NVM + 2012
• Arizona Skies with Dr.Sky
LATE SHOWERS PREDICTED to our unique column, which takes you on a most magical journey through time and space! Get set for one of the best meteor showers of the year, the annual Perseid meteor shower, which will peak on the night of August 12. Perseid will provide lucky observers who have clear, dark skies with an opportunity to see well over forty meteors per hour! The radiant portion of this shower is located in the constellation of Perseus, the slayer of mythological monsters. Sparks will f ly from his sword—the shining meteors will be seen emanating from the 109P/ Swift Tuttle comet. Moonlight will not be a problem for observers of this year’s Perseid show, as the moon will be a small waning crescent rising well after midnight. An amazing fact about this shower is that these tiny comet particles are for the most part as small as beach sand and travel well over 37 miles per second! That makes for an amazing light show. To view this splendiferous shower, first find a dark location and then face the northeast sky from 11 p.m. until dawn. Don’t miss it! In August, Earth’s nearest neighbor, the moon, is full on the first (Full Sturgeon Moon); another Full Moon, the Full Corn Moon, will appear on August 31st. The last quarter will manifest on the 9th, the new moon on the17th, and the first quarter on the 24th.
Welcome once again
August also brings some interesting planets to view. Look for Venus and Jupiter high in the southeastern sky before dawn. Mercury will look its best in the morning sky on the 16th. In the evening sky, Saturn will take its place low in the southwest at sunset. In September, we find that the moon is in its last quarter on the 8th, the new moon on the 15th, and the first quarter on the 22nd. Another full moon, the famous Harvest Moon, rolls into sight on the night of the 29th. September planets abound, with Venus and Jupiter high in the morning sky before sunrise. The evening sky will be empty of major planets. Finally, fall arrives on the 23rd, at 8 a.m. local time, with the autumnal equinox. Not heavenly body-related but certainly up there in the sky, the National Championship Air Races and Air Show at Stead Airfield near Reno, Nevada, will return September 12 through the 16 after a tragic air crash and loss of life. I would like to remember those who were lost and injured, including pilot Jimmy Leeward and his modified P-51, the Galloping Ghost, and in particular, Michael Wogan of Scottsdale, who fulfilled his dream of participating in the races. On a happier note, join me as we follow the North Star and spot a bunch of other ones above some amazing destinations. We
have teamed up with Tropical Sails Corporation of Arizona for some exciting luxury cruises. We have our first Dr.Sky® cruise, which takes us out of U.S. waters to the coast of Costa Rica in March 2013. We’ll spend seven days on the Star Flyer, one of the great Star Clippers tall ships, and will see the skies at sea in a perfect dark location. To learn
more, call Tropical Sails at (623) 444-8195 or visit tropicalsales. com and click on Star Clippers under Sailing Cruises and Specialty Cruises. Closer to home, I hope to see you at the many locations that host our Dr.Sky programs, including the Arizona Challenger Center in Peoria. Clear skies!
Join Dr. Sky® for the many Dr. Sky programs around Arizona, monthly events at the beautiful Las Posadas Resort in Sedona, and monthly “Dr. Sky Cruise to the Cosmos” on the Dolly Steamboat. Listen to KTAR News Talk 92.3 weekly for the Dr.Sky Show, 3 a.m. Saturday mornings. Find the good stuff on Dr. Sky’s Web sites at drsky.com and drsky.tv. E-mail Dr. Sky at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can find him on Facebook. AUGUST | SEPTEMBER 2012 North Valley
North Valley Magazine Aug.-Sep. 2012