One thing we pride ourselves on is providing an environment that helps build community. Not only do we offer an awesome collection of items people can check out and take home, but we provide spaces, toys, and activities that encourage kids and parents to socialize and play with others in the department. We frequently hear surprised patrons if it is their first time here. “I didn’t realize you had so much!”
Here are just a few activities you will find on your visit…
We have an amazing puppet theater with a stash of puppets that stay in the department just to make up creative, fun stories to share.
We offer a variety of blocks from large foam blocks to make big structures, to Lego Duplos, to Bristle Blocks.
We keep board games near the children’s desk and if you ask the librarian you can select a game to play during your visit. Coloring pages, crayons and occasionally other craft projects can also be found at the children’s desk. You can use these in the library or take color sheets home with you!
Our magnetic pillar is a big hit! Currently we have letters out, fun for leaving messages for friends or practicing ABC’s but we do swap these out with different activities from time to time so come in and check it out! We also have games attached to the walls for the very young. These games feature nursery rhymes and songs and are very durable.
Our oversized stuffed animal collection has been a favorite for many years. Let me give you some insider info on these! If the animals are on the floor, they are there to curl up and read with or play with. If you see some on top of the shelves, we ask that they stay there. These are animals that may be old and have had many visits to the stuffed animal “hospital” and can’t be played with anymore but still like to be out on display.
The AWE computers are a great resource! These have no internet connection, touch screens, and are preloaded with fun (and sneakily educational) games so any kiddo can play, from the very young to the middle grades.
We do have some toys we DON’T want you to play with in the library, but that is only because we want you to take them home instead! We have some awesome kits, puppets, and puzzles in special sections of the library. These items will be in special containers, like bags, totes, or boxes and will have a barcode.
These check out for 3 weeks like a library book and cost nothing to check out and play with. We encourage you to NOT play with these items at the library unless you have asked the librarian and there will be a grown-up supervising the play. As harsh as this may sound, it is with good reason, I promise.
If a puzzle piece, puppet, or pieces from a kit go missing, then we can’t let kids or their families check them out. They sit and wait until we can locate the pieces. If those can’t be found, the kits end up being withdrawn from our collection and the community loses that resource. We want to make sure anyone who wants to enjoy these has access so before grabbing one and opening it up at the library, talk to the librarian at the children’s desk first! We are happy to let a child play with them as long as they are only being used one at a time, under the supervision of a grown-up. We just ask you bring it back to the desk if you aren’t taking it home so we can check the pieces and reshelve it.