Our library had a table at the local business fair yesterday. We focused on the message “the value of a library card” and had visuals explaining that libraries circulate more books than Fedex does packages and library card holders outnumber Amazon.com customers by 5 to 1, that sort of thing. Other things that seemed to go well were:
- skunk puppet who told jokes, good for kids who are not normally people who enjoy business fairs
- free books for kids out of Friends of the Library booksale stock
- free pencils with our URL on them
- ability to sign people up for library cards right then and there
- laptop with slide show of library pictures cycling, there was no wifi but we had a couple of stock slide shows if people wanted to see them
- “this is when my books are due” magnets
- most importantly: someone to talk to.
I had people coming up to me telling me about their divorces, their bowel surgery, the last book they read, some weird thing that happened to them at the library, their home book collection, their early memories of the library and they had questions questions questions. I always sort of dread the business fair beforehand, and I always wind up having a much better time than I expect to.