Muskegon Magazine.com, Muskegon County's online magazine

Pictured is Altair, a well-known member of the Summer Triangle, clearly visible in the summer night sky across the United States. Image: NASA/JPL/Caltech/Steve Golden.

Clear Skies Contain Wonderful Sights for Sky Watchers

BY JONATHAN TRUAX, ASTRONOMER, MUSKEGON COMMUNITY COLLEGE'S CARR-FLES PLANETARIUM

This month, the nights are short and darkness comes late, but clear skies are frequent and contain many wonderful delights for sky watchers.

As the month begins, a trio of planets is visible after sunset. The planet Venus is the lowest and western most of the three. Look for Venus as a very bright white “star” in the northwest near the twin stars Castor and Pollux of Gemini the Twins. The waxing crescent moon is very near Venus the nights of June 15 and 16.

In the southern sky and less brilliant is the planet Jupiter. Look for a bright yellow “star” shining among the stars of Libra, just to the west of Scorpius the Scorpion. The waxing gibbous moon is very close to Jupiter the nights of June 22 through the 24.

June is this year’s best month to observe Saturn, as Earth is closest to Saturn. The planet is visible rising in the southeast about an hour after sunset. The Full moon is very close to Saturn on the nights of June 26 through the 28.

The planet Mars begins rising in the southeast around midnight local time. Look for a fairly bright orange-red “star.” In two months Mars will be closer to Earth than it has been since 2003. The waning gibbous moon is very close to Mars the nights of June 2 through the 4.


The MCC Carr-Fles Planetarium presents free of charge “Incoming!” Tuesday, June 5 and Thursday, June 7 at 7:00 p.m., the last planetarium shows this season! Tag along with robot explorers zooming past rocky asteroids and icy comets, all the way to Pluto, and discover how asteroids and comets have collided with our planet throughout history, changing the course of life on Earth. Narrated by George Takei, this 2016 program gives audiences a closer look at the scientific advances that may allow us to find and track cosmic threats before they reach planet Earth. The program will be followed by a brief tour of the current night sky, using the planetarium.


As darkness falls after sunset this month, high in the northwest, locate the “Big Dipper” formed by the stars of Ursa Major. Low on the northern horizon; find a “W” forming the stars of Cassiopeia. High in the western sky nearly overhead, locate Arcturus of Bootes, the brightest star of summer.

Low in the south southwest, just west of the bright blue star Spica, look for a trapezoid-shaped pattern of stars forming Corvus the Crow. Rising in the Eastern sky locate three bright stars all blue or white in color, forming the “Summer Triangle.” Low and to the northeast is Deneb, of Cygnus the Swan. Higher in the east is Vega, of Lyra the Harp. Furthest south of the trio is Altair, of Aquila the Eagle.

By dawn the “Summer Triangle” can be found high overhead. As dawn twilight begins, look low in the northeast to locate the bright yellow star Capella, one of the brightest stars of winter.


The MCC Carr-Fles Planetarium presents free of charge “Incoming!” Tuesdays, June 5 and Thursday, June 7, at 7:00 p.m. Visit the MCC Carr-Fles Planetarium website for upcoming events and call (231) 777-0289 for sky show information. Carr-Fles Planetarium is located on the Muskegon Community College campus in Room 135. Thanks to the generosity of the Reach for the Stars campaign donors, you can now experience the all-new Carr-Fles Planetarium, featuring state-of-the-art digital projection, sound and lighting systems; all-new library of shows; and modern theater seating and domed ceiling.

Click here to return to CONTENTS PAGE.

Jazz: Midnight, with art inspired by jazz album cover design, drops readers into the late night music clubs of 1957. From Gary Scott Beatty. Click here for Jazz: Midnight.

Worlds, the first Gary Scott Beatty retrospective is now on Amazon. This 96 page collection includes early work, unpublished art, in-depth articles, a jazz art gallery and more. Click here for “Worlds.”

Wounds, Gary Scott Beatty’s zombie horror book with a twist, is now on Amazon. Click here for Wounds.

Muskegon Magazine.com, Muskegon County's online magazine

Brought to you by our advertisers


Contents:

FESTIVAL
The 40th Annual White Lake Area Arts and Crafts Festival is Father's Day weekend, June 16 and 17. More than 75 artists will be there. Check out the music schedule and more here! VIDEO!

EVENTS
Musical performances, Michigan Notable Book Author, Summer Reading Program and much more at Hackley Public Library! There's something for everyone in this June schedule. VIDEO!

HOMES
Will the reforms in the tax code cause home prices to tumble over the next 12 months? Nancy Bierenga answers questions about your home and the impact of tax reform in this informative article.

SENIORS
Seniors are often targeted for scams and fraud. Judith Delis of Seminole Shores Assisted Living Center offers tips to share with seniors to help them from becoming victimized.

DECORATING
Window covering motorization can control light through those hard to reach windows, but Decorator Carol Beatty of Quigley Draperies says PowerView can do so much more. VIDEO!

COMMUNITY
Great things are happening in our community! Christine Robere of United Way of the Lakeshore says Happy 100th Birthday to United Way of the Lakeshore.

LAKESHORE STAR GAZER
This month, the nights are short and darkness comes late, but clear skies are frequent and contain many wonderful delights for sky watchers! Astronomer Jonathan Truax explains. VIDEO!

BUSTER KEATON
In Buster’s film Convict 13 (1920), Buster once again is dangerously misunderstood by the police, changing places with an escaped prisoner and scheduled to hang! Complete and online here! VIDEO!

CARTOONS
You think your summer job is challenging? Flip the Frog works as a blacksmith and barber in this month's classic cartoons, complete and online here! VIDEO!

EVENTS CALENDAR
Don't miss a thing this summer with Muskegon County's BEST online events calendar, courtesy of Hackley Public Library!

Click here to return to CONTENTS PAGE.
Inquire about ADVERTISING here.

Muskegon Magazine.com is locally owned and produced. Gary Scott Beatty, editor and publisher. Contents and design © Copyright Gary Scott Beatty, 1509 Princeton Rd., Muskegon, Michigan 49441.

Muskegon Magazine.com is an educational and informational service to help you make informed decisions. The content, tools and services of Muskegon Magazine.com are not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Privacy.