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!

What's Happening



The Last Full Blood Moon of the Tetrad Lunar Eclipse
at the
Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater

Sunday, September 27th
6:00pm ~ 11:00 pm
Admission $5
(does not include camping)

Make it an all nighter
Make your camping reservations now.

Bring libation and comforts! A chaise lounge, camp cot, Camp out and make a night to enjoy the  starry night in the Joshua Tree Desert.....


Visible Planets: 
Mercury, Venus, and Jupiter can be seen deep in the glow of sunset.  Mars is just becoming visible low in the glow of the dawn sky. Look for it a little above the east-northeast horizon 30 or 40 minutes before your local sunrise. Bring binoculars. Don't confuse it with similar-looking Pollux above it, or Castor above Pollux.
Saturn  shines in the south-southwest at nightfall, in Libra, to the right of upper Scorpios. Fiery orange Antares, the heart of the Scorpion is less bright, and is about 13° to Saturn's left or lower left. Delta Scorpii is the brightest star sort of between them.
Uranus in Pisces and Neptune in Aquarius are in the southern sky before the beginning of dawn.

As the days start getting shorter and the nights longer, The Milky Way is the "star" of the night skies nearing the middle of the month,  due to very little to no moonlight. Appearing almost like a long gray cloud arching from the south in Sagittarius to Northern horizon over head, the mass of stars in the Milky Way provides some great viewing for the next few months.  
The Milky Way is loaded with star clusters and nebulae. Scorpio is a fantastic constellation to find just west of Sagittarius, 2 of many of the galaxy's summer sights, The Lagoon, Trifid Nebula can be seen there as well as many open and globular clusters.

Another one of the favorite constellations of summer is soaring high across the sky is Cygnus, the swan. Stretching to the right & intertwining with the Summer Triangle, the swan spreads its wings  across the east and northeast shortly after nightfall. The brightest stars in the swan  form a pattern that really does look like a graceful swan, soaring through the mist of the Milky Way, with the brightest star being Deneb at the northern point of the Summer Triangle

August 1st
Today is Lammas Day or Lughnasadh, one of the four traditional "cross-quarter" days midway between the solstices and equinoxes. Sort of. The actual midpoint between the June solstice and the September equinox this year comes at 8:29 a.m. August 7th Eastern Daylight Time (12:29 UT). That's the exact center of astronomical summer.

August 3rd
Altair shines high in the southeast after dark. Just above it is little orange Tarazed. A bit more than a fist-width to Altair's left, look for Delphinus, the Dolphin, leaping leftward.

August 5th
The Big Dipper hangs diagonally in the northwest at nightfall. Most of its stars are about 80 light-years away. Follow the curve of its handle around left by a little more than a Dipper-length and there's bright Arcturus, due west. Arcturus is the nearest orange giant, 37 light-years away.
August 6th
The Delta Aquarid meteor shower will reach its maximum rate of activity on 6 August 2015. Some shooting stars associated with the shower are expected to be visible each night from July to Aug.  Sadly the Moon will be shining bright when this shower peaks.

August. 12th / 13th The Perseids
The good news is that the Moon sets before dusk and doesn't rise until after sunrise.  Perfect for viewing meteors.
Best viewing time 1 a.m. to dawn when meteors peak, with 60 to 80 meteors an hour are possible.
Left behind by the comet Swift-Tuttle, which was discovered in 1862, the stray bits of rock burn up in our atmosphere creating a cosmic show.  
The Perseids are famous for producing a large number of bright meteors. The shower runs annually from July 17 to August 24. 
It peaks this year on the night of August 12 and the morning of August 13.   With the New Moon being on the 14th we should be getting some great views of meteors dashing across the dark night sky this week.
Where do I look to see the Perseid's? 
Look late in the evening in the northeast where the constellation Perseus will be rising.

August 29th Full Super Moon.
This full moon was known by early Native American tribes as the Full Sturgeon Moon because the large sturgeon fish of the Great Lakes and other major lakes were more easily caught at this time of year. This Full Moon is known as the Corn Moon, Red Moon, Green Corn Moon, or Grain Moon. 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.


What is a Supermoon?
 A superman happens when there's a Full Moon, or New Moon at the same time as the Moon's closest approach to the Earth; perigee. It's also known as the Super Full Moon, Super New Moon and Perigee Moon.
The moon will be closest to the Earth at 11 a.m. on Aug. 30, 222,631 miles or 358,290 km. distant. The moon will be below the horizon at that time for observers in North America. The best time to observe this “Supermoon” will be just after it rises on Saturday night, Aug. 29. Those living near the ocean should expect higher tides than normal for the next few days.

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Clear Sky Chart for The Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater  



Moon Phases for August 2015

January moon, February moon, March moon, April moon, May moon, June moon, July moon, August moon, September moon, October moon, November moon, December Moon

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



The Globe at Night campaign of
  Next Event 
August 5-14

The Globe at Night dates for 2015 have just been released! They will be:
January 11-20
February 9-18
March 11-20
April 9-18
May 9-18
June 8-17
July 7-16
August 5-14
September 3-12
October 3-12
November 2-11
December 2-11

For more info go to
Globe at Night

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


For our next Star Party or Event
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




Contact us at:



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Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater

Check out the  
Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater


Meetup site
for further & future details
Upcoming Events




Clear Sky Chart for The Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater  



Moon Phases for August 2015

January moon, February moon, March moon, April moon, May moon, June moon, July moon, August moon, September moon, October moon, November moon, December Moon


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Go to Photos & Events Link
to see pictures  of what we've been up to.


Please Help Support our efforts. To contribute, click the link below.

Or mail your Contributions to

P.O. Box 2192
Joshua Tree Ca. 92252

Thank you for your support

Note:  non tax deductible

Last updated August 18, 2015