Category Archives: Observing Without A Telescope

If you already have binoculars…

Do you have a pair of binoculars lying around your house somewhere? Turn them to the sky and have a look.  If you’re a beginning stargazer, a telescope is not a requirement in getting started. I recommend learning your way … Continue reading

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Orion’s Lesser-Known Neighbors

Orion is a well-known constellation. He has bright stars, and he straddles the celestial equator, which puts him in prominent viewing position for both northern and southern hemisphere star gazers. He also has some bright, well-known neighbors: Gemini the Twins; … Continue reading

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Winter Solstice, Bedtime Math, and Meridian Calendars

Tomorrow is the winter solstice for my location in North America, and then the Sun can begin its northward journey along the horizon and the days can lengthen again. For “Everything you need to know: winter solstice 2012,” see this … Continue reading

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November 2012 star map

I apologize for the lack of posts this past month. It’s been rough! We’ve been taking turns being ill in my household, and I was super busy organizing and preparing our first ever Halloween planetarium show and Spooky Science Night … Continue reading

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September Skies, Part WHOOSH!

WHOOSH! Did you hear that? That was my September whizzing by. I had promised a part 2 to my September Skies post, but it hasn’t happened yet. Don’t worry, though–the constellations I meant to write about–Cassiopeia, Andromeda, Perseus, Pegasus, etc.–will … Continue reading

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September Skies, part 1

Fall is fast approaching in the Northern Hemisphere, and that means the seasonal constellations are changing. In the southern view, we have a low parade of zodiacal constellations (the path the Sun, Moon, and planets take across the sky), some … Continue reading

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Perseid Meteor Shower 2012

I’ve been working on meteor content for the planetarium, so I’ve completely missed posting about Mars and the Curiosity landing tonight, but you’re probably getting that news elsewhere (I hope.) Anyway, August is a great time to view meteors for … Continue reading

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June 2012 Stargazing, Part 2

In June 2012 Stargazing Part 1, we looked at the Summer Triangle constellations and the shifting position of the northern-sky constellations. Today we will look at the southern view, and consider Sagittarius, Scorpius, Libra, Ophiuchus, and Serpens. Sagittarius sticks close … Continue reading

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June 2012 Stargazing, Part 1

In this guide to the June sky, I am focusing on the north and east views of mid-northern latitudes. Looking east, the Summer Triangle is up by 10 or 11 p.m. This *asterism is made up of three bright stars … Continue reading

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June 5 Transit of Venus

On June 5 (or 6, depending on where you live), you may have the opportunity to see the last transit of Venus in your lifetime! A transit of Venus is when the planet Venus passes directly in front of the … Continue reading

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