The third week in October is National Friends of Libraries Week. This may be an unfamiliar term. Friends of Libraries are groups which operate on the local level to promote their local libraries. Friends groups often hold interesting seminars and other informational meetings. They raise money for their local libraries, for there is not a library anywhere which has money to buy all the materials they want. They often spearhead expansion projects. They may run book sales. My local Friends group runs a perpetual book sale in the library garage. It’s called the Bookie Joint. Gift books which the library can’t use, and older books weeded from the collection are for sale there for very reasonable prices. It’s open two or three times a week and is often quite busy.
If your library has a Friends group, find out how you can get involved. If it doesn’t, the American Library Association has information on how to get one started. You can find all sorts of useful information about Friends groups here. Your librarian will thank you. Don’t know if your library has a Friends group? Ask your local librarians. They will know. My local library has a link to our Friends group on the main Web page. It clearly states who the Friends are, what they do, when they meet, and how to get involved.
But whether or not you join an official Friends group, I urge everyone reading this to become a friend to their local library. They serve an important purpose in this information age, particularly for people with fewer resources. I don’t know what I’d do without my library!
Quotes about libraries
Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future.–Ray Bradbury
Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation.–Walter Cronkite
What is more important in a library than anything else – than everything else – is the fact that it exists.–Archibald MacLeish
We may sit in our library and yet be in all quarters of the earth.–John Lubbock
What in the world would we do without our libraries?–Katharine Hepburn
The very existence of libraries affords the best evidence that we may yet have hope for the future of man.–T. S. Eliot
To Whom It May Concern: Welcome to the library where no one will tell you what to read or tell you what to think…. Meanwhile a book over there on a shelf will be glancing at you sideways getting up the courage to ask you out make you laugh make you cry make you fall in love.–Meg Rosoff
To ask why we need libraries at all, when there is so much information available elsewhere, is about as sensible as asking if roadmaps are necessary now that there are so very many roads.–Jon Bing
A public library is the most enduring of memorials, the trustiest monument for the preservation of an event or a name or an affection; for it, and it only, is respected by wars and revolutions, and survives them.–Mark Twain
The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library.–Albert Einstein
Most people don’t realize how important librarians are. I ran across a book recently which suggested that the peace and prosperity of a culture was solely related to how many librarians it contained. Possibly a slight overstatement. But a culture that doesn’t value its librarians doesn’t value ideas and without ideas, well, where are we?–Neil Gaiman
You could go to a secret corner of the library where the only people talking are between the covers of books. They speak so softly that you can only hear them in your head as you read about forests and oceans and deserts and caverns and museums and a thousand other things.–Douglas Wood
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