Looking Up Podcast
LOOKING UP TONIGHT
Your daily, "What's Up" in the sky for backyard stargazing
Posted daily on Dean Regas's Facebook Page
Star Gazers, is the world’s only weekly television series on naked eye astronomy. After hosting the show for the past nine year, Dean Regas and James Albury will be stepping down from the show. Regas and Albury helped write, produce, and star in over 900 episodes broadcast around the world.
Some of Dean's and James' classic episodes are below.
Dean is currently working on a new book, "How to Teach Grown-Ups about Pluto"
And be sure to Follow Dean on Facebook
And for What's Up in the Sky tonight Follow Dean on Twitter
"Keep Looking Up!"
Dean has been the Astronomer for the Cincinnati Observatory since 2000. He is a renowned educator, author, national popularizer of astronomy and an expert in observational astronomy.
From 2010-2019 Dean was the co-host of the PBS program Star Gazers. He is the author of four books including "Facts From Space!", "100 Things to See in the Night Sky" and 100 Things to See in the Night Sky, Expanded Edition. Dean is a Contributing Editor to Sky and Telescope Magazine and a contributor to Astronomy Magazine, where he won 2008 “Out-of-this-World” Award for astronomy education. Dean has written over 150 astronomy articles for the Cincinnati Enquirer, blogged for the Huffington Post and is regularly featured on television and radio. Dean is a frequent guest on National Public Radio’s Science Friday with Ira Flatow and NPR's Here & Now. He also hosts an astronomy podcast with Anna Hehman called "Looking Up!"
At the Cincinnati Observatory, he has developed his skills as a dynamic writer and public speaker who brings the complicated field of astronomy down to Earth for students of all ages.
Dean is currently working on a new book, "How to Teach Grown-Ups about Pluto"
As the co-host of PBS' Star Gazers I brought the wonder of the night sky to TV sets around the country and embody the phrase, "Keep Looking Up!" As the Outreach Astronomer for the Cincinnati Observatory since 2000, I communicate my love of astronomy through 150 lectures per year to people of all ages. I combine knowledge, charisma, and technology to deliver multi-media presentations on topics that appeal to a diverse audience. My engaging style involves a lot of humor and I’ve been dubbed by many students, “The Stand-Up Comedian of Astronomy.” Whether I'm talking about stars, planets, comets, or black holes, I bring the complicated field of astronomy down to Earth for any audience. Please peruse my sample lecture topics and let me know if I can share my love of the universe with you.
The first podcast created exclusively by Cincinnati Public Radio reaches for the stars. Cincinnati Observatory's Dean Regas and Anna Hehman host this quick-paced, fun conversation about outer space.
“Twice a month, Looking Up brings you the latest astronomical discoveries,” according to Regas, "and we’ll bring out-of-this-world topics about planets, stars, and the universe, science and technology, throw in a little pop-culture and bring it all down to Earth.”
“I'm excited to join Dean for Looking Up,” Hehman said. “We’ll talk about space, astronomy and cover all the questions a non-astronomer like me has for an astronomer like him.”
Dean and Anna also answer questions from kindergartners (they're smarter than most adults) and interview experts in the field of astronomy. Recent interviews include:
William Shatner - Actor, Director, Author, and Musician
Scott Kelly - NASA astronaut and American who has spent the most time in space
Paul Zaloom - Beakman from Beakman's World
James Hansen - Author of First Man, the biography of Neil Armstrong
Phil Plait - The Bad Astronomer
Shankar Vedantam , NPR science correspondent and host of the weekly show Hidden Brain
Alice Bowman - Mission Operations Manager for New Horizons mission to Pluto
James Albury - Co-host of Star Gazers TV show
Check them all out and connect via Cincinnati Public Radio, Twitter, and Stitcher at:
Listen to Looking Up Podcast
July 3, 2020
Red, White and Blue Stars
Stars come in all colors: from ruby red to electric blue. Face south after dark tonight to see the red supergiant star Antares marking the heart of Scorpius the Scorpion. Then turn to the east to spot the three bright stars of the Summer Triangle. The faintest of the three stars is white in color and named Deneb. And at the top of the triangle is a blue star named Vega. Take a closer look at the bright stars tonight. You can see these red, white, and blue stars every July.
Tour of the Universe: You Are Here
Rocket through space and sail among billions of stars and galaxies. Utilizing some amazing simulation software Dean Regas guides you through the mind-boggling scale of the universe. Along the way you’ll stop at the Moon and individual planets. Then you’ll make the jump to light speed and head to interstellar space and see all the galaxies in the universe. Don’t worry, he’ll have you back home in time for dinner.
