Read On! Nice Quiet Libraries

There’s a struggle in modern libraries. Are libraries quiet havens for reading, study, and contemplation or are libraries lively centers for communication, play, and creation? The short answer is, “yes.” Finding a balance between those needs in our building is difficult, but not impossible.

Our physical building limits some of what we can do to control noise levels – brick does not absorb sound well – but if you travel from West to East the library tends to get progressively quieter. Sometimes our Library Board meets in the Genealogy Department and we’re louder than the average bear, but generally, the East wing is the quietest place in the building.

If you’re looking for examples of when the library is at its loudest, poke your head in the Youth Services Department after school. You might find toddlers and pre-schoolers cooking in our play kitchen while kids in kindergarten through about sixth grade play Roblox on computers. Meanwhile our teens are likely practicing magic tricks (really) or socializing in the Teen Area. It’s a bustling place.

In the middle of the library toward the main checkout desk, I’ll be honest: the loudest thing is probably the staff. Our break room and staff kitchen are behind the desk, so we tend to socialize there. Feel free to tell us if we’re being too loud.

By the time you get through the computer lab, past the loud staff on break, and through the adult books, you’re in our quietest area: our Local History and Genealogy Department. Our East wing is not only a wonderfully atmospheric area of the building, but it’s also a great place to do research or study without much more than building noise.

We try to make the library a home to as many people as we can. If we can do something to make your time in the building better, please let us know.