The late astronomer Carl Sagan once said, “Books permit us to voyage through time, to tap the wisdom of our ancestors.” He was making a pitch for the importance of libraries, but he could have said the same about the stars. In a way, our universe is the biggest book of all, one few of us take the time to read. But thanks to a partnership with the Western Montana Astronomical Association, the Missoula Public Library offers a program that would surely make Sagan proud. Patrons can check out an Orion StarBlast 4.5” telescope
, free of charge. The telescope can be used for up to a week and comes with plenty of instructions and tips for novices. The library added a second telescope last year, due to the program’s popularity, but there’s still plenty of open reservation spots through the rest of the summer. All we need is a clear night sky.