April 9, 2010 —
Library Center Reference Associate Mary Harrison recently had a patron stop by the Reference Desk and comment, “What a bargain the library is!”
Harrison added, “He said every time he sees a sign about ‘tax dollars at work,’ he thinks of the Library and wishes all of his tax dollars were as well used as the ones for the Library.”
We appreciate that sentiment especially today, as the Library District celebrates National Library Week through April 17. The annual event honors the contributions of libraries and librarians.
We enjoy hearing from patrons how a librarian from their childhood was the person who first introduced them to their favorite writers, opened their eyes to other cultures and even helped them learn to read.
More common in these rocky economic times are inspiring stories about how patrons at the Library learned new computer and career skills, prepared for employment tests, found a job, or saved bushels of money by borrowing or downloading – not buying – books, audiobooks, movies and music.
Some examples: If you check out three books, you have saved about $60 by not buying them. If your kids check out music CDs, they save about $15 for each one. Savings for each movie borrowed versus rented -- $4; savings for each borrowed audiobook -- $40; for each downloaded book -- $15.
If you attend a library-sponsored program, you also save an average of $12 per month. The branches sponsored a total of 678 programs in February, alone.
That’s not counting the money you save on concerts and cover charges by attending free music programs such as today’s 2 p.m. concert at the Library Center, “Music of the 30s with Christopher Lair.”
In honor of National Library Week, we’re having an essay contest, asking patrons ages 18 and older to tell us in 500 words or less, “How the Library has helped me.”
Essays may be submitted from April 11-May 3 to a branch library or to email@example.com. Three winners will be selected by Library staff and featured in a series of Library “READ” posters. They’ll also receive a gift basket for book lovers.
Look for the essay contest rules link from the contest promo on thelibrary.org.
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