2023 Sky and Space Calendar


January 4: Earth at perihelion, closest point to the sun, 91.4 million miles
January 8: Latest sunrise
January 12: Mars ends retrograde motion
January 16: Pluto at solar conjunction, behind sun
January 22: Venus and Saturn close in evening sky—0.4° degrees apart
January 22: Chinese New Year—Year of the Rabbit—Second New Moon after Winter Solstice
January 31: Moon and Mars very close all night


February: Launch of NASA’s Peregrine 1 lunar lander
February 1: 20th anniversary of space shuttle Columbia disaster
February 16: Saturn at solar conjunction—behind Sun—moving to morning sky
February 22: The top three—Moon, Venus, and Jupiter—are very close


March 1: Venus and Jupiter close in evening sky—0.5° degrees (width of full moon) apart
March 12: Spring ahead! Daylight Saving Time begins
March 14: Pi Day and Einstein’s birthday
March 20: Spring begins at 4:24 p.m. CDT
March 28-29: Mercury and Jupiter close in evening sky


April: Launch of ESA’s Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE), arrives 2031
April: Launch of Smart Lander for Investigating Moon (SLIM) – JAXA (Japan)
April 11: Venus and Pleiades star cluster
April 11: Jupiter at solar conjunction—behind sun—moving to morning sky
April 20: Annular/Total Solar Eclipse—Western Australia and New Guinea


May 14: 50th Anniversary of first Skylab—America’s first space station
May 17: Waning crescent moon and Jupiter very close in morning sky
May 22: Moon, Venus, and Mars for lovely trio in Gemini
May 26: Venus and Moon very close in morning sky
May 28-29: Mars and Jupiter close in morning sky


June 14: Earliest sunrise
June 18: 40th Anniversary of first American woman to fly in space
June 21: Summer Solstice starts at 9:58 a.m. CDT
June 27: Latest sunset


July: Launch of Russian Luna 25—a lunar lander
July 4: Earth at aphelion, the farthest point from the sun


August: Launch of Korea Pathfinder Lunar Orbiter (KPLO)
August 1: Biggest full moon of 2022 (also called Supermoon)
August 11-13: Perseids meteor shower peaks
August 13: Venus at inferior conjunction-between sun and Earth, moving to morning sky
August 21: NASA’s Parker Solar Probe makes sixth Venus flyby
August 26: Saturn at opposition, opposite the sun, up all night
August 31: Blue Moon (also called Supermoon)


September 19: Neptune at opposition 
September 23: Fall arrives with the autumnal equinox at 1:50 a.m. CDT
September 24: OSIRIS-Rex returns to Earth with sample of asteroid Bennu


October: Launch of NASA’s Psyche mission to metal asteroid Psyche, arrives 2026
October 14: Partial solar eclipse (Milwaukee: starts 10:38 a.m., Max [41% sun eclipsed] 11:57 a.m., ends 1:27 p.m.)


November 2: Jupiter at opposition, opposite the sun, up all night
November 5: Fall back! Daylight Saving Time ends
November 13: Uranus at opposition


December 7: Earliest sunset
December 8: 30th Anniversary of NASA astronauts repairing the Hubble space telescope
December 12-14: Geminid meteor shower peaks
December 21: Winter Solstice starts at 9:27 p.m. CST