If you follow the moon tonight with binoculars or a small telescope as it rises above the mountains, I guarantee you will have a delightful time watching it slide past the distant mountain peaks.
The moon brightens the skies for the next several days, but there is plenty to see if we keep our attention focused on the planets.
The sun sets tonight at 5:47. If you look toward the southwest from 6 to 7, you will see the 4-day-old moon forming a right angle triangle with Mars and Antares, the brightest star in Scorpius the Scorpion.
The first quarter moon Saturday night helps us celebrate the autumnal equinox, which is officially at 7:49 a.m. in Tucson on Saturday.
Tonight astronomical twilight ends at 9:09 p.m., and the moon rises at 10:31. If you observe the sky around 9, it will be fairly dark.
Tonight find the moon in the southwestern sky after sunset, between 6:30 and 7 p.m. when the sky is darkening at the end of twilight. It will not be near any bright object.
Dean Koenig CQ DEAN KOENIG, owner of Starizona CQ STARIZONA provided telescopes for a star party at the White House in 2009. Photo courtesy of Dean Koenig.
Starizona's Dean Koenig, right, took part in the first star
party on the White House lawn in October. The event, hosted by
President Obama and the First Lady, included more than 20
telescopes from around the country and some 150 middle-school
The annual Perseid meteor shower is next week, with the peak
starting late Wednesday and possibly getting even better the next
This year's Perseid meteor shower, next Wednesday and Thursday, could feature 50 meteors an hours.