Planetarium Learning Center


YCAS Schedule

Public Observing




Tonight's Sky

Mason Dixon Star Party

New Telescope Users Help

Members Websites


Astronomy Classes

Press Release

Lunar Eclipse

Star Party and Astronomy Links




Back to YCAS Home

Public Observing January 14, 2017

8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

At John Rudy Park, York, PA. Observatory

There will be an Astronomy Program in the Observatory if cloudy.

The York County Astronomical Society, Inc. is a non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the science of astronomy.

Expand your mind by taking in the expanse of the universe.

Come and view the night skies with us through one of our telescopes and let our experienced members guide you on a tour of celestial wonders, including stars, planets, nebulae, and the moon. You are also invited to bring your own telescope and share your experiences with other amateur astronomers. Star Charts are available to help your exploration of the nighttime sky.

For all observing activities at John Rudy Park, if the weather is questionable, please check our voice message at 717 759 YCAS (9227) for notice of any late cancellation or for an updated status, check this website.

To Observatory See: Directions

If it is clear or mostly clear, the activity will occur as scheduled. If it is completely cloudy, raining or snowing, the activity will be changed to an astronomical presentation in observatory.

For information on events, scheduling a private party star watch, directions to the observing site, or for general Society information please email YCAS at: E-Mail YCAS

 Visible for Public Observing Night Sky January 14, 2017


The Sun is in the constellation Sagittarius "The Archer" and sets at 5:05 pm.


Click on Moon to enlarge image.

The evening sky finds the waning Moon rising at 7:50 pm in the east located in the constellation Leo the "Lion" and is at phase 91.58% lit. The Moon is only Angular separation: 01°10'08" degree from the magnitude 1.36 bright star Regulus in Leo. The Moon is visible all night casting its pale winter light. January’s Full Moon is popularly known as the Wolf Moon, a name derived from Native American lore, or the Moon After Yule.  See position of Regulus and Moon at 9 pm in image below.


Venus is very bright at -4.4 magnitude seen after sunset in the west southwestern evening sky just 07°55'59" below Mars. Venus is located in the constellation Aquarius "The Water Carrier". Venus sets at 9:01pm. Venus had reached greatest elongation east of the Sun on the morning of the 12th. Venus is at phase 49.77% and appears as a tiny first quarter Moon. The next few weeks Venus phase will become more crescent-shaped as the apparent diameter grows ever larger. See Venus as seen through a telescope On January 14th as shown below.


Mars is visible low in the west southwest after sunset located in the constellation Aquarius "The Water Carrier". On the evening of the 14th Mars is 07°55'59" above Venus. Mars sets at 9:41 p.m. Mars is disappointing as seen through a telescope now as the planets disk size has become smaller due to the increasing distance from Earth. See below location of Mars and Venus at 8:00 pm January 14th.


Neptune is in the south southwest in the constellation Aquarius the "Water Carrier". Neptune is 02°09'36" below Venus. Neptune sets at 8:50 pm. You need a telescope to see Neptune and best looked for early in the evening around 6:00 pm.. See below of location of Neptune for 8:00 pm.


Uranus is high in the south southeast sky located in the constellation Pisces the "Fishes".  Uranus can be found with binoculars and a dark clear sky. Uranus sets at 12:17 am. See Uranus location at 9:00 pm on January 14th.


Hubble Space Telescope

The Hubble Space Telescope will make a low pass in the south west evening sky beginning at 7:17 pm at 3.1 magnitude. See location and times of positions of HST in image below. HST enters Earths shadow at 7:20:04 pm when sunlight no longer illuminates the satellite and it is no longer visible.

Quadrantid Meteors

The Quadrantid are active from January 1st to January 10th and peaks on night of January 3 through the morning of the 4th and best time to observe is around midnight till dawn.  This shower probably will produce around 25 meteors per hour but possible to produce 120 +per hour. There is not a Moon to hinder observations this night. These meteors often produce bright fireballs. It is thought that 2003 EH1 may be the remnant of a larger parent comet called C1490 Y1 that results in this meteor shower when Earth passes through the old debris stream. Click on image below for more information.


