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Geminid meteor shower: How and when to view

During the Geminids meteor shower peak, 120 "shooting stars" can be seen per hour under perfect conditions. Lucky for us, December's new moon will offer us dark skies for great viewing opportunities.
Belarus Geminids meteor shower
Posted at 4:05 PM, Dec 12, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-12 17:05:49-05

One of the most popular meteor showers of the year will take place Wednesday evening and Wisconsinites will have a chance to see the show!

The Geminids meteor shower, which is caused by the debris of an asteroid, peaks during mid-December every year. During its peak, 120 Geminid meteors ("shooting stars") can be seen per hour under perfect conditions, according to NASA. Lucky for us, December's new moon will offer us dark skies for great viewing opportunities.

Belarus Geminids meteor shower
Night sky is illuminated during the annual Geminids meteor shower over an Orthodox church on the local cemetery near the village of Zagorie, some 110 km ( 69 miles) west of capital Minsk, Belarus, late Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)

Geminids are bright and fast and tend to be yellow and bright white with green streaks.

If you're a stargazer, you won't want to miss this, so here is everything you need to know:

WHEN: The show starts Wednesday night at about 9 p.m. or 10 p.m. and its peak is between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m.

WHERE: The meteor shower is visible across the globe, according to NASA, due to a nearly 24-hour broad maximum.

VIEWING TIPS: First and foremost, get away from city lights and look to the darkest part of the sky!

According to NASA, Geminids are best viewed during the night and predawn hours.

You should also give your eyes time to adjust to the dark skies. After 15-30 minutes, NASAsays you will begin to see meteors. Meteorologists say to be patient - the show will last until the morning, so you should have plenty of time.

Geminids appear to come from the constellation Gemini, the "Twins." NASAsays you should not just look to this constellation, because Geminids are visible throughout the night sky.