100 Things to See in the Night Sky: Stargazing 101
Want to know the name of that star? How do I find constellations like Orion, Gemini, and Taurus? When can I see the planets? Based on his popular book, astronomer Dean Regas will show you the basic tips and tricks to identifying stars, constellations, planets, and more in the night sky. You'll soon be on your way to finding 100 Things in the Night Sky. No telescope needed.
I Want to Believe: Returning to an Age of Reason
After 20 years of public speaking at the Cincinnati Observatory, Dean Regas has heard every astronomy conspiracy theory and doomsday prediction in the universe – and frankly, he’s worried. He’s worried that we are slipping into an age of growing superstition. In this rational, often humorous lecture, Dean tackles such controversial topics as: The Mayan Calendar, Moon landing, UFO sightings, Doomsday Comets, Astrology, and the Star of Bethlehem. The truth is out there and Dean shows why it is important to confront superstitions head-on and how you can champion a new age of reason.
Fly You to the Moon - And Beyond
On July 20, 1969 Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the Moon while astronaut Michael Collins circled overhead. 50 years later, the Apollo 11 mission still is the journey of all time, “one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.” Dean Regas will take you on a journey or exploration to the Moon and back on Apollo 11 with pictures, videos, and behind-the-scenes anecdotes that will have you reaching for the stars. Then we'll look ahead to the next great adventure to Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and beyond!
Archeoastronomy: Ancient Paths of the Sun, Moon, and Stars
Astronomy was everywhere in the ancient world. If you look at the oldest surviving works of art and architecture, you find astronomy within them: Cave paintings in France, pyramids in Egypt, intricate mounds in the Americas. Civilizations expressed and celebrated their knowledge of this oldest science through works of art and monumental construction projects. Take a journey with Dean to explore these amazing archeoastronomy sites and discover more of what the ancients knew about the universe.
Comets and Meteors: Shaking Up and Waking Up Astronomers
When something new appears in the night sky, everyone takes notice. Historically comets portended gloom and doom as a change to the status quo. Now, astronomers can’t wait for a chance to observe and study them when they wander close to Earth. And when a meteor hits the Earth like the one that exploded above Russia, you can’t help but look up. This lecture explores where these sudden visitors come from and what we can do to protect ourselves from the next, “Big One.”
Mythology for Adults: Ancient Star Stories You Can’t Tell the Kids
Constellation mythology speaks to students of all ages. However, some of them were not meant for younger ears. Dean will share the best, grossest, sexiest stellar legends from Greek mythology including Zeus’ affairs, gory deaths, the castration of Uranus, and the real origin-story for the goddess Venus. This uncensored, adults-only version will have you cringing and laughing like an ancient Greek.
Eclipse Chasing: Heavenly Excuses to Travel
A total solar eclipse is the most spectacular natural event you can ever witness. The Moon glides slowly in front of the Sun and at just the right moment, in just the right place, the Moon completely covers the Sun. Dean Regas shares his adventures traveling around the world in search of solar eclipses, lunar eclipses, transits, and other astronomical events.
July 4, 2020
The Full Buck Moon
Watch a sunset and a moonrise tonight. After the Sun sets in the west-northwest, turn 180 degrees to the southeastern horizon and the full Moon will slowly emerge from the shadow of the Earth (sometimes called the Belt of Venus). The full Moon for July goes by many nicknames including the Full Buck Moon, the Thunder Moon, and the Hay Moon. Watch how the Moon arcs up into the sky, and if you stay out until 10:30pm you should see Jupiter and Saturn trailing behind it.
Want to have Dean speak to your group?
"The Winter Football"
From January 2018
Dean's Newest Book!
100 Things to See in the Night Sky, Expanded Edition
Learn your way around the best, most fascinating objects you can find with the naked eye and binoculars in the updated and expanded collection of planets, stars, constellations, and more. With more detailed star charts this book is perfect for beginners and amateur astronomers wanting to explore the night sky.
July 5, 2020
The Big Three
Tonight is the night! The Big Three, the Moon, Jupiter, and Saturn get together after dark. I call them the big three because they are by far the three best objects to wow people with views through a telescope. Face southeast after sunset and get ready. Jupiter rises first with the full Moon close behind. Then Saturn pops up last but not least. So get outside after dark or watch out for the Big Three shining through your windows all night!
Cincinnati Libraries to Loan Telescopes
Cincinnati Observatory Astronomer Dean Regas is partnering with the Cincinnati and Hamilton County Libraries to offer the stars to library patrons. Telescopes may be checked out from certain branch libraries starting this month.
