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The Big Dipper Graces the Night Sky

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, The Big Dipper is over Ridgewood from July 30th for a few more weeks , It is easily viewable despite the city lights , at the 12 o’clock position .

The Big Dipper or the Plough is a large asterism consisting of seven bright stars of the constellation Ursa Major; six of them are of second magnitude and one, Megrez, of third magnitude. Four define a “bowl” or “body” and three define a “handle” or “head”. It is recognized as a distinct grouping in many culture

The Big Dipper is one of the most familiar sights in the Northern Hemisphere’s night skies. It’s a prominent asterism — a recognizable pattern of stars that isn’t an officially named constellation — in Ursa Major, the Great Bear. Ursa Major is a circumpolar constellation: Its stars never set for most observers at northern latitudes. In fact, the Dipper is visible year-round to observers north of latitude 41°, which makes it an invaluable key to unlocking the night sky.

 

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