Your local library is making room for Space.

NASA and the American Library Association (ALA) have
partnered to create a one-of-a-kind interactive space
research exhibit as part of a new program called NASA @ your
library. The program launched today at the Enoch Pratt Free
Library in Baltimore.

NASA @ your library was created to inspire more participation
at public libraries, raise awareness and encourage interest
in science. The unique exhibit will tour 120 public libraries
in five regions across the nation for the next two years. It
will feature special presentations specifically created to
expose people of all ages to NASA research in the areas of
health, home and transportation, agriculture and environment,
and commerce.

“Space research plays an integral role in our daily lives. It
affects many things around us from the foods we eat to
everyday household products we use. This exhibit will educate
everyone on the importance and opportunities in space
research,” said Mary Kicza,
Associate Administrator for NASA’s Office of Biological and
Physical Research, Washington.

The five libraries representing each region of the tour that
will host the exhibit in its first month include the Enoch
Pratt Free Library, Baltimore; Johnson County Library,
Overland Park, Kan.; Lakewood Library, Tacoma, Wash.;
Northwest Reno Library, Reno, Nev.; and Spartanburg County
Public Libraries, Spartanburg, S.C.

The exhibit is self-contained and complete with six desktop
computers and workspace. The main interactive exhibit
includes topics on Space Shuttle operations, living, working
and conducting space research on board the International
Space Station, and information on future aerospace
activities. Apple Computer, Inc. is contributing 36 new “Way
Cool Flat Screen” computers to the exhibit and funding the
movement of the exhibit throughout the U.S.

NASA @ your library is part of The Campaign for America’s
Libraries, a multi-year public education effort sponsored by
the ALA to speak loudly and clearly about the value of
libraries and librarians in the 21st century. The campaign is
designed to showcase the unique and vital role played by
public, school, academic and special libraries across the
United States. NASA is the latest founding partner in the
campaign. Invitations to participate in the program were sent
to over 16,000 public libraries throughout the U.S. Libraries
are being selected to participate in the tour based on
criteria established by the ALA.

“The NASA @ your library program is a wonderful example of
how libraries have become modern community centers for
information, education and entertainment,” added ALA
President Carla Hayden, executive director of the Enoch Pratt
Free Library. “With this new partnership, ALA is also able to
further spread the message that libraries play a critical
role in making information accessible to all people,
regardless of age, race, income or background.”

As part of the program, libraries will be given a stipend to
enhance their book/electronic resources and collections, and
will host various social and academic activities of their
choice. ALA, to engender interest in International Space
Station research through reading lists, information on
careers, and other space-related activities, also has created
a new web site. You can find the information on the Internet

Additional information about NASA can be found on the
Internet at: