Displaying items by tag: space

Perseid Meteor Shower - The 'Best and Brightest'

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (8/2/13)—Independence Day celebrations are long gone for 2013, but mother nature has a phenomenal interstellar “fireworks” display up her sleeve that has been wowing audiences all over the world for thousands of years: the Perseid meteor shower.

Generally regarded by both seasoned astronomers and recreational stargazers as the “best” annual meteor shower visible from the Northern Hemisphere, the Perseid meteor shower not only produces some of the brightest meteors of the year, but it also correlates with the tail end of the Delta Aquarid shower that peaks in late July and continues into early August.

What’s more, those trying to fit in a viewing of the Perseids will have plenty of opportunities to squeeze in a little “time off the clock.” In fact, the 2013 Perseids meteor shower can be viewed during the post-midnight/pre-dawn hours of early August for nearly two full weeks, with their peak production of 50-100 visible meteors per hour taking place on the late evenings/early mornings of August 10/11, 11/12, and 12/13.

As EarthSky.org explains of the immense meteor shower:

The Perseid meteor shower is perhaps the most beloved meteor shower of the year for the Northern Hemisphere…The Perseids tend to strengthen in number as late night deepens into midnight, and typically produce the most meteors in the wee hours before dawn. They radiate from a point in the constellation Perseus the Hero, but, as with all meteor shower radiant points, you don’t need to know Perseus to watch the shower; instead, the meteors appear in all parts of the sky. They are typically fast and bright meteors. They frequently leave persistent trains. Every year, you can look for the Perseids around August 10-13. They combine with the Delta Aquarid shower to produce the year’s most dazzling display of shooting stars. In 2013, the Perseid meteors will streak across the short summer nights – August 10-13 – from late night until dawn, with little to no interference from the waxing crescent moon. Plus the moon will be near the planet Saturn in the evening hours, giving a colorful prelude to late-night Perseid show.

To maximize your viewing experience of the Perseids, however, there are a few guidelines that should be followed:

• First and foremost, you’ll want to locate an open and public vantage point that is as far removed from light pollution as is possible (this includes everything from glowing city lights to the lights of a car or nearby security light). Fortunately, Hopkins County has plenty of rural areas that are perfect for such an occasion.

• Secondly, it’s important to remember that watching for meteors is really all about getting out and enjoying the fruits of nature. While the Perseid shower is legendary because of the powerful and dependable displays it can produce, it would take a lot of patience to catch each and every one of the 50-100 meteors the annual shower can create.

• Third, don’t forget to make yourself comfortable while gazing at the night sky. Bring a chair or seat, check the weather, and dress appropriately for the climate.

• Finally, make sure you’re looking for meteors at the right time. To reiterate, the Perseids will be peaking during the late evening/pre-dawn hours of August 10/11, 11/12, and 12/13.

To learn more about the Perseid meteor shower, click here.

Wondering what the shower might actually look like? Check out a stunning time-lapse film of the 2010 Perseid meteor shower by clicking the video player attached below this article.

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photo by Jeff Harp
Information provided by EarthSky.org

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  • Published in Music

Chasing the White Buffalo with 'Home Videos'

BOWLING GREEN, KY (2/24/13)—Intense, yet spacious vocals, snappy and often times energetically raw guitar work, a striking wall of synthesized sounds, thick bass lines, and a varied mix of splashing cymbal and sharp drum work define much of the musical catalogue created by Bowling Green-based band, Buffalo Rodeo.

From the juxtaposition of chaotic breaks and joyously insightful lyrics found in “A. Hook” on the band’s 2012 sophomore album, Common Cults, to the ethereally impassioned feel of their latest single, “Cargo,” Buffalo Rodeo’s music is fresh, inspiring, and, in a sense, spiritual. And with a new EP, Home Videos, set for release in March, there’s no doubt that the unique musical atmosphere they have created will expand. 

Never heard of this progressive band of musical gypsies?

Even if you haven’t, the Sugg Street Post recently got the chance to interview the up-and-coming five-piece to find out what the story is behind their name, their influences, plans they have for the future, and much more. And, like their sweeping, experimental compositions, the individual and collectively-voiced answers they offered us are perhaps some of the most original responses we’ve received so far—and that’s a really great thing.

Luke Short: Who are the members of Buffalo Rodeo and where are you all from?

Buffalo Rodeo: Buffalo Rodeo is comprised of Zach Preston on vocals, Ryan Gilbert on drums, Nathaniel Davis on guitars, Jordan Reynolds on keys and vocals, and Patrick Duncan on bass. We all reside in Bowling Green.

LS: How and when did you all meet up and start jamming?

BR: There was an earthquake and we met under a rainbow of glorious salvation and love; forever.

