Pick up free books or drop off your extras at one of three Little Free Libraries built in Downtown Halifax recently, courtesy of The Word on the Street. New signs on the libraries now feature the Book and Magazine Festival date: Saturday, Sept 16, 2017, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Halifax Central Library, with upwards of 10,000 people expected.
Downtown Halifax Business Commission’s Gritty to Pretty grant program funded the little library venture. Volunteers built and installed them to add a pick-me-up to their locations. Each one is designed to reflect its neighborhood theme. At the back corner of the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic near the playground, one mimics a sea shanty. Another at Scotia Square, consists of filing cabinets painted with a Halifax Harbour Bridge. The third, is a little house at 1343 Barrington Street, a Paramount Management property.
“The festival promotes all forms of literacy and little libraries bring books to where you live and work all year round,” said Lesley Dunn, Chair of Halifax’s The Word on The Street. “It’s been a truly beneficial partnership with Downtown Halifax Business Commission and the property owners who’ve allowed the libraries in their space.”
“Little Free Libraries is a great initiative that has really taken off recently,” said Paul MacKinnon, Executive Director of Downtown Halifax Business Commission. “These small libraries make a positive impact on the pedestrian experience. Passersby can pick out a free book to read while enjoying the sun in Grand Parade or on the Waterfront. What better way to experience Downtown Halifax on a beautiful day?”
“They’re well used,” added Rose Poirier, Word on the Street Board Member, who spearheaded the project. “Little libraries give you a bite-sized experience while going to a large, regular library gives you the full meal deal. I’ve overheard people walking by say, ‘Do you have one of these in your neighborhood? I wish we had one in ours.’”
Library builders were Jim and Dave McDonald and Adrian LeClaire, as well as Halifax Makerspace, a community group of people who enjoy making things with skills from carpentry to 3D-printing.