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Bruce McClure

Lyrid meteor shower peaks this weekend

Assuming ideal conditions, you might catch 10 to 20 meteors per hour in 2018’s Lyrid meteor shower. The peak is probably Sunday morning, but watch the mornings before and after, too.

Lyrid meteor shower: All you need to know

In 2018, April 22 is the peak morning. Try April 21 and 23 as well. The moon, near the 1st quarter phase, is out of the way.

Moon in Winter Circle April 19 to 21

What a great time to identify many bright stars! Let the moon be your guide.

Moon and Venus on April 17 to 19

On April 17 to 19, you’ll see some gorgeous pairings of the moon and brightest planet Venus. You’ll find them in the west shortly after the sun goes down.

Will you see the young moon?

It’s a wonderful evening for young moon hunting from North America or a Pacific island. The moon will be west after sunset, below brilliant Venus.

Clock time and sun time agree

Sundial and clock agree every year in middle April. It means that, when the midday sun climbs highest, the sundial reads 12 noon and your local clock says 12 noon.

Spica, guide star to Omega Centauri

Omega Centauri is the largest and finest star cluster visible to the eye alone from the Northern Hemisphere. Binoculars or a telescope show even more. A dark sky is best!

Scared yet? 2018 has 2 Friday 13ths

The 1st of this year’s 2 Friday the 13ths falls on April 13, 2018. It comes exactly 13 weeks before 2018’s second Friday the 13th, in July.

For Southern Hemisphere, moon and Mercury before sunup April 13 and 14

Mercury is starting its best morning appearance for 2018 for the Southern Hemisphere. Northern Hemisphere? You might catch the moon on April 13 (maybe 14), but Mercury will be tougher to see.

Meet M13, the Great Cluster in Hercules

Many stargazers call it the finest globular cluster in the northern half of the heavens. It’s M13, also known as the Great Cluster in Hercules.