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Perseid meteor shower to offer a spectacular show this weekend

DENVER -- The very popular Perseid meteor shower will peak this weekend and it will be extra special this year because of the new moon making the skies extra dark.

Experts say the show will take place on the nights of Saturday, Sunday and Monday with about 60 to 70 meteors falling each hour during the peak hours.

"This year the moon will be near new moon, it will be a crescent, which means it will set before the Perseid show gets underway after midnight," NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke told Space.com.

"The moon is very favorable for the Perseids this year, and that'll make the Perseids probably the best shower of 2018 for people who want to go out and view it."

To view the meteor shower, experts recommend going to a dark area where you can see as much as the sky as possible and allow your eyes to adjust to the dark -- which can take about 20 to 30 minutes, according to EarthSky.

With the rate of 60 to 70 per hour, expect to see about one meteor per minute 00 so the longer you stay out, the more you will see.

EarthSky also says it is important to know all meteors come from a single point in the sky.

"If you trace the paths of the Perseid meteors backwards, you’d find they all come from a point in front of the constellation Perseus," the website says.

"Don’t worry about which stars are Perseus. Just enjoying knowing and observing that they all come from one place on the sky’s dome."

If you're unable to make it to a place to view it, you can watch it online, courtesy of the Virtual Telescope Project in Italy.

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