Perseid meteor shower Aug. 11 from the park

Weather permitting, come watch for shooting stars from the park Aug. 11

UPDATED SUNDAY AUG. 12, 12:40 a.m.: Well, not perfect conditions for meteor viewing… lots of clouds and wet grass… but still managed to see more than half a dozen meteors, two brief viewings of the International Space Station on two separate orbits, a few satellites and plenty of airplanes puncturing the clouds. One excellent meteor left a trail of sparks through the sky and had a slight green tinge (oxygen??). Thanks to everyone who came out under uncertain skies, including the couple celebrating their sixth anniversary: a Perseid wedding!

UPDATED SAT. AUG. 11, 9:30 p.m.: Mixed skies and recent rainfall but the Big Dipper is out so we’ll give it a go, for 10 p.m.-ish by the dog park. With luck we’ll see the Space Station fly-over at 10:21 p.m. See other details below.

UPDATED SAT. AUG. 11, 8 p.m.: Blue skies in the west! If there are stars out by 9:30 p.m. we’ll be going to the park. Skywatching bonus: the International Space Station is scheduled to fly over Toronto in the north tonight at 10:21 p.m. We’ll be on the look-out for it. Since the ground will be wet, consider bringing a tarp upon which to place your camping pad. It will be cool, and there may be a few bugs out, prep accordingly. Fingers crossed. Watching from the slope in right-field by dog park, or possibly along the slope by the path on the east side (railway side) of the dog park. We’ll try to find the darkest location.

UPDATED SAT. AUG. 11 6:38 p.m.: The weather is looking unfavourable but we’ll continue to watch over the next few hours to see if there is any break. We’ll post another message before 10 p.m. Dance for clear skies!

The inaugural event of Sorauren Stargazers takes place Saturday night, Aug. 11 (weather permitting), as the Perseid meteor shower flashes across the night sky. You’re invited to gather at 10 p.m. in the baseball outfield (close to the dog park) to lie on the grassy slope and watch for meteors. Bring camping pads, blankets, pillows, reclining lawn chairs, refreshments, whatever will make you comfortable. No special gear required; it’s naked-eye viewing.

This is a bit of an experiment, as the park and city lights will make it harder to see faint meteors. Any clouds will also affect the experience. But the evening will be moonless till early in the morning so the chances are good. Satellite spotting is also a strong possibility. And stargazers will share sky knowledge: constellations, why meteor showers occur, and more. So tear the family away from glowing screens to watch the real glowing night sky. Clear skies!

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