Thursday, April 17, 2014
Hug Your Librarian!
What comes to mind when you think of libraries? Dark and dusty buildings that house stacks of books and reigned over by a gray haired little old lady? If so, think again. In many towns, my own included, the public library isn't even close to that. In fact, these days it's more like the town's living room.
Moms come with toddlers for story time and play dates, those who can't afford computers come use the internet and still others come to play Scrabble or chess or meet their friends for a chat over a cup of coffee. (Our library has a Keurig machine) Many more come to read newspapers or magazines having cancelled their subscriptions due to economic difficulties.
What about e-readers? The library in my town owns different brands of electronic readers that are available for check out so patrons can decide which, if any, they'd like to purchase. Several of the staff have become technology experts and readily answer computer questions or give one-on-one tutorials about a patron's personal device.
As a reader and a writer, I've been pleasantly surprised at the number and quality of materials at my public library. In my research thus far I have managed to find all the reference materials I need, no matter how obscure the topic, in one case taking advantage of the “Interlibrary loan” system. My library is part of a network of facilities that allows them to request an item from other libraries, colleges and universities from anywhere in the country. All for free!
My library hosts book discussion groups, movies, lectures, geneology workshops, a lego club, and craft events. The Friends of the Library group has purchased passes for numerous museums and area attractions that library card holders can check out.
When I go to the library, the staff greet me by name, and I often run into friends and acquaintances while I'm there. The experience is always positive, and I look forward to each visit. How about you? Has there been a library or librarian that made a difference in your life?
If so, hug your librarian – you'll be glad you did!