This seems to be a growing trend and I'm happy to see them popping up in Kalamazoo.

I'm talking about free, little, libraries. Now, I'm not sure who exactly started this, but I think it's a brilliant idea. It was a couple of years ago I saw the first story of someone who built a small cabinet, for lack of a better word, that they put by the side of the road. They loaded the cabinet with books and invited those who passed by to take one, free of charge.

Whether for adults or kids, access to books is never a bad thing. In fact, the United Way of Battle Creek and Kalamazoo region just posted a picture on their Facebook page of their own little library. They're inviting locals to take a book and leave a book. You can see the post here.

Now, other free libraries may be backed by non-profits or individual sponsorship, but the United Way is working with the nonprofit organization called Little Free Library. The organization began in 2009 with the goal of building a global community of readers and has grown to include 100,000 little libraries, according to their website.

There are actually a few Little Free Libraries right here in Kalamazoo which you can see on Little Free Library's interactive map:

  1. The United Way at 709 S. Westnedge Ave.
  2. Kalamazoo Land Bank at 1523 Riverview Drive in Kalamazoo
  3. First National Bank at 348 W Michigan Ave in Kalamazoo

Judging by pictures alone, I'm going to assume that most of the books in these free little libraries are targeted towards kids. Finding them could even be a fun scavenger hunt to give them an adventure while keeping them excited about reading too.

As well, if you have any interest in starting your own Little Free Library, donating, or buying books you can do so here.

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