LS: What is the meaning behind your name, and how does it fit with your music?

BR: We have a neighbor who is really into Native American culture and he also used to be a bull rider. However, one night while he was meditating and smoking the medicinal and spiritual holy plant, God came down to him from high and said, “Two Rivers”—which was his name—“your destiny is to ride the great white buffalo,” and when he told us about this, we knew that our calling had come. We named ourselves thusly: Buffalo Rodeo. Amen.

LS: Do you define your music by a certain genre?

BR: Progressive indie experimental alternative rock.

LS: What are all the albums you’ve released since forming?

BR: We released Wanderers in 2011, Common Cults in 2012, and are in the process of finishing our latest EP, Home Videos, which is due for release in March.

LS: So, what's the story behind the new release? Where are you recording it? 

BR: We're recording Home Videos at Greyskull Recording Studios here in Bowling Green. We're really excited to release this EP because the music is a lot different than any of the other stuff we've previously recorded. It's also going to be the first recordings we have with Jordan and Patrick on them.

LS: Who are some of your major influences musically?

BR: Portugal. The Man, Local Natives, Manchester Orchestra, Arcade Fire, and Band of Horses.

LS: Who are some of your major influences outside of music?

BR: Family, God, and friends.

LS: With a lot of your music, there is this sense of spaciousness and freedom, as well as some powerful emotional chaos. Is that something intentional or does it all come out spontaneously when you’re jamming and recording together?

BR: A lot of our music has evolved from spontaneous jamming; however, we also spend a lot of time deliberately and meticulously sifting through each part to make sure that everything sounds as it should. So, in essence, our music is the product of spontaneity and careful decision.

LS: What kind of instruments do you use?

BR: Bass - Fender P. Bass and Warwick Powerbass; Drums - Ludwig Vistalites; Keys - Nord Electro 2 and Roland Juno-Stage; Vocals - baller-ass chops; Nate - an excessive amount of rare, vintage, badass gear that only a gearhead would be able to identify properly.

LS: What are some of the most memorable places playing music has taken you?

BR: [Bowling Green’s] Starry Nights Festival and Movers and Shakers in Chicago.


LS: Who are some of BR’s favorite local bands?

BR: Cage the Elephant, Sleeper Agent, Morning Teleportation, Mahtulu, The Black Shades, The Fair-Weather Kings, Canago, Heavy Chase, and Schools.

LS: You guys are based out of Bowling Green, KY, and there’s a very strong music and arts scene there—and has been for a long time now. What are some the components of BG that keep the scene alive and strong in your opinion?

BR: Honestly, one big component in the BG scene is the fact that there’s not that much to do in Bowling Green…besides play music. The things that people do on the weekends mostly consists of going to a show. There’s constantly music being played or watched. There’s also a big respect for music that goes on. We have a lot of inspiration from our peers—people like Cage and Sleeper Agent and other bands that have gone out and tried to make a name for themselves.

LS: For a community like Madisonville and Hopkins County that is just starting to really grow artistically, is there any advice you can offer to improve upon the scene here?

BR: Start more bands, play more music. It always helps to have a good venue in the area, so out of town bands can come in and play as well. Get a decent sized bar to invest in a good sound system and start having shows.

LS: What is BR’s ultimate goal with music?

BR: We’d like to do this, for real. We want to tour and play music for our lives and not have to have other jobs. Music is what we love, and we want to do it always.

LS: What kind of plans do you have for the future?

BR: In the short future, we’re just going to tour as much as possible and get our name out there to people in other places. We just got a van, so we’re really excited to get out on the road. After that, we’d love to get picked up by a record label of some type and release a full record. That would be tight.



LS: Where can people check you out?

BR: You can check us out at www.facebook.com/buffalorodeo, buffalorodeo.bandcamp.com, and on Twitter @buffalorodeo.

LS: In closing, feel free to give some shout-outs.

BR: We want to give a shout-out to Jordan’s dad for being a cool guy, to Greyskull recordings for recording our EP, and to Richard, our neighbor, for painting that cow skull in our living room.

Want to check out Buffalo Rodeo’s music right now? Simply click on the the ReverbNation player attached below this article, visit their official Facebook page, or check out some of the links mentioned above.

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photos provided by Sean Marshall Studios/Buffalo Rodeo

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Seeking Stardust - The 2012 Geminids Meteor Shower

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (12/15/12)—Bending to the whims of an agile breeze, they stand like stoic observers, taking in hundreds or even thousands of years worth of ceaseless change. From weathering the ravages of natural catastrophes and the ever-long cycle of life, to experiencing the sunny splendor of a season’s rebirth and the singular peace of a clear, starry night, most trees outlive a single man five times over. To simply imagine what they have seen and what they could say to us if granted a human voice is, at the same time, both jarring and beautiful.

