Pictures from around the world are casting a spotlight on this weekend's supermoon - the biggest, brightest full moon of the year - and now is the perfect time to get in on the action yourself.
The moon is even getting some love from the International Space Station, where NASA astronaut Karen Nyberg tweeted out a picture of moonrise over New Brunswick. In her picture, the lunar disk doesn't seem all that super, because of the comparison with Earth's broad, gently curving horizon.
It's true that this full moon is only about 14 percent wider and 30 percent brighter than it would be at its dimmest. Nevertheless, Supermoon Weekend is a fine occasion to shower some extra attention on our closest celestial neighbor. There's a super view on Saturday night as well as Sunday night.
Japan's foreign minister announced a $7 billion initiative Monday to promote development in Southeast Asia's Mekong region, which encompasses parts of Vietnam, Laos and Thailand through which the river flows. (Japan Today)
Japan on Monday began its annual "Cool Biz" campaign, which encourages workers to dress more casually to help reduce energy use, with government offices allowing polo shirts, Hawaiian-style aloha shirts and similar attire. (Japan Times)
The Osaka District Public Prosecutor's Office has filed charges of drug trafficking against a 40-year-old woman who left a large quantity of illegal drugs inside a fast-food outlet, reports the Asahi Shimbun (April 30). (Tokyo Reporter)
An increasing number of people are using the "furusato nozei" hometown donation program to support Kumamoto Prefecture, southwestern Japan, which has been hit hard by a recent series of strong earthquakes. (Jiji Press)