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Skywatch: Look for a famous constellation this week

Queen Cassiopeia is easy to spot.
Planet Watching

Use the young moon to help you find Venus early in the week. The pair will be in the southwestern sky after sunset Sunday through Wednesday. Above is how you’ll find them on Monday night. If you have a telescope, you can use it to help you locate Neptune and if you can get a clear view of the horizon, you’ll find Mercury below and left of the show.

Cassiopeia

When skies clear out this week, take advantage of it and look for one of the most recognizable constellations in the night sky. Cassiopeia is the constellation that looks like a “W”.

Legend has it that she was so beautiful and vain that she once claimed that she was prettier than the Nereids, the exquisite sea nymphs. This upset Poseidon who sent a monster to destroy the coast of her husband’s kingdom. When the gods put Cassiopeia into the night sky, they put her in such a place that she would be upside down half the night as punishment for her hubris.

Cassiopeia is a circumpolar constellation meaning it circles the north pole. As a result, the queen is upside down half the night.

First Quarter Moon

The First Quarter Moon arrives Saturday night at 8:43 p.m. Look for the half moon if you’re out and about enjoying the night life in Columbus. Happy hunting!