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Tips for starting your backyard astronomy hobby

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If you’re looking for a new hobby or want to give your kids things to do, try out backyard astronomy.

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Here are some tips to get you started on cosmic adventures.

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Step outside and look up. This will depend on the light pollution conditions of your area, but even in cities on a clear night you can see a few stars and perhaps even a planet. Websites like Sky and Telescope offer tips on what’s in the sky every night.

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Online resources abound for finding constellations, planets, and even the International Space Station. There are also resources to help you find less light-polluted areas, if you have access to a car.

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Binoculars can help you see closer. If you have a pair lying around, or need to buy a new pair (which can range from $35-$200), train them on objects you see in the sky — especially the Moon.

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If you have the money, invest in a telescope and use sky maps to help you peer at celestial objects.

Read more about backyard astronomy here.

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