Leonid Meteor Shower

Brian McCaffrey

According to the think-geeks at NASA, tonight will play host to the best meteor shower of the year. Starting around 12:00 am Central time on November 17th (that’s tonight if you have forgotten how to read time), star-gazers will be able to see meteors painting the dark North American sky. I won’t go into the details of the Tempel-Tuttel comet, but if you’re interested check out Wikipedia or NASA.gov for more information.

Only twenty to thirty meteors on average are expected each hour for us yankees. The best seats went to Asia, where some regions are expecting 300 to 500 meteors an hour. As a fun side note, a meteor storm is classified as having 1000 or more meteors an hour. Despite not having the best seats on the planet, you should still be able to catch some good glances of burning rocks tonight.

Where in the cities should you watch this celestial spectacle? Well, you shouldn’t watch them in the cities! Light pollution will only make it harder to see the meteors. The farther away from Minneapolis and Saint Paul you go, the better you’ll be. For those of us stuck here because of classes or homework that needs to be done, I’d recommend an area such as Van Cleve that has a wide open space and no tall buildings around it. Just be careful to check the hours of any park or place you go to and be quiet/respectful of any neighbors, as you don’t want a ticket from the city. Good luck star gazers and remember: the truth is out there.

Here’s a quick step-by-step instruction list of how to watch the meteor shower: Step 1: Go Outside with friends (or your tomodachi if you don’t have any real friends) Step 2: Find a comfortable place to sit with an unobstructed view of the sky Step 3: Have everyone look in a different direction for streaks of light Step 4: Profit