Affiliated with the Astronomical League
A WINTER CONSTELLATION
Look east around 7:00 in the evening. You will need to look higher up as the night gets later. Locate the large pattern of stars that appear like a bow tie knocked to the side. Some people see it as an hour glass. The ancients called it Orion the Hunter.
The fun thing about this constellation is the nebula, or Messier objects M42 and M43, viewed as a smudge to the bare eye. A binocular or VERY LOW powered telescope will reveal a spectacular view!
IMPORTANT NOTE: Do not use high power or you will shoot right through and never find it and it can be very frustrating. Look at your ojective eyepiece lens number and select the highest number (for example pick the 32mm over the 8mm). The larger number is actually the lower powered magnification and this is what you need to start with.
The above image from Starry Night Bundle Edition, Sienna Software Inc., was modified to annunciate the Orion Nebula.
image below (M42) is provided by Mike Smithwick of Distant Suns.
You won't see the nebula this spectacular with most department store
but you should get a good view.