July 31, 2021: The slightly gibbous moon, nearing its Last Quarter phase, is in the southeast as morning twilight begins. It is near the planet Uranus, easily within reach of a binocular. Mira, a variable star, reaches its brightest 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.
January 20, 2021: Mercury is low in the west-southwest after sunset. The bright moon is to the lower right of Mars, while the Red Planet passes planet Uranus.
January 19, 2021: Mercury is low in the west-southwest after sunset. The moon is approaching Mars before their grouping tomorrow evening. Mars nears the planet Uranus before tomorrow’s conjunction.
January 18, 2021: Without a bright morning planet, bright Arcturus and the constellation Bootes the Herdsman is high in the south. The crescent moon is in the early evening sky. Mars is near the planet Uranus. They are high in the south-southeast as night falls.
January 17, 2021: Venus slowly slides into bright sunlight. Step outside to see starry mornings. In the evening sky, Mercury is low in the sky after sunset. The moon is near a fish. Mars approaches the planet Uranus.
January 16, 2021: With Venus slipping from the morning sky, look for bright stars in the morning sky. In the evening the crescent moon appears to the upper left of Mercury. Mars approaches planet Uranus.
January 15, 2021: The crescent moon, Mercury, and Jupiter group in the southwestern sky after sunset. Mars is higher in the southeast near Beta Arietis. The Red Planet is nearing a conjunction with Uranus.
January 12, 2021: Jupiter and Saturn are slowly disappearing into the sun’s brilliant light in the west-southwest immediately after sunset. Mercury, not as bright as Jupiter, is to the Jovian Giant’s upper left. Meanwhile, in a darker sky, Mars is approaching Uranus. The moon begins its evening appearance in 2 evenings after its New phase this evening.
After the October 2020 Mars opposition, Earth pulls away from Mars. The Red Planet appears to move farther eastward compared to the starry background, and dims as the distance to the planet grows.