June 23 – 30, 2021: Venus is quickly catching Mars in the western sky after sun. Venus passes the Red Planet next month.
June 16, 2021: A summer project is to build a sidewalk solar system model. The scale uses the sun’s size as the size of a basketball. Earth’s distance is 88 feet.
June 15 – June 22, 2021: Brilliant Evening Star Venus shines in the west-northwest after sunset. It continues to close the distance to Mars. Venus shines from Gemini, beneath Castor and Pollux. Mars marches eastward in Cancer, approaching the Beehive star cluster.
2021, June 23: Through a binocular, Mars is in front of the Beehive star cluster this evening. The stars Gamma Cancri (γ Cnc) and Delta Cancri (δ Cnc) are in the same binocular field of view as Mars and the cluster.
August 18, 2021: During bright twilight, five planets and the moon are in the sky simultaneously after sunset. This is a challenging observation made with the assistance of a binocular or spotting scope. Mercury and Mars are at their closest in the west, with brilliant Venus to the upper left. The moon, Saturn, and Jupiter are in the southeastern sky. The Mercury – Mars conjunction is the closest until 2032.
June 11 – 14, 2021: After the solar eclipse, the crescent moon returns to the western sky after sunset appearing with Evening Star Venus on June 11. Each evening the crescent waxes and appears higher in the sky. The crescent is near Mars on June 13.
June 1 – June 7, 2021: Evening Star Venus shines in the western sky after sunset. Mars is over 20° to the upper left of Venus during this week. Venus cuts the gap to Mars during the month. Use a binocular to watch Venus pass a star cluster and Mars move eastward in the Pollux region.
May 31, 2021: The planet parade is cut to four bright participants as Mercury departs the evening sky after tonight’s final appearance. “Goodbye, Mercury!” until it appears in the morning sky during early summer. This morning the moon is near Saturn and Jupiter in the southeastern sky. Brilliant Evening Star Venus, dim Mercury, and Mars are in the evening sky.
May 30, 2021: Brilliant Evening Star shines from low in the west-northwest after sunset. Through a binocular locate Mercury, 2.5° to the lower right of Venus. Mercury is quickly departing the evening sky. Mars is higher in the sky, 5.3° to the lower left of Pollux.
May 29, 2021: Three planets are in the evening sky. Brilliant Venus is low in the west-northwest after sunset. Speedy Mercury is leaving the sky after its best evening performance of the year. It is below Venus. Mars is higher in the western sky, in Gemini to the lower left of Pollux.