Social Library, Volume 57

Jennifer Peterson /

Image courtesy Stark County District Library on Facebook With a new edition of the Social Library, we're excited to share an innovative branding strategy, a guest appraiser, a sing-along worthy of a Prince, book spine poetry and an important annual fundraiser. These examples of library engagement show that efforts can be comprehensive or simple, timely or recurring, but always meaningful to their communities. If you'd like to see your library featured in the Social Library series, please let us know via, or find us on Facebook.

  • Stark County District Library in Ohio caught our eye with their innovative branding as The Smart Store, "where everything is free." A wonderful video from 2014 introduces the marketing approach and is used on their website and in their quarterly newsletters, most recently in their spring Smart Store Guide (pdf).
  • The Saint Paul Public Library in Minnesota is hosting What's It Worth, an opportunity to meet with professional appraiser Mark Moran for a free consultation and appraisal of "an heirloom or garage-sale find you think might be worth something." What a great way to host your own library Antiques Roadshow-style event! Every community has collectors, so even with out a professional appraiser, your library could bring the community together with some show-and-tell and guess work. Include a cart with all the library's collectors price guides, and perhaps a few guidelines. Saint Paul includes this specification in the promotion: "Coins/money, weapons, fine jewelry/gems and Beanie Babies are excluded."

  • We were saddened to learn of Prince's passing last week, but grateful to see libraries honoring his life with mention of access to his music, including an upcoming Purple Rain Sing-Along to be hosted at the Seattle Public Library. The screening is part of the Library's African American Film Series celebrating black actors, directors and films depicting the African American experience. Image courtesy 
Seymour Library on Facebook
  • And as National Poetry Month wraps up, we're pleased to share Book Spine Poetry from staff and patrons at the Seymour Library in Brockport, NY. Not only is this a brilliant way to bring out the poet in everyone, it's also a simple way to display a stack of books for patrons to browse, or even a cart full of books for experimental shelvers.

Thanks to all of this week's featured libraries for such outstanding service to your communities!