A “Blue Moon” is a fairly infrequent phenomenon involving the appearance of an additional full moon within one month and the next one is on January 31. To celebrate the blue moon the Institute for American Indian Studies in Washington is hosting a blue moon hike on the 31st @ 6:30 p.m.- 8:30 p.m. Native Americans followed the cycles of the moon and every month the full moon had a different name.
The Algonquin tribes called January the full wolf moon because when this full moon appeared wolves howled in hunger outside the villages. Traditionally, the January Moon is also known as the Old Moon. The hike concludes at the replicated Algonkian village for hot cocoa around the campfire. Native Americans drew constellations, created a mythology around the stars and built structures in alignment with the sky long before Europeans arrived on American shores. Like other groups, they tracked the motions of the Sun to help them decide when to plant crops, move their camps, or stage sacred rituals.
Their stories contained explanations of the constellations they saw as patterns of bright stars, meteor showers, the Northern Lights, and saw in what we call the Milky Way a pathway to the afterlife.
Some tribes built great circles of stones to help them predict the changing seasons, or ceremonial sites and mounds of earth in alignment with the Sun and stars and to reflect the patterns they saw in the heavens.
Participants on this hike through the Native American Village and surrounding woodland trails will learn about the beliefs and folklore of the Eastern Woodland Indians that made Connecticut their home.