Orion, easily seen even on a moonlit night, displays some if his fainter features near the dark of the Moon. Below Orion’s three bright “belt stars” dangles a sword. Follow the line of his belt to the upper right, where a modest curved line of stars outlines his hunting bow, though it is also imagined as a shield, and even a bath towel.

The Milky Way, known in the orient as the “River of Light”, is home to many bright stars, including Capella, a brilliant white star some 46 light-years away, the sixth brightest star in the skies. You’ll find it nearly overhead this evening at 9:45 PM EST.

The Milky Way Galaxy is a fine sight, but it is not the only galaxy – or large group of stars and star systems – we can see. At 7:00 PM this evening, looking due west, about two-thirds of the way up from the horizon, another galaxy can be seen as a faint smudge of light, the Andromeda Galaxy, over 2.5 million light years in the distance.