By Lara Dunning
Astronomical voyeurs have already been cosmically treated to a mini-moon and the Lyrid meteor shower this year, but NASA’s Juno spacecraft as well as 11 additional meteor showers and planets like Mercury, Saturn and Uranus are a few of the other celestial sights the night sky has yet in store.
For those seeking stellar events, remember just two things: choose a spot with minimal light pollution and find an unobstructed view. Then look up. Depending on where you live (northern and westerly island sites have the least light pollution) your own backyard might be perfect.
If not, a handful of other spots like Rotary and Fay Bainbridge Parks, Port Madison and the open fields at Bainbridge High School can prove ideal for a glimpse of galaxies unfolding around us. By far, the most popular place to stargaze is at Battle Point Park in the Edwin Richie Observatory at the Helix House. There, you can view the skies at your leisure or join a monthly lecture presented by the Battle Point Astronomical Association.
The lectures start in the John Rudolph Planetarium and afterward, weather permitting, guests are invited to the outdoor star party on the observatory’s rooftop. Bring your own telescope, share a club member’s or contemplate the universe by gazing through the 27.5-foot reflecting Edwin Richie telescope.