Skywatchers get an early treat for the new year as they do not have to wait for long for the first meteor shower of 2015 to take place.

The celestial display will be prominent this weekend with astronomers expecting it to be most visible between Saturday night and early Sunday morning.

The Quadrantid meteor shower is often the first meteor display of the year because it peaks during early January. For this year, the space event is forecast to peak on Saturday at 9 p.m. EST with the shower anticipated to produce up to 100 meteors per hour.

Skygazers in the Northern Hemisphere will get the best views between midnight and dawn on weekend when the moon will be lower in the sky.

Quadrantids are among the best annual meteor showers and are known for their fireball meteors characterized by more intense color and light explosions that last longer than ordinary meteor streaks.

Viewing the meteor display this year, however, can be challenging because the views of the celestial fireworks will be dampened by the brightness of the nearly full moon. Experts advise skywatchers to observe the event from a position where the moon is blocked.

Meteorologist Nick Wiltgen likewise pointed out that the weather may also be a problem as clouds obstruct the views of the meteor display particularly in the eastern United States. Those in the southwest, though, have more chances of seeing clear skies during the duration of the event.

Most meteor showers originate from comets, but the Quadrantids are the remnants of asteroid 2003 EH1. The asteroid, which was discovered by the Lowell Observatory Near-Earth Object Search (LONEOS) in March 2003, is believed to be either a dead comet or a new object that astronomers call a rock comet.

Compared with other meteor showers, such as the the Perseid and Geminid showers, the Quadrantids also only peak for only a few hours, so skygazers who miss the peak won't likely see many meteors in the sky.

"The reason the peak is so short is due to the shower's thin stream of particles and the fact that the Earth crosses the stream at a perpendicular angle," the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) explained.

Still, those who miss the show in person can still view it on the computer as the Slooh Space Camera will have a live broadcast of the event online.

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