This past week, legendary IU coach Bob Knight came and spoke for free to raise money for the library and celebrate the life of a woman who supported her community. It all started with a man waking from a dream and deciding to act to save a resource that's valuable to the city. Seems unreal. It seemed unreal to us, but after months of planning, eleven-hundred people filled a venue. And it was awesome.
In the fourth grade, my elementary school put together a project to teach kids how to bind books. The catch...you had to write the book that was being bound. While the rest of the girls in my class wrote about unicorns and princesses, I wrote a little story about Bob Knight being kidnapped by Gene Keady, winning the big game with seconds left, and finding buried treasure in the basement of Assembly Hall. I got an A+. For some reason, I saved the book I wrote twenty years ago. This past week, the ten year old girl in me did a happy dance when the coach signed the book and actually smiled. (Sidenote: Mike the Garden Gnome came along to the reception where I met Knight, but after seeing his stereotypical stoic, "grouchy" expression, the usually courageous traveler shook with fear my bag - I'm saying I totally chickened out...)
We've been fortunate. Luckily we started telling our story a few years ago. We wanted our community to know what we do on a daily basis. We wanted the patrons and professionals in our city to understand that we are far more than just a building of books. We are resume builders, job seekers, teachers, mentors, and friends. Support your local library. While you may not need all the resources it has to offer, your neighbor might, and they deserve the availability to learn and grow.