As the star Arcturus climbs to one third of the way above the eastern horizon at 10:30 PM this evening, look for another brilliant star to return to the skies, the bluish-white Vega, just rising in the northeast. Vega appears on any clear night of the year, but shifts into evening skies in the Spring.

Very high in the west near 7 o’clock sparkles the brilliant star Capella, the fourth brightest star that we can see. What we can’t see is that it is actually a pair of bright, giant stars, each more than twice as massive as the Sun. They orbit each other once every 104 days, no farther apart than the Sun and Venus.

In March, the Milky Way is still fairly high across the western sky in the evening, running from the south, just above the bright star Sirius, then high in the west above Orion and Taurus, the Bull, then to the right of the bright star Capella, finally settling down into the north.