library / special libraries

Library Combos

After reading this article about a libromat – a library/laundromat combo – it got me to thinking about other mashups that would be mutually beneficial.

Gymbrary – Fitness for the mind and fitness for the body.

I can imagine that gym patrons might come to the library to supplement their fitness, for example, picking up an illustrated book of yoga poses. The gym could entice library patrons to pay for a membership by offering a free pass for library card holders (for like a week or something) or hosting programs on nutrition.

Cat Athenaeum – Borrow a book. Borrow a cat. Borrow both.

Cats and libraries are already a natural match, like the sun and the moon. Obviously the folks who are allergic to cats will avoid coming, but I bet cats at the library would draw a bunch of people who don’t normally visit. The way I picture it in my mind is similar to this, where the cats would come from a shelter and could be adopted, and offer companionship to people in the library who need it. And a lot of people in the library could use a little companionship. Trust me.

Cook Repository –  Bring your appetite to the library.

So many libraries have rules against eating and drinking in the library, but what if you could go to a library that was also a culinary school. I envision this to be a special library, with at least three floors: one for the school, one for the library, and then the makerspace floor where the magic happens – culinary students practicing recipes on the public, teaching classes, and running the cafe in the building. Yummy.

What are some other cool library combos?



7 thoughts on “Library Combos

  1. I would love the Gymbrary and Culinary school combos even if it was only for a month each. Like, for one month, the library would be the center for cooking, then exercise, and so on.

    I know there is a library in Harford County (I think? Or is it Howard?) that was built attached to their new rec center. So the community gym is pretty much attached!

    And really, the Gymbrary works well because how many people do we know who work out while reading or listening to a book? Playaways!

    *sigh* too bad none of the minds behind building new libraries in our system think like this. :-\

    • I’ve been to two branches at DCPL that are connected to recreation centers. It’s a good match, like senior centers. I see several people at the gym who walk on the treadmill and read (usually on an e-reader) and I listen to books myself sometimes too.

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