People look east, the time is near . . .

Look Up! Look Waaaaay Up!  During the month of December the sky will hold a veritable feast for the eyes! With the holidays coming and the calendar year soon ending, it seems that the winter sky has saved the best for last.

The annual Geminids meteor shower will be at its peak of activity on December 14 with some 120 meteors flying across the night sky each hour.  

There will also be a total eclipse  of the moon. Winter officially begins at 6:38 p.m. on December 21 and, as if winking its eye to the end of the fall season, barely 15 hours earlier, in the wee hours of the morning of December 21, the moon will pass through Earth's shadow, thus causing a total eclipse which will be visible in our region, if there is no cloud cover, between 2:40 a.m. and 3:53 a.m. with the middle of the eclipse at 3:16 a.m. The moon will not disappear totally from sight during the eclipse but will be tinted red by the light of the sun filtered through Earth's atmosphere. Don't miss this celestial rendez-vous. The next total eclipse of the moon visible in our region won't take place until April 2014.

Keep watching the eastern sky after sunset on December 24 as well. Perhaps you'll see that Star of Wonder the Wise Men were following.