7 February 2008

Library Lovers Day, 14 Feb

In Australia St. Valentine's Day, February 14, has been adopted by the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA), and other organisations such as Public Libraries Australia, as a day for supporters to assert their love of their local library, and for libraries to show their appreciation of those who use them.

ALIA says that Australians are definitely library lovers. Some facts and figures: We borrow around 174 million items every year from our 1700 plus public libraries and just over half the population are registered borrowers, while 77,000 Australians use 5,000 internet computers in our public libraries every week.

Last year members of one of the US online groups that I belong to recounted how funding had run out for their local libraries and that they were having to close their doors until the next funding stream occurred. This article recounts the impact as Congress funding for libraries dried up early in 2007. At the time, I thought how I would react if my local council here in Adelaide withdrew their funding for the library network that I belong to. What a catastrophe it would be! And how much more expensive to "feed my reading habit".

See the Great Ideas page for how you can celebrate Library Lovers Day on February 14. They include delivering hampers to powerful people, decorating your library, playing romantic music over the public address system, hosting a morning tea, printing out some bookmarks, and having fun. As a supporter, let your library know that you appreciate and love them!

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