Thanks for Geeking the Library
What do you Geek? That question usually raises an eyebrow. But, I’ve been surprised at how quickly people got the gist of “geeking-something,” as a playfully-invented verb onto itself, synonymous with one’s personal pursuits of intellectual or recreational enrichment.
Ferndale Public Library patrons were encouraged, late this summer and into the autumn, to proclaim “what they geek” as a means of spreading awareness about the vital role libraries fill for individuals and the community. That whatever-you-geek – the library supports you, expanding your access to your passions, hobbies and interests.
The goal of library-Geeking was to tacitly draw attention to the tenuous issues of funding for public libraries. National studies show library usage is increasing. Yet budgets across the nation are either stagnant or slashed to the point of shortened hours, cuts to staff or, worse, indefinite closures. That’s not anything we’re getting up on a soapbox about. We at the Ferndale Public Library count ourselves lucky, (91% of our funding comes from our dedicated millage, passed in 2007, with the rest coming from penal fines, patron fines and donations).
What we’ve learned from the Geek campaign is the public library’s value to any and every community – as access hubs for those lacking internet service; as educational resource centers for those seeking expansions of skillsets in the job market; and places to ameliorate literacy rates (for both books and computers). We at the Ferndale Public Library are happy, week-in-and-week-out, each year, to bring you the best service and most enriching materials, as well as facilitate what, in many ways, is much more a community center than any traditional perception of a “library” (i.e.: a place to check out books or movies).
Truly, the real point of this letter is to say to all of Ferndale: Thank you. Thank you for supporting us. Thank you for Geeking us!