10 Fresh Ideas That Prove Libraries Have More to Offer Than Books
From lending ties to job hunters to teaching people how to use their electronic devices, today’s public libraries offer a range of cultural events and services. But research shows that some folks still don’t know that their local library is more than a place to check out the latest best-seller. That’s why 250 libraries around the world are participating in Outside the Lines, a grassroots initiative that’s boosting awareness of the innovative and culturally relevant services libraries offer.
“This is our third year of Outside the Lines, and we’re overwhelmed by the creativity we’ve seen in the ways libraries are celebrating worldwide,” Stacie Ledden, director of innovations and brand strategy at Anythink Libraries in Colorado and planning chair for Outside the Lines, told TakePart. “Our goal is to shift perceptions by helping people understand how libraries have changed into dynamic centers for engagement. With the work being done this week, we are seeing the library as a catalyst for building community through healing, art, learning, and innovation.”
To participate, libraries signed up to host at least one event or campaign between Sept. 11 and 17 that would get people to engage with one another and the library. Here are 10 examples—from responding to the Pulse nightclub shooting to setting up a beer garden—that prove that libraries are about more than books.