There’s a place, probably right in your hometown, where you can find books, movies, classes and seminars all at no cost to you. What is this wonderful spot? Your free public library, of course.
The library is a quiet place where phones are kept hidden and people speak softly, a refuge from the loud and sometimes boisterous world. You can wander among the bookshelves to find new authors while rediscovering old ones. No one rushes you, so you can take your time looking for whatever it is you desire that day. Do you want a mystery to challenge your mind, a thriller to scare you, or a comedy to make you laugh? How about a self-help book to learn crocheting or sewing, or one on how to refinish your great-aunt’s cedar chest? Or do you have dreams of becoming a writer or painter? There are plenty of books to help you accomplish your goals. If for some reason you cannot get to your local library that often, many have eBooks and even eReaders on loan so you can download your choices right from home.
For children, libraries are a gold mine of information and fun. Many offer puppet shows, storytimes, book bingos and much more. Take your kids when they’re young, even before they can read, and let them pick out their own books. Give them an appreciation of the stories inside and let their imaginations add to them. Help them discover new worlds and ideas between the covers. Enroll them in classes so they can make new friends and learn new skills. If you have teens, there may be classes that offer tips for saving for college, homework help, and computer coding tutorials.
For adults, there are usually a variety of classes and activities that may focus on everything from using social media and tax return preparation to yoga and book clubs. Many libraries also offer museum passes, so you and your family and friends can visit for free or at drastic discounts. This opens up a whole new world for many who could not afford it otherwise.
Libraries have greatly expanded their services over the years, so take advantage of all they have to offer. Either stop in or go to your local website for more information.
Written for The Country Register published across the U.S. and Canada.