For the past year I have been writing about library related topics that I believe in. To me the amazing things that libraries and reading can do are powerful and important—possibly even more important than slushies on a hot summer day (and to me and my family that is really saying something!). I can see how libraries have played an important part in my life. Without reading I would not be the person I am today. (And I don’t just mean being a librarian.) Reading has helped shape my character, study, and work habits as well.
Knowing how reading and libraries have changed my life, I want to share why libraries are important to me. Just yesterday in a conversation I was asked if libraries were empty buildings that would eventually go out of business? Are people still interested in libraries since society could easily buy books to read on an electronic device? I shared that in addition to what traditionally comes to mind when one thinks of a library, there are also many other programs in addition to electronic books/audiobooks to check out. Libraries can also save patrons money by offering ebooks that can be checked out from their local library instead of buying them.
Yes, libraries are great! They are diverse and robust and have something for everyone. What the mother of a toddler needs is different from the needs of the man I talked to yesterday which is why a library can help everyone. Libraries are unique in that they serve the whole community—no matter who you are or what you are interested in. It is a library's purpose to make sure that we can serve everyone in the community.
It is sad that many people still think of libraries as quiet places with books, where cardigan-wearing librarians in glasses and buns shush anyone who so much as sneezes. Granted, I do tend to wear cardigans and I like to have my hair in a bun, but I am not the shushing monster librarian often portrayed in Hollywood. Instead I wish I could yell at the top of my lungs just how great libraries are. I want people to know how the Provo City Library can help them and how the library can change their lives just as it has for me. Only, I can’t do it alone. Will you join me? Do you love your library? Can you tell a friend about the Provo City Library—so that they too will learn just how amazing libraries are and how libraries can change the world, one person and one community at a time? Will you share what you love about the library?