This weekend, space enthusiasts are in for a light treat right before the main course at the end of the month.
Just days before the much-anticipated planetary alignment involving Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Uranus, the moon will enter the space chat, and it will align with two planets. The celestial event will take place over the course of two nights, starting from Saturday, March 25 and through the evening of Sunday, March 26, AccuWeather predicts.
The moon, however, will start its dance with Venus a couple of days before that. According to NASA, on the evening of Thursday, March 23, the thin waxing crescent moon will make its first appearance below Venus, and it will only surpass it by the evening of Friday, March 24.
Stargazers will have to wait until Saturday to spot the three of them together. On Saturday, March 25, the crescent moon will have made its way above Venus, and Mars will be visible high up in the western sky. As AccuWeather points out, though, Sunday, March 26 might be the best time to observe the phenomenon, as the moon will be right in between the two planets.
Seeing the planets in the night sky won’t be too hard. Venus, the brightest planet, will be easily visible, while Mars will be recognizable thanks to its signature orange hue. If you want, you can even equip yourself with binoculars for a better viewing experience. Just look to the west, toward the Orion constellation (which will be just to the left of this alignment).
As always, it is advisable to find a dark site or a low-light pollution area to set out on your planet-gazing journey. You can find the nearest dark site by visiting this website, while this map will show you what the light pollution conditions are.