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Happy Chinese Valentine’s Day, from Vega

One of the prettiest stories in all skylore surrounds this star. “On the 7th night of the 7th moon …” The legend sets the date of Chinese Valentine’s Day – the Qixi Festival – this year on August 17.

More favorite Perseid meteor shower photos

2018 has been an exceptional year for the Perseids. Wonderful photos are still coming in. Thanks to all who submitted!

Perseid meteor shower: All you need to know

Some believe that Monday morning – August 13 – will be the best morning for 2018’s Perseid meteor shower.

Moonless nights ahead for the Perseids

It’ll be a great year for the annual Perseid meteor shower. Don’t miss this preview by Guy Ottewell, which has the best charts you’ll find anywhere online.

Dark Rift in the Milky Way

Standing under a dark sky? Look up! In August, you’ll notice a long, dark lane dividing the bright Milky Way. This Dark Rift is a place where new stars are forming.

August guide to the bright planets

In August 2018, 4 planets arc across the evening sky. From west to east as night falls, these bright worlds are Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars. Late August features Mercury before sunrise.

How far is a light-year?

How can we comprehend the distances to the stars? This post explains light-years in terms of a scale of miles and kilometers.

The cycle of close and far Martian oppositions

Like so much in the sky, very close approaches of Mars happen in cycles. Become a Mars guru, here.

Beautiful photos! Full moon eclipse and Mars

Earth flew between the sun and Mars this week, so, during yesterday’s total lunar eclipse, the moon and Mars were close. Photos from the EarthSky community here.

The July 27 total eclipse of the moon

More details and more charts, from Guy Ottewell.

Mars and moon meet at midnight

Best insights – and best charts – anywhere online about Mars’ wonderful July 2018 opposition and meet-up with the moon on the dome of Earth’s sky.

See it! Mars is very bright now

It’s the brightest Mars has been in our sky since since 2003. Photos from the EarthSky community here.

Brightest Mars since 2003

Why is Mars so bright and red now in our sky? Here’s the answer.

How to watch meteors in moonlight

A bright moon will do its best to drown out the peak of the 2018 Delta Aquariid meteor shower this week. Here are some tips for enjoying meteors in moonlight.

Delta Aquariids peak on eclipse night, Mars night

There’s no moon-free window left for meteor-watching this week. Yet this shower – whose nominal peak is July 27, same night as this century’s longest lunar eclipse and the brightest Mars since 2003 – might be a winner in 2018.

How to find Delta Aquariid radiant point

How to spot the radiant point for the Delta Aquariid meteor shower, going on now. Plus … why meteors in annual showers have radiant points.

Uranus, Neptune, Pluto: A longer view

Beloved astronomer Guy Ottewell announces his newest book.

See it! Last night’s moon and Venus

Photos from EarthSky friends around the world of Sunday evening’s spectacular moon and planet Venus, and Saturday’s moon and Mercury. Thanks to all who submitted or posted to our Facebook page! Miss then? Try again Monday.

How the moon’s orbit makes supermoons

An explanation of why extra-close perigees and extra-far apogees happen at new and full moons.

2018’s closest new supermoon on July 13

The closest new moon of 2018 – a supermoon – comes on July 13. You won’t see it, but Earth’s oceans will feel it. Then, 2 weeks later, we have the year’s farthest full moon.