“Secret” Things the Library Can Do for You (Part 1)


shh. secret - Young boy with his finger over his mouth


Ok, they aren’t really secrets, but there are some things we offer here at the library that may as well be. Often, my family and friends are surprised by something I refer to. Maybe it’s because these aren’t programs that are featured in our bi-monthly newsletter, but services that we always offer. Or maybe we have to work on tooting our own horn. So in the interest of tooting, here are some of things I wish more people knew they could get from us.  There are a ton of these, but I’m going to start by mentioning four, and save the rest for next time.


Personalized book recommendations

One thing I wish more people knew about is how much staff LOVE giving book recommendations. It’s not always a quick process, but we love searching out new books for you. Talk to your local library person and see what happens! Side note – we might consult our website or our NoveList service, which you can also access yourself with your library card. You can search for books by appealing terms like “character-driven,” and “suspenseful”.


We’re not quiet

ottomancomedy jpgI’m always amused when people assume the library is still a quiet place. I suppose it can be sometimes. But we also host groups socializing, friends meeting up, kids running around and climbing on our animal ottomans and lots of programming in our public areas, like Folk Fest (for adults and kids), Library Out Loud, Comedy Fest, storytelling and more.


A spot just for you

All of our 20 locations have comfy armchairs for lounging and tables to work at. We have desks with plugs nearby for laptops and other gadgets. Some areas of the library are busier and noisier and welcome groups. Other sections tend to be quieter. Staff can tell you which are which. Millennium, Louis Riel, Henderson, and Sir William Stephenson Libraries all have Tutorial rooms that are great for small groups, and a large dedicated quiet study room. Check here for more information about booking a room. And of course our much-photographed sunny terrace.


Bonus tip: You can now tour all of Millennium Library streetview-style! Check out all the little corners you may not have had a reason to visit in person yet:


Cheap used books (and free for non-profits!)

All branches have ongoing used book sales where you can pick up A BAG OF BOOKS for $5.60. That’s right. A BAG. Some of these are withdrawn from our collection, but many were donations. All money goes toward new books for the library. So you can load up and help the library at the same time. Also, non-profits can get books for free. It’s true.


My circle drawing skills need some work!


I can’t let you go without reminding you of our worst-kept secret – we are always planning a zillion programs for you. We’re trying lots of things in the spring that we’ve never done before!

More secrets to come! Or for a sneak peek, chat with your local branch and they’ll fill you in.


Keep on reading!

– Erica


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