I’ve always loved Golden, a suburb of Denver situated in a valley between the foothills and the flat top mesas that are North and South Table Mountains. As the capital of the Colorado Territory before we became a state, it has a vibrant and historical downtown (a rarity in the West), with a wonderful walkway along Clear Creek.
Coloradans like their exercise and the tree-shaded creek path is heavily used. Kayakers practice at the whitewater park as families watch and enjoy the many sculptures along the way.
It’s not a huge library, but they manage to squeeze a lot into the building. As is usual at JCP libraries, they have self-pickup of holds.
And a nice display of new items.
You can rent the community room for meetings and they have two quiet study rooms available on a first come first served basis.
They have 13 adult internet stations and a computer for playing CDs and DVDs, and it’s a pleasant place to while away the afternoon, with upholstered chairs and paintings scattered around.
There’s a small Teen Area with beanbag chairs (staff sometimes need to remind adults that inviting as it looks, the area is not for them).
Despite the lack of space, the children’s area is colorful and welcoming.
And they even have a new book display for kids.
Though they only have one (filtered) children’s internet computer, they also have a kid friendly AWE workstation loaded with educational games like Bailey’s Book House, Dora’s Magic Castle, Flash Action Phonics, a number of JumpStart (Toddler, Preschool etc.) programs as well as other software.
Unlike Columbine, my local branch, Golden has a biweekly Intercambio/Language Exchange, where people (like me) who are learning Spanish or English, can get together to practice their language skills in a real life setting, which might draw in the large Spanish speaking population that doesn’t use the library much.
But my favorite thing about this branch is the way they integrate themselves into the community. Golden has a wonderful Christmas tradition, a Candlelight Walk, and even though the library would normally be closed by 5pm on Friday, the friendly and welcoming staff stay open late that night to provide a place (with cookies and juice) for the caroling mobs to get warmed up. They’ll also host a sing-along featuring a local guitarist, and a book and craft sale.
If your library has grasped an opportunity like the Candlelight Walk to show nonusers what they are missing, I’d love to hear about it.