The winter solstice, our shortest day and longest night of the year, arrives Monday i.e. 21st Decemeber 2020

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Winter may just be getting started, but our long, dark nights are about to turn a bit brighter. Monday is the winter solstice, the shortest day and longest night of the year in Earth’s Northern Hemisphere. On Tuesday, we’ll start gaining a few seconds of daylight again.

This year’s solstice, which arrives Monday. Eastern, coincides with another special astronomical event: On Monday evening, Jupiter and Saturn will be in a rare planetary alignment, appearing closer together in the evening sky than they have in nearly 800 years. They won’t appear this close again until 2080.

The visual proximity of the two giant planets offers a good reason to gaze skyward on the solstice. But if you miss the event (or clouds spoil the show), there’s still plenty to appreciate about the winter solstice in its own right.

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