Ryan Reynolds, Executive Editor, and Houston Harwood, Criminal Justice Reporter, Evansville Courier & Press

The most confusing thing about Indiana isn't the origin of the term "Hoosier" or the state's obsession with breaded tenderloins.

Want to really befuddle someone here? Ask what time it is in Indianapolis. And then ask what time it is in Evansville. And what time it is in South Bend. And then what time it is in Gary.

If you live in, say, Vincennes, and commute across the Knox-Gibson county line for work at Toyota near Princeton, you experience the same hour twice on your way to work and then lose an hour completely on the way home.

In a state with so many rivers and lakes, nothing seems as fluid as time.

And it's not much better in Kentucky, where Paducah, Owensboro and Henderson are in a different time zone than Louisville, Lexington and Richmond.

The annual autumn time change is coming up soon. Here's what you should know.

What day does my clock 'fall back' in 2023?

Daylight Saving Time for 2023 will end on Sunday, Nov. 5 at 2 a.m. local time, when clocks will fall back an hour to 1 a.m. So theoretically, you'll get to live the same hour twice.

But the biggest immediate change you'll see is in the shift in what time the sun rises and sets. In the Evansville/Henderson area, sunrise on Nov. 4 will be at 7:18 a.m. On Nov. 5, it's at 6:19 a.m. Sunset will go from 5:48 p.m. to 4:47 p.m.

The days (well, the daylight, anyway) keep getting "shorter" until the winter solstice on Dec. 21. That day, the sun will rise at just after 7 a.m., and set just after 4:30 p.m. The total daylight on Dec. 21 will be 5 hours and 16 minutes shorter than what we experience on the summer solstice in June.

So is Evansville still going to be on a different time than Indianapolis?

Yes, unlike in the old days (for about 30 years prior to 2006) when Evansville and Indianapolis were on the same time for only part of the year and chaos reigned within the hands of every Hoosier clock and watch.

In 2005, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels made DST part of his economic plan, arguing that "Indiana Time" was bad for the state's economy because businesses outside of the state couldn't keep track of what time it was in Indiana. Then-House Speaker Brian Bosma and other key legislative leaders also backed the change, but many lawmakers remained adamantly opposed, particularly those from western counties close to the Central Time border.

So now, if it's 2 p.m. in Evansville, it's 3 p.m. in Indianapolis, no matter what day of the year it is.

So part of Indiana is in a different time zone than the rest of Indiana?

Affirmative. Twelve of Indiana's 92 counties are in the Central Time Zone, including the Southwestern Indiana counties of Gibson, Posey, Vanderburgh, Warrick, Spencer and Perry. The other Central Time Zone counties are in the Chicago area.

The rest of the Hoosier State is on Eastern Time, with its 11 p.m. local newscasts, 8 p.m. prime-time television starts and 1 p.m. NFL kickoffs on Sundays.

Does Kentucky also observe two different time zones?

Yes, and on a bigger scale. Of the 120 counties in the Bluegrass State, 40 are on Central Time (western part of the state) and 80 are on Eastern Time (in the eastern part of the state).

Is any part of this time-change thing simple?

One thing, for sure. Pretty much everyone carries a cellphone these days, and those cellphones will automatically set themselves to the correct time. Most of your household appliances, unless they're connected to the Internet, will still require you to manually change the time.

How do cellphones know to automatically change time?

We reached out to Verizon for an answer on that. Here's the response we got:

"All network time is based on what’s known as Coordinated Universal Time, which is transmitted from atomic clock-equipped GPS satellites. Each individual cell site has GPS time servers with each site assigned a time zone based on its geolocation. All time zones are based on state and county borders."

And yes, they change automatically when you're driving into a new time zone.

"Simply put, Verizon’s customer devices update their reported time based on the primary serving cell site they are connected to at any given moment," the company said. "On rare instances when a user happens to be on a time zone border, the device would change reported times at every instance the device hands off between adjacent sites across the time zone border."

I thought the government was going to get rid of time changes. What happened?

Well, government being government, we're not quite there. An explanation from USA TODAY:

"The Sunshine Protection Act would permanently extend daylight saving time from just eight months to the entire year. in January 2021, Rep. Vern Buchanan first introduced the bill, which was reintroduced by Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, and seven other bipartisan members of Congress in March 2022.

"The measure, which would make daylight saving time permanent across the country, still needs to be passed by the U.S. House of Representatives and signed into law by President Joe Biden."

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