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Night Sky
5:16 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Shining Trio this Weekend - Venus, Jupiter, and a Crescent Moon

Clear skies over Utah this summer have meant hot days and little rainfall, but on the bright side, summer stargazing has been especially delightful.

Venus has been dominating the pre-dawn sky for a few weeks, brightly shining from low on the eastern horizon. And early risers might have noticed the planet Jupiter joining in with a not quite as bright light just above Venus.

Now, for a special treat, "This coming Sunday morning, the 15th, the planetary duo will be joined by a delicately thin crescent Moon making for a truly beautiful cosmic triangle of light." That's according to Patrick Wiggins,  the NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador to Utah, whose job is to warn us when night sky beauty is in our future.

Sunday morning is the only chance to see this cosmic triangle, Wiggins says, because "By the next morning the Moon will have moved on leaving Venus and Jupiter to shine alone against the backdrop of stars."