One of the brightest stars in the sky, and part of the Summer Triangle, Vega, is flickering in the northwest by dark. Vega gets its name from the German “Wega”, which came from “Al Waki”, Arabic for “the falling or swooping eagle”. It will set tonight at 9:30 PM EST.

Harry Potter in the sky? Looking in the southeast at 8:30 this evening we see the brightest star in the sky, Sirius, rising. It is known as the Dog Star, and in the Harry Potter books, his god-father Sirius turns into a dog. Likewise, Sirius’s sister is Bellatrix, the star that marks the left shoulder of Orion, called the “female warrior”, and in the books she indeed fights!

Venus continues to be majestic in the morning skies, rising before 3:30 AM, and seen along side the bright star Spica to its right. Although Spica shines as the 11th brightest star in the heavens, it appears 100 times fainter than Venus. Through the month, Venus loses its height, rising an hour later, and only climbing to one quarter of the way up at month’s end.