We Love L.A. to the Moon and Back

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When was the last time you sat mesmerized and watched the Moon? Did you plan it out or was it by happenstance?

Before the onset of our celebrity and social media-saturated society and the frenzied pace of modern life, there existed more subtle influences on our daily (or nightly) lives that have been mostly lost to the fray.

For millennia human cultures have followed the cycles of the Moon and harkened its phases to mark the passage of time for religious festivals, harvests, and the changing of the seasons. For most of us these matters now have little importance to our daily lives.

But the Moon still captivates us! It still holds wonder and evokes a mysterious sense of adventure, danger, and vulnerability to the powers of the night. And who doesn’t like that?

L.A.’s Moon
Los Angeles is notorious for its night skyline which blasts out light domes obscuring all but the brightest stars. But the Moon shines through and treats left coasters to monthly moonscapes over the city and the sea, showering down science-y romance on the City of Angels. Read on for the best events and tips for moonbathing in L.A. this year!

Moonlit Hikes at Mt. Baldy
What’s better than BBQ and live music under the moonlight? Being able to enjoy it twice a month! Every Friday and Saturday—the weekend of and just before the full moon—Mt. Baldy hosts Moonlight Hikes. That’s right: tasty dinner, great musical sounds, and amazingly beautiful evening views. The 2016 schedule is coming soon and can be found here when it’s available. Don’t miss out on your opportunity to chill out under the Moon.

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Photograph courtesy Gondola Getaway

Cruisin’ Into the Moonlight
If you’re not really the hiking type, have no worries—we have something special for you. Sit back, relax, and unwind as you enjoy a Gondola Getaway in the Long Beach area. These relaxing rides are available from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and seat anywhere from two to 60 guests. The Gondola Getaways offer dinner cruises where a full table is set in the middle of the boat, and a multi-course meal is served.

Thirst Quenching Moon Experience
With all these activities under your belt, it’s no surprise that you may be feeling a bit hungry or even a bit thirsty. Whether pick-up or delivery, Moon Juice has all of your fresh drink needs covered. Moon Juice is made through hydraulic cold pressing organic vegetables, fruits, and herbs into these mystical concoctions. One bottle of Moon Juice is actually pretty close to three pounds of raw, organic vegetables, herbs, and fruits. Moon Juice isn’t just about the juice (although the juice is soooo good!), they also offer milks, tonics, cleanses, and snacks. From Brain Dust to Beauty Dust, or taking home the Full Moon Dust Collection, you’ll be able to satisfy all of your needs and with a healthy twist!

Dance the Night Away
OK, perfect! Now that you’re re-energized with your tasty snacks and fresh, juices it’s time for us to howl at the Moon! No, really… Howl at the Moon. Howl at the Moon is a Hollywood nightlife favorite. Housed in the buzzing strip of Universal CityWalk, Howl creates a non-stop party all night long. This dancing destination is part bar, part concert, and a whole high-energy evening. It’s fun, it’s interactive, it’s for everyone (age 21 and up of course), it’s—happening every night! Basically, you should be there. Go!

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Image courtesy Celestron

Celestron’s LA MOONWALK Charity Art and Astronomy Festival
This month, Celestron—one of the world’s largest and most innovative telescope brands—announces plans for a first ever charity art event and astronomy festival to take place this summer in the L.A. area. As part of their social media campaign, #MissionMoon2016, Celestron is pulling all the stops to curate a Moon-themed party like no other that will unite the arts and sciences for a night full of space, music, art, and fun.

Join your fellow Angeleno artists and astronomers during August’s full Moon party and charity auction with music, food, and drinks, live painting, a star party—with telescopic views of the Moon, planets, and stars—and more!

Artwork and custom telescopes will be auctioned off to help fund charity organizations, and guests will enjoy a night of Moon-, space-, and science-themed activities and discussions all night long. Submit your artwork here. Location to be announced soon.

Rocketship Park in Rancho Palos Verdes
Rocketship Park in Rancho Palos Verdes

Photography by Jarred Donkersley

DIY Full Moon Parties
In that same spirit, Celestron is also pushing for individuals and community groups to plan and host their own full Moon parties. It’s as simple as downloading a Moon calendar or app to your smart device and getting together outside with friends and family to enjoy the sights. The Moon can seem mysterious and unpredictable, but with just a little attention, you can create an unforgettable experience for yourself and loved ones (or strangers!) by knowing in advance where and when the Moon will be. In short, the full Moon always rises once a month in the east about 180 degrees from the setting Sun in the west (that’s why it appears “full”). Plan ahead, grab some snacks and a blanket and find a nice spot to relax and enjoy.

Pro Tip: The 3 days following the new Moon offer a chance to watch a crescent Moonset right after Sunset over the ocean from Palos Verdes up to Santa Monica and beyond. 

Crescent moonset at Redondo Beach Pier
Crescent moonset at Redondo Beach Pier

Photography by Jarred Donkersley

Best Apps and Optics
If you fancy yourself a photographer and are interested in a new subject, why not try to capture these sights while exploring your city? Check out this primer on shooting a Moon illusion from Celestron’s blog.

If you’re in the market for some magnification to view the Moon up close and share with your friends and neighbors or on social media, check out this handy guide to learn how to spend as little or as much as you want, easily and efficiently.

So there you go! Be you a budding scientist, photographer, artist, musician, or poet—or if you just need a little local adventure a couple times each month—we’ve got something here for everyone. Follow these tips, links, and events for ways to meld the arts and sciences into your nights and weekends around Los Angeles and put a little lunacy back in your life.

And as always, have a nice night!

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Image courtesy Celestron

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