Venue for Watching Perseid Meteor Shower
Pittsburgh Space Weather Update:
This is a long post, but it deals with securing a venue for our subscribers to watch the Perseid Meteor Shower this August. Please read, comment, and share. Thank you!
We have been having some excellent skies lately. Last night, all of our neighbors had their back yard lights off. While there is still a LOT of light pollution in the city, I was able to isolate myself in a dark spot of my yard without any bright white lights shining in my field of view. I saw over a dozen meteors between 10pm and 1am. Meteor season is picking up & any clear night is a good night to watch.
Pittsburgh Space Weather is considering providing a venue about an hours drive outside the city for the peak of the Perseid Meteor Shower. There would be no cost, just a location you could bring the entire family to watch the meteor shower without interference from light pollution.
The best nights to watch are the nights of Sunday, August 11th & Monday, August 12th. In a perfect world, everyone would take off work or go in late on Monday, but Saturday night should be a pretty good show as well. Therefore, I am looking to secure a venue for both Saturday night & Sunday night. Saturday, while not the peak night, will be very active. I will be there both nights.
Meteor showers are best viewed after midnight, but you’ll want to arrive before 11pm. Car lights cause light pollution and parking will be close to where we are watching. Therefore, we would ask that no one arrives after midnight. The longer you can stay, the more active the shower will appear. Meteor showers intensify the most in the hours before dawn. You would be welcome to stay as late or as early as you want.
If you are interested in PSW putting together a free venue for watching the Perseids this year, PLEASE: 1). comment, 2). share this article on Twitter and Facebook. This is the only way we can gauge how large turnout will be.
Also, if you have an idea for a location, post that as well. So far, we are looking at Cataney Airport in Washington, PA or Moraine State Park in Portersville, PA. I have not yet contacted either location to ask permission as I am waiting to see how much feedback we get. There are some observatories in the area that we could use, but I am hesitant to invite our ~4,000 subscribers (between Facebook, Twitter, and website) to one of those venues without prior permission. If you represent an observatory and would like to provide our members with a free venue for those evenings, please send our Facebook page a private message.
PSW is completely driven by our followers. It is very exciting to see so many people excited about space. I want to personally thank everyone who follows our page, whether you are a lurker or someone who is actively sharing/commenting on our stuff. Everyone has been great to us and we really appreciate it. I look forward to reading your replies and setting up an event for everyone.