WISCONSIN, (WFRV) – Twice a year the direct rays of the sun are centered over the equator. This is called an equinox and happens in the spring and fall seasons. The reason for this is due to the 23.5-degree tilt to the Earth.

The fall equinox happens on Sept. 22 at 8:04 p.m. Central Time. This marks the time when the direct rays of the sun favor the southern hemisphere as they experience their spring and summer seasons. For the northern hemisphere, this is the beginning of our fall and winter seasons.

The equinox also is the time the planet experiences almost equal daylight and darkness. Sunrise in Green Bay on Sept. 22 is at 6:40 a.m. with a sunset at 6:50 p.m. In Latin, equinox means “equal” and “night.”

The Winter Solstice, which is when the direct rays are at their most southern point, signals the beginning of the winter season in the northern hemisphere. This is also when we see the least amount of daylight.

After this point, the direct sunrays begin gradually moving northward as we approach the spring equinox on March 20, 2023.

Unlike meteorological seasons which go in three-month increments, the day a new astronomical season begins varies from year to year.