Leo "The Lion" is rising above the eastern horizon. The constellation Cancer "The Crab" lies just above Leo with it's pretty open star cluster M-44 also known as the Beehive cluster.

The winter constellations Orion "The Hunter" and Canis Major "The Larger Dog" with the bright star is Sirius. are visible in the southeast below Orion. Constellation Gemini the "Twins" are visible in the south southeast sky. Taurus the "Bull" with its bright red star Aldebaran are visible high in the south sky. About 13 degrees above Aldebaran is  the open star cluster M-45 also known as the "Pleiades" or "Seven Sisters". 

Low in the southwest are the constellations Cetus the "Whale", Pisces the "Fish". In the south Eridanus "The River".

Pegasus the "Winged Horse". is low on the western horizon.  The constellation Andromeda known as the "Princess of Ethiopia" is above Pegasus with its magnificent  spiral galaxy M-31 the famous Andromeda galaxy, which is our nearest large neighbor galaxy. 

Visible high in the northwest lies Perseus the "Rescuer of Andromeda" with the the beautiful Perseus Double Cluster consisting of two open star cluster NGC 869 & NGC 884. The constellation of Cassiopeia, the "Queen". The Big Dipper is standing on its handle and is visible low above the northern horizon as public observing begins.. To the left (west) of the Big Dipper is the Little Dipper which contains Polaris the north star. See How to use the Big Dipper to find Polaris the north star. See: Finding North Star. These are just a few of the many constellations visible this night.

View the January 14, 2017, 2017  Night Sky Below

North - South - East - West - Zenith

 Take a memorable tour with members of the York County Astronomical Society of Galaxies, planets, the moon and the constellations of the night sky.

Stars and Constellations Astronomical Pronunciation Guide

Directions to Observatory

See: Directions

Explore the Wonders of your Universe

Astronomy Picture of the Day

The Known Universe


Our sun is almost one million miles in diameter and a million earths would fit in it.

It takes light eight minutes to reach us from the sun. 

The last star shown in video is VY Canis Majoris which takes light about 5000 years to reach us that is light traveling at 186,000 miles per second x 60 seconds in a minute x 60 minutes in an hour x 365 days in a year x 5000 years. VY Canis Majoris is (almost 2 billion ) 1.7 billion miles in diameter. 


 What does light pollution look like?

What does your nighttime sky look like? Try this fun interactive game to see how light pollution affects the stars you see at night: 

Light Pollution also see: Globe At Night

International Dark Sky Association

See Weather and Directions map below.


Directions to Observatory

See: Directions

The GPS coordinates of the observatory are: N40.024400° W076.704700°



The York County Astronomical Society holds a public observing session every month, check this website for times. 

The club's telescopes will be used to show the public many of the fascinating objects that are up in the nighttime sky. We will also be showing people how to use Star charts to identify the stars and constellations that are up in the nighttime sky. The public is encouraged to bring their own telescopes, if they have one, to learn how to use them more effectively. If you are interested in buying a telescope, this is a great place to ask questions.

For information on events, scheduling a private party star watch, directions to the observing site, or for general Society information please email YCAS at: E-Mail YCAS Membership applications are available upon request.

Contact us for Scouts Astronomy Merit badge program.

Please Observe Below

While on the observatory's premises: no smoking, food, pets (except guide dogs) or flash photography is permitted, thank you. In accordance with the ADA, those with disabilities who wish to gain access within York County Parks should telephone the County of York human services offices.

The York County Astronomical Society, Inc. is a non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the science of astronomy to all concerned Unless otherwise advertised, Most star watches are held at our observatory, located in John Rudy County Park, at 400 Mundis Race Road in York County, Pennsylvania, 17402 , they are free and open to the public. If you have a red-filtered flashlight please bring it along. 


YCAS SCHEDULE See: YCAS Schedule page for more dates

Need help with your telescope? See New Telescope Clinic.

Check out the new show at the YCAS Planetarium. Go to Planetarium link.

Back to YCAS Home