The night skies in 2022 are going to be AWESOME. Since there's nothing quite like sitting in the freezing cold with your loved ones, debating whether the bugs and the cold is worth [gasp] DID YOU SEE THAT? OH MY GOSH! IT WAS AMAZING... ok, we'll stay out another 5 minutes and then we'll go in... Hey! The sun's up!
You might even be able to see Uranus, which is usually hidden behind other objects or the butt of every night sky joke I make (pun intended).
March: Full Moon on the 18th = The Worm Moon
I have to admit that I’m only writing about this particular full moon because of the name... it’s the Worm Moon because this is the time the dirt thaws and the worms come out. Really, that’s why. The moon is NOT made out of worms (sigh.).
This is one time when the VERY early bird gets the worm.
March 24th - April 5th: Venus, Mars, and Saturn
The planets are in alignment! From late March to early April, you'll have the opportunity to see three beautiful stars (Venus, Mars, and Saturn) in the sky. Look towards the southeast about one hour before local sunrise between March 24 and April 5 - They'll be in a cool, bright cluster, so they should be pretty easy to see.
April 30 is a partial solar eclipse, but really only for people in the Southern Hemisphere, so I’m giving it a hat tip here and assuming most of us’ll miss it
Shooting Stars for April 22nd & 23rd
Our little ball of dirt will be passing through a bunch of space debris in late April, which means shooting stars and wishes galore.
In general, the best time to see shooting stars is just before dawn, so either stock up on cocaine or be sure to have coffee ready.
(Just kidding about the cocaine. Everyone knows it’s impossible to stock up on that without attracting attention from the neighbors when you run outside in your briefs and scream “COCAIIINNE” at the night sky.)
Shooting Stars for May 5th & 6th
It's time to get your observing gear (and by “observing gear,” I mean coffee and binoculars) ready! The best views of the Eta Aquariid shower are expected on May 5th, as skies will be nearly perfect. The meteors will be coming in hot from the South, so if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere, you’ll be more likely to see the best of the shower, but hey, any excuse to sit around in lawn chairs squinting in the dark before dawn is good enough for me.
Up here in the Northern Hemisphere, we could see 10 - 20 shooting stars per hour. That’s a LOT of wishes to be made.
May 15th - 16th: Flower Moon Total Eclipse Of The Heart
Just kidding about the heart part.
The eclipse starts at just after 9:30 PM EST, and then the moon will turn blood-red (hey, that’s what I read…) during the height of this solar eclipse at around 12:11 AM EST on May 16. It's going to be quite something!
(They call the full moon the “Flower Moon” because flowers are blooming in May, not because the moon is made out of flowers. Second disappointed sigh of this post.)
June 18th - 27th: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, and possibly a rare sighting of Uranus (hahahahaha Uranus jokes)
Author’s Note: Uranus is only visible if the sky is absolutely clear, so don’t hurt your eyes looking for it. [more Uranus jokes here]
Shooting Stars for August 12th & 13th
My favorite meteor shower, The Perseids, is happening on August 12th and 13th. The main photo of this blog is from the Perseids in 2021, so, yeah, it’s fricken’ alarmingly amazing.
This is from debris from the Swift-Tuttle comet, so one comet’s trash is another planet’s reason to believe in star-wishes.
Shooting Stars for October 8th & 9th
Possibly the most goth name for a meteor shower, the Draconid Meteor Shower apparently appears to originate from the constellation of Draco the Dragon. I do not have the sufficient star knowledge to know where that is, but I’ll figure it out before October 8th.
Shooting Stars for October 21st & 22nd
More shooting stars, this time from the legitimately awesomely named Betelgeuse star, which is part of the Orion Constellation. I’m truly disappointed that they didn’t name the shower “Betelgeuse Meteor Shower,” since we’d all have a reason to dress up like post-mortem party ghosts… but anyways, it’s the Orionids.
(Please tweet your request to NASA here: https://ctt.ac/s5GU7 💫)
Lunar Eclipse on November 7th & 8th, and Beaver Moon on the 8th
Submitted without comment.
Shooting Stars for November 17th & 18th
Leonid Meteor Shower, which is special because it’s actually made out of fireballs (which are colorful and crazier to watch) and “earthgrazer”meteors… which makes me very uncomfortable to ponder.
Anyways, best viewing time is after midnight and goes until dawn, at which point your eyes will be frozen open and your spine will be permanently fused in a right angle at the top of your shoulders, with your head angled backward.
(That’s why NASA recommends we lay down on a blanket and watch, instead of standing up and cranking our heads backward, but THEY CAN’T TELL ME HOW TO LIVE MY LIFE.)
Shooting Stars for December 13th & 14th, and then again on the 22nd
More shooting stars, this time right after the COLD MOON (on the 8th). I wonder why it’s called the Cold Moon… oh wait, probably because of the reason I’m not going to lay outside in 19 degree weather to watch stars.
And finally, the SUPER NEW MOON on December 23rd
I don’t know what makes it super, but I love me a super anything… and a new moon is as good as anything to be super.
So there you have the MAJOR celestial events of 2022. Who will you be watching these with?