There are some special sky events and wonderful deep-sky and solar system objects to observe in March. But March nights can still be very cold even though the March equinox on the night of March 20th (about 3:30 am local time) marks the beginning of spring.
The zodiacal light, the soft light from sunlight reflecting off dust particles in our solar system, is most visible in late winter and early spring. It may appear as a cone-shaped glow just after twilight on the nights of March 14-28 (the darker nights) stretching in the west up to the constellation Taurus.
On March 4th, a waxing crescent Moon will pass in front of (astronomers say the Moon will “occult” Aldebaran) the very bright star Aldebaran in the constellation Taurus (in the western sky) after 7:00 pm local time. Aldebaran may vanish for about an hour and suddenly come back into view.
Comet 41P/Tuttle-Giacobini-Kresak may be a bright binocular object (reaching magnitude 5 or 6) near the end of March when the Moon is out of the sky. The comet will be very near the bowl of the Big Dipper (the star Alpha Ursa Major) on the evening of March 27th. This comet has a period of 5.4 years as it orbits the Sun.
Recall that when we look at the Milky Way in winter we are looking away from the center of our galaxy and out through its spiral arms. One of the brightest of the open clusters and a sparkling sight in binoculars is The Beehive Cluster (M44). This tight cluster in the constellation Cancer contains about a dozen stars of magnitude 6, so it is just visible with the naked eye. In binoculars you can see the cluster contains at least two hundred stars. The Beehive Cluster is located about 1/3 of the way on a line drawn between the star Pollux (one of the twin stars in the constellation Gemini and nearly overhead in March) and the star Regulus (the heart of the sickle-shaped constellation Leo the Lion).
Galaxies are often too small and dim to make interesting binocular objects, but the galaxies M81 and M82 are worth the effort to find them because they are an actual interacting pair of galaxies. You can locate these galaxies by imagining a diagonal line across the stars of the bowl of the constellation Ursa Major (the Big Dipper) and extending that line an equal distance outside the bowl to the Northeast. One of the galaxies (M81) is a spiral galaxy very similar to our own Milky Way, and the other (M82) is long and thin and cigar-shaped. The two galaxies are close enough to each other that M82 has been gravitationally disturbed by M81 and is known as a “starburst” galaxy.
Venus appears 20 degrees above the western horizon (that is two fist-widths held out at arm’s length) about one hour after sunset on March 1st. However, Venus will drop sharply toward the horizon as it passes almost between the Sun and the Earth on March 25th. After March 25th, Venus will be observable in the east in the predawn sky. Mars will appear slightly to the upper left of Venus in the evening of March 1st, and it will drift very slowly through the constellations Pisces and Aries throughout March and remain visible well after dark. Jupiter will rise above the eastern horizon about 9:00 pm local time in early March and in the early evening by the end of the month. Jupiter will be big and bright this month as it approaches opposition in April. If you can wait until about three hours after Jupiter rises it will be more than 30 degrees above the horizon and you may get sharp views of its alternating dark belts and bright zones and its four Galilean moons. Saturn rises around 2:30 am local time on March 1st and rises after midnight all month. Saturn will appear in the constellation Sagittarius and its rings should look spectacular in binoculars as they will be tilted 26 degrees to our line of sight.