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Public Observing July 9, 2016 

8:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.

At John Rudy Park, York, PA. Observatory

There will be an Astronomy Program in the Observatory July 9th 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 949-963-9147 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.

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

The July 9, 2016 Public Observing Night Sky


The Sun sets at 8:37 p.m. and is located in the constellation Gemini the Twins.


The evening sky finds the Moon in the west southwest in the constellation Virgo and is at phase 31.35% lit. The Moon sets at 11:52 pm. See: Moon Map. See: How to find degrees.

Mars and Saturn

Mars and Saturn are visible in the south after sunset. Our telescopes will show you the beautiful rings of Saturn and the surface features of the planet Mars. The Amazonis region of Mars with the Olympus Mons a shield volcano, largest volcano in the solar system will be facing earth this night. Mars appears larger and brighter than at any time in the last 10 years. Mars will be located in the constellation Libra in the south.

Below image shows Mars surface of the Amazonis region visible at 10:00 pm July 9, 2016. Click on Mars to see Map of Mars.

The  below image shows the location of Mars two moons Phobos and Deimos at 10:00 pm. Both moons are very faint at 12+ magnitude. high magnification, excellent seeing conditions and closest approach of Mars, are essential for glimpsing the moons.

See below location on where to  find the Mars and Saturn in the evening sky. Look for the ruddy glow of Mars and pale yellow of Saturn.

Mars and Saturn are 1731'15" degrees from each other as seen above on the evening of July 9th at 10:00 pm.


Jupiter is located in the southwest this night located in the constellation Leo the Lion. Jupiter sets at 11:34 pm. When you look at Jupiter your seeing the planet as it appeared 36 minutes ago due to the 467,790,000 million miles it takes light traveling at 186,000 miles per second to reach your eyes from Jupiter. Jupiter the fifth planet from the Sun is the largest planet in the Solar System. It has a mass one-thousandth that of the Sun.

Above shows the location of the planet Jupiter which is only 0734'45"" (degrees) to the right of the moon.

Jupiter's Moons

Observe four of Jupiter's moons this night. See below image of the planet Jupiter and moons as they will appear through a small telescope at 10:00 pm. July 9th.


Saturn the ringed planet  is located in the south in the constellation Ophiuchus. Saturn appears as a pale yellow glow compared to the color of the background of stars. Image below shows the tilt of Saturn's rings this night..

Image below shows the location of some of Saturn's icy moons at 10:00 pm on public observing night. Titan, Saturn's largest moon is 5,150 km diameter, it is the second largest moon in the Solar System. Titans should be visible at magnitude is 9.6 this night.


Asteroid 8Flora at magnitude 9.9 is 0409'28" degrees from Saturn Located in the constellation Ophiuchus. Asteroid 7Iris at magnitude 10.1 is 0959'45" degrees from Saturn and Mars at 0732'14"


Rising in the east early evening are the constellations Lyra with the famous ring nebulae M- 57, Ophiuchus, Libra and in the constellation Hercules with the beautiful globular cluster of stars containing hundreds of thousands of stars known as M13. The Summer Triangle consisting of the constellations Lyra with its bright star Vega, Cygnus with its bright star Deneb and Aquila with bright star Altair make up the triangle visible rising in the east. Low in the southeast is Scorpius and in the southwest the constellation Hydra. High in the sky is Virgo, Coma Berenices, Cane Venatici and Bootes. Lower in the western sky is the constellation Leo the Lion and below Leo is the constellation Cancer and just above the horizon is the setting constellation Gemini the Twins. In the north is the Big Dipper to the left of 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 July 9, 2016  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 at (949-963-9147).

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.

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