What is considered as the best meteor shower of the year — Perseid — will light up the night sky this weekend, with anywhere from 50 to 100 meteors per hour visible during the peak time late Sunday and early Monday.
Check out this video to find out more about the Perseid meteor shower.
You can check out the celestial show on Saturday night, too, but the Perseids will be at their fullest starting around 10 p.m. Sunday and through the predawn hours on Monday, according to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. However, it will be visible nightly through Aug. 24, NASA says.
According to Astronomy.com, the Perseid Meteor shower has some added bonuses this year: It will occur on a night when the moon is in its waning crescent phase, which means the moonlight will interfere only slightly with your view of the meteors.
You don't even need a telescope. Just spread out a blanket at any of Middletown's many lovely parks, unpack a late-night picnic, lay back and enjoy!The Perseids have several advantages over other meteor showers that occur throughout the year, according to Astronomy.com: A consistently high rate of meteors; a higher percentage of bright meteors than other showers; and it happens when the weather is warm, so viewers enjoy the show all night.
The Perseids are also known for their fireballs, larger explosions of light and color that can persist longer than an average meteor streak, according to NASA. Fireballs are also brighter than typical meteors.
If you want watch the meteor shower, here are a few tips from the space agency:
- The Perseids are best viewed during the predawn hours, though at times it is possible to view meteors from this shower as early as 10 p.m. The best time for viewing is about 4 a.m.
- Find an area well away from city or street lights for best viewing.
- Bring a sleeping bag, blanket or lawn chair, lie flat on your back with your feet facing northeast and look up, taking in as much of the sky as possible.
- After about 30 minutes in the dark, your eyes will adapt and you will begin to see meteors.
- Be patient. The show will last until dawn, so you have plenty of time to catch a glimpse.