June has a few backyard astronomy celestial treats. Here's what to look for.
Summer is almost here, and the month of June has a few backyard astronomy celestial treats! With the warmer nights ahead, all we now need is a clear sky.
First up - the planetary parade. You'll be able to see five planets in their orbital sequence clear across the southeastern sky before sunrise. You can't miss Venus and Jupiter, as they are both very bright and easy to find. Right now, Mercury is a little hard to spot since it'll be so low on the horizon and will get lost in sunrise glow. You'll have an easier time later in the month to view it as it rises higher. On June 24, the crescent moon joins in on the fun too.
Next up is the summer triangle. Have you seen it? It's a summer staple that's easy to spot as it now hangs high in the eastern sky. The summer triangle isn't a constellation, but it's an asterism that is made up of three very bright stars from other constellations. An asterism is a group or small cluster of stars with a popular name. It's a sign of the changing season and a roadmap to view the Milky Way galaxy. If your sky is dark enough, you'll be able to see it right through the lower portion of the triangle.
Finally, we have the full moon on June 14. It's known as the Strawberry moon. Perfect timing... by the way have you tried any of our locally grown strawberries yet? This will be another "supermoon," so it may appear slightly larger or brighter.
Be sure to share your pictures or video of any of these fun celestial events. Use the hashtag #n12stormwatchers.
The countdown to summer continues. Enjoy the month and happy stargazing!