EYES TO THE SKY April 29 – May 12, 2019

Evening twilight, end of April, first days of May. image: Starry Night, Judy Isacoff
For delight in discovery plan to observe many fleeting moments that mark the movement of the seasons and other special events in the sky this week.
Beginning with the short window of evening twilight, bid farewell to the scintillating stars of winter constellations close to the horizon in the west. Linger with Sirius, The Dog Star; Orion’s Betelgeuse and belt stars; Taurus’ Aldebaran. See planet Mars – like a unicorn’s horn marked by a red “star”– above the head of the Bull.
Sunset is at 7:50 p.m. tonight; look by 9 p.m. all week, until they disappear.
Waxing crescents with winter stars and Mars the second week of this post. Courtesy of EarthSky.org

Swing around to face east to meet spring star Arcturus, second in brilliance to Sirius, halfway to zenith in the early evening and overhead by 11 p.m. Arcturus follows Leo the Lion, found striding high in the southeast early and later in the south.

Looking to the morning sky, there is also a short window of opportunity to observe a heavenly meet-up close above the horizon; the east to southwest skyline this time.
Brilliant planet Venus rises in the east close to 5 a.m. tomorrow. A waning crescent moon clears the east-southeast horizon at about 4:15 a.m. tomorrow and 4:40 a.m. on May 1. Jupiter is well above the south-southwest skyline, having risen around midnight. Sunrise tomorrow, April 30, is at 5:57 a.m. Find an unobstructed horizon view about 50 minutes before sunrise today, tomorrow and May 1.
Morning twilight, April 29, 30, May 1, 2019 about 5:15 a.m. See waning crescent moon, southeast, between the planets. Summer Triangle above.
 Moon fades earlier on May 1.   image: Starry Night/Judy Isacoff
New moon, when the moon is dark, occurs on May 4. New moon, in dark sky locations, is the best time for a meteor shower. Click here to learn about the Eta Aquarid meteor shower that peaks before dawn on May 6.

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