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Old 04-21-2009, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic east coast
5,699 posts, read 10,508,639 times
Reputation: 11314

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I'm a huge fan of libraries. My hometown library helped instill the love of reading in me, and I've been a big supporter and patron ever since.

How about you?

Does your town have a good or great library? Do you support it with donations of money, time, or books? Do you have a local Friends of the Library group? Are you a member?

What makes a great library?

What can we do to get our local, state and federal governments (and citizens) to support our town libraries during these challenging economical times--when usage is exploding and funding is down?
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Old 04-21-2009, 07:39 PM
 
Location: wrong planet
5,142 posts, read 10,557,730 times
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I love our local library. Growing up my best friend and I went to library weekly and picked up several books.
We moved to this town a little over a year ago. Even though it is small town of around 20.000 it has a very active library with lots of events, a Friends of the Library Group (of which I am the VP) and we sponsor many events, such as the showing of independent foreign and domestic movies, art openings, readings by authors, musical events etc. To me that is the thing that makes this particular library great, the fact that it creates COMMUNITY, which is hard to find these days.
We just had our annual book sale and it was a great success
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Old 04-22-2009, 06:25 AM
 
Location: Sugar Grove, IL
3,131 posts, read 10,800,040 times
Reputation: 1619
I also am a huge fan of the library! I am a Library Friend too. I volunteer, donate etc. Our town is small and the library is in the process of completing a brand new, really large library! we are excited. It is supposed to open in august. the problem we face is that back a few years ago, voters passed a referendum to build the new library, but efforts to pass the operations referendum for the new building have failed. My fear is that we will get this brand new building and they will barely have the funds to open the doors!
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Old 04-22-2009, 06:40 AM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic east coast
5,699 posts, read 10,508,639 times
Reputation: 11314
We're getting a new, much larger main branch county library in our town, too. It's actually a retrofit of a former supermarket! Creative re-use--you've got to love it. Lots of free parking will make the patrons happy.

The basics were covered by the county but our Friends group is in the midst of a major capital campaign to raise money to outfit those items not covered. A tough time to be raising money, these days, eh??

Our librarian is great--she just located a bunch of shelving being discarded by a library that's getting new shelving so we'll be getting that for the cost of transportation...we're making do with some things--refinishing and recovering the old solid wood chairs...we'll be opening this Fall, no doubt, with some empty spaces still needing infrastructure, but that might spur donations to supply those so it's full-steam ahead...

We're all very excited. The new space will also supply some much needed indoor community-gathering area for more events...

Personally, if I were shopping for a new town for re-location, how well the community supported their library would be my first criteria. I just wouldn't move to a town with a neglected library. It's the heart and the pulse of the community.
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Nebraska
4,527 posts, read 7,752,509 times
Reputation: 7463
We have a great City Library system here in Lincoln, Nebraska in addition to several University and College libraries.
Our city libraries have great programs catering to children and young adults. Not only is the book selection fantastic but I can check out CD's and DVD's covering a broad range of topics. AND the really GOOD PART. . . any resident qualifies for a FREE library card. Thanks to Lincoln taxpayers. One tax I feel good about.

GL2
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:31 AM
 
Location: Bayou City
2,987 posts, read 4,773,035 times
Reputation: 2508
Our library system is a community jewel. A good one like ours is deeply engaged in the community through sponsorships, cultural events, workshops, etc. I always say knowledge is the most valuable thing you can get for free. And the library is where it's at.
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Old 04-22-2009, 03:22 PM
 
Location: Minnesota (Blaine)
4,185 posts, read 5,652,661 times
Reputation: 5105
I love Libraries. Even small ones have some personality but can't compare to larger ones that offer so much. Smaller communities share resouces these days and that seems to have limited any further growth. My small town doesn't even have one, we get a visit from the Bookmobile twice a month. Not quite the Library Experience. People should support thier local Libraries in any way they can.
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Old 04-22-2009, 10:27 PM
 
3,553 posts, read 7,157,434 times
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Our library, Loveland CO is great, large CD collection, large magazine and newspaper subscription, computer room, wireless availability if you bring your laptop, always lots of new books and I often give them suggestions.

golfgod
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Old 04-22-2009, 10:43 PM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
8,998 posts, read 13,585,400 times
Reputation: 3538
I LOVE libraries!
I visit the one on my college campus just about every day...to read the newspaper.
I normally visit the public one once a week, I visited yesterday.
I feel lucky to have such a great public library system. A lot of times if you recommend books, they will buy them. They are very fast when it comes to interlibrary loans.
The local library system has done a lot of hiring and they are experiencing an uptick in visits because of the downturn.
I feel like a great library has a great selection of books, you feel comfortable asking staff questions, it is very user friendly (I would like to see more libraries put up signs saying what subject books are where and things of that nature.....), and the hours are convenient for most people. They would also hold a lot of community events.

http://www.cals.lib.ar.us
I've basically grown up with this library system. I've been going since I was around 6 or 7, I'm now 18 and one of the librarians at a particular branch knows me by name and knows what kind of books I like.

I am not throwing librarian off my list of potential careers.
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Old 04-22-2009, 10:57 PM
 
Location: Kauai, HI
1,049 posts, read 4,153,389 times
Reputation: 880
I love libraries and really do not understand people who do not utilize them. I have friends who always order at amazon or pick something up at borders/barnes and noble. It does not make any sense to me (unless you are going away on a long trip...) why anyone would pay so much for books when you could get the same books for free. Plus, I am a fast reader and go through books rather quickly- affording my reading habit would be out of the question.

My library growing up was great and I grew up in story hour. My college library was terrifying but we had a nice community library. Now I live in Hawaii and the Hawaii State Public Library System is great. They will ship books to you from different islands and you can return books to any of the branches, so if I want to check out a different library, I can still return them to the one down the street from me. Plus, they have a great DVD section with all new DVD's for $1 a week.
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