by Carol Lewis
We’ve got a big celebration coming up this spring, and it has to do with our library. Well, all our nation’s libraries, to be specific. National Library Week is April 8–14, and this will mark the 60th anniversary of the event, which began in 1958.
I was nine-years-old in 1958, and libraries had played a significant role in my life to that point. I loved to read, and by the age of nine, I was absorbing all kinds of books at a rapid rate. We couldn’t afford to buy a lot of books, so the library was the mother lode as far as I was concerned. Our town library, in Martinsville, Virginia, was then housed in an old two-story white house on Church Street. The old house smell and the creaking wooden floors will forever be associated in my mind with the excitement and pleasure of seeking out and discovering books like Heidi, the many Dr. Seuss books (Horton Hears a Who! was my particular favorite) and countless others. I can’t even imagine what my life would have been like without libraries.
National Library Week was originally established because research during the 1950s showed that Americans were reading less; radio, and especially television, had become popular and were transplanting reading to some extent. The theme of that first National Library Week was “Wake Up and Read!” Now, 60 years later, libraries are still going strong, despite many dire predictions to the contrary. In fact, the theme of this year’s National Library Week is “Libraries Lead.”
Today’s libraries are so much more than just a building to house books. Craig County’s little library, in addition to offering all kinds of media including books, ebooks, audiobooks and DVDs, is also a visitor center, with maps and brochures of our area; a technology center, with computers and internet service; and a popular meeting place as well. And through membership in local library consortia, it offers access to much larger collections in the region. It’s a place to connect with knowledge and learning in whatever form it is available. And our knowledgeable librarian and volunteer library assistants can help with many things, whether it be filling out a job application form, searching out a reference on an online catalog or locating that bestseller you’re dying to read.
I’m sure you’ll be hearing much more about the celebration of National Library Week as it gets closer. But in the meantime, use your library. Support your library. Cherish your library for the community treasure it is!
Thank you to all who donated to the Roanoke Valley Gives Campaign on March 14! You donated over $2,000 for improvements on the library lot!
April 15 – deadline for Photo Contest. Theme: Historic Treasures of Craig County. Submit photos to [email protected] Gift card prizes for Food Country for winners in three categories: children, teens and adults.
April 20 – stargazing night with Roanoke Valley Astronomy. Stay tuned for details!
April 21 – Community Yard Sale Day, sponsored by the Craig County Public Library.
We are encouraging everyone to have their spring yard sales on this day to generate a greater interest together! We will have a book sale that day. Please let us know if you are having a yard sale so we can help you spread the word.
Book Barn Book Sales: Ongoing all the time, just ask a library assistant for help! There are many treasures to be found!
Volunteer are always needed! We have large and small jobs, so just contact the Library Director or a board member if you want to help. We cannot do all we do without our volunteers!