Regas donated 10 telescopes to the libraries so that patrons can borrow them like checking out a book. “My hope is that people will be inspired by their views through the telescopes and the universe,” Regas said.
With just your library card you can sign up to reserve a telescope for a three-week period. The telescopes are small but powerful and can show the craters on the Moon, the planets, and stars and star clusters up close.
“I wished I had this at my local library growing up,” Regas said. “Everyone should be able to explore the universe like this with friends and family.”
For more please see: https://cincinnatilibrary.org/services/telescope/
"Identified Flying Objects (I.F.O.s)"
For October 28-November 3, 2019
July 6, 2020
The Cat’s Eyes
Face south after dark to find a fishhook shape of stars just above the treetops. This is the constellation Scorpius the Scorpion. At the end of the scorpion’s tail are the two stinger stars named Shaula and Lesath. They are so close together in the sky that they really stand out. Imagine a jungle cat peering at you through dense foliage. Shaula and Lesath are nicknamed “the cat’s eyes” since they seem to hover just above the horizon so close together.
Partial Solar Eclipse
Thursday June 10
I chased the eclipse in search of clear skies and better views and traveled to Mackinaw City, Michigan. Luckily the clouds stayed away and I was able to get capture this video of the partially eclipsed Sun just above Lake Huron at sunrise.
It is so awe inspiring and such an amazing sight to see the Moon block out part of the Sun. The next solar eclipses visible from the United States will be October 14, 2023 and April 8 2024. Mark your calendars and don't miss them!
100 Things to See in the Night Sky
Dean handy, paperback field guide for the best stargazing experience whether in your own back yard, camping, or travelling—including information showing you which planets, constellations, stars, and manmade objects you can see with a telescope, or just your naked eye!
Each object is presented as a separate entry, with background information on the makeup, appearance, and history of the object, along with easy-to-follow instructions on how to find it.
“Return of the Moon Joke Episode”
From February 12-18, 2018
July 7, 2020
The Star-Crossed Lovers
An old Korean myth links the stars Altair and Vega. Two star crossed lovers are banished to the heavens. Their love was so strong that they fell into the sky hand in hand. It looked as if they would finally be together until a flock of magpies flew in between the two. Their hands separated and glided away from each other, and struggled to reconnect. But it was no use. When they stuck to the heavens, one was on one side of the great river in the sky (The Milky Way) and the other fell on the opposite shore. They turned into the stars Altair and Vega, forever distant.
The couple could meet only once a year on the seventh day of the seventh month. Only then could they cross the river. When the meeting occurs on July 7th, Altair and Vega shine in 5 colors to symbolize their happiness.
Facts From Space!
From Super-Secret Spacecraft to Volcanoes in Outer Space, Extraterrestrial Facts to Blow Your Mind!
Dean's first book will take you from the Earth to the edge of the universe and back.
How did turtles, flies, meal worms, and bacteria become the first living things to go the far side of the Moon? How do you go to the bathroom in zero-gravity? Where should we look for aliens? You will see a Martian sunset, swirl in Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, skim the corona of the Sun, and fall into a black hole.
Moon + Venus Conjunction
The slimmest crescent Moon was about 1 degree from the planet Venus on the evening of Wednesday May 12, 2021. And astronomer Dean Regas was there to capture it. The video was taken with a camera phone attached to a small portable telescope.
“Reasons for the Seasons”
From December 15-21, 2014
July 8, 2020
Double Your Cluster
On Monday we looked for the Cat’s Eyes, the stars Shaula and Lesath in the stinger of Scorpius. Tonight browse around those stars again with binoculars. Higher and to the left of them you will stumble upon two open star clusters named M6 and M7. M6 is nicknamed the Butterfly Cluster while M7 is Ptolemy’s Cluster. Under a dark sky, they are barely visible to the naked eye so they’ve been known since antiquity. See if you can spot the two clusters tonight!
Happy Birthday Mitchel Telescope!
The Cincinnati Observatory's main telescope turned 175 years old last April 14 and we'd like to look back at how Astronomer Dean Regas gave a virtual tour of the scope last year. So wish us a happy 176th birthday today!
"The Great Star and Constellation Shootout"
From January 12-18, 2015
July 9, 2020
The Planet Report
This is my 100th edition of Looking Up Tonight! I began this daily blog on April 1 to provide some practical astronomy info and encourage people to get outside to drink in the night sky. I hope you’ve enjoyed these and practiced some social distance stargazing with friends and family.
