‘There’s more to the story’…connect with your local library

Published 12:12 pm Tuesday, April 25, 2023

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April 23-29 is National Library Week. It’s a time to celebrate the contributions of libraries, librarians and library workers in communities nationwide.
The theme of the week is “There’s More to the Story,” and highlights the multifaceted role of libraries within the communities they serve. Libraries facilitate connection by providing access to resources such as technology, the internet and physical space that people can use to connect with each other. Patrons can connect with resources available from libraries such as books, digital assets, games and more. Library programming brings communities together for entertainment, education and connection through book clubs, story times, movie nights, crafting classes and lectures. Lastly, the 2023 theme is a call to action to join, visit and advocate for their libraries.
Monday of this week was designated as “Right to Read Day.” Across the nation, libraries face many challenges, ranging from funding issues to book bans. However, our librarians have stood tall to keep our libraries open and their resources accessible while protecting our intellectual freedom. Therefore, during this National Library Week, we recognize, honor, and celebrate every school and public librarian for your dedication, devotion, commitment, and most of all, your courage. We applaud your consistent efforts to bring high-quality books and other materials to the library to foster a learning environment that feels safe, inclusive, and educationally encouraging. Your work ensures that students and adults in every community have a safe learning environment where their literacy skills, cultural awareness and overall knowledge can be enhanced as well as expanded.
While one may not read every book in the library, there should be a book for everyone in the library. The rich diversity that is our strength must be proudly reflected in our libraries for all Tennesseans and for future generations. In essence, our libraries must be as rich and diverse as the people reflected across this county and city, state and nation…as all our past and current struggles and contributions are woven into the fabric of America.
Ronald Reagan, our 40th president, had no tolerance for the notion of restricting what students read. In defense of books and reading, he said: “So long as books are kept open, then minds can never be closed.”
Libraries continue to go above and beyond to keep their communities connected by expanding resources and embracing inclusion in their programming, resources and collections. Libraries across the country are making a difference in people’s lives by providing electronic learning resources and Wi-Fi access for students and workers who may lack internet access at home.
The Elizabethton-Carter County Public Library offers a wide array of programs and is supporting the community with services such as computers with printing and friendly staff that are also pleaded to offer research help and reading recommendations.
If you haven’t been to the library lately, we encourage you to stop and see what they have to offer. Libraries are full of stories. But there’s so much more to the story. Library programming brings communities together for entertainment, education, and connection through story time for children, to book clubs, crafting classes, genealogy research, and lectures.
Libraries and technologies are the heartbeat of our communities and schools, and the vessels by which students and adults gain access to the world; after all, as someone has said, “the library is the only place where you can go everywhere without having to go anywhere!”

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