Everything You Need To Know About The Perseid Meteor Shower August 11 & 12 (And How It Affects Your Zodiac Sign)

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When, Where & How To Watch The 2017 Perseids Meteor Shower/Shooting Stars
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How to watch it and what it is!

Shooting stars are coming — in the form of the Perseid meteor shower, a naturally-occurring light show that arrives every summer at some point between July 17-August 24.

This year the extraterrestrial fireworks display will peak between the evening of Friday, August 11 and the morning of Saturday, August 12.

Also known as "the Perseids," the annual event is loved for its typically large number of bright meteor showers.

Check out this stunning video of the 2016 Perseid captured over Cleveland National Forest in Mount Laguna, California, especially the "epic fireball" at 00:41.

According to Stardate.org:

"Most meteor showers are spawned by comets. As a comet orbits the Sun it sheds an icy, dusty debris stream along its orbit. If Earth travels through this stream, we will see a meteor shower. Although the meteors can appear anywhere in the sky, if you trace their paths, the meteors in each shower appear to "rain" into the sky from the same region.

Meteor showers are named for the constellation that coincides with this region in the sky, a spot known as the radiant. For instance, the radiant for the Leonid meteor shower is in the constellation Leo. The Perseid meteor shower is so named because meteors appear to fall from a point in the constellation Perseus."

 

Related: How Mercury In Retrograde REALLY Affects Each Zodiac Sign (Because YES, It's BAAACK)

 

The Perseid meteor shower, in particular, is caused by Earth passing through debris that's thrown off by the comet known as Swift-Tuttle.

Space.com cites NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke saying the Perseids are "perhaps the most popular meteor shower of the year," adding that, "the show would be slightly better in the predawn hours of Aug. 12, but [there should] be a decent show both nights."

Unfortunately for all of us this year, the magic will be slightly dampened.

Despite reports — which have since proven to be "fake news" — claiming that "several sources include the added imperative that, regardless of your age, it's probably the last chance to see anything that even comes close, meteor-wise, that is. A (presumably second-rate) repeat won't roll around for another 96 years, they say," Cooke stands firmly by his correction that, "[no] such thing is going to happen."

The video below was taken in 2015 "during a 50 mile, 9-day backpack" in Yosemite National Park.

In fact, this year isn't expected to be "as spectacular as 2016, an 'outburst' year that doubled the number of meteors seen in a typical Perseid shower... And light from a three-quarters moon [AKA waning gibbous moon] this year may wash out some visibility too." Good news, however, is that you should still "expect to see 40 to 50 meteors per hour," which is 40 to 50 more meteors than you would since in any other typical hour. So at least there's that...

If you're looking for the best time and place to settle down on a picnic blanket with some hot chocolate to watch, Space.com recommends this:

"You can see the Perseid meteor shower best in the Northern Hemisphere and down to the mid-southern latitudes, and all you need to catch the show is darkness, somewhere comfortable to sit and a bit of patience... Go to a dark area, in the suburbs or countryside, and prepare to sit outside for a few hours. It takes about 30 minutes for your eyes to adjust to the dark, and the longer you wait outside, the more you'll see... Some skywatchers plan to camp out to see the Perseid meteor shower, but at the very least, viewers should bring something comfortable to sit on, some snacks and some bug spray. Then, just relax and look upward for the celestial show."

As far the effect this astronomical event will have on the zodiac signs this year, astrologer Leah Whitehorse shared this:

“If you have a wish to make, now might be a good time to catch a falling star!”

Her fellow astrologer Larry Schwinner elaborates:

"This cosmic event is likely to affect you in unseen, yet mystical ways bringing unexpected events into your life. Even if your life has been embroiled in confusion, chaos or turmoil, the light from The Perseids is said to illuminate your path, leading you to a new direction when you need it most. As you look up at the sky, ask yourself: are there any changes you would like to see happen that would make your life happier?

 

Related: There's A HUGE Solar Eclipse Coming In August & Here's How It Will Affect Your Zodiac Sign

 

This cosmic event may be just the catalyst for altering your life and moving you to take constructive action and make your goals a reality. There are a number of positive changes that often occur after this amazing meteor shower. It’s time when you’re likely to be inspired to find an innovative solution to a troubling problem.

The possibilities for a magical transformation in some area of your life are endless...

You may go to sleep and have an amazing dream that lays out your destiny and reveals the steps you need to take to get there. Best of all, the magical effect of this event can bring you an answer to your prayers in the form of an unexpected gift or reward. All you have to do is to look up at the sky... and make a wish. Then, let The Perseids inspire you."

Luckily, this won't be your last opportunity to do some stargazing this year.

We still have the Orionids coming up on October 21, the Leonids on November 16 and the Geminids on December 13.

Senior Editor and happily-former divorce coach and mediator Arianna Jeret is a recognized expert on love, sex, and relationships (except when it comes to her own life, of course). Join her Sundays at 10:15 PM EST when she answers ALL of your questions on Facebook Live on YourTango's main page. You can also follow her on Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

 

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