The predicted peak of the annual Lyrids Meteor Shower in the hours after midnight tonight, as they Earth passes through the debris of Comet Thatcher, last seen in 1861, but not due to return until 2283. However, any increasing frequency of visible meteors will meet with an increasingly bright moon, now a waxing gibbous, but just 2 days short of being full.

The increasing light of the Moon, while spoiling the Lyrid Meteor Shower, leaves the brighter stars to admire, including Arcturus, emerging from the twilight, due east, about one third of the way up from the horizon at 9:30 this evening. Its pale orange color indicates it is a red giant star, a preview of what our Sun will do some 4 to 5 billion years from now.

Tonight’s full moon of April is also known as the “Pink” Moon. This is a great time to see one of the Moon’s prominent craters, Tycho. Binoculars show it near the bottom as a hub for a series of lines radiating outward, or “rays”, caused when a meteor crashed into the Moon 110 million years ago.