Sphinx, the monliths at Stonehenge, and the Ancient Mayan Caracol Tower and Temples of the Sun and Moon.
- One superstition on spring equinox is egg balancing, it is supposed to be possible to balance a raw egg on its oblong end. I wouldn’t try this at home because it has not been proven to work any better on spring equinox than any other day of the year.