World Book Day Meanderings

The public library is one of the best places to spend an hour or so each weekend.  I’m glad many parents feel the same way. More often, entire families are queued in the check-out line with their hands carrying books. As I notice the eagerness most of the kids show for the reading materials, I feel more confident about the future of the world.

It’s good to see how parents encourage their children to read and to visit the public library.  They’re carving out time from their busy weekends to dedicate an hour or so in favor of the intellectual development of the children. Apparently, most of the parents are also avid readers, because I notice they have selected a few titles to bring home from the library trip.

Even though we have many Internet sources for books, ebooks, and other information, I prefer brick and mortar places to browse and purchase books. Unfortunately, the last of the general interest book stores in my town went out of business a couple of years ago. The only place left is the public library.

Thankfully, the town’s powers that be understand the value of having an excellent public library. A major reconceptualization and expansion of our library is currently underway.  The present shelves and media centers have been temporarily concentrated into a smaller area to allow for construction crews to begin their work.

I’m probably not the only person who is excited about the renovation activity.  Parents and children are undoubtedly curious about the nuts and bolts of building construction, too. The construction will be a real-time, real-life audio-visual learning tool that all the library patrons can witness for themselves over the next year and a half. So our library will be a major hub of activity during this time.

All the added excitement will help motivate more people to browse the shelves for books.  In turn, this will encourage more folks to develop reading habits. At least, more books will get into the hands of more people.

Perhaps many of the people will visit the library today to find reading material for today’s World Book Day. World Book Day is a celebration of books and reading that takes place around the globe each April 23rd. The annual event is sponsored by UNESCO to inspire people to become enthusiastic readers. So far, more than 100 countries officially celebrate the event.

There is also a World Book Night coordinated by “The Reading Agency” a UK based charity that helps encourage reading by helping organizations distribute books to special audiences. The British organization focuses on adults and children with low literacy levels who do not read for pleasure; isolated elderly people; men and women in UK’s prisons; the LGBTQ community; and other vulnerable population groups. Books from publishers have been donated with the needs and interests of the people in mind.

Although a similar program in the United States has disbanded, due to lack of funding, World Book Night is still promoted by schools, libraries and civic groups across the country.

Today’s the day. Celebrate World Book Day and Night in your own special way. Buy a book at a store, check out a book at the public library, or select one from your own personal collection. Then sit back and enjoy it.

The Blue Jay of Happiness likes this thought from the Argentine writer Jorge Luis Borges: “I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.”


About swabby429

An eclectic guy who likes to observe the world around him and comment about those observations.
This entry was posted in Books, cultural highlights, Hometown, Meanderings, Youth and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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