Posted in 'Tis the Season, Light show, Science

STORMS for Friday!

Meteor Storm, That Is!

The prediction of a possible 15-20 meteors every minute for late Friday night, May 23, and early Saturday morning, May 24, excites everyone who’s ever stayed up to watch the night sky. DO let it inspire you to stay up, for the first time, if you never have before.

To find the storm in the night sky, just look at Polaris, the North Star, which you may find by tracing a line straight “up” from the front two stars of the Big Dipper–the two stars that form the front of the dipper.  Or just face north and look up. You won’t be able to miss it.

Scientists predict the best time to be at the hour that is midnight in California or 4 a.m. in New York. Do your own math, there.

The fact that most excites me is the prediction of many fireballs and bolides. Check out this Website for cool graphics and information about those.

Won’t you join us!

For ideas on how best to make this happen, try this routine:

  1. Select, in advance, an unlit place to view this glorious sight. An open field away from civilization would be good. Your own house, with a couple of street lights blaring, not so good.
  2. Explain the plan to your children before you put them to bed. Go over a few pieces of child-appropriate science on the topic and answer questions. A globe might help. Don’t let them be scared; let your excitement sparkle as you explain the beauty and awesomeness of the event.
  3. Put them to bed in outdoor-friendly clothing, just this once.
  4. SET YOUR ALARM for 1/2 hour early. It takes awhile to get everything all around. Why miss a single event?
  5. Rise on time, fix plenty of hot cocoa, or whatever warm drink you’d like them to have. Gather flashlights, sweaters, blankets, lawn chairs, bug spray, etc. and load into car if you have to drive to an unlit place.
  6. Wake the children and bumble them outdoors or into the car. Set up your night-sky-watching station and begin the fun. It should be every bit as much fun as watching a fireworks display on July 4, but not as convenient an hour.
  7. Be sure to explain to your children that most of the world will not get to view this because it will be daylight everywhere else when it arrives.

Have a wonderful time! I cannot wait!