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Skywatch: Hello, Summer

The Summer Solstice is this week!

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The moon will darken throughout the week but not before Monday night's last quarter. At 11:11 p.m., the moon will reach that phase but moonrise isn’t until after midnight so you’ll have to wait to catch the half moon.

Even though we’ve already seen some hot weather spring officially ends early this week. At 5:14 a.m., the sun will be directly overhead on Tuesday morning at the Tropic of Cancer. 

That marks its highest point in the sky in the Northern Hemisphere for the year. It also means summer is officially here!

Mars hits a milestone on Tuesday morning as well. At 10:01 a.m. it will reach perihelion. This is when the planet is at its closest point to the Sun in its orbit. 

Mars will be about 128 million miles from the sun Tuesday morning.

Use the moon to help you find planets on Wednesday morning. It will be closest to Mars but Jupiter won’t be far off just above and right of the pair. 

Saturn will be a little higher than Jupiter. If you have a clear view of the horizon Mercury and Venus will be hanging low in the sky. The whole show unfolds from the ENE to the southern sky. 

Happy hunting!

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