Northern Notes – May 2019

Murphy Dome sunset – Courtesy Explore Fairbanks

Alaskans Celebrate Summer Solstice

By Serine Reeves

As the northern hemisphere approaches its maximum tilt toward the sun, the daylight in Alaska lasts a few minutes longer every day. Summer solstice on Friday, June 21, marks the day with the most daylight hours in the north. For the most northern cities of Alaska, such as Utqiagvik or Deadhorse (at Prudhoe Bay), that means the sun will not set at all. In fact, the sun will rise in Utqiagvik on May 12 and it won’t set again until August 2! Each night, the sun will dip close to the horizon and rise again.

The change in daylight is significant across the state. In Anchorage, Alaska’s most populous city, residents and visitors will enjoy 22 hours of functional daylight on summer solstice, with the sun rising at 4:20 a.m. and setting at 11:42 p.m. For Alaskans, this summer surge of daylight means that it’s time to celebrate! Here is a brief list of some of Alaska’s favorite solstice festivals:

Mayors Marathon Race in Anchorage – Courtesy Visit Anchorage

Downtown Summer Solstice Festival
Saturday, June 22, noon-6 p.m.
Anchorage

Midnight Sun Festival
Sunday, June 23
Fairbanks

Gold Rush Days
Saturday—Sunday, June 22-23
Juneau

Moose Pass Summer Solstice Festival
Saturday—Sunday, June 15-16
Moose Pass

Summer Solstice Music Festival
Thursday—Sunday, June 20-23
Seldovia

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