Eclipse, meteor shower set to visit local skies

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Weather permitting, local sky-watchers will be able to enjoy two celestial events in the next few days.

The first is a total eclipse of the moon before sunrise on Saturday, according to Vancouver Sidewalk Astronomers. At 4:40 a.m. Pacific time, some shading should be noticeable; total eclipse will begin at about 6:05 a.m.

The moon will be in mid-eclipse at 6:32 a.m. as the first light of dawn appears, and as the moon sinks lower in the west-northwestern sky.

Maximum activity in the annual Geminid meteor shower will be Tuesday night/Wednesday morning and Wednesday night/Thursday morning.

The greatest number of meteors will be seen after midnight but a few may appear not long after dark.

The radiant, or place in the sky from which the meteors appear to emanate, is against the background stars of the constellation of Gemini, which is well up in the eastern sky by mid to late evening and high overhead around 2 a.m.