I can still remember lying on a deck in a dark backyard with my two toddlers, all of us staring in wonder at the stars streaking across the sky. It was truly a magical time that you can share with your own friends and family this weekend during the annual Perseid Meteor shower.
The Perseid meteor shower occurs every year at this time as Earth moves through the dust & debris tail of the comet Swift-Tuttle that passes every 20 to 200 years (approximately every 133 years). Contrary to most Hollywood disaster movies, the Perseid’s are just comet dust and debris about the size of a grain of sand that vaporize as they hit the atmosphere. According to Space.com, the peak of the shower will actually be around noon on August 12th, so the best viewings will be from the night of the 11th to the early morning hours of the 13th. Due to the moon being at about 3/4 full, only the brightest meteors may be visible during the shower. That means you may see a possible 40-50 meteors per hour instead of the 100-200 per hour that are actually hitting the atmosphere.
Here’s a couple of links about the Persiads and the best times/places to see them.