On Dec. 21, at 5:12 a.m. CST, the sun will be as far south as it will get in our sky, marking the start of our winter. It will also mark the start of the southern hemisphere summer.
Is it just a coincidence that that those who interpret the Mayan calendar as indication the end of time picked the shortest day of the year? I don't know, but perhaps that's all the Mayans really meant to describe, the rebirth of the solar year.
We may not be able to tell you when the end of time is coming, but we can tell you what's coming up in the night sky. “Tonight's Sky” runs daily in the Kirkpatrick Planetarium Star Theater. Also, throughout this month, our popular holiday program “Star of Wonder” runs daily. Go to www.sciencemuseumok.org or call 603-3761 for details.
Planet Visibility Report: Mars has been hanging around in the evening twilight for several months and remains there all this month. It's low in the west and difficult to find in the sun's twilight glow, but it's there. Jupiter glows brightly in the eastern sky at sunset, outshone in the night sky only by the Moon and Venus, which is almost lost in the morning, predawn sky. Saturn rises around 3 a.m. but Mercury is hiding in the sun's glare. New Moon occurs Dec. 13, with full moon Dec. 28.