Not just books

by | Aug 10, 2023

Woodstock’s L.P. Fisher Public Library offers many community programs.

When library director and Woodstock resident Jenn Carson was a child, the library was a place for reading exclusively, with the only activity offered there being a summer reading club for youth.

Today, libraries are different, said the director of Woodstock’s L.P. Fisher Public Library.

“We see libraries as a third place,” said Carson, meaning it’s a place other than work and home where people can enjoy themselves without spending money.

Besides various fitness-based activities such as yoga, running, and cycling, the library now offers services such as loaning skateboards, biking and skating protective gear, kites, hiking poles, snowshoes, and ukeleles.

The library has also made its services accessible for all by offering many options for disabled people, namely a magnification machine, audiobooks, dyslexic font books, wheelchair ramps, an elevator, and braille books.

Free-to-use computers and a weekly-stocked snack cart are available.

They also offer free board games, knitting and colouring clubs, and a summer reading club.

All programs offered are free of charge.

The goal of these programs, explained Carson, is to provide a space in the community where everyone feels welcome.

She said the library has plans for a gallery room where artists can display their work and a residence program wherein an author or artist will receive a stipend to work on their art and to provide related services to the public, such as a painting class.

Recently, the library and the Woodstock Trans Canada Trail created “Story Trails,” where children can read a book posted along the walking path, with the first book selected being “I.Q, gets fit!” by Mary Ann Fraser.

To manage this collaboration, the library hired summer student Jenna A. Rees to improve the trails and help with the library’s youth programs.

However, these programs and plans are even more expansive than the library staff can think of, as people are encouraged to use the community room at the library for any events they might want to put on.

The L.P. Fisher Library in Woodstock offers the Dalton Camp Canadiana Centre, dedicated to works by, for, and about Canada and Canadians and the Raymond Genealogical Centre featuring family histories from the Carleton County area with census records, local papers and telephone records all on microfilm back to 1849.

For further inquiries about the library, contact them via their Facebook page.

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