Look Up

Tonight is a celestial treat night. First, today  is  the winter solstice, the first day of winter in the Northern Hemisphere and the shortest day of the year.   And then  tonight we have a meteor shower. The shower will peak shortly after midnight – with 5-10 meteors visible per hour.  However, it might be tough to spot in most areas, due to cloudy skies and a half-full moon obscuring the view.  According to NASA, the best time to ‘tune in’ is from 12:30-1:30am tomorrow morning. AND THEN we have the Star Of Bethlehem!!   Jupiter and Saturn are aligning perfectly today to create what is commonly called the “Christmas Star” or the “Star of Bethlehem.”  The planets have not aligned this closely in about 400 years, and their alignment hasn’t been visible in about 800 years.  The star appears in the nativity story of the Gospel of Matthew where “wise men from the East” are inspired by the start to travel to Jerusalem.   December 21st also marks the winter solstice, which is the shortest day of the year meaning the star will be visible longer.    You should be able to view the two planets in the sky, depending on weather, with your own eyes. But, be ready to go outside and look up right at dusk because the planets will set right after sunset.