Star-gazers witness first hand Perseid meteor shower

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
The Confederate Reunion Grounds held a star-gazing party Saturday, which was also the height of the Perseid meteor shower.
According to site manager Amanda McVay, nearly 60 people attended and watched the sky for the second annual event, but they also identified many other items in the night sky.
According to nightsky.org, the Perseid meteor shower is produced each year, between July 17 to Aug. 24, as the earth crosses through the orbital path of the Comet Swift-Tuttle and is usually most visible after the first week of August. Particles of debris burn up as they hit the earth’s atmosphere. A rare few may survive and actually hit the earth, and are then classified as meteorites.
While waiting for the meteors to start showing up, McVay and others saw Jupiter, Saturn and other heavenly bodies, and also the International Space Station, space program debris and night-flying jets. Those who had waited long enough saw a large meteor that streaked across the sky with a red tail.

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