For those of you who can't wait for summer to begin, today's the first day you can tell your friends it's already begun.
Today, May 7, marks the beginning of "solar" summer here in the Northern Hemisphere – the three months of the year with the greatest amount of sunshine. In other words, it's the quarter of the year when the most solar energy reaches the Earth's Northern Hemisphere, according to AccuWeather.
The solar summer centers around June 21, which is the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere. (The summer solstice also marks the beginning of "astronomical" summer, which tends to be referred to as the "official" start of summer, though I'm not aware of any legislative body that's actually conferred this honor.)
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Confused yet? If not, don't forget that meteorological summer – defined as the three warmest months – begins June 1, and consists of the months of June, July and August.
Of course, the hottest part of the summer, often referred to as the "dog days" of summer, occurs from mid-July to early August across much of the USA, AccuWeather notes.
Any way you slice it, summer lovers, it's finally time to get out and soak up the sun.