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A total lunar eclipse, seen from Joshua Tree National Park in 2015. (Brad Sutton / National Park Service)

After a string of clear, sunny days, rain and clouds are expected to move in for the weekend. Depending on the extent of the cloud cover, the eclipse could still deliver an “ooh-aah” moment, or it could be a womp-womp for Chicago.

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(WTTW News)

Delivering on a promise she made when the owners of the Chicago Bears announced their purchase of the Arlington International Racecourse property, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced the members of a working group tasked with reimagining the city’s lakefront museum campus.

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(Neale LaSalle / Pexels)

Comet Leonard, discovered in January of this year by astronomer Greg Leonard, is racing toward the sun and will make its closest pass of Earth in the coming days. The Adler Planetarium is hosting a viewing session Tuesday morning. 

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(Dids / Pexels)

For once, the weather cooperated in Chicago. Astronomers at the Adler Planetarium proclaimed: “What a stellar view!”

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(Lim Yaw Keong / Pixabay)

If the skies are clear, Chicagoans will have an excellent chance of seeing the eclipse Friday morning, with the best hours for viewing the event being approximately 1:30-4:30 a.m.

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Chicago as seen from the International Space Station. The Palos Preserves Urban Night Sky Place is outlined in green. (Courtesy of the Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center)

Palos Preserves has been named an Urban Night Sky Place by the International Dark-Sky Association. The site emits nearly 1,000 times less light than downtown Chicago, with four times as many stars visible in the night sky than can be seen in the city.

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(Adler Planetarium / Facebook)

A return to pre-pandemic business as usual is not yet in the stars for the Chicago cultural institution, though some screenings and public observing events will make an in-person comeback beginning July 3.

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A lunar eclipse. (dexmac / Pixabay)

Chicagoans aren’t in the right place or time zone to see Wednesday’s lunar eclipse at its peak. Just when the show gets interesting, the moon will sink from view.

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“Chicagohenge” during the fall 2020 equinox. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

During the fall and spring equinoxes, the sun rises due east and sets due west, creating an effect dubbed Chicagohenge (in reference to Stonehenge), when sunset is strikingly framed by the city’s east-west streets.

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A photo taken on Dec. 13, 2020, shows Jupiter (the bright "star" on the right) closing in on Saturn to the left. (Bill Ingalls / NASA)

Jupiter is preparing to pass Saturn, an event known as a great conjunction. On Dec. 21, the two planets will come closer to each other than they’ve been in nearly 400 years — and it will be visible to the naked eye. 

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Chicago's east-west streets are the best place to view the fall equinox sunset. (Patty Wetli / WTTW)

During the fall equinox, the sun rises due east and sets due west, creating an effect dubbed “Chicagohenge” (in reference to Stonehenge), when the sunset is strikingly framed on east-west streets by the city’s skyscrapers.

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(Adler Planetarium / Facebook)

Museums and aquariums can now reopen their doors — with restrictions — but few of them have, and at least one Chicago institution says it will remain closed until phase five of Illinois’ reopening plan.

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Jupiter is one of the brightest objects in the night sky. Look for it in July. (Hypervel / Flickr)

July is a great month for planet watching. Jupiter, Saturn, Venus, Mars and Mercury will all make an appearance.

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(Adler Planetarium / Facebook)

A day after celebrating its 90th birthday, the Adler Planetarium laid off 120 part-time and full-time employees. The “difficult decision” was made “in order to help the Adler survive,” spokesperson Jennifer Howell said in a statement to WTTW News. 

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(picjumbo_com / Pixabay)

In a world in which scientific literacy is often lacking, the online platform Zooniverse.org is doing what it can to encourage “people-powered research.”

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(Brenna Hernandez / Shedd Aquarium)

A handful of museums and cultural institutions in and around Chicago are offering free admission to workers affected by the ongoing federal government shutdown.