The Perseid meteor shower – also known as “The Tears of St. Lawrence” – is an astronomical yearly spectacle best viewed in complete and total darkness.
Cue Mount Seymour.
A viewing party is planned on the North Vancouver mountain for the height of the shower on August 12. As an added bonus, this year’s Perseids will be more spectacular than ever, according to astronomer Derek Kief with the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre.
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“This meteor shower is an ‘outburst’ and that’s basically when the debris from the comet is concentrated in front of the earth,” Kief tells Daily Hive. “It means that we’re going to go through a lot more pieces of this comet and there’s going to be an influx of brighter, bigger meteors more often.”
August 12 will be a quarter moon, which means the meteors will be fairly visible, but Kief says anytime between August 7 (when there’s a new moon) and August 12 (the peak of the shower) are ideal viewing times.
As for the viewing party, Dr. Redouane Fakir, who has a PhD in astrophysics from UBC, will be giving a short talk about meteor showers before local musicians Bre McDaniel and Jenny Banai perform a set of songs under the night sky.
Here’s a recommended list of things to bring for the viewing party:
- Blow-up mattresses
- Bug spray
- Late night picnics
The event is open to people of all ages, but be warned: more than 4,000 people say they’re going on the Facebook event page at the time of writing.
When: Friday, August 12; 11 pm
Where: Parking lot 2, Mount Seymour – Mount Seymour Road, North Vancouver