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How visible will Comet Neowise be in Minnesota this weekend?

Sunday night may be your best chance to see it.

So far, the Comet Neowise has put on quite the show. And if you haven't gotten a chance to see it streaking across the night sky, it's not too late. 

The comet became visible in the evenings in the Northern Hemisphere earlier this week and will continue to be visible until July 23, after that it'll speed away into the depths of space, where it won't be visible again for 6,800 years, NASA says

NASA's Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) mission discovered the comet on March 27, hence the name Comet Neowise. It's said to be the brightest comet we've seen in about 25 years. 

Comet Neowise is visible a little after sunset (sunset is just before 9 p.m. in Minnesota) in the northwest sky – look below the Big Dipper. Each night, it will be higher above the horizon, NASA says. Here's a chart: 

Skychart showing the location of Comet Neowise just after sunset from July 15-23.

Skychart showing the location of Comet Neowise just after sunset from July 15-23.

The best way to spot Comet Neowise is to get away from city lights and find a place with an unobstructed view of the sky. This light pollution map could help you find where to avoid the lights, and MPR News has some suggestions for where to go, depending on where you live

Once you've found a spot, use binoculars or a small telescope to get the best look at the comet. Without the binoculars, NASA says it'll look like a "fuzzy star with a bit of a tail."

So far this week, conditions have been quite good to see the comet in Minnesota, with lower dew points and few clouds, but high heat and humidity along with the severe weather that's in the forecast Friday and Saturday nights could hamper visibility this weekend. 

Sky cover (the percent of opaque clouds covering the sky) at 8 p.m. Friday (left) and 8 p.m. Saturday. 

Sky cover (the percent of opaque clouds covering the sky) at 8 p.m. Friday (left) and 8 p.m. Saturday. 

According to the National Weather Service's (NWS) website, the sky will grow increasingly cloudy Friday night. At 8 p.m., sky cover (the percent of opaque clouds covering the sky) is below 50 percent for much of the state, but by 11 p.m. the northern half of Minnesota is forecast to have 50 percent cloud cover, with some places closer to 100 percent. 

In the southern half of the state, clouds will increase, with 40-60 percent cloud cover by 11 p.m. across much of the area. 

Expect a similar amount of cloud cover on Saturday night, though Saturday's storm chances will be heavily dependent on what unfolds Friday night into Saturday morning, per the NWS. 

By Sunday, conditions are looking much better to spot the comet, with lower dew points and less cloud cover, the NWS forecast shows.

Early next week, when the comet should still be visible, Minnesota could see some thunderstorms at night, which would limit viewing for the comet, otherwise, skies are forecast to be mostly clear or partly cloudy across much of the state. 

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