Book Bikes Make the Rounds

Jun 16, 2016

Summer is a great time to get out on a bicycle. Two Wyoming libraries combine cycling with reading with book bikes — portable, pedal-powered, traveling libraries they take out and about to their community. Many libraries are using book bikes; check out the photo gallery on Instagram. Here’s a little more about Wyoming’s two-wheeled libraries:

Fremont County Library – Lander

Anna Smedts on the Lander Library Book Bike. Anna works in interlibrary loan.

Anna Smedts on the Lander Library Book Bike. Anna works in interlibrary loan.

The Lander Library’s 2014 “Outside the Lines” marketing campaign inspired a rolling library projects known as the Book Bike. The project helps promote and raise awareness of Library services by traveling to local events, bringing a small bit of the library out into the community. Community response is very positive and the staff has embraced the opportunity to take the bike out. With funding from Lander Library Friends Association, this unique Book Bike was created with the purchase of a Specialized Step Through bicycle, and shelving kindly built free of charge by Steve Lynn. The Book Bike has appeared at RiverFest, the International Climber’s Festival, the Farmer’s Market, Storytime in the Park and other events. Julie Baehr, library assistant, said that you can expect to see the Book Bike at many similar local happenings again next year.

Teton County Library

The Teton County Library's new book bike, open for business.

The Teton County Library’s new book bike, open for business.

If you see a biker pulling a trailer in Jackson with a bright green cart emblazoned with a leaf, you’ve just spotted Teton County Library’s brand new Book Bike. The seemingly petite cart opens to reveal shelves lined with hundreds of pounds of free, gently used books from the Library Friends, summer reading information, Pathways maps and more.

The bike, funded by the Teton County Library Foundation and Friends, had its first outing on May 31. It was purchased from Hoff’s Bikesmith in Jackson, while the cart and trailer came from Street Smart Trailers in Boston.

The library’s Book Bike will bring free reads and professional librarians to community events all summer. Ongoing plans are to open the Book Bike weekly on Wednesdays in Phil Baux Park from 4 to 6 p.m. through August. And during July, librarians will also bring the Book Bike to Jackson Hole Middle School lunches with plenty of free books to encourage summer reading.

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