Professional and amateur astronomers use telescopes to view, appreciate, and gain a better understanding of the universe. The Kalamazoo Astronomical Society believes
this joy should be shared with as many people as possible. This program will give us the avenue to reach many who have never had the opportunity to look through a good
telescope. Our goal is to stimulate public interest in astronomy, and help everyone gain a better understanding of their place in the cosmos.
The Library Telescope Program utilizes the services of an astronomy club and a local library, allowing patrons of the library the opportunity to check out a telescope as they
would check out a book. This program was originally started by the New
Society (NHAS) in 2008. The January 2011 Sky & Telescope
magazine article, featuring the NHAS and the program, provided the
spark that fueled the KAS bringing the opportunity to Michigan.
The New Hampshire club graciously made all the material available on the Internet for any club to use and copy. We have attached our version of the program, and encourage
you to copy, use, and modify the information to suit your club’s taste. We also encourage you to visit NHAS website
for the original version of the program.
Our journey began on May 22, 2012
through a donation of
an Orion Starblast 4.5 Astro Reflector to the Portage District Library
. A second
telescope followed in July to the Oshtemo branch of the Kalamazoo Public Library. We hope there are many
more to follow.
The telescope comes complete with everything needed for a night of successful viewing, even if you’ve never used a telescope. This telescope was chosen for several reasons
including ease of use, simplicity, a large primary mirror, and no wobbly tripod legs. You can expect to see the rings of Saturn, Jupiter and its moons, some galaxies,
nebula and star clusters, and some breathtaking views of the Moon.
We hope you get as much enjoyment out of viewing with the telescope as we do, and we’d appreciate your comments, concerns, and any questions you might have. We’d especially
like to hear from those who have used the telescope!
Please send your feedback titled “Library Telescope Program” to:
For more information about our Library Telescope Program, please contact:
Library Telescope Coordinator
Oshtemo Branch Library
7265 West Main St.
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Phone: (269) 553-7980
Portage District Library
300 Library Lane
Portage, MI 49002
Phone: (269) 329-4544