Zip Books, Author Series and Telescopes


Here’s a look at what’s happening in our local libraries.

Palm Springs Public Library Now Offers Zip Books

A new grant-funded program gives Palm Springs Public Library cardholders quick access to books or audiobooks that aren’t in the library’s collection.

Here’s how it works: A customer simply requests the item, the library purchases it from Amazon, and the book is shipped directly to the customer’s home. Called Zip Books, these items are checked out like any other library item. Once complete, the patron returns the item to the library, where it will be saved and added to the collection for other cardholders to enjoy.

“California State Library developed this program in response to a number of rural libraries that were struggling to provide resources to their communities,” says Jeannie Kays, City Librarian and Director of Library Services. “It was designed to be an alternative to interlibrary loans, which are time-consuming and expensive.”

A Palm Springs Library card is required to use this program and items, like other library items, are subject to loan deadlines and other borrowing guidelines. Only physical books and CD audiobooks are available as Zip Books.

“Right now we’ve ordered 224 titles and we have about 25 requests in the hopper that came in today,” Kays said. “We get a lot of requests. We have prolific readers using this system and really loving it.”

Another benefit of the program is that it helps a library’s collection better match the needs of its local community.

For more information, visit

DHS Library Ends Author Series Season With Two Nonfiction Books

Author Marge Snell will pay tribute to Armed Forces Day by presenting her book, “Lest We Forget,” May 21 from 1 to 2:30 p.m. in the Desert Hot Springs Library Community Room. Like so many other World War II veterans, Marge’s husband Russ never got to talk about the war. It wasn’t until later in his life that he shared his horrific experiences. As a registered nurse, Marge saw the residual effects of war on her husband, causing severe PTSD before it was recognized as an illness. This book, in these times, will provide an emotional response to all wars. Artifacts mentioned in the book will be on display and all veterans who attend will be honored.

Author Luis Fuerte will conclude the first season of the Desert Hot Springs library author series.

And then on May 26 from 1 to 2:30 p.m., Luis Fuerte, award-winning cameraman of the television series “California Gold”, will present his book, “Louie, take a look at this! My time with Huell Howser. Fuerte takes the reader into the adventure of two men from very different backgrounds who instinctively knew what makes good and rewarding entertainment.The book tells the story of KCET and recounts the many iconic shows produced by Howser and Fuerte.

These two authors conclude a very successful first season of the Author Series in the new library. Authors interested in presenting a book next season should contact Sally Hedberg at [email protected]

To learn more about the Desert Hot Springs Library, visit

From Books to Stars: Rancho Mirage Library Launches Telescope Program

The loan of telescopes is part of a national program set up in 2008.

On April 18, the Rancho Mirage Library & Observatory announced the launch of its Library Telescope Program to help foster science literacy, stimulate interest in astronomy, and provide people who have never looked through a telescope the chance to experience the excitement of discovery.

Thanks to a generous grant from the Smaby Family Foundation, Rancho Mirage joins more than 400 other libraries across the United States that loan user-friendly portable telescopes to patrons. The library also allocates a percentage of its 30 telescopes to educators to share with their students.

To borrow a telescope, customers must be at least 18 years old or have a parent or guardian present. Telescopes are treated like other library materials and can be searched in the catalog. When checking out a telescope, the clerk will demonstrate how to transport the telescope and give a brief overview of the components.

Telescope lending is part of a national program that was established in 2008. For more information, visit To learn more about the Rancho Mirage Library and Observatory, visit


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