Star gazing with the kiddos: Perseid meteor showers


Do you have happy childhood memories of lying on your back and watching shooting stars–technically called meteor showers? Have you made similar memories with your own kids?

Here’s an easy, fun and free family activity to do in your own backyard tonight. The annual Perseid meteor showers peak tonight (Aug. 11) and tomorrow night (Aug. 12). We also can view a super moon, which may make it a little more challenging.

1. If your yard has a clear view of the sky (no big trees blocking it), you can do this at home. Otherwise, check with a friend, family member or go to a neighborhood park. You’ll have to wait until it’s dark enough to see the stars clearly.

2. If you’re doing this at home, turn off indoor lights that will make it hard to see meteors. Bring flashlights with you to prevent falls.

3. Spread out a blanket on the ground. Lie down with your kids, look up and watch the meteor showers. Play games to see who can see the most.

4. Make it more fun by making popcorn to share with watching the meteor show–better than anything on TV!

5. If you’re really into the night sky, consider heading over to Rooster Rock State Park Tuesday night for OMSI’s Star Party. Free, but parking is $5 per car.

Read an article about the meteor showers and OMSI star party here.

Read an excellent explanation of the Perseid meteor showers here.

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