The Orionid Meteor Shower reaches its peak tonight, best seen in the hours after midnight. The fragments of rock are part of debris released by Halley’s Comet, producing some 10 to 20 meteors per hour. A First Quarter Moon settles toward the horizon, setting before midnight, just as Orion rises to host his meteors.
For early birds, Venus has been a dazzling beacon for several weeks now. It reaches the pinacle of its appearance in the mornings this week, as its orbit carries it to its greatest separation from the Sun, called its Greatest Western Elongation. This brings Venus up at 3:11 AM, nearly four hours before sunrise, high in the southeast by 6:30.
With evenings arriving a bit earlier each day, you’ll find the twilight darkening from 6:15 to 7 o’clock, at which point you should gaze toward the southeast, where the waxing Gibbous Moon glows well to the right of the planet Saturn, sitting about one quarter of the way up from the horizon. They’ll crest due south at 8:45 PM.