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Thin Moon, Venus put on show tonight, next few

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There is going to be quite a show in the sky tonight and the next few too, for that matter. The best part of all, one need not own a telescope or even stay up late for that matter. The sky show that will be taking place the next 3 nights: the thin crescent Moon meets Venus.

So, how to go about seeing the show?

To see the Moon tonight, December 4, you'll need a good Southwestern horizon. How good? One with less than 10 degrees of obstruction. To simulate this, hold a fist vertically at arm's length to simulate 10 degrees. Hint: if you can't think of a good location off-hand, scout out one during the day. Location found, head there about 45 minutes after sunset. The good news, while 5% illumination doesn't sound like much, it is plenty of light to eliminate the need for optical aid. To aid in the search for the Moon, look for Venus, which is to the left and slightly above Luna.

Tomorrow night, pair will be higher and only within a couple of degrees of each other, with the night of the 6th offering another sight similar to tonight's, albeit with positions reversed. Of all the nights, the sight on the 5th will be the best thanks to the close pairing, so make it a point to see that one if you can only find time to go out once during this conjunction.

As always, would-be sky watchers in the Cleveland area should be sure to keep an eye on the Cleveland weather forecast and, for hour-by-hour cloud predictions, the Cleveland Clear Sky Clock. Live somewhere else? Find a clock and see if it will be clear near you.

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