The Nebraska Star Party was south of Valentine at the Merritt State Recreational Area. I arrived on August 8, 2018, had a good dinner & drank plenty of liquid. You get thirsty out here!
Planets were the whole show! I noticed Venus in the west, then Jupiter, Saturn & Mars. I had never seen 4 planets strung out along the Zodiac like this. Mars was as close as it was in 2003, and actually outshone Jupiter. Mars was at opposition (opposite the sun), meaning it rose at sunset and set at sunrise. Up all night! I tried to visualize what was happening. The planets and the sun stayed put. It was Earth that was turning west to east. Facing south, I saw Scorpius and picked out the teapot of Sagittarius. Above me was the Summer Triangle of Vega, Deneb & Altair. Seeing these stars took me back to the early 1960s. I felt like I was in my parents' yard. Toward morning, we had turned toward Orion. I saw a waning crescent moon with earthshine lighting up the lunar night. I observed the horns of the moon pointing away from the sun. As my spot on Earth rotated toward the sun, its rays were reflected to the ground before the sun became visible. Morning twilight! Earth would continue to rotate west to east until the sun again disappeared below the horizon and the planets were once again visible.
I hoped to see the Perseid meteor shower in its glory, but it was not meant to be. 1964 will never be topped.
I have attended 7 star parties in 22 years going back to the one in Indiana with Gaby.