Public libraries may just be the best kept secret for those not familiar with their vast array of services. Imagine a place where so much information and entertainment are contained within the same building and open to everyone. Where everything is free or extremely inexpensive to obtain and there are even people to help you find what you are thinking that you want.
Everyone knows that libraries are full of books, but the mistake is that they think that may be the extent of the treasures available. The brilliant thing about the library is that you can get all types of books and keep them for a while to read and this service is almost always free. The only cost is usually quite small and associated with getting a book from another library if your does not have it. Even paying this fee few dollars or so is much cheaper than buying the book if you love to read and can’t afford to buy each book you are interested in. The other cost comes from overdue books but even that is generally inexpensive to pay unless you are very delinquent.
If you are a student or find a subject you want to learn more about. The public library is ideal for access to knowledge and the pricey textbooks or other non-fiction items that you don’t want to spend money on. Think about it, doing a report for class or work can be stressful enough without having to incur extra cost. The other benefit is the knowledge of the librarian who knows all the tricks to finding exactly the right book. Old newspapers that you may have already disposed of are easy to find there too. Or maybe you don’t want to buy the local paper every day. Maybe you want newspapers for other cities that you can find at the library but nowhere else nearby.
A lot of libraries are branching into other areas of media to serve a broader spectrum of people. Books on tape for those not as confident in their own reading skills are becoming more abundant. This service is perfect for older people as well who enjoy literature and have a fixed budget. Listening materials include compact discs with music that you can try before you go buy it.
A lot of libraries also offer DVDs for patrons to borrow for a low cost. This is perfect for families that want to have a movie night and can’t afford to buy tickets to relatively new movies or just want a nice night in together. A selection of TV series on DVD are also available and may be the best way to spend a frosty weekend or some time when you may be sick or otherwise unable to go out and about. Documentaries are another tool for research or great entertainment.
Public libraries are moving towards the modern to serve their patrons as well. Probably the majority of libraries have computers with internet for the public to use. They can research, surf the net and print off pages. There are fax machines to accompany these media centers as well. These technological centers are often equipped to assist in genealogy research whether personal or of those that are famous. To make all this more attainable to the public, there are usually classes offered for free educate those interested in progressing their skills.
There may be other services that are unique to some libraries with larger budgets or more donations but they all cater to the needs of everyone from newborn to elderly. The library is a place you can go with no money in your pocket and leave with something to do for a weekend. Public libraries are great places to spend time with your kids away from the TV or video games or by yourself to simply relax.