An ever-changing library

Published 9:11 pm Monday, January 13, 2020

With so much information available to most people with just a few clicks, it might be hard for some people to see how public libraries are still relevant today.

If you’re one of those people, we’re happy to tell you that there are lots of reasons libraries are more relevant than ever before.

Some of the ways the Suffolk Public Library is growing, changing and adapting were highlighted in its Annual Impact Report for 2018-2019, which we reported on recently. The library experienced a 33-percent increase in attendees of library events during that year. One of those events was the Flip the Switch technology event, which showcased emerging technologies for attendees to experience. It’s this kind of experiential learning that has kept the library and its patrons on their toes.

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The public library’s partnership with the nonprofit organization Friends of the Suffolk Public Library brought in cash donations to help fund the reading challenges, along with other supportive efforts.

And what about the traditional library roles? Well, visits to the libraries also increased by 7 percent, and the number of newly issued cards increased by 9 percent. Reading challenges encouraged readers of all ages to log books read.

What’s more, the library is becoming a more and more important place for those who are marginalized in the rest of society, those who need help connecting to community resources and those doing specialized research like learning about their family history.

We think Suffolk’s libraries do a great job, and this report only confirmed it.

If you haven’t visited one of Suffolk’s public libraries in a while, we challenge you to pay a visit and “check out” not just the books, but everything they have going on. We guarantee it will be worth your while.