How to watch the Lyrids light up April night sky

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It’s that time again, skygazers.

The annual Lyrid meteor shower will light up the night sky beginning this weekend and is expected to peak Thursday night into early Friday morning, according to Space.com.

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Optimal viewing will occur “in the hour before your local midnight, before the moon rises or gets very high in the sky,” EarthSky.org reported.

According to the American Meteor Society, a bright, waning gibbous moon is expected to rise between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m. local time, “obscuring all but the brightest meteors,” meaning the best time to catch a glimpse of a shooting star will be between about 11 p.m. and 2 a.m.

Meanwhile, Astronomy magazine reported that the Lyrids appear to emanate from the constellation Lyra the Harp, near the bright star Vega, which “rises in late evening and passes nearly overhead shortly before dawn.”

The average Lyrid shower produces 15 to 20 meteors per hour, according to Space.com, and the American Meteor Society projects that skywatchers should have their best views during the three evenings around the shower’s peak.

Lyrids, which have been observed for more than 2,700 years, are pieces of debris from the Comet C/1861 G1 Thatcher that the Earth plows through every year in mid-April, USA Today reported.

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