Milky Way Nights at RAO

Rothney Astrophysical Observatory (RAO) is hosting “Milky Way Nights” from August 7-11 this year.  Gates open each night from 22:00 through 02:00 (10 PM – 2 AM), and admission is simply a donation to RAO educational programs (I suggest $20 per vehicle).  The observatory is located near Priddis, Alberta, just south of Calgary.  See here for more detailed location information and directions.

Hopefully the weather will cooperate, because these are the days leading up to the peak of the Perseid meteor shower.  The actual peak occurs on August 12, but meteors may be visible any time from July 23 through August 22.  This is an excellent chance to get out and enjoy the night sky from a reasonably dark site (sky glow from Calgary is visible to the north, but most of the good stuff is either overhead or to the south, east, and west).

Throughout this moonless week in August the dark skies will allow us to view the Milky Way and, with any luck, maybe a meteor or two. Each evening, from Sat., Aug, 7 to Wed., Aug. 11, you are invited to the RAO to observe next to our research scientists. The darkness will help us key in on distant faint objects and provide opportunities for deep sky viewing.

In the Sky – the planets Venus, Mars and Saturn will be visible along with the beginning the Perseids meteor shower.

Hope to see you there!

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