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Glenn Chaple's observing basics: Summer sledding

August 2005: The summer Milky Way dominates the evening sky in August.
The summer Milky Way dominates the evening sky in August. What a grand sight it is — a bright band of light arching high overhead to the north from Cassiopeia, then southward to Sagittarius.

Well, at least that's how I remember it.

When I moved to rural Massachusetts 30 years ago, the summer Milky Way from my backyard truly was awe-inspiring. But as the surrounding community grew, so did the light pollution. A town-wide lighting ordinance passed a few years ago came too late to save the once-pristine skies. Like many of you unfortunate souls, I have to trek to remote sites to get my Milky Way "fix."

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