Sunday, April 15, 2007

It's not just about shushing@ your library!

Happy National Library Week everybody!

Why is this a big deal? Well, first of all, I'm a librarian, so it's a big deal for me. I love libraries and I always have. I spent a lot of time in libraries as a kid and young adult. As I grew up, I found new parts of the library to enjoy.

Why is is a big deal for everyone else? In a library you can find tons of great reading material and it's all free, as long as you return it on time. You can read best sellers, do research, pick up audiobooks to listen to while driving, ask reference questions, use public internet computers.... the list goes on.

Not only that, but libraries (and especially librarians) fight for your right to choose what you want to read and not have that choice made by someone else. It's one reason we commemorate Banned Books Week in the fall. We don't want books banned, we want you to decide for yourself while your neighbor decides for him/herself. We lobby to prevent the government from taking away our right to choose and our freedom to read.

Libraries are also community hubs. They are places to hang out with friends, have book discussions, attend library programs, and take your children to story time. So take a minute this week to stop into your local library and check out a book. Say "hi" to your librarian and thank him/her for encouraging literacy and lifelong learning in your community. They'll give you a great big smile - and they WON'T shush you. I promise. Trust me, I'm a librarian!

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