The theme for National Library Week (April 4-10, 2021) is “Welcome to Your Library,” which promotes the idea that libraries extend far beyond the four walls of a building – and that everyone is welcome to use their services. During the pandemic libraries have been going above and beyond to adapt to our changing world by expanding their resources and continuing to meet the needs of their users. Whether people visit in person or virtually, libraries offer opportunities for everyone to explore new worlds and become their best selves through access to technology, multimedia content, and educational programs.
National Library Week was first celebrated in 1958 by the National Book Committee and has since evolved into an annual celebration highlighting the valuable role libraries, librarians, and library workers play in transforming lives and strengthening our communities.
The week’s celebrations include:
- Lakeview Library’s celebration:
At Lakeview Library, small cards asking people to share their favorite book, film or TV show, as well as what they love about the library will be shared via Curbside Pickup bags. Patrons can fill them out and return them in the book drop throughout the month of April. Once the cards start coming in, two librarians at Lakeview - Hannah Majeska and Madeleine Kain - will use them to create a vibrant window display.
“The interactive cards are a way of inviting patrons to celebrate National Library Week with us, at a distance,” said Majeska. “The display will also function as readers' advisory, where community members can see what others enjoy and maybe try it out for themselves.”
- First Day of National Library Week - Sunday, April 4
Madison Public Library will be sharing info about the ways in which the library serves the community, showcasing the services provided and encouraging social media followers to utilize the #MyLibraryIs hashtag to share their own experiences with the library. Be sure to tag @MadisonPublicLibrary on Facebook and Instagram or @MadisonLibrary on Twitter.
- State of American Libraries Report Release - Monday, April 5
The State of American Libraries report is an annual summary of library trends that outlines statistics and issues affecting all types of libraries during the previous calendar year. This report also includes a list of the Top 10 Most Challenged Books for 2020.
- National Library Workers Day - Tuesday, April 6
National Library Workers Day is a day for library staff, administrators, and Friends groups to recognize the valuable contributions made by all library workers. Stories From A Distance, a community story gathering project about peoples’ experiences of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 included many stories from library workers. Hear them speak in their own words about what the early days of the pandemic were like at madpl.org/libraryvoices.
- National Library Outreach Day – Wednesday, April 7
April 7 is National Bookmobile Day! The Dream Bus has been on the road for two years and, in 2020, continued to bring books out to the community during lockdown. Throughout the past year, the Dream Bus circulated 2,293 items and during summer 2020 they gave away 1,300 free book/craft bags! These items didn't need to be checked out, so families could keep them as long as they needed! In the past year, Dream Bus stops also served as locations for people to return absentee ballots, register to vote, fill out the census, and more! When winter hit, the Dream Bus shifted gears and partnered with MSCR sites and community centers to make bi-weekly book drops at 23 community locations. You'll hear more about what the Dream Bus has planned this summer soon! Learn more about the Dream Bus. #DreamBusLibrary
- Library Giving Day - Wednesday, April 7
The Madison Public Library Foundation’s role is to bridge the financial gap between publicly funded library services and all the experiences that library staff want to deliver to the community. They raise millions of dollars each year for collections, technology, programs, professional development, equity and innovation projects, capital campaigns, endowments and the Wisconsin Book Festival.
“Madison’s libraries have always played a crucial role in our lives and our children’s lives — not only by supporting our reading habits, but also by providing family programming and public educational opportunities that benefit the entire community.” —HILARY & ERIK SHAGER, monthly donors to Madison Public Library Foundation
- Take Action for Libraries Day – Thursday, April 8
Library users are encouraged to contact their members of Congress, urging them to support the Build America's Libraries Act. #BuildLibraries
- Share YOUR Library Story – Friday, April 9
Throughout the week, or specifically on Friday, library users are invited to share why they love their library. It may be because of a fantastic event, a free media service, a community gathering tool, or something else entirely! Library users are invited to post a story with the hashtags #MyLibraryIs and tag @MadisonPublicLibrary to get involved with the national campaign to share stories through short videos and photos.
- Last Day of National Library Week - Saturday, April 10
Madison Public Library went Fine Free in August 2020 and recently finished manually clearing fines from 33,503 library records. “Madison Public Library is proud to support our commitment to equity and literacy. By eliminating nearly all overdue fines and ceasing to use a collections agency, we want to encourage even more Madisonians to use the library by removing those barriers to library services,” said Library Director Greg Mickells. “Especially now, we need to make our libraries more accessible.”
Learn what library card is right for you - Full-use, Virtual, Organizational - and sign up at madpl.org/apply.
Follow along and share your own content for National Library Week 2021: