Cedar Breaks National Monument and local astronomy clubs are collaborating with Iron and Washington County libraries to launch a new library telescope-lending program. Telescopes are now available to the public at the Cedar City and Parowan libraries in partnership with the Southern Utah Space Foundation, or SUSF. More telescopes will become available at additional libraries throughout Iron and Washington Counties in the coming months in partnership with the St. George Astronomy Group and the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument. Cedar Breaks National Monument, SUSF, and the St. George Astronomy Group will maintain the telescopes in this program.
Library patrons can check out a telescope as they would a book for a week at a time. The telescopes are modified to be user-friendly and are of higher quality than most amateur-level telescopes. The StarBlast 4.5-inch tabletop reflecting telescopes utilize quality optics that provide great views of craters on the moon, Saturn’s rings, Jupiter’s moons, numerous star clusters, galaxies, nebulae, and more. Included with each telescope is an instruction manual, a moon map, a pocket guide of the constellations, and a night-vision-friendly red LED headlamp.