Last October, reporter Helen O’Neill visited Mineral Point, WI, and was charmed. The article she wrote was released a few days ago by the Associated Press and was then picked up in the following media outlets: ABC News, Post Bulletin, Rochester, Minnesota, SF Gate, San Francisco California, The Charlotte Observer, DFW.com, Dallas-Fort Worth, The New Zealand Herald and The Daily Mail, United Kingdom.
That’s just a partial list.
One of the features of Mineral Point that captivated Ms. O’Neill were the Little Free Libraries.
“Whimsical free libraries — handcrafted miniature houses that look like birdhouses filled with books — are tucked into street corners.”
This Saturday, July 26, 2014, Mineral Point will celebrate these Little Free Libraries with a Little Free Walk and the unveiling of two new libraries. If you’re curious about these libraries and cannot attend this event, you can take your own tour anytime. After all, most places in Mineral Point are deemed a “Walker’s Paradise” by WalkScore.com.
This celebration coincides with a visit from Maya Stein and Amy Tingle, two poets traveling the US on a tandem bike to promote Little Free Libraries. When they’re not traveling the country on a tandem bike, they operate a mobile creativity company based in Nutley New Jersey, called Food for the Soul Train. It’s like Shake Rag Alley on wheels. Check them out on Facebook.
Maya and Amy began their most recent bike tour in Boulder, Colorado and will end in Beloit, Wisonsin. Right now their tour, “Type Riders II – The Tandem Poetry Tour” is in Iowa and heading our way. They arrive on Saturday, July 26th.
Mineral Point is proud to be one of the stops on this creative tour.
To celebrate their arrival, we will be holding a Little Free Walk for Little Free Libraries, this Saturday. Festivities begin at 3:30 p.m. at the Elementary School Garden, with the unveiling of a new Little Free Library donated by the family of former Elementary School Principal Anne Palzkill, and built by Anne’s brother. If you haven’t yet seen the school garden, that’s reason enough to attend the opening.
After the unveiling, we will tour the other Little Free Libraries in town including the following:
* The Elementary School Oak Savanna Little Free Library, contains more than 50 unique, laminated mini-field guides created by the students in last year’s 3rd grade class.
* At the Foundry Books‘ Little Free Library visitors are invited to leave Haiku. By the way, Foundry Books is hosting the Cradle of American Haiku festival July 25-27th.
* The Longbranch Gallery has one of the town’s first Little Free Libraries.
* Roland Sardeson has Little Free Libraries for sale on the Corner of High and Commerce. Roland built most of the Little Free Libraries in town.
* High Street Sweets‘ colorful Little Library is filled with children’s books.
* Shake Rag Alley has two Little Libraries. This one near the street contains arts and crafts books and was donated and constructed by Dr. Matt Michalski.
The other one is tucked into the grounds of Shake Rag Alley and houses children’s books. The interior has fairy drawings by elementary students.
The walk will culminate in a celebration at Pendarvis where they will unveil a new Little Free Library, that is currently being painted on the porch of High Street Sweets.
The total walk is approximately one mile. Refreshments will be served along the way. You can join or bail at any point.
The event is completely free and everyone is welcome.
- Contributed by the Hays