This just arrived in my in-box from my colleague -- and our assistant webmaster -- Adam Kapp. He wrote to say that:
The annual Perseid meteor shower is this weekend! (FYI) This year should be particularly good as there's a new moon, so the sky will be totally dark. At the peak you may see as many as a few per minute.
And here are some details from Adam's astronomer friend:
Meteor showers are best observed between the hours of Midnight and Sunrise, with 3-4 AM tending to be the peak. The best date will probably be Sunday, very early in the morning. You may see a few meteors before midnight, but if you really want to observe the shower, you'll have to go to a dark site and be awake during the wee hours.
To observe them, all you need are blankets to lay on and your eyes. No binoculars or telescopes are needed (they actually are counter-productive in this case. The show should be visible from everywhere in the world (at the appropriate time) however there tend to be peaks in numbers at certain times that are rather hard to predict. The reason that the shower is not time dependant is that the best time is when the side of the Earth you're on is flying directly into the meteoroids, which are the hours before sunrise.