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    The Christmas Star – Monday December 21st Humanity will enjoy a rare treat!


    On the evening of Monday December 21st Humanity will enjoy a rare treat, one that hasn’t been seen for 800 years, a Christmas Star. What makes it a Christmas Star is that it happens so close to December 25th. But it isn’t a star at all, it’s two planets, Jupiter and Saturn.

    We see the planets all the time as they move about our night sky. In actuality they’re moving around the sun at different rates of speed. Every so often, from Earth’s perspective, they appear to get very close to each other. That’s what’s happening on December 21st, Jupiter and Saturn will be so close they will almost look like one “star.” That almost never happens.

    This will be visible to everyone on Earth from 6 to 8pm, weather permitting. Sadly, most people will wait until December 21st to view this rare event and look at it just that night. In doing so they’ll miss the exciting part. Jupiter and Saturn are racing toward each other as you read this. Right now, they’re 2 moons apart and getting noticeably closer each day.

    So, look to the southwestern sky tonight and every night until December 21st and witness this celestial race as it happens. And continue to look until the new year as Jupiter takes the lead and leaves Saturn in its cosmic dust. You won’t need any special equipment, but a small pair of binoculars or an inexpensive telescope will enhance the experience.

    For news on the latest astronomical events in Ventura County email [email protected] . Say you heard about the Ventura County Astronomical Society in the Citizens Journal.

    Keith Salvas ~ President and Publicity
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