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Penticton Public Library offers easy-to-use, portable telescopes for loan. Through telescope lending we hope to inspire our citizens with a rewarding introduction to the world of astronomy, stimulate interest in science and foster scientific literacy. We chose a Dobsonian type telescope, because it is considered to be the easiest to use for beginners!

Borrowing a Telescope Tote With Your PPL Card

Want to borrow a Telescope Tote? It's easy! All you need is an active library card, with no outstanding fees. If we don't have one available when you visit, we can put a hold on the next available telescope! You can check availability here: PPL Catalogue.

You may borrow a Telescope Tote for a two-week loan period (no renewals at this time). Please return your Telescope Tote on time to the service desk!

Information on Weather

We live in a semi-arid climate, although it can be cloudy in the winter! We have year-round opportunities to use one of our telescopes for starviewing! Resources such as Clear Dark Sky can be used to determine what dates and times will have minimal cloud cover to obstruct your star viewing! Clear Dark Sky provides Clear Sky Charts for 150+ locations in British Columbia.

There are also various indoor or day-time activities that you could explore with an PPL telescope! You can familiarize yourself with how telescopes work, for example you can learn how to calibrate its spotting scope. You can also practice your spotting skills with a game of I-Spy with a friend!

Astronomy Resources - Keep Learning!

Connect with PPL staff for help working with one of our Telescope Totes. Come in for tech help Friday morning for one-on-one help on any topic. Visit our library catalogue to find astronomy resources.

Apps are also great resources for amateur astronomy. Red flashlight apps make pathfinding and chart reading easier in the dark – without affecting your night vision. Sky mapping apps make learning and finding constellations easy! Stellarium is free planetarium software for your desktop, useful for planning your night’s viewing schedule. You can find printable sky charts online at Deep-Sky Watch.

To learn more about astronomy and make new friends, connect with local astronomy clubs such as the:

Telescope Tote FAQ

Each kit includes a telescope, eyepieces, introductory astronomy book, instruction booklet (for the telescope), survey and hard carrying case. Please note: the case is large and cannot be put on the back of a bike.

It is quite large, and cannot be put on the back of a bike.

I have another question that hasn’t been answered here

Please email Stephanie at: for more information.

Telescope Instruction Manual 

** Some text has been taken from the FVRL Telescope Kit page

Dobsonian Telescope