Give a Book, Take a Book: Niles West’s Little Free Library


Niles West News

The completed little free library located at the main entrance.

By Gia Bexes, Staff Writer

If you’re an active reader, the little free library is a great opportunity for you. Located at the front entrance, the little free library is a bookcase that contains transitional books. The community may select books from here and also donate some of their own. Librarian Kelly Stallard proposed the idea for a little library prior to the pandemic.

“We bought it a couple years ago, like, pre-pandemic, and we had students paint it, and it was part of National Library Week. It sat in here for a while, but it was always my intention to have it outside. Now that we came back in person and finally got the ball rolling, we were able to get it installed right up front. The students can, check, drop off a book, pick up a book and switch in and out without having to come into the building,” Stallard said.

The little free library contains a variety of books, and the community is encouraged to take a few and donate their own. With easy access to these books, it can spark new interests in reading for students.

“There has been some excitement about it. I think I’ve had people say like, ‘Oh, that’s such a great idea!'”

According to Stallard, students have been asking about donating books for a long time, but they were difficult to distribute.

“For a while, I would try to organize book swaps or we would do giveaways up here. But then I just thought, there’s a lot of traffic coming out that main door, so we’ll just put it there. So if you ever have books that you want to donate, you can just drop them off,” Stallard said.

Finding the right book can be hard sometimes, but with a little free library, people in the community are introduced to a wide range of books and encouraged to continue reading.

“I’m super stoked. I love little free libraries. There are several around my neighborhood that I always go by and drop off some books, or I always peek in there and see what’s there. I think they’re a great thing and are really fun. It is just another way to get books to students and people in our community,” Stallard said.

If you’re interested in reading new books or donating some of your old ones, visit the Niles West’s little free library. Give a book, take a book.