You may have already seen them: boxes propped on posts throughout the City of Kenai filled with books and billed as mini community libraries. There’s a mint green one in Daubenspeck Park and a converted newspaper box at the bluff overlook, both filled with paperbacks and picture books.
The boxes are part of Kenai’s mini community library program, a growing network of book boxes that operate on a take-a-book, leave-a-book system. Now, a cohort of library supporters are working to expand the number of boxes in existence throughout the city.
The Kenai Parks & Recreation Department installed three new libraries around Kenai in June of this year, including at Old Town Park, Beaver Creek Park and at the city’s bluff overlook near the Kenai Senior Center. Existing little libraries include those located at Daubenspeck Park, on Forest Drive and at the Kenai municipal park.
Eileen Bryson, of the Friends of the Kenai Community Library, said last week the group has more mini-libraries to put into Kenai. The organization, which has a stated mission of enhancing library programs and participation, has raised money to expand the program, according to documents provided to the City of Kenai’s beautification committee.
“I just think it’s a great idea,” Bryson said. “So I’ve been kind of encouraging people to do this.”
As the Friends of the Kenai Community Library look to expand the network, Bryson said they’ve tried to focus on neighborhoods where there are children.
“It’s nice for kids to be able to say, ‘Hey, I liked this book, I just want to keep it,’” Bryson said. “They might not have an opportunity to be able to do that (otherwise).”
People interested in getting involved in Kenai’s network of little libraries, Bryson said, should reach out to the Friends of the Kenai Community Library at 907-690-2779.