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Tiny Libraries in Community Spaces

October 12, 2012

Some time ago I wrote a post about tiny community libraries.

I have since relocated to the Chicago suburbs, and unfortunately, my Homeowner’s Association would not be happy if I erected a little library box outside my house.

But I got to thinking about the whole “tiny community library” thing in relation to parks.  Awhile ago, I saw this picture  from a Croatian park (please forgive Twilight Sparkle’s enthusiasm):

I had my own “that’s awesome” moment before I came to grips with the fact that a hammock in a public park would invite…things. Like teenagers making out in said hammock. And staff having to take down hammocks at night. A lot of things that a parks department would say in order to not do it.

But then I thought – HEY! Why not have public library sponsored tiny libraries in parks? They’d operate the same way – take a book, leave a book – but the library could start it off with either donated, advanced reading copies, or withdrawn books.  I mean, how cool would it be to have a tiny library stocked with gardening reference books in a community garden?  They may not circulate, but they’d potentially get looked at.  Or if you put it near a cozy reading nook, you’re inviting people to enjoy a book and the great outdoors at the same time.

I realize of course that the answer might also be to promote digital services rather than “go to the trouble” of creating tiny libraries. And sure, I get that. But we haven’t closed the digital divide yet, and there are plenty of folks who digest content in various formats – I’m one of them.

So there you go. More ideas from the Marti-brain.  I’m going to try to focus on my DDC/LCSH exam now.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Beverly Grubb permalink
    October 16, 2012 3:25 pm

    Marti, I agree with your enthusiastic support of the idea of planting and maintaining tiny libraries for community readers. Inspried! Keep the faith!

    By the way, Heather Rayl, new Emergining Technolgy Librarian here at Cunningham Library passed along your greetings from a chat she was in with you on Twitter. I’m still at Cunningham after 12 years and can’t believe I’m actually hearing from you!! FB me sometime. 🙂

    Beverly Grubb

    • October 16, 2012 3:27 pm

      We both attended the ALA Techsource webinar on Makerspaces in libraries, and she mentioned she was at Cunningham listening in with others. I couldn’t resist the urge to say hi!

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