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Bright Planets in July
Jupiter and Saturn at Their...
Both Jupiter and Saturn will be the brightest they get in the whole of 2020, and shine for the longest. Next up is Jupiter is at “opposition” to the Sun on July 14, 2020. ...
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Next Total Solar Eclipse
When is the next total solar eclipse? See our dates when the total eclipse of the Sun is visible...
Some Like It Hot! Best Vegetables to Grow in the Heat
A week-long heat wave and a recent question—concerning what green beans to grow in a hot climate—...
Total Solar Eclipses: How Often Do They Happen?
On August 21, 2017, people in a large swath of North America had the opportunity to view a total...
Sky Map (Star Chart): July 2018
Look up with the July 2018 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky. On...
Trapped for Life: America’s Most Famous Cave Rescue
We’ve been riveted by the cave rescue in Thailand and watching as 12 boys were successfully rescued...
The Perseids: Best Meteor Shower of the Year
Everyone loves shooting stars and meteor showers. The Perseid meteor shower of August 11 to 13 is...
Fourth of July Planets: A Parade of Worlds
On Independence Day, the same scene will be repeated around the country. Crowds will gather as...
Saturn at Its Brightest—Next to the Full Strawberry Moon on Wednesday
It’s a truly extraordinary conjunction. Saturn reaches opposition—shining at its biggest and...
Nearing the End of Solar Cycle 24
Solar Cycle 24 is approaching its end, which will mean the beginning of Solar Cycle 25. What does...
Quarter Moon or a Half Moon? Clearing Up Confusion.
Only in astronomy does a Half Moon and a Quarter Moon mean the same thing! And the Quarter Moon is...
Venus, Planet of Paradox
Sister planet. Nearest neighbor. Goddess of love. How appealing the planet Venus sounds! But the...
Sky Map (Star Chart): June 2018
Look up with the June 2018 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky. On...
Solar Minimum Approaching | A Mini Ice Age?
Sunspots are disappearing more rapidly than usual as the Sun prepares to enter the solar minimum....
The Far Side of the Moon
We never see the far side of the Moon or what some people call the dark side of the Moon. Do you...
Jupiter at Opposition | Closest Approach to Earth
This is Jupiter month! On the night of May 8–9, the Giant Planet will be at its brightest for the...
What Are Sunspots?
The Old Farmer’s Almanac uses sunspot activity to help in making its weather predictions. What are...
Sky Map (Star Chart): May 2018
Look up with the May 2018 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky. On...
How Far is the Most Distant Object in the Universe?
What is the most distant object humans have ever seen in the known Universe? The latest record-...
2018 Summer Weather Forecast
Believe it or not, summer is just around the corner! What kind of weather can we expect this year?...
What’s the Slowest-Spinning Planet?
Space is famous for zippy activity, like streaking meteors that sail through the night sky. But...
The Moon, Saturn, and Mars Meet on April 6–7
Sometimes the actual sky is so compelling, we’re forced to simply look out the window. Such is the...
Sky Map (Star Chart): April 2018
Look up with the April 2018 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky. On...
Happy Pi Day 2020, My Friends!
On Saturday, March 14 (3/14), Pi Day is celebrated. It’s the sort of holiday only celebrated by...
The Year's Best Conjunction is Sunday, March 18
An unusual thing happens Sunday evening at 7:30 P.M.—a beautiful meeting of the three closest...
Sky Map (Star Chart): March 2018
Look up with the March 2018 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky. On...
A New Star in the Night Sky in 2022
A star is born! If you’ve followed my column, you may recall me saying that a new star will appear...
Planet Spectacle: The Show Will Start Soon
This year will indeed be extraordinary for planets. We will see one of the closest approaches of...
How Does the Moon Affect Our Bodies?
In mid-February, the Moon returns to the evening sky. This brings up an ancient puzzle: How does...
So You Want to Buy a Telescope?
Since Galileo—one of the first people on Earth to have aimed a telescope at the heavens—millions of...
A Supermoon, Blue Moon, and Lunar Eclipse on January 31
Heard about this “Super Blue Blood Moon” on January 31? Let’s break this down: That’s a Supermoon,...
Stars Crowd Around the Moon This Weekend
Easy astronomy? Deep, profound, cool stuff with no pain? That’s this weekend. On the evenings of...
Sky Map (Star Chart): February 2018
Look up with the February 2018 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky....
Baby, It's Cold Outside
It’s been a cold meteorological winter so far, and the northeastern states hit their very coldest...
Sky Map (Star Chart): January 2018
Look up with the January 2018 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky. On...
Can You Really Name a Star?
Maybe you’ve heard those radio commercials. The announcer says, “If you’re looking for a perfect...
Sky Map (Star Chart): December 2017
Look up with the December 2017 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky....
Ode to Kerosene: It Took Us to the Moon
In some rural areas, folks heat their homes with oil. Some buy kerosene, especially in the coldest...
Get Ready for Fabulous Shooting Stars
Much attention is being paid to the Leonid meteor shower, which peaks in the wee hours before dawn...
Sky Map (Star Chart): November 2017
Look up with the November 2017 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky....
Sky Map (Star Chart): October 2017
Look up with the October 2017 sky map to navigate the stars and constellations in the night sky. On...
The Smiling Moon, Venus, Mars on October 17
Maybe you’ve already seen it. Low in the east, just before dawn—say at 6:15 or so—is the brightest...
Navigating the Night Sky
The wonder of the universe is at your fingertips! Here is how you can use the Almanac to help...