Auburn Public Library: Gateway to your future

By Lynn Lockwood, Director

A historic organization dating back to 1891, Auburn Public Library has always been about connecting people to the written word. Books are still a high priority, but these days, the library also connects people to the Internet, to jobs, to learning, and to each other.

The spacious, airy building at the corner of Court and Spring Streets is the result of a 2006 expansion of the original 1904 Carnegie library building, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Knowing how important a library is to a community, people from every segment of the population donated toward making it an award-winning meeting place: children collected pennies, adults attended gala fundraisers, and businesses made pledges. Since its reopening, the library’s staff has developed many ways for the city to benefit from its own generosity, providing materials and programs for people transitioning to new families, new careers, or new life situations.

As a Family Place Library, parents with young children enjoy special materials on childrearing, and can attend parent-child workshops, trading tips with other new parents and consulting with area experts, preparing their children to be healthy, happy learners. Pre-readers and young readers flock to story times and to the many children’s programs held throughout the year. Families can take field trips to area museums at low or no cost through the Museum Pass program.

Teens find an after-school haven in the library. Popular teen offerings include Anime Club and Teen Open Mic Night, where teens can practice their art and get feedback from their peers. A future initiative called Young Adult Lifeline will help older teens and adults find instant answers to problems such as renting an apartment, registering to vote, or financing college.

Adults seeking a new job or career change have benefitted from browsing the Jobs and Education collections, set apart from the rest of the nonfiction collection for convenience. The reference staff can help job seekers fill out online applications. Brand-new computer users find help in the popular “Ready, Get Set, Take It Slow” class.

APL’s newest book purchases are easy to locate on the first floor, and the staff loves to discuss what they’re reading and help point patrons to their next great novel. And the new InfoNet Download library brings over a thousand books to their computers, for free.

Another future offering will be the Fifty Plus Club, enabling older adults to talk to one another and learn from one another as they move toward retirement. Career and family changes, and health and financial concerns will all be addressed through in-house materials, website information, and programs that address their needs.

Whether you want to surf the ‘Net, read a favorite novel, or voice your opinion, the Auburn Public Library is ready to meet your need for fun and learning, alone or with friends and family, at any stage of life.

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