HTC VIVE virtual reality systems are coming to the Fraser Valley Regional Library.                                FVRL photo

HTC VIVE virtual reality systems are coming to the Fraser Valley Regional Library. FVRL photo

Virtual becomes reality at Fraser Valley Regional Library

HTC VIVE VR systems are coming to all 25 FVRL libraries over the next 6 months.

Experience the thrill of virtual reality, coming soon to Delta’s libraries.

The Fraser Valley Regional Library has expanded its “playground” to include HTC VIVE virtual reality systems, which customers can check out during various free programs at FVRL’s 25 locations.

VR is an immersive computer-generated three-dimensional interactive environment. Using the VIVE goggles, headphones and motion controllers, participants will be able to move freely around a 10×10 space and try out a mix of virtual games as well as educational experiences.

“VR is an important addition to FVRL’s Playground as we focus on providing customers with access to engaging STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) related learning experiences,” says Heather Scoular, FVRL’s director of customer experience.

“VR has many applications beyond entertainment, including learning and training. With VR, a person can learn how to land a plane, practice a life-saving surgery or simply battle aliens on another planet — all without ever leaving their current location.”

The first VR launch event will be held at the Maple Ridge Public Library on Saturday, Sept. 23, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Customers can visit to register for a time slot to play. Limited drop-in time slots for play will be available on a first-come first-served basis.

Two more launch events will be held at the Sardis Library on Oct. 14 and the City of Langley Library on Nov. 4, with registration opening up one-week prior to the events.

Scoular said the FVRL’s goal is to roll out the VIVE VR systems at all 25 of its libraries over the next 6 months. Though library staff are still in the process of creating a calendar of launch dates, she estimated that the VIVE might be available at North Delta’s George Mackie Library in late 2017 or early 2018.

Looking for other STEAM experiences? FVRL’s playground also features a lending collection of Sphero SPRK+s (app-enabled robotic balls) and ukuleles, and in-library experiences include green screens, Makey Makeys, and KEVA Planks.

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