What the Heck Goes on at the Library? Library Snapshot Day Offers ... Well, a Snapshot

Too many people, it seems, aren't quite sure what life at a 21st-century library is all about. The Missouri Library Association has come up with a fun way for us to share what we do: Library Snapshot Day, celebrated this year on Wednesday, January 24. Follow along on social media by searching for the hashtag #LibrarySnapshotDay.

Did you know the Kansas City Public Library offers such outreach services as Home Bound Books by Mail, Lobby Stops, Books to Give, and Books to Go? Are you familiar with our Refugee & Immigrant Services & Empowerment team?

Have you found your way to the fifth floor of our downtown Central Library, which is home to a wealth of local history and genealogy resources? Or to the third-floor H&R Block Business & Career Center, where people can get help searching for jobs, starting businesses, or creating and developing nonprofit and entrepreneurial ventures?

Were you aware that our 10 Library locations offer services beyond checking out books and DVDs? That many offer free health, financial, and public safety workshops?

Check out our Library Snapshot Day collection. We hope you walk away learning something new about the services we provide and what we do for the community.


Neighborhood residents and community leaders gather at the Bluford Branch to hear recommendations for neighborhood revitalization from the Kansas City Design Center. Many neighborhood organizations use the Library for community meetings.
Seth, a Ruiz and Westport Branch staffer, displays a donation box for scarves and gloves. The Westport Branch accepts gloves, hats, scarves, and coats, and puts the donations in an outdoor bin so they can be used by anyone who needs them.

Free Information Sessions, Workshops, and Classes

Patrons at the Plaza Branch attend a Social Security 101 workshop, organized by the Library's H&R Block Business & Career Center.
Graduates of our inaugural English for Citizenship class.

In the Community

AmeriCorps VISTA members are among the outreach and reference staff members who serve a meal at KC Community Kitchen to promote the Library's Coffee & Conversation program. In the background is the exhibit Indisposable, featuring photos taken by Library patrons who are experiencing homelessness.
The outreach department's table at a community event, sharing information with attendees about all the Library offers.
Staffers (from left) Kahra Graebner, Eric Petersen, and Amanda Landayan man a Library table at the annual Homeless Summit.
Patrons on the roof of the Central Library parking garage stop for a putt at the KC Golf Crawl tournament in 2016.


Redena's Heart Healthy Line Dancing class meets the first and third Saturday of each month at the North-East Branch.
Nursing students provide free heart health screenings at the Bluford Branch. Participants learn their cholesterol numbers, body mass index, and blood pressure, and get tips on maintaining healthy hearts.

Youth Activities and Enrichment

The Waldo Branch offers a special literacy program, READ to a Dog, that uses therapy animals to improve children's reading and communication skills. This girl reads to Ziggy as the dog's owner, Laurie, looks on.
The Graphic Novel Book Club is a weekly meet-up where fans of the genre can discuss books and learn the basic elements of design, creating their own characters and stories.
Trainees at the Trails West Branch us LEGO bricks to design gadgets/tools that will help them fight crime as superheroes.
Waldo Branch teens dabble in Dungeons & Dragons as part of the branch's weekly Tabletop Tuesday program.

Local History and Technology

Missouri Valley Special Collections archivists spend much of their workday preserving and organizing collections. That can involve delicate repairs and/or special housing for fragile items. Other times, it's something as basic as removing a pesky staple—as archivist Joanna Marsh is doing here.
Tech Coaches help patrons with basic digital literacy, offering sessions at multiple Library branches and off-site locations in partnership with Phoenix Family. One example: a Smartphones with Seniors series at two low-income senior housing complexes. It provided a basic overview of smartphone settings to help older patrons get more comfortable with their devices. Coaches also are stationed weekly at Library branches to help patrons with tech questions.

Having Fun

Four staff members at the Central Library pose with their ukuleles after performing at the Library's every-other-month First Friday open house, Art Starts at the Library, in December.
Tiffany and Yasmeen, a teen volunteer, set up for a Halloween party at the North-East Branch.
Librarians dressed up as famous literary characters for the grand opening of the Kansas City Streetcar at the Library Stop. This, if you're wondering, is young Max of Where the Wild Things Are and Captain America.
Patrick Riley (left), Bobby Layton (middle) and Grace Bentley (right) of Bluford Branch take in the 2017 solar eclipse while wearing their glasses.

See More

View the Kansas City Public Library's entire Library Snapshot Day collection on our flickr account:

Library Snapshot Day 2018