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Lunar Eclipse Thrills Stargazers in the Americas (Photos)

A total lunar eclipse provided a spectacular celestial show as it unfolded Sunday night into early Monday in the Americas.

The eastern half of North America and all of Central and South America were prime locations to see the eclipse, while partial stages were visible across Africa, Europe and the Middle East.

Among those watching the eclipse where skies were clear were residents of Buenos Aires, Argentina, who bundled up in the chilly night and relaxed on blankets in a park to look at the event. In Caracas, Venezuela, some people brought laser pointers as a crowd gathered to watch.

The moon was bathed in the reflected red and orange hues of Earth’s sunsets and sunrises for about 1 1/2 hours, one of the longest totalities of the decade. It was the first so-called “blood moon” in a year.

A total eclipse occurs when Earth passes directly between the moon and the sun, and casts a shadow on the lunar surface. The moon was 225,000 miles (362,000 kilometers) away at the peak of the eclipse — around midnight on the U.S. East Coast.

There’ll be another lengthy total lunar eclipse in November, with Africa and Europe being the best places to see it, but not the Americas. Then the next one isn’t until 2025.

A full moon rises above the historical city center of Mardin, famous with its stone houses, in southeastern Turkey, early Monday, May 16, 2022. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
A lunar eclipse covers the moon as it rises beyond a statue atop the Liberty Memorial tower at the National World War I Museum on Monday, May 16, 2022, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
A lunar eclipse is seen above the artwork titled: “Seven Magic Mountains” by artist Ugo Rondinone, during the first blood moon of the year Sunday, May 15, 2022, near Jean, Nev. (AP Photo/John Locher)
A lunar eclipse is seen behind an Argentinian flag during the first blood moon of the year in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Monday, May 16, 2022. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
People are silhouetted as an almost full moon rises above the sky in Grozny, Russia, Sunday, May 15, 2022. (AP Photo/Musa Sadulayev)
A lunar eclipse is seen behind a cyclist during the first blood moon of the year, in Irwindale, Calif., Sunday, May 15, 2022. (AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu)
A lunar eclipse begins as the full moon sets over the hills of the Taunus mountains near Frankfurt, Germany, Monday, May 16, 2022. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

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