5 Ways to Love your Local Library

 I grew up in libraries. My mom started taking my brother and I when we were little. We'd attend story time in the afternoons and after we'd get to pick out our books to take home. I loved having a library card - the only piece of identification I had as a five year old. I treasured it as something sacred, and felt it was a rite of passage when I was able to finally have my own and not have to use my mom's. 

20 years later I'm still going to libraries. More, I still feel the same sense of love and responsibility for my library card. After I got married last June my priorities for getting my name changed legally on important documents and identifications went as such: 

1. Social Security card

2. Driver's License 

3. Library Card 

4. Passport

Libraries have long taken care of me - so I got to thinking, how can I help take care of my library? With the help of a little internet research and a pleasant conversation with a lady at the Main Library downtown, here's a quick list of 5 things we can all do to show the libraries who given us so much, a little love: 

1. Volunteer: One positive I can take away post-election this year is that there is a flood of people, including myself, looking to lend our time and hands in volunteer to a cause or organization we believe in. Why not volunteer at your local library? They can always use your help shelving books, organizing & filing. 

2. Teach a course: Are you an expert in something? Looking to share that with others? Teach a course at your local library! Enrich your community with knowledge you can share and empower others with! Libraries, like community centers, are great places to get involved in community activities like teaching or attending a course like learning Chinese, or weaving. 

3. Donate: Donate books from your most recent spring cleaning session to the library in lieu of trading them for credit at a second hand bookshop (or maybe split them and do both!). Your personal collection, even the stuff you're getting rid of, is going to contain some pretty great stuff - give your local library a boost of literary awesomeness! 

4. Shop at library book fairs: Keep an eye out for library book fairs where you can purchase books for dirt cheap and all proceeds will go towards supporting your library. 

5. Go. To. The. Library: Maybe the best and most pleasurable thing you can do to love your local library is to simply go there. And if you haven't gone before, or maybe it's been several years since you've been, make a date of it! Gather up some friends or a loved one, plan a trip to your library, and make plans to breakfast or lunch afterward! It could even be the beginning of a book club! Just go! I promise, it will be well worth your time. 


Erin E Barrio