And it was this immense concept that myself, writer Jessica Dockrey, and photographer Jeff Harp pondered this past week while gazing into a late night and early morning sky animated by the streaking lights of this year’s Geminids meteor shower.

On the rural fringe of Hopkins County, the smell of burning cedar lingered in the wind and the soft glow of fire danced upon the branches of the surrounding forest. It was here that we watched, in what often turned to silence, as grain-sized debris from a centuries-old asteroid—3200 Phaethon—blasted into our atmosphere, leaving behind a myriad of vivid, ephemeral trails.

While we counted ourselves lucky to have observed the annual interstellar event, which produced upwards of 75-100 meteors per hour, we imagined how many astronomical displays our rural, bark-bearing hosts had witnessed from their sapling years to the days of knotty growths and splitting seams. Obviously, it’s an impossibility to know, but the thought of their powerfully quiet existence and the years they have spent simply traversing the gauntlet of time is, in a word, astounding.

At the conclusion, what we enjoyed that evening, and into the dawn, alongside the trees, was not only an epic display of “falling stars,” but also a feeling of significance.

We are but flecks in the majesty of our ever-expanding universe—a feeling that can be magnified by star-gazing—yet we feel, we remember, and we observe. More importantly, we create our reality and define our existence by moments of enchantment and wonder—moments like a meteor shower.

A previous article about the Geminids meteor shower, which includes tips for successful meteor watching, can be found here.

A list of upcoming 2013 meteor showers is as follows (NOTE: Peaks usually occur during the pre-dawn hours on the date noted):

  •          QUADRANTIDS: January 1st – January 4th (Peak on January 3rd)
  •          LYRIDS: April 20th – April 23rd (Peak on April 21st)
  •          ETA AQUARIDS: May 2nd – May 6th (Peak on May 4th)
  •          DELTA AQUARIDS: July 14th – August 19th (Peak on July 28th)
  •          PERSEIDS: July 29th – August 17th (Peak on August 12th)
  •          ORIONIDS: October 18th – October 26th (Peak on October 22nd)
  •          LEONIDS: November 14th – November 20th (Peak on November 17th)
  •          GEMINIDS: December 7th – December 15th (Peak on December 14th)
  •          URSIDS: December 17th – December 24th (Peak on December 22nd)

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photos by Jeff Harp

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Bathing in Nature’s Interstellar Shower

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (11/21/12) – Each year, seasoned astronomers and weekend star gazers all over the globe mark their calendars for two of the most prolific and consistent meteor showers viewable from our planet: the Perseids of August and the December Geminids. And while the warm wind of August is well behind us, as are the Perseids, a dark sky and what should prove to be a lengthy display of “falling stars” is a mere three weeks away. 

Named after the bright, centuries-old constellation from which they radiate—the constellation of Gemini—the winter-bound Geminids shower commonly produces 50 or more visible meteors each hour. Differing from many other showers, the Geminids may also start as early as 9 or 10pm (local time) during the height of their activity, which is scheduled to occur on the night of December 13th and during the early morning hours of December 14th this year. Specifically, astronomers project that the shower will reach its pinnacle between 1am and 3am. 

Though the light of the moon can often times hinder an otherwise successful viewing of meteor displays such as the Geminids, it seems that the night and pre-dawn hours of December 13th and 14th will be free from any lunar light pollution thanks to the new moon. This being said, it’s a safe bet that additional, though more intermittent, meteors will be visible during the night sky up to a week before and after the peak. 

So what’s the best way to watch the meteor shower? Here are some tips:

•  First and foremost, you’ll want to locate an open and public vantage point that is as far removed from light pollution as is possible (this includes everything from glowing city lights to the lights of a car or nearby security light). Fortunately, Hopkins County has plenty of rural areas that are perfect for such an occasion. 

•  Secondly, it’s important to remember that watching for meteors is really all about getting out and enjoying the fruits of nature. While the Geminids shower is legendary because of the powerful and dependable displays it can produce, it would take a lot of patience to catch each and every one of the 50 or more meteors the annual shower can create. 

•  Third, don’t forget to make yourself comfortable while gazing at the night sky. Bring a chair or seat, check the weather, and dress appropriately for the climate.

•  Finally, make sure you’re looking for meteors at the right time. To reiterate, the Geminids will be peaking from 9/10pm (local time) on the night of December 13th until the predawn hours of December 14th, with the “climax” estimated to take place from 1am through 3am on December 14th. 

Wondering what the shower might actually look like? Check out a stunning time-lapse film of the 2010 Geminids shower composed by Henry Jun Wah Lee by clicking the video player attached to this article. 

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photo by Jeff Harp
Information provided by EarthSky.org 

 

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