Low above the northern horizon near 10 o’clock this evening, can you make out the letter “W” formed by five medium-bright stars? This forms part of the throne of Cassiopeia, the Queen. To her upper right, still low, you might see a house-shaped pattern – a box with a triangle on top. This is the Queen’s husband, King Cepheus.
Prowling the heavens high in the southwest this evening starting near 9:30 PM, you’ll find Leo, the Lion. Leo is one of the horoscope signs, its traditional dates of late July into the third week of August marking when the sun was against the background of these stars 3000 years ago. This now happens one month later.
Between the brightest star in the skies this evening, Arcturus, high in the southeast at 10 o’clock, and the second brightest, Vega, slightly lower in the east, the faint stars of Hercules offer a challenge to view. Many people look for the bowtie pattern, marking his knees to the upper left, and his shoulders to the lower right.