COMET CATALINA THIS WEEK!

COMET CATALINA makes it’s closest pass to Earth this weekend, on the night of Saturday, January 16. On this night, it will be very close to the handle of the Big Dipper. Catalina will pass between the Big and Little Dippers among the stars of Draco through the end of January as it recedes from the Earth. In the process, … Continue reading

Lunar Conjunction – Venus and Saturn

The fun begins in 2016 with the morning conjunction of the waning crescent Moon with the bright planet Venus this week, on the morning of Thursday, January 7, before sunrise.  But as a special added bonus, Venus is currently lining up with the planet Saturn, which recently emerged from the sunrise, after being invisibly hidden on the opposite side of … Continue reading

2016: A Year of Lunar and Planetary Conjunctions

Friends, 2015 was a very interesting year for conjunctions of the Moon and planets.  Long-time readers of this newsletter and other experienced sky observers understand that the classical planets are among the brightest objects in the sky, and are brighter that the actual fixed stars. The planet Venus is blazingly bright, the third brightest object in the sky, exceeded in … Continue reading

Total Solar Eclipse USA – NEXT YEAR!

On Monday, August 21, 2017, there will be a TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE SUN passing over the United States, from coast to coast.  A lot of people don’t appreciate the magnitude and significance of such an event.  Basically, the Moon will BLOCK OUT the Sun for a couple minutes, and the brightness of noon will become the darkness of midnight, … Continue reading

CHRISTMAS FULL MOON

  And the popular movie in question was NOT “Saturday Night Fever”! 2015 will have the first Christmas Full Moon since 1977, 38 years ago. No one under the age of 40 can remember the last time this happened. That famous movie came out in 1977, the year of the last Christmas Full Moon, and the latest Disney-produced sequel in … Continue reading

GEMINID METEORS — THIS WEEK!!!

  The Geminid meteor shower runs from December 6-19, and peaks this Sunday night, December 13/14. But the Geminids are one of the most active showers of the year, and in recent years, have been more active than the more-famous Perseids in August. You can see the meteors in any part of the sky, but they all appear to emanate … Continue reading

CLOSE CONJUNCTION/ OCCULTATION OF VENUS BY THE MOON!

  Before sunrise on Monday morning, December 7, there will be a VERY CLOSE conjunction of the “Old Moon” with the blazingly bright planet Venus in the constellation Virgo! The Moon and this bright planet will be sharing the morning sky with the planets Mars and Jupiter! ALASKA AND NW CANADA… But on Monday morning, the waning crescent Moon will … Continue reading

CONJUNCTIONS OF THE MOON WITH JUPITER AND MARS!

Keep your eye on the sky before sunrise on the morning of Friday, December 4, as the waning crescent Moon lines up with the bright planet Jupiter in the constellation Leo! Over the weekend, the waning Moon moves into the constellation Virgo and passes by the red planet Mars! But the weekend dance of the planets is just a prelude … Continue reading