September Holidays in 2014
September 1 Labor Day
September 7 Grandparents Day
September 9 Admission Day - California
September 10 Carl Garner Federal Lands Cleanup Day
September 11 Patriot Day
September 12 Defenders’ Day – Maryland
September 17 Constitution / Citizenship Day
September 15 - October 15 Hispanic Heritage Month
September 21 World Peace Day
September 22 Autumnal Equinox
September 25 Rosh Hashanah
September 26 American Indian Day (4th Friday)
Selected Regional Festivals in September 2014
September 12-13 Utica Arts & Music Festival
September 12-13 Madison County Hop Fest, Oneida
September 13 Mohawk Valley Garlic and Herb Festival, Little Falls
September 20 9th Annual Cream Cheese Festival, Lowville
September 27-28 102nd Annual Pilgrimage and Feast of Sts. Cosmas & Damian, Utica
September 27-28 Barn Festival of the Arts, Remsen
When March began the New Year in Roman times, September gets its name from the Latin Septem for seven as it was the seventh month of the Roman Calendar when the New Year began in March. The ninth month of the year in today's Gregorian Calendar, September is the first month of fall that officially begins with the Autumnal Equinox of September 22.
Throughout the month, daylight hours decrease nearly by nearly 90 minutes and sunset by the end of the month is before 7 P.M., a significant change from the long evenings of early summer. With an average of 4.40 inches of rain, September is the month with the largest long-term average of precipitation. Some Septembers are much rainier than others. Occasionally the tail end of a hurricane affects our weather, usually in the form of a tropical depression decreasing in intensity as it moves north. Occasionally these fall storms drop over two inches of rain in our area. Usually one of our most pleasant months, September has generally warm days (average of 71° F) and cool evenings (average 47° F).
The reds, yellows and oranges of changing leaves start to appear, usually peaking in intensity late September in the Adirondacks and the North Country, but later in mid to late October in the Mohawk Valley and southern hills. Frost may also occur in areas north and south of the Mohawk River, but in the Valley the first frost is usually now in early to mid October.
For local gardeners, there may still be late beans, corn, squash, and tomatoes to pick. It is time to clean out detritus from the garden as the last summer vegetables are picked. Late summer flowers usually continue to bloom until the first hard frost. It is also time to prepare beds for planting of garlic and bulb flowers such as tulips and daffodils for next year’s spring flowers. For those without a garden, local produce of vegetables, along with apples, pears, and early pumpkins are readily available at the many local farmers markets.
Summer Ends and School Begins
Labor Day marks the last hurrah of summer, and many area parks and tourist attractions close after the holiday weekend, though some remain open on weekends through Columbus Day in October. After Labor Day, the school year begins for elementary and secondary students. Most arts and other organizations begin their programming and meeting schedules for the fall and winter season.
There are many outdoor fall festivals in the region in September. These often focus on local agriculture, especially apples, garlic, and in Madison County, hops and beer. These are held on weekends throughout the month and provide a last chance to enjoy the outdoors and usually nice weather before the colder days of late fall and winter arrive.
The 40th annual Falling Leaves Road Race of five kilometers is held the last Sunday of the month, this year September 28. This began before the Boilermaker, and is usually the second largest area road race.
While the last weekend of the month is often cool and rainy, it does not dampen the spirits (too much) of the thousands that attend the annual Remsen Festival of the Arts (FOTA) that is held annually. This is one of the largest regional fall festivals of arts and crafts, music and food, held in this small village in the Adirondack foothills north of Utica.
On the same weekend, thousands of Catholic pilgrims come to Utica for the Festa of Sts. Cosmas and Damian. This annual event attracts people from across New York State, as well as Ontario and Quebec. Sponsored by St. Anthony and St. Agnes Church, this includes a unique outdoor processional in the East Utica neighborhood streets surrounding the church with floats and marching bands. There is much Italian food and music, and several religious services during the two day event. This year is the 102nd annual celebration, making it perhaps the oldest continuously celebrated festival in the area other than for county fairs.
Early fall is a great time of year in the Mohawk Valley. Take the opportunity to attend one or several of these regional outdoor events during the month of September before the cold of later fall and winter arrive.
In the Night Skies
September is usually the month of the Full Harvest Moon, this year occurring rather early on September 8. Between the 15th and 26th, best seen in dark rural areas, the Milky Way seems to slplit the sky from north to south shortly after sunset. With binoculars, if skies are clear, one might see the Green Planet Uranus, close to the Moon in Pisces in the eastern sky on the 10th about an hour after moonrise of 8:13 P.M. Jupiter and the Moon have a conjunction about 5 A.M. in the eastern sky on the 20th. There is also a conjunction of the Moon and Saturn in the western sky about 8 P.M. on September 27. Mars is seen close to the Moon in the constellation Ophiuchus near nightfall in the western sky on the 29th. The autumnal equinox occurs at 10:29 P.M. on September 22, the official beginning of Autumn. The rising and setting times of visible planets are listed below for that date.
Phases of the Moon
First Quarter September 2
Full Moon September 8
Last Quarter September 15
New Moon September 24
Autumnal Equinox September 22
Sunrise 6:49 A.M. Sunset 6:57 P.M.
Moonrise 5:13 A.M. Moonset 6:06 P.M.
Venus Rises 6:02 A.M.
Mars Sets 9:41 P.M.
Jupiter Rises 2:52 A.M.
Saturn Sets 9:07 P.M.
Virgo, belly August 23- September 22
Libra reins September 23- October 22