Look to the skies for a real show

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August 11, 2016 12:00 AM

The Perseid meteor shower is expected to put on a wonderful, heavenly light show starting tonight. To see it in all its glory, find a spot outside the city where man made lights won't interfere with the show.

Pokemon Go players should stop looking down at their screens tonight and perhaps look up to the sky instead.
The Perseid shower may be the best meteor shower of the year and will be making an appearance, peaking during the nights of Aug. 11-12.
“In many ways, this is the best display of the year since it is both rich with meteors and occurs at a time of year when clear skies are common,” said Luca Vanzella, president of the Edmonton chapter of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC).
“Under good conditions you can expect to see 40 to 80 meteors per hour; however, this year conditions are compromised by a fat gibbous moon that doesn’t set until after 1 a.m., local daylight time, on Aug. 12.”
Vanzella said this means the best time to watch the show is between moonset and 4:30 a.m., when twilight begins.
To top it off, this year’s Perseid meteor shower might prove richer than usual if earth passes through an especially dense part of the meteor stream, as the RASC is predicting.
Another element that’ll factor in to make this year’s shower better than usual is the moon will only be half-full, stopping a lot of its light from interloping and obscuring the sight of the meteors. 
The Perseid shower happens annually when the earth passes through a belt of material from 109P/Swift-Tuttle, a comet that goes around the sun every 133 years.
When that material comes into the atmosphere, it incinerates and creates a sky full of eye candy in the form of shooting stars.
Those who want to take in the shower are encouraged to find the darkest spots they can, which probably means going out of the Lloydminster a ways to avoid the light pollution from the city’s buildings.
One recommended spot in the Border City area is a big hill, imaginatively named, Big Hill.
Big Hill can be reached by going north on Hwy. 17 until you get to Hwy. 3, take a right for about 12 miles until you get to Big Hill Rd. on the north side of Highway 3.
Here you will be treated to a great view of the sky where you should have no trouble viewing the falling stars of the Perseid Meteor Shower.

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