At our quiet corner of North Fowler Street and Church Street in Bishop, there’s a small but mighty new institution a Little Free Library! Thanks to your support, we’ve been able to install this free community resource outside our office at 250 North Fowler Street for you and all our neighbors to enjoy. Reading changes lives, and this Little Free Library is already lighting up our neighborhood with the power of sharing books!
Stop by anytime – books will now always be available for exchange inside the box at the top of this small structure! We encourage everyone to come here to take a book or share a book anytime. The structure itself looks like an oversized wooden mailbox, and its construction was a fun community effort. Our awesome student volunteers from Orange Lutheran High School built the underlying structure, which was then decorated by our Land Conservation Program Director Susanna Danner with beautiful detailed paintings of Eastern Sierra native species on each side. While an acrylic rendition of a Halictid Bee graces the back of the Library, illustrations of a male Anna’s Hummingbird and a male Owens Pupfish wrap around each side. If you don’t come by here for the books, definitely come look at this incredible scientific artwork!
The first Little Free Library was built only 10 years ago in Hudson, Wisconsin, and already they are an international phenomenon. Today there are over 90,000 libraries worldwide in over 90 countries, and they exchange millions of books each year. Users frequently report that their local Little Free Library has led them to meet new neighbors and to read books they otherwise wouldn’t have read.
They look quiet, but these community resources are lively they build community, spark creativity, and inspire readers. And pedestrians on North Fowler Street have noticed that our library is no exception. The books inside are different almost every day, indicating that books circulate quickly through our neighborhoods. For example, a Steven King novel that appeared in the collection early on was picked up within the week. A North Fowler Street resident later told us that he had relished the book, which was a favorite from his childhood. The Little Free Library is full of picture books for kids right now, including beautiful Winnie the Pooh books and Clifford the Big Red Dog paperbacks.
“Every day, I look out my window and see folks reviewing the book titles, then taking one or more,” says our Executive Director Kay Ogden. “Sometimes people come by just to share a few books with others. I love seeing how many people are participating!”
So if you’re looking for some good summer reading for yourself or your family members, definitely stop by our new Little Free Library. Let our local community put new thoughts in your head, in your life, and in your summer! Thanks to you, we’re influencing our community by helping folks quietly connect this season – by sharing powerful thoughts and ideas, locally.