Stargazers will get yet another celestial show when Venus and the sliver of the crescent moon flirt in the western sky just after sunset on December 26.
NASA says the show will begin between 4:30 and 5:30 p.m., when Venus pops into view as twilight turns to night, and the moon stands by, “exquisitely slender, grinning like the Cheshire cat with his head cocked at humorous attention,” the space agency said in a media release.
But there’s more.
“As the sky fades to black, a ghostly image of the full moon materializes within the horns of the lunar crescent. This is caused by earthshine, a delicate veil of sunlight reflected from our own blue planet onto the dusty-dark lunar terrain,” NASA said. “Also known as ‘the Da Vinci glow,’ after Leonardo da Vinci—who first understood it 500 years ago—Earthshine pushes the beauty of the conjunction over the top.”
On top of that—literally—Jupiter, the brightest object in the night sky, will also join the party, surveying the activity from the constellation Pisces.
“Almost everyone, everywhere will be able to see them,” NASA said.