Friday, October 28, 2005

Mars at Halloween

"On Oct. 31st, the planet Mars is making its closest approach to Earth for the next 13 years. (13 years? Cross your fingers.) Technically speaking, the moment of closest approach occurs on Oct. 30th, a day before Halloween, but the difference in distance between the 30th and the 31st is too slight to matter.

"Trick or Treaters will notice Mars rising in the east at sunset: sky map. It looks like a pumpkin-colored star, so intense that people in brightly-lit cities can see it. Some say it's blood red, but maybe that's just Halloween talking.

"Mars will soar almost overhead at midnight (as seen from North America) and stay "up" all night long. Halloween 2005 is truly the night of Mars."

Folklore of Halloween, in the Book of Days

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