Southern California Desert Video Astronomers

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Our Mission.............................
To educate & promote astronomy in order to preserve the dark skies of the California Desert and everywhere for future generations.

SCDVA, moving the line for dark skies




Let's explore our wonderful Universe together!

Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater

The World's First & Only Live Astronomy Theater.

SCDVA, Official IDA Chapter Serving The High Desert Region
San Bernardino County


IDA International Dark Sky Association

"Ask not what dark skies can do for you, rather,
Ask what you can do for dark skies."

                                                                                Inspired by a quote from JFK



What's Happening

Book Your 2015 Events Now Under the Beautiful Joshua Tree Night Skies


For our next Star Party Event, To Be Announced
Why Not Make it an All Nighter Under the Starry Nights of the Joshua Tree Desert Skies.

 Make your camping reservations early
At the Joshua Tree Lake RV & Campground


* * * * * *

 The Globe at Night campaign of
  Next Event December 11 - 20

For more info go to
Globe at Night


Contact us at:

Scroll down to see
What's Up!
In our night skies




Check out the 
Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater
Meetup site
for further & future details
Upcoming Events


December Skies 

Decembers Planets
Venus is now the “Evening Star” in the southwestern sky just after sunset at the beginning of the month.  And Saturn reappears  as a “Morning Star” in Libra in the southeastern dawn sky.

Mars moves from Sagittarius into Capricornus on the 4th in the low  southwestern sky, moving behind the sun.

Mars is at its closest to the sun (perihelion) on the 12th. 

Jupiter now rises in mid-evening in the constellation Leo, shining brightly in the southern sky through the night.   A two-month series of double shadow transits begins on Dec. 8.

December 1st.

The Geminids peak on the 14th but many fireballs can be observed leading up to the 14th and after. Click the image below to check out NASA's All Sky Fireball Network.


On Dec. 1, 2014, the network reported 47 fireballs.


December 4th

Thursday at 9:00pm. Check out Aldebaran and the Moon.

The nearly full moon passes just north of the red giant star Aldebaran and the Hyades star cluster. The bright Pleiades star cluster is above and towards the West.

December 6th

Full Moon 4:27am Pacific Time. 

The Full Moon of December is known as the “Cold Moon,” or “Long Nights Moon.” as called by some Native American Tribes.  Also known as the "Yule Moon".  All these names are self explanatory.  It rises around sunset and sets around sunrise; this is the only night in the month when the moon is in the sky all night long. The rest of the month, the moon spends at least some time in the daytime sky

Saturday /Sunday, Dec.13/14

The Geminid meteor shower peak at  4 a.m. Pacific Time
The Geminids are considered to be the king of the meteor showers, producing up to 120 multicolored meteors per hour at its peak. It is produced by debris left behind by an asteroid known as 3200 Phaethon, which was discovered in 1982. The shower runs annually from December 7-17. It peaks this year on the night of the 13th and the morning of the 14th. The waning gibbous moon will block out some of the meteors this year, but the Geminids are so bright and numerous that it should still be a good show. 


The best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Gemini, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

December 19th

Friday, 1 hour before sunrise, Saturn makes a reappearance as a “morning star” close to the slender waning crescent moon, just before sunrise Friday morning.

December 21st

Winter Solstice Begins Sunday at 3:03 p.m. Pacific Time.

Winter solstice and the days now start to get longer.  The sun reaches its southernmost position in the sky, and now begins moving northward once again.  

The New Moon is less than 3 hours away, so the moon is close by, and the sun is flanked by four planets (Mars, Venus, Mercury, and Saturn) and two dwarf planets (Pluto and Ceres). As happens every year at the solstice, the sun is only a few degrees away from “alignment” with the black hole at the center of our Galaxy.

This is the summer solstice, First day of summer in the Southern Hemisphere.

December 22, 23  

Ursids Meteor Shower. The Ursids are a minor meteor shower producing only about 5-10 meteors per hour.

It is produced by dust grains left behind by comet Tuttle, which was first discovered in 1790. The shower runs annually from December 17-25. It peaks this year on the night of the 22nd.

This will be one of the best years to observe the
Ursids because there will be no moonlight to interfere with the show. The best viewing will be just after midnight from a dark location far away from city lights. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Ursa Minor, (The Little Dipper) but can appear anywhere in the sky.


December 31st



Clear Sky Chart for The Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater  



Moon Phases for December 2014

august moon September moon October moon November moon December moon January moon February moon march moon April moon may moon June moon July moon


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to see pictures  of what we've been up to.


Please Help Support our efforts.

Or mail your donation to

P.O. Box 2192
Joshua Tree Ca. 92252

Thank you for your support

Note: Donations are non tax deductible

Last updated December 01, 2014