Public Libraries

Rescuing Run-down Libraries

Gary Deane & Jen Young both sent over A NYTimes Piece in which the author, Joe Rizzo, an architect, talks a bit about how he has built or restored more than 75 libraries since he joined the Hillier Group 24 years ago.
He says his latest project, Carnegie library, in St. Louis, will \"be like walking into a Neiman Marcus for books — and having your own personal shopper.\"

The Library\'s Contribution to Your Community

Here\'s A Great Resource, put together by dmA Planning and Management Services,
for the Southern Ontario Library Services.
The Library\'s Contribution to Your Community:
A Resource Manual for Libraries
to Document their Social and Economic Contribution
to the Local Community. Here\'s the summary:

  • is a manual
    designed for self-use by public libraries

  • identifies 12
    social and 9 economic benefits

  • describes the
    information required to document how the library delivers each of the
    benefits

  • provides tools for
    collecting the information needed

  • outlines a
    communication strategy, which includes constructing the argument and
    preparing for counter-argument, for delivering your message to
    municipal politicians and administrators

  • illustrates how to
    use the manual at a level of involvement comfortable for your library

  • includes an
    extensive bibliography of related publications

  • has been
    distributed to all public libraries in Ontario

  • is available in
    English and French

Love Amid the (Not Quite) Ruins

Jen Young sent over This NYTimes Story on the strengths and weaknesses of The New York public libraries.

\"The world, it\'s long been clear to me, has little interest in books. But these libraries, shabby and often bathroomless though they are, do. I\'m frustrated by anemic collections, by erratic hours. But I admire their spunk, their hard-working librarians and their persistence, chugging along in a city that has plenty of other things on its mind.\"

Voice of Darth Vader shows library the power of words

This Isn\'t The Most Interesting Story, but it\'s probably the funniest picture of James Earl Jones you\'ll ever see!
He read to the children at the Carver Academy and Ogden Elementary, down in TX. Jones\' reading launched \"The Year of the Library,\" a 12-month celebration of the 100th birthday of the San Antonio Public Library.Jones said he developed a love for books when, as a boy, stuttering virtually silenced him for several years.

St. Louis County Library reaches out to Latino residents

From the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

The St. Louis County Library\'s Rock Road branch will launch a new film series tonight with a free showing of \"Harry Potter y la Piedra de Mago.\"

No, it\'s not a Harry Potter prequel or a book your kids forgot to tell you about. Instead, the Spanish-dubbed version of \"Harry Potter and the Sorcerer\'s Stone\" is the first step in the library\'s attempt to better serve the metropolitan area\'s growing Hispanic population . . .

\"The Spanish-speaking population is currently underserved,\" said Eric Button, who managed the Rock Road branch before moving to the Daniel Boone branch in Ellisville on Jan. 1. \"We\'re trying to change that. This hopefully will be just the beginning.\"

Complete article.

Budget crisis not shushing libraries yet

Mark Arend sent along a nice article about small town libraries coping with budget problems.
They say For more than two dozen small libraries in east-central Wisconsin’s, five-county Winnefox Library System, circulation is still growing. That’s because small town populations from Kingston to Omro keep reading, using computers and taking advantage of children’s programs.

\"We would hope the libraries would not take more cuts than their fair share. We realize that everyone will have to feel the pain a little bit. Trouble is our usage is going up and up. Some of our libraries are seeing record use this year,\"

Children abandon libraries as Potter magic falls flat

SomeOne sent in A Sad Story from the UK where they say readers are deserting public libraries, depressed by shabby decor, odd opening hours and the impossibility of getting the book they want.Despite a sharp rise in the number of books being bought and read by children - thanks to the 'Harry Potter effect' - younger readers are staying away from their local branch libraries.

Libraries Call In Cops To Track Down Missing Book

News That the Enfield Public Library in CT is the latest to get the police to go after patrons.
One patron, who checked out more than $400, has left town. For about a year now, the Enfield Public Library has called on the police to solve its cold cases: books, CDs and movies missing for months, even years.

American Libraries Violating Literary Dress Code

Rochelle Hartman writes "NPR commentator, author, and bon vivant Andrei Codrescu (codrescu.com) gnashes his teeth over the fact that some libraries strip the jackets from books before shelving them, and he wants some answers. Listen to his commentary Here, At npr.org. "

Fire destroys librarian\'s work

Blair writes \"As Homer Simpson would say, Duh\'Oh!
a BBC Story reports on Olga Franks A librarian at the School of Informatics at the University of Edinburgh who worked for 20 years on a collection of books and journals, only to have it destroyed in Edinburgh\'s Old Town blaze. Books, journals and research papers, which were housed at 80 South Bridge, were completely destroyed when fire swept through Scotland\'s capital on Saturday night.

Ms Franks said: \"I feel simply desperate. I was one of the original librarians in the department and I saw this work grow from the size of a cupboard to an immense library.
\"

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