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2014 Perseid Meteor Shower


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Radiant of the Perseid metoer shower. Illustration credit: NASA

The 2014 Perseid meteor shower will peak between August 10 and August 13. A waning Gibbous Moon (the Moon's phase after a full moon) may make it harder for observers to see the shower. Despite this, astronomers suggest that observers try their luck to catch some Perseids before dawn on August 11, 12 and 13.

The Perseid meteor shower, one of the brighter meteor showers of the year, occur every August, peaking around August 9-13. Consisting of tiny space debris from the comet Swift-Tuttle, the Perseids are named after the constellation, Perseus. This is because, their radiant or the direction of which the shower seems to come from lies in the same direction as Perseus. The constellation lies in the north-eastern part of the sky.

While the skies light up several time a year by other meteor showers , the Perseids are widely sought after by astronomers and stargazers alike. This is because at its peak, one can view 60 to a 100 meteors in an hour from a dark place.

Where to view

The Perseids can be viewed by observers in the Northern Hemisphere. If you are planning to view the shower, look between the radiant, which will be in the north-east part of the sky and the zenith (the point in sky directly above you). But don’t worry, you do not have to make any major astronomical calculations. Just lay a blanket on the ground, lie down and let your eyes wander around the sky - you will be bound to spot the shower sooner or later.

When to view

The best time to view the Perseids, or most other meteor showers is when the sky is the darkest. Most astronomers suggest that depending on the Moon’s phase, the best time to view meteor showers is right before dawn.

How to view

There isn’t a lot of skill involved in watching a meteor shower. Here are some tips on how to maximize your time looking for the Perseids:

  • Get out of the city to a place where city and artificial lights do not impede your viewing
  • If you are out viewing the shower during its peak, you will not need any special equipment. You should be able to see the shower with your naked eyes.
  • Carry a blanket or a comfortable chair with you - viewing meteors, just like any other kind of star gazing is a waiting game, and you need to be comfortable. Plus, you may not want to leave until you can’t see the majestic celestial fireworks anymore.
  • Check the weather and moonrise and moonset timings for your location before you leave, and plan your viewing around it.
Location in the sky Perseids meteor shower for Alpena (Night between Aug 8 and Aug 9) Time Azimuth/
Direction Altitude Fri 10:00 PM 20°sa2.png 17.9° Fri 11:00 PM 27°sa2.png 22.2° Midnight Fri-Sat 34°sa4.png 27.6° Sat 1:00 AM 39°sa4.png 33.9° Sat 2:00 AM 44°sa4.png 41.0° Sat 3:00 AM 47°sa4.png 48.6° Sat 4:00 AM 49°sa4.png 56.5° Sat 5:00 AM 47°sa4.png 64.4° Direction to see the Perseids in the sky:
  • Azimuth is the direction, based on true north, a compass might show a slightly different value.
  • Altitude is height in degrees over horizon.
Note that this is not the prime period to watch the Camelopardalids, so there may be few or no meteors visible this night.
Set your location


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I used to post all the space activity stuff.


 Got this the other day if people are get out of th ehouse types:


Aug. 5, 2014


Enjoy Perseid meteor shower at state parks Aug. 9-16


The Michigan Department of Natural Resources invites residents to grab their blankets and head to participating Michigan state parks Aug. 9-16 to enjoy one of the biggest and most visible astronomical events of the year: the Perseid meteor shower.

Some state parks in Michigan are staying open late and offering “Meteors & S’mores” events in honor of this natural light show. Many of these events feature astronomy presentations, as well as – you guessed it – s’mores. A few participating parks also will offer free movies to complement this natural light show.

Meteors & S’mores events are scheduled at the following state parks (counties). Parks with an asterisk next to the name will offer a free movie before the meteor shower:

Saturday, Aug. 9

 Bald Mountain Recreation Area (Oakland), 9 p.m. (beach parking lot)
 Fort Wilkins Historic State Park (Keweenaw), 10 p.m. (parade grounds) This program features guest speaker Joel Kimball, professor at the South Dakota School of Mining and Technology


Sunday, Aug. 10

*Ionia Recreation Area (Ionia), 8:30 p.m. Star Wars: A New Hope (beach day-use area)

Leelanau State Park (Leelanau), 8:30 p.m. (day-use picnic shelter)
Van Riper State Park (Marquette), 10 p.m. (campground shelter building)


Tuesday, Aug. 12

Brimley State Park (Chippewa), 7 p.m. (visitor beach playground)
Muskallonge Lake State Park (Luce), 9 p.m. (community fire pit in the day-use area)
Silver Lake State Park (Oceana), 9 p.m. (dune pedestrian lot)
Hoeft State Park (Presque Isle), 9 p.m. (hospitality site)
Wilderness State Park (Emmet), 9 p.m. (amphitheater)
Rifle River Recreation Area (Ogemaw), 10 p.m. (ranch ball field)
Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park (Ontonagon), 9 p.m. (Union Bay campground)
North Higgins Lake State Park (Crawford), 9 p.m. (park beach pavilion)
Port Crescent State Park (Huron), 8:30 p.m. (day-use area)


Wednesday, Aug. 13

Young State Park (Charlevoix), 10 p.m. (park baseball field across from loop 4)


Thursday, Aug. 14

Van Buren State Park (Van Buren), 9 p.m. (southern side of the beach parking lot)


Friday, Aug. 15

Baraga State Park (Baraga), 10 p.m. (park picnic area)
*Pontiac Lake Recreation Area (Oakland), 8:30 p.m. Star Trek (2009) (west picnic area)


Saturday, Aug. 16

Aloha State Park (Cheboygan), 8:30 p.m. (camp host site no. 47)
Burt Lake State Park (Cheboygan), 9 p.m. (fire pit on the west side of the interpretive building)
Brighton Recreation Area (Livingston), 9 p.m. (Chilson Pond behind the park headquarters). This program features guest speakers from University Lowbrow Astronomers.
Hartwick Pines State Park (Crawford), 8 p.m. (campground amphitheater)


For more information about Meteors & S’mores events at Michigan state parks, please check the state park event listings at www.michigan.gov/gogetoutdoors,  For specific information about a state park, please contact the park directly.

There is no charge to attend Meteors & S’mores, but a Recreation Passport is required for any vehicle entering a Michigan state park.

The Recreation Passport is an easy, affordable way for residents to enjoy and support outdoor recreation opportunities in Michigan. By checking “YES” for the $11 Recreation Passport ($5 for motorcycles) when renewing a license plate through the Secretary of State (by mail, kiosk, online at www.expresssos.com or at branch offices), Michigan motorists get access to state parks, recreation areas, state forest campgrounds, non-motorized state trailhead parking and state boat launches. In addition, Recreation Passport holders can experience real savings at businesses and retailers that participate in the Passport Perks discount program. 


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