The brightest star in the Summer Triangle, Vega, appears nearly overhead as the last of the twilight fades near 8:35 PM. Vega’s brilliance is due, in part, to its location just 25 light years away, and because it is the fourth brightest star within 50 light years of here.

The waning Gibbous Moon brightens the nighttime skies as it rises near 9:15 PM, followed about a half-hour later by the planet Jupiter. Well left of the Moon shines one of the brightest stars in the heavens, Capella. It twinkles rather profusely, as its light travels through the thicker, lower portion of our atmosphere, causing the light to waver, including flashing briefly different colors.

Rising in the east-northeast this evening at 9:45, a waning Gibbous Moon escorts Jupiter into view, the pair climbing higher by midnight, due east, and about one quarter of the way up from the horizon. On the left side of the Moon, an equal distance as Jupiter to the right, the fuzzy patch of stars known as the Pleiades, or the Seven Sisters.