Valentine's Day isn't the only thing happening on February 14—it's also a day to pay some respect to your local library by celebrating Library Lover's Day. We don't observe every random holiday around here, but libraries are definitely worthy of our affection.
I am the product of two nerdy librarians, so my love for them runs deep. I'm especially enamored with the Columbus Metropolitan Library, my local system. They always have what I need, I can read the New Yorker while sitting on a comfy couch, AND they let me bring in coffee. I spend more time writing there instead of Starbucks—it's more comfortable and there are way more tables.
CML has been rated a 5-Star Library by Library Journal's American's Star Libraries for seven of the eight years the magazine has published its industry ratings. With 23 branches and 13 partner libraries in the area, they have an extremely comprehensive database. I almost always get the books, movies, and music I request online within days, and I can pick which branch I want to go for pick-up.
Not only do they have everything I need when I want it, they are working hard to reduce strains on their community's most disenfranchised. As of January 1 this year, CML eliminated the use of overdue fines on ALL borrowed library materials! In another effort to remove barriers, the library system also doesn't require proof of residency, meaning that those without shelter are still able to have access to their resources. Additionally, it means out-of-state transplants missing their old library can still access their e-books.
Not to mention, the main branch of CML is gorgeous (even more so since its renovation was completed last year). Go for the gardens, stay for the free access to everything you want, both on and off the New York Times best sellers list. I'll probably be living there all summer, because it's beautiful—and also beacuse I don't have central air.
If you don't have a library card, go grab one. It'll only take a few minutes, and most systems have great online resources for when you don't have time browse in person. Note too that your local legislators take into consideration the number of cardholders in their districts when they make important decisions about funding. Show them you love your library by signing up!
What do you love about your library? Tell us in the comments.