Transit of Venus Viewing. Celestial Event of a Lifetime

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Rare transit of Venus viewing: June 5 from 3‐7pm at the Oregon Observatory at Sunriver

The last to occur in our lifetime, a rare celestial event called a transit of Venus is set to take place on Tuesday, June 5. The Oregon Observatory at Sunriver will host a free transit of Venus viewing party for this exciting occurrence.  Filtered solar telescopes and indirect viewing methods will be available for safely observing the transit.

For a $5 donation, you will also receive some special solar eclipse glasses that allow you to look at the Sun.

A transit of Venus is the observed passage of the planet Venus across the disk of the sun. It occurs when Venus, orbiting the sun “on the inside track,” catches up to and passes the slower Earth. To viewers, Venus will appear as a small dot in the foreground, making its passage (or “transit”) from left to right across the face of the sun.

The transit will commence just after 3pm when Venus appears to the east of the Sun. The greatest transit movement will occur at 6:29 p.m. when Venus appears just off-center to the right of the northern area of the sun. The sun will set at 8:55 p.m. and the transit will end at 9:44 p.m. as Venus exits to the west of the sun.

It is important to use eye protection or indirect viewing techniques when observing this transit activity. Viewers should use only an approved solar filter which blocks dangerous ultraviolet and infrared radiation as well as visible light.  Special solar viewing glasses are available.

Transits of Venus always occur in pairs that are spaced eight years apart. Each pair of occurrences is then not repeated for more than a century. For example, the last transit of Venus took place on June 8, 2004, and of course the next one will be visible this June of 2012. The previous pair of transits occurred in December, 1874 and December, 1882. After 2012, the next transits of Venus will take place in December 2117 and December 2125.

The Oregon Observatory at Sunriver is the largest non-profit, educational public viewing facility in the United States. During the past eclipse, they had more than 10 telescopes fitted with special solar filters that allowed guests to view the Sun directly and safely. Staff will be providing access to multiple telescopes again for this event. They will also be taking pictures during the event that will be available.

You may call 541-598-4406 for weather update and for more information

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