Natchitoches now has Little Free Libraries! Little Free Libraries are neighborhood book exchanges where passers-by can take a book they are interested in reading or leave a book they are finished enjoying. Scouts from BSA Troop 60 (Natchitoches) installed and stocked three Little Free Libraries in local parks: City Park, Ben Johnson Park, and Pierson & Mallett Park on Nov. 10.
These three book exchanges were designed, built, installed, and stocked with books as an Eagle project by Griffin McFarland, a Life Scout in Troop 60, with the assistance of Troop 60 Scouts. There are more than 75,000 registered Little Free Libraries worldwide, and the hope is that these will become well-loved in the Natchitoches community with lots of books changing hands.
Griffin McFarland has always been an avid reader, so when it came time to decide on his Eagle service project, he decided to do something that would help promote literacy and a love of reading. He met with the City Parks Director Chris Laurence and Mayor Lee Posey about his project ideas before designing a weather-proof, brightly-colored, sturdy, and accessible book exchange. He then began collecting book donations to help get the exchange started.
In late August, Griffin led Scouts in Troop 60 in the building, assembly, and painting of the library boxes, and over the next few months added the final touches, like clear door windows, magnetic hinges, and roofing shingles. After a number of weather delays, the three libraries were installed and packed with books at all three parks with the assistance of 11 other Troop 60 members.
Some readers may be wondering how Little Free Libraries work, given that they are called “Libraries.” There is no check-out card: these books belong to everyone! If you see something you would like to read, take it. When you’re finished with a book, either return it to one of the book exchanges or pass it on to a friend. If you are clearing off your own book shelves and have books you don’t want any more, please consider donating them to one of the parks’ Little Free Libraries for others to enjoy!
Pictured from left are Troop 60 members Caleb Martinez, Noah Martinez, Stephen Wheat, John Martinez, Koda DeBlieux, Patrick Martinez, Mark Melder, Griffin McFarland, Alex Eldridge, Sarah McFarland, and Seth Leach.