Little Free Libraries Program Grows a Little Bigger in Oswego County

Hannibal is home to the newest Little Free Library in Oswego County. Built by volunteers with donated materials and filled with donated books, the library is open to children and adults who would like to take a book home to read or donate one for someone else to read. The project came together through the work of New York State Assemblyman Brian Manktelow, Oswego County Legislator Terry Wilbur, the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau, Oswego AmeriCorps, and the Hannibal community. Pictured from left are NYS Assemblyman Brian Manktelow; Kristen Slimmer, youth activities coordinator, Oswego City-County Youth Bureau; Virginia Wilbur, town supervisor, Hannibal; Carol and Lowell Newvine, book donors; Amanda Quaile, program assistant, AmeriCorps; and Brian Chetney, executive director, Oswego City-County Youth Bureau.

– The Oswego City-County Youth Bureau announced that the Little Free Libraries program has expanded to the Hannibal community.

Book lovers can find the new addition in front of the Hannibal Town Hall building at 824 County Route 34.

“We are grateful for the support of NYS Assemblyman Brian Manktelow and Oswego County Legislator Terry Wilbur for our youth programing,” said Oswego City-County Youth Bureau Executive Director Brian Chetney. “That, combined with the help of volunteered time and talent from the Hannibal community, our AmeriCorps members and Youth Bureau staff, all made this worthwhile project a reality.”

This newest Little Free Library was built from donated material by volunteer AmeriCorps members Ariel Ashline-Winters, Mallory Curtis, Sydney Alton and Ryan Lalik.

Start-up book donations were provided by Mr. and Mrs. Lowell Newvine and Sandy Tremain.

“I’m proud that our community is part of this program by hosting a Little Free Library here,” said Legislator Wilbur, District 21. “The Library offers something for everyone, so parents can bring their kids, and everyone can find books to read together as a family. It really goes to the heart of promoting literacy for all residents of Oswego County.”

In 2009, the Little Free Library program began as a small tribute to a teacher in Hudson, Wisconsin, by getting books into the hands of every child and adult to promote literacy and neighborhood unity.

It has grown into a global book-sharing movement with more than 90,000 Little Free Libraries throughout the U.S. and in 91 countries around the world.

Its mission is to inspire a love of reading, spark creativity and build up communities through free book exchanges.

“I am delighted to support any program that encourages all people to read, especially children,” said NYS Assemblyman Manktelow, 130th District. “The Little Free Library program is a great idea that benefits a lot of residents. It’s good that the Hannibal Town Hall has one of these libraries for people to take and leave books. In society today, where everything is digital, it’s so important to get material in people’s hands.”

The Oswego City-County Youth Bureau coordinates the Little Free Libraries program locally.

The city of Oswego currently houses six libraries in Washington (East), Breitbeck, Shapiro and Oak Hill parks.

There are also libraries in the lobby of the Oswego County Health Department and the Oswego YMCA Youth Center.

Across the county, there are libraries in front of Tops Supermarket in the village of Mexico, in Voorhees Park in the city of Fulton, and at 1319 NYS Route 49 in the town of Constantia.

Little Free Libraries open during the spring season and remain open as far into the fall season as the weather will allow.

Children and adults can visit any Little Free Library whenever and as often as they would like to take a book home to enjoy.

They are also welcomed to leave any gently used and child-appropriate books that they wish to donate.

For more information about the Little Free Libraries program or to donate gently-used books, contact Kristen Slimmer, youth activities coordinator, Oswego City-County Youth Bureau, at 315-349-3575 or [email protected]