I’m going to take a hiatus from the daily Looking Ups to better focus on the reopening of the Observatory (there is a lot to do!) and continuing my online classes. But I’d love to get your feedback on these emails. And let me know what kind of info I can provide in the future. Drop me an email to share your thoughts. I’d definitely appreciate it.
And so without further ado…
Let’s find the planets tonight (and tomorrow). Face southeast after dark and you can’t miss the two largest planets in our solar system: Jupiter and Saturn. They look like suspiciously-bright stars and are right next to each other. Jupiter is the brighter one on the right with dimmer, distant Saturn to the left. The waning gibbous Moon rises late tonight – after 1am - and with it, in the east, comes the planet Mars. The two will be in conjunction late tomorrow night and the following morning. Then right before sunrise, face east to see dazzling Venus gracing the skies at dawn. Just below it is the Bull’s Eye star Aldebaran. You can find these four planets all month in these spots so make sure to get outside, share the planets, and “Keep Looking Up!”
Upcoming and Recent Appearances
Joshua Tree Night Sky Festival - September 4, 2021 Skys The Limit
Space Place, Madison Wisconsin - September 14, 2021 Tour of the Universe
Wall Street Journal review of Dean's Book 100 Things to See in the Night Sky, Expanded Edition
Here & Now Interview- December 7, 2020 A Match Made in Heaven
The Tundra - Virtual Event "Beyond Space" Watch it Here
Here & Now radio program - June 29, 2020 - Listen Here and Now
Washington Post - 100 Things Book - June 20, 2020 - Read the Review
Dean in Cincinnati Magazine - May 15, 2020 - Check out the article
Joshua Tree Night Sky Festival - Keynote speaker - Sept 21, 2019 Joshua Tree National Park
Serpent Mound - Keynote Speaker - September 7, 2019 Talk and Star Party
Shenandoah National Park - Guest Speaker - September 5, 2019
Grand Canyon Star Party - Keynote speaker - June 27, 2019 Grand Canyon National Park
Science Friday - Dean Regas Explains the Lunar Eclipse Listen Here
Here & Now Interview - Super Blood Wolf Moon - January 20, 2019 Here & Now Eclipse
Here & Now Interview - 2018 a Busy Year in Space - Dec 28, 2018 2018 in Review
Books by the Banks - Cincinnati Regional Book Festival - October 20, 2018
Science Friday live from WVXU Cincinnati - April 20, 2018 Science Friday Interview
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii - Star Party - January 29, 2018
Huffington Post - September 11, 2017 Cassini Mission to Saturn Article
New York Times - When the Universe Calls - September 8, 2017 New York Times
Bryce Canyon Star Party - Keynote Speaker - June 23, 2017 Bryce Canyon
NEAF, Northeast Astronomy Forum - Speaker - April 8, 2017 NEAF
USA Today - December 28, 2016 Highlights of 2017
Science Friday with Ira Flatow - December 23, 2016 Science Friday
Science Friday with Ira Flatow - May 6, 2016 Transit of Mercury
Huffington Post - September 24, 2015 Supermoon Lunar Eclipse
Science Friday - September 18, 2015 Keeping an Eye on our Celestial Companion
Science Friday - June 5, 2015 How I Explained the Sun
Mae Among the Stars
Dean reads the children's book about astronaut Mae Jemison and her dream to become an astronaut. Thank you to the Cincinnati Museum Center for including this in their Story Tree Time program.
Jupiter and Saturn Come Together
On the nights of December 20, 21, and 22 the largest planets in our solar system, Jupiter and Saturn, appeared closer together in the sky than they have since 1623. In fact they were so close that you could see the two planets in a telescope at the same time!
To the right is video captured by Astronomer Dean Regas through the Cincinnati Observatory's 175 year old telescope on December 21.
100 Things to See in the Night Sky
Dean takes you inside his new book, 100 Things to See in the Night Sky, Expanded Edition and then shares his tips to observing the Sun safely and finding a lot of planets, stars, and constellations this week.
“Return of the Moon Joke Episode”
Classic Star Gazers Episode
From February 12-18, 2018
Museum on Tap
With the Cincinnati Museum Center
Dean shares a drink with CMC's Jessica Urban to tell the bizarre tale of the life and unbelievable death of the best naked eye astronomer who ever lived: Tycho Brahe. It involves kidnapping, a nighttime duel, a fake nose, the construction and ruin of a castle-observatory, exile, deceit, and finally a strange-but-true demise. It's a whodunnit in the year 1600.