A visitor sits next to a telescope at a Fraser Valley Regional Library location. Submitted photo

See what’s up when you borrow a telescope from the library

Fraser Valley Regional Library’s telescope lending program takes off

Fraser Valley Regional Library (FVRL) has expanded its lending inventory to include telescopes.

Starting Monday, April 23, customers can borrow an easy-to -se portable telescope from local libraries and explore the wonders of the night sky.

Local FVRL locations include Aldergrove, Brookswood, Fort Langley, Langley City, Murrayville, the Muriel Arnason library in Willoughby, and Walnut Grove.

“FVRL had been looking for another engaging STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) experience to add to its Playground lending collections, and the stars seem to align when the Mission Heritage Association approached the library with a donation of seven telescopes,” said Heather Scoular, FVRL’s director of customer experience.

“They inspired us to launch a collection of 50 telescopes, and in turn we hope to inspire customers to start their astronomy journey with the library.”

Over the coming months FVRL will grow the collection with a range of telescopes for different backgrounds and knowledge levels.

“With the naked eye, you can only see a few thousand stars. Put a telescope on that and all of a sudden you can see millions of stars – it’s just amazing. This collection is going to open a lot of eyes,” notes Brian Antonson, the Mission Heritage Association president. “Telescopes contribute to the whole STEAM learning concept, particularly in the areas of science and technology. Libraries are repositories of knowledge.

“They are a place where people come together to learn and so it is perfect for a telescope lending program.”

As part of the launch celebrations, FVRL will be hosting an astronomer series at the Maple Ridge Public Library on May 10 from 7 to 8 p.m. Customers can learn more about the universe as local expert Christa van Laerhoven brings light to some of the wonders of the night sky.

Looking for other STEAM experiences? FVRL’s Playground also features a lending collection of Sphero SPRK+s (app-enabled robotic balls) and ukuleles. In-library experiences include virtual reality, green screens, Makey Makeys, and KEVA Planks. Learn more by visiting www.fvrl.ca.

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