Getting the Most Out of Your Local Library (Library Lovers’ Month)

February is designated as Library Lovers’ Month to encourage people to visit and support their local public and school libraries. Too often, it seems, people think of a library as one thing — a repository for books. But there’s a lot more happening at your local library than you may know about!

Let’s take a look at some of those materials and activities you can take advantage of this month (and for the rest of the year).

  • Go Digital—If you’re a book-lover, then obviously a library seems like heaven on Earth. But even the best library can’t house everything. That’s why many libraries are now offering digital book services such as Overdrive for your tablets and e-readers, including the iPad, Kindle, and Nook. These services allow you to download eBooks, audiobooks, and even graphic novels and videos straight to your mobile device so that you can read them at home or on the go.
  • Ditch the Paid Online Services—Another service offered by most libraries is a great array of audio-visual materials. Are you tired of what’s on Netflix or Hulu? Then check out the library and browse its selection of DVDs. Along with the standard blockbusters, there’s usually some obscure foreign films as well as many classics. Are you getting tired of paying for Spotify or Audible? Libraries also offer audiobooks as well as CDs or albums that you can check out and take home.
  • Get Social—Many people think of the library as a place where you can’t talk or, if you do, not above a whisper. But the library is actually a great place to become socially active. Most libraries offer different kinds of social gatherings, including story time for kids (also known as break-time for moms) as well as other events such as film screenings and more. They may even have meeting rooms available for rent if you need one for your business or social group.
  • Get Financial Assistance—The library can also save you money! How, you ask? Well first, they offer tax information for free and allow you to print out tax forms and complete them at the library. Many libraries also offer free tax returns for Senior Citizens and for those who need assistance with the EZ forms. Libraries can also help you earn money by holding programs such as job fairs and career counseling.

If you aren’t sure what programs are available at your library, then take a visit today. Talk to a librarian! They aren’t the stodgy “No Talking!” stereotypes of old. Much more often, librarians are happy to help you learn more about their programs and offerings.