With the Lyrid meteor shower wrapping up this week, you early risers probably think that you've got nothing unusual to look at in the early morning skies over Northern Illinois.

And that's where you'd be wrong. You've got an actual planetary parade to catch, assuming you're cool with hopping out of bed in the early morning hours.

The Best Viewing Time For Those Of Us In Northern Illinois Is About An Hour Before Sunrise

Like I said, if you're already an early-riser, this should be no problem for you. Just make sure you're in viewing position by about 4am, Rockford time. Sunrise is 5:57am, which should give you plenty of time to check things out, assuming we have clear skies. Keep your eyes on the eastern horizon for best results.

We should also appreciate the fact that we won't need any special equipment of any sort to view the planetary parade, since it's visible to the naked eye, according to NASA.

The planetary parade is not just a one-night show.

The Alignment Of Planets Isn't A Super-Rare Event (we had one last year), But It's Always Cool To See It

According to a report at Patch.com, this alignment isn't as impressive as the grand conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in late 2020, but the planetary lineup is still really impressive and will make for thrilling sights in the morning sky.

While you're scanning the sky, you may still see a few stray shooting stars from the Lyrids meteor shower, known for producing fireballs with bright dust trails that can last for a few seconds. The monthlong Eta Aquarids meteor shower is also underway. It peaks May 4-5.

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