“According to the founder of the Little Free Libraries movement, Madison is the city that made it all possible — and, this weekend, Madison will receive the organization’s first “City of Distinction” award in recognition of that. “When I started this, I thought to myself, ‘Where in this country would you test this to see if it’s viable?” said Todd Bol, creator of the movement that now spans the globe. “I thought it had to be a fairly innovative, progressive place that would embrace literacy and family and community and I thought: ‘Madison.’” (via Madison.com)
“Carter and Rachel Popoff have always been voracious readers. As kids, the now teen siblings from Brampton loved snuggling up on the couch with their parents and a good book. They would spend summers raising thousands of dollars for their school library through lemonade stands and would never refuse a trip to Chapters to expand their home collection. So last year, when their mother took the hundreds of tales they amassed through their childhood and turned them into a little free library on the quiet, sidewalk-free Byng St. side of their corner-lot house on Mill St. South, the pair adored watching families stroll up to the nook to take or return books.” (via Toronto Star)
“Since Liz Siegel and Greg Jacobs live two blocks from the Sulzer Regional Library in Lincoln Square, logic would dictate that there really is no need for their sidewalk kiosk stocked with free books for anyone. But there is. The couple is part of the Little Free Library movement, a grass-roots wave of people around the world who are dedicating time and money to maintaining a free-standing book exchange on their front lawns, all in the name of literacy and community building. “I love the conversations with strangers it sparked,” says Siegel, 46, a curator at the Art Institute of Chicago. She, her husband and two daughters will often sit on their porch and talk to strangers about the books they might leaf through. They’ve met neighbors they had never met in their many years living in Lincoln Square.” (via Chicago Tribune)
“Maybe “little” isn’t such an apt description anymore of those book houses people put up in their yards. Five years after Todd Bol put up the first Little Free Library in front of his house in Hudson, Wis., the grassroots book lending program has popped up everywhere from Iceland to Tasmania. There are about 25,000 Little Free Libraries around the globe today and it’s growing faster than ever. “We’re going to pass McDonald’s by Thanksgiving,” Bol said. “There’s going to be more Little Free Libraries than McDonald’s, which is great.” (via Minnesota Public Radio News)
“Neighbors and passersby along A Street in Petaluma can browse through an eclectic selection of books without visiting a yard sale or stepping into a library or bookstore. So can neighbors in Penngrove, Sebastopol, Forestville, Santa Rosa and hundreds of other towns throughout the country.
They’re inspired by a global literacy movement that started in Wisconsin in 2009 that requires no paperwork, library cards or currency, just an unspoken agreement. Want a book? Take one. Got too many? Leave one behind. But as so often happens, simple ideas have been derailed by critics. Officials in three cities — Los Angeles; Shreveport, La.; and Leawood, Kan. — received complaints about little libraries and were asked to investigate them as zoning code violations.” (via The Press Democrat)
Peter Cook used to make lots of trips to the Palms Library to donate books, but then he got a better idea. He’d seen little homemade lending libraries in yards here and there and decided to make his own.” I love working with wood and have a two-dollar theory that most actors have no control over their lives, so we search for things to do that we can control,” said Cook, who has appeared in dozens of movies and TV shows under his stage name Peter Mackenzie.” I put in a redwood post and went to a local liquor store and got some wine crates and screwed them into the post, and I wanted them low enough so kids could look at the books,” Cook said.” (via LA Times)
“The Montgomery County Library System soon will add a new offering to its usual items for check-out. Instead of just borrowing a book, selected county residents will be able to take a “Little Free Library” out on loan – and set it up in their neighborhood or in front of a business. Melissa Baker, library marketing and program coordinator, explained that Little Free Library is a movement started by Todd Bol and Rick Brooks in Wisconsin in 2009. Their vision was to create little boxes of books that would encourage the exchange of reading materials and foster a sense of community. The founders gained nonprofit status by 2012 – and have since inspired more than 15,000 Little Libraries to be raised in neighborhoods around the world.” (via Houston Chronicle)
“Residents in a cozy residential neighborhood off M-15 are trying to figure out why someone would take all the children’s books from two little free libraries off M-15 in Davison.
Kim Carter said she left her Juniper Drive home around 5 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 27 and came back a few hours later to discover the nearly 50 books in the library sitting on a bench in her front yard were all gone. “I was horrified,” said Carter, trying to grasp the thinking behind someone removing all the books. Typical users will borrow a book or keep one and it replace it with another read.” (via MLive.com)
When a 36-year-old bibliophile in Daegu, South Korea, sat down at his computer and googled the word “library,” he didn’t expect to find anything particularly noteworthy. But as DooSun You scrolled through the results, an appealingly anti-tech concept popped up. The Internet led him to Little Free Libraries—hand-built boxes where neighbors can trade novels, memoirs, comics, and cookbooks, and connect with each other in the process.” (via The Atlantic)
“Nine-year-old Spencer Collins will be able put his “Little Free Library” back in his front yard first thing in the morning. The Leawood City Council unanimously approved a temporary moratorium Monday night that exempts the little lending libraries from a city ordinance that prohibits structures in front yards. The moratorium, effective Tuesday, will last until Oct. 20. As soon as the moratorium passed, Mayor Peggy Dunn called Spencer to the front of the room to hand him a book for his library, an action that received applause from the audience.” (via The Kansas City Star)