by Dennis Dalman
Thanks to the Sartell Middle School Student Council, Sartell now has two “Little Free Libraries” and will soon have a third.
Little Free Libraries were started by Todd Bol of Hudson, Wis. in 2009. The “libraries” are little, indeed, about the size of a large birdhouse. The concept behind the libraries is that people can walk up to them, then take a book and leave a book. Most often the libraries are placed on residential yards in neighborhoods. A typical “library” can hold about 30-40 books. Since Bol started the concept, it has spread throughout the world.
As a “WE School,” the SMS council decided during the last school year to emphasize projects promoting literacy. The WE School program was begun by the International Free the Children organization. Each WE School is expected to initiate community-service projects each year – one locally and one internationally.
For its international program, the SMS council donated books to the Books for Africa organization. For its local literacy-promotion effort, it decided to install three Little Free Libraries.
The libraries were installed at Nemeth Orthodontics in Sartell and in the Celebration neighborhood on 21st Avenue N. A third one has yet to be placed.
The library project was made possible by donations from the St. Cloud Noon Optimist Club, CentraSota Dental and the hands-on woodworking skills of SMS staff members Luke Miller and Lyle Olson.