December’s Geminids meteor shower

By Mario Carr

The Geminds Meteor Shower will peak December 13 and 14.

It’s often known as the best meteor shower of the year however frigid temperatures discourage many casual observers. It’s called the Geminids Meteor Shower because it looks as though shooting stars are coming form the Gemini constellation.

This year, you don’t have to stay up all night to see the show. You could glimpse a few shooting stars at 9:30 p.m. on Dec. 13, as Gemini rises above the eastern horizon. If you wait a little longer between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m. when the crescent moon sets, more shooting stars will be visible.

Here are December stargazing events, which are listed in the Hamilton Amateur Astronomers calendar. The 2019 calendar is currently on sale and available at the next meeting.

Dec. 14 — Hamilton Amateur Astronomers meeting 7:30-9:30 p.m, Spectator Building, 44 Frid Street, Hamilton. Free admission, door prizes and everybody welcome. An optional food bank donation of non-perishable goods will be collected and appreciated. Francois van Heerden will discuss how to use video-assisted observing for astronomy public outreach in light-polluted areas. There will also be a Christmas Social.

Dec. 14 – The Moon is near Mars in the evening sky.

Dec. 20 – The Moon is in the Hyades star cluster.

Dec. 21 – Winter officially begins with the winter solstice at 5:23 p.m. Mercury is also close to Jupiter, low in the morning sky.

Dec. 22 – The Full Moon is called the Cold Moon.

Christmas Eve – The Moon is close to the Beehive star cluster in the evening sky.

For more information, see the Hamilton Amateur Astronomers website at www.amateurastronomy.org or call (905) 627-4323. The club offers a basic astronomy course for members.

Mario Carr is the club’s director of publicity and can be reached at mariocarr@cogeco.ca. Twitter: @MarioCCarr

About Mario Carr

Mario Carr has a Physics degree from McMaster University and hosts this blog. He is the director of publicity for the Hamilton Amateur Astronomers and has helped to raise the profile of the group. He writes an astronomy column and appeared on CHCH-TV to talk about the night sky. Mario is the founder of the Carr Marketing Group in Burlington, Ontario and can help with your marketing, communications, publicity and public relations needs. He can be reached at www.carrmarketinggroup.com or mariocarr@cogeco.ca.
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