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Monday, April 13, 2015

Doing National Library Week Right: TSCPL

Yesterday marked the start of National Library Week (#NLW15) in the US. Many libraries of all types do things to take advantage of this time, when ALA and other organizations have already primed the media to do library stories. Some, understandably, do more than others.

I'd like to show you a prime example of a public library that's done #NLW15 right. Take a look at the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library (TSCPL) in Topeka, Kansas. 

On its Facebook page yesterday, the opening day of National Library Week, TSCPL posted a short teaser note and video. (It's just 26 seconds if you want to go watch it. I'll wait...)

Then, today, the big reveal... TSCPL created a parody video of the Taylor Swift hit song, "Shake It Off" -- but of course, in this library version, it was "Check It Out." In just under 4 minutes, this well-produced video shows off the library staffers (not shy, no buns!), the building and bookmobile (on the road), the collections and services (including self-checkout tech), and an overall attitude of fun and creativity. 

Now the staffers are spreading the word about its video across social media. It's one of the featured photos on the home page's scrolling promotions, too. (See top photo.) Here's the full video for you to enjoy:

It's true that Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library has a big building, a good-sized staff, and some money behind it. But it's also true that the managers and staff have built up to this by being community-centric and unafraid of technology for years. In fact, TSCPL was just recognized as a runner-up for the LibraryAware Community Award. As the write-up in Library Journal begins:
"As a one-building library serving 180,000 people living in a 550 square mile area, Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library (TSCPL) needs to be civic-minded—and with a wide range of programs and local initiatives, TSCPL lives up to its goals, serving members of the community at every level.Since 2008, the Topeka and Shawnee County citizens have joined forces through the Heartland Visioning planning process, “a collective effort to share ideas and dreams for our community. ..."
So if you want a great example of how to use a celebration like National Library Week (in any country) to really excite and engage the people in your community, you really do need to #CheckItOut! 


David Lee King said...

Thanks for the nice write-up!

Anonymous said...

:) Fun. We did a rap last year for an earlier holiday - April Fools.