The blazing hot days of summer are almost over. Our slice of the Earth is tilting away from the sun. It’s time to get out and soak up the last days of summer. In the coming weeks we’ll suggest some ways to make the most of the last drops of summer 2017.
With its warm nights and often cloudless skies, August is an ideal month to spend some time looking up at the night sky.
The first thing you’ll want to find is a good, clear patch of sky, as far away from city lights as you can get. Bring a chair or a blanket so you can get comfortable, along with a telescope or even a pair of binoculars.
If you’re new to stargazing, it can help to do some research ahead of time to find out what you might be able to see. Research online or download a stargazing app for your smartphone. In August, look for Lyra and Pegasus and, depending on when and where you’re doing your looking, you might see Saturn or Venus as well.
You can search the sky solo, of course, but if you’re looking for a guide, head to the Cordelia Lutheran Church in Genesee at 8:45 p.m. Saturday. There, Paul Yost, former president of the Spokane Astronomical Society will guide a viewing of the night sky. Participants are encouraged to bring telescopes if they have them.
Get an even closer look at the heavens at a free star gazing party at the Jewett Observatory at Washington State University. The observatory houses the largest refracting telescope in the state. There’s one at 9 p.m. Aug. 26, 8:30 p.m. Sept. 23 and 8:30 p.m. Oct. 28. The observatory is located on the east side of campus along Observatory Drive.