The Fayetteville Public Library has been named the Library Journal Library of the Year. It was named one of the TravelSmart "15 Landmark American Libraries." It was designated a LEED Silver Certified building by the U.S. Green Building Council. But nothing makes me more proud of our library than its magnificent Summer Reading Programs for children and students.
A fine editorial in today's Northwest Arkansas Times takes the occasion of the latest Harry Potter book launch to comment on more than the commercial impact of the book and to focus on the importance of reading -- both for our children and ourselves. "During the summer months it could be especially advantageous to try getting young people hooked on reading. It sparks the imagination. It evokes creativity. And even if our kids fill their heads with all sorts of facts and figures in school, they won’t know what to do with it without imagination and creativity.
"Now is the time to use literature to inspire the imagination, and get children thinking thoughts that might not have seemed possible even a short while ago. We need to get our kids busy dreaming big and, consequently, thinking big, too. Parents should make sure that Taj Mahal of a library downtown isn’t just a symbol, but an actual fountain of knowledge fully taken advantage of.
"Speaking of which, there’s no reason the Harry Potter reading craze need be for children only. That world-class public library gives everyone a chance to open up our minds through reading."