Neighborhood libraries

Published 10:40 am Friday, June 2, 2017

Neighborhood libraries

Austin Redwine checks out the selection inside the Little Free Library at Pope Country Cafe.
The Panolian photo by Rita Howell

By Rita Howell
Maybe you’ve seen the purple wooden boxes outside two local businesses. They are actually cabinets filled with books. And there’s no lock on them. In fact, readers are encouraged to take a book, or leave a book to share. (There’s no slot to slide in payment, either.)
They’re Little Free Libraries, installed in a collaboration between the Batesville Public Library and the South Panola High School Career and Technical Education Department’s construction technology class.
The idea is to increase access to books and foster a love of reading among people of all ages and backgrounds in the community, according to the Little Free Library Web site.
They are part of a growing movement that now includes 50,000 Little Free Library book exchanges in all 50 states and over 70 countries around the world, the site noted.
Batesville Library partnered with Pope Country Cafe and Cole’s Sundry in the project, according to Alice Pierotti of First Regional Library.
Students of Glenn McCain at SPHS designed, built and installed the Little Free Libraries.
These Little Free Libraries join the one soon to be erected in Trussell Park by the Strehle family.
The books were supplied by the First Regional Library and the selection includes a variety of books for children and adults.
“Little Free Library book exchanges have a unique, personal touch,” the LFL Web site says. “There is an understanding that real people are sharing their favorite books with their community; Little Libraries have been called ‘mini-town squares.’”

At the installation of the Little Free Library on Patton Lane were (from left) Justin Pope, Luke Ellis, Spencer Davis, Parrish Lee Red, Ben Kirkland, Glenn McCain, Batesville head librarian Hanna Lee, Cole’s Sundry proprietor Edith Cole.
Photo provided

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