Southern California Desert Video Astronomers

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Our Mission.............................
" To share our abilities with astronomy in order to preserve dark starry night skies and a vibrant healthy environment in the California Desert and everywhere else on our Planet for future generations! "

SCDVA, moving the line for dark skies and environmental awareness.


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What's Next

Celebrating one of the best meteor shower events of the year, the Geminids are always exciting.
Join us as we explore the night sky and focus on the Constellation that hosts this famous meteor shower and hear the story of how the namesake came to be. The mythology of the night sky is alive in the stories that tell of heroes and lords of the stars.

Please dress for the cooler weather, No Pets please. Drive slowly in the campground to keep dust low. We will have a fire barrel burning to take the chill off and don't forget your comfy stuff.
Friday, December 15, 2017
7:00 PM to 11:00 PM
$5.00 at the door.

Sorry, no pets allowed inside theater.



Let's explore our wonderful Universe together!


Clear Sky Chart for The Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater  



Moon Phases for December 2017

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



Click the above image to see amazing live views of our earth

Book Your Fun 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




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7 planets visible but most difficult to see.
Slightly difficult to see due to the fact they will bo close to the sun, Mercury and Venus are visible around sunrise and sun set only, and are fairly close to the sun.  Also Mars can be seen before sunrise along with Jupiter with average visibility with Saturn difficult to see. 
Uranus and Neptune can be viewed after sunset somewhat difficult to see and should be viewed through binoculars or a  telescope.

Dec. 3rd - Full "SuperMoon" Occurs at 9:47 am.

Sunday night, the moon will still shine 16% brighter and appear 7% larger than its usual size.
This Supermoon will be the first in the series of three consecutive full moon Supermoons, the next two to occur in January, which means the second full Supermoon in January will also be a Blue Supermoon climaxing with a total lunar eclipse! And to make things even more strange there will be no full Moon in February.

The full Moon of December is known as the Long Night Moon or Moon Before Yule.

The full moon gets its name this month for the winter cold fastens its grip, and nights are at their longest and darkest. It is also sometimes called the Moon before Yule. The term Long Night Moon is a doubly appropriate name because the midwinter night is indeed long, and because the Moon is above the horizon for a long time. The midwinter full Moon has a high trajectory across the sky because it is opposite a low Sun.


December 13/14 Geminids Meteor Shower Peak

The Geminids Meteor Shower Peak the evening and morning of the 13th & 14th.
The Geminids, are considered to be one of the more prolific meteor shower during the year, with the possibility of sighting around 120 meteors per hour at its peak. 

A Waning Crescent Moon of 18.7% rising at 2:25 a.m., will make viewing conditions good for the shooting stars.

Named After Gemini, and emerging from the constellation of the
Gemini twins, the Geminid meteor shower is an annual meteor shower and can be observed between December 4 and December 16, with its peak activity being around December 14. 

Unlike most other meteor showers, the Geminids are associated not with a comet but with an asteroid: the 3200 Phaethon. The asteroid takes about 1.4 years to orbit around the Sun.

Where to View the Geminids.
According to date and time, "The Geminids can be observed from locations all around the world. While it is not necessary to look in a particular direction to enjoy a meteor shower, astronomers suggest looking towards the south to view the Geminids."

When to View the Geminids
The best time to view the Geminids is of course at night after sunset and before sunrise from a dark sky area away from city lights.  I remember back in 2001 even from Anaheim, California, seeing several around midnight at zenith (straight up).  So it might be worth your while to go outside and check it out no matter where you are.

Location in the Sky
Maximum for the shower is predicted to be on Wednesday, December 13, 2017 at 10:20 pm; the table below is courtesy of date and time.

Dec 14th Close approach of the Moon and Jupiter
The Moon and Jupiter will make a close approach, passing within 4°03' of each other.  The pair will be visible in the pre dawn sky, rising at 03:35 PST it will reach an altitude of 28° above the south-eastern horizon before fading from view as dawn breaks at around 06:25.


Dec 21st Winter Solstice 8:27 am PST 

The shortest amount of daylight of the year with sunrise occurring in Joshua Tree at 6:33 am PST and setting at 4:35 pm giving us 10 hours and 2 minutes of day length. 


December 23/24 - Ursids Meteor Shower.

Named after Ursa Minor, the Ursids is a minor meteor shower producing 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 Active annually between December 17-24. It peaks this year on the the night of the 23rd and morning of the 24th.

Best viewing will be after midnight, at a dark location away from city lights.  The waxing crescent moon will be only 26% of full and sets at 9:44 pm approaches making viewing excellent for the night owls or the really early morning risers.

Looking North, meteors will radiate from the constellation Ursa Minor aka The Little Dipper, but can appear anywhere in the sky.  The North Star, Polaris is located at the tip of the handle.


December 31st


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Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater

Check out the  
Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater


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for further & future details
Upcoming Events

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Check out the JTAAT Movie by Leonard Holmberg,

Showing some of the Happenings and Fun

Click below to take a journey.

Take a trip to our Astronomy Theater, live images captured and displayed on our giant screen. JTAAT a magical place for Concerts, Star Parties, Art Exhibits​, Weddings and Special Events. Special thanks to and Nasa.



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 425
Joshua Tree Ca. 92252

Thank you for your support

Note:  non tax deductible

Last updated December 01,  2017