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Don't Miss Venus in the Evening Sky This Month | Almanac.com

Don't Miss Venus in the Evening Sky This Month

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NASA
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Don’t miss beautiful planet Venus dazzling in the evening sky this month. It’s that bright “star” you see just after sunset—the third-brightest object after the Sun and Moon.

Let’s be Venus groupies! 

Centuries ago, a number of cultures like the Maya pretty much worshiped Venus.  As the evening star each gets maximally prominent every 19 months, sure enough, the Maya had a 19 month calendar. 

Well, these evenings just after sunset Venus hovers in the west so brilliantly it’s impossible to overlook.  It’s even a major source of UFO reports. Indeed, when Jimmy Carter was governor of Georgia, he reported seeing a UFO that proved to be Venus. So let’s keep an eye on it.

Night after night, the evening star gets a little higher, a little brighter, and shifts its position to the right.  Up until now it has hovered to the upper left of sunset and set in the west-southwest.  But it is moving to position itself directly above the sunset point, and set more perfectly due west. 

Whether these changes are fascinating or overlooked depends on how much you love sky gazing.  If you’re really into it, mark the final day of January and then February on your calendar, when Venus will form a triangle with the Moon and Mars.

But don’t wait until March.  That’s when Venus will vanish and not be a high-up, prominent evening star again until 2020. This is a limited-time offer. And the price is right.

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