This year’s celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month carries particular poignance for the Kansas City Public Library. In conjunction with the monthlong observance, running from September 15 to October 15, the Library annually highlights a collection of book recommendations, film offerings, and other resources that explore a rich array of the experiences and perspectives of Latino Americans.
Libraries frequently innovate out of necessity to serve patrons as technology changes or during challenging times – pandemics, for example. But necessity isn’t the only mother of library invention.
Sometimes, the “usual” way just isn’t good enough.
For instance, when a patron wants a book that the Library doesn’t have, the usual process of requesting it through interlibrary loan (ILL) can be tedious and take weeks. And for the Library? ILL is expensive. More expensive than buying the book.
In April, the Library won the 2023 Urban Libraries Council Top Innovator Award in the Operations & Management category for revolutionizing how patrons request and receive materials. The system is called Request It: Collaborative Acquisitions and is easily accessible to anyone with a Kansas City Public Library card, giving patrons a voice in shaping the collection.
Insect jokes bug me, so let me just say: The May Central Youth Services zine is now available for pick up at CYS or you can print one out!
Congress established Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month in 1992, corresponding its timing in May to two historical milestones: the arrival of the nation’s first Japanese immigrants in May 1843 and the completion of the transcontinental railroad, in which Chinese workers played a pivotal role, in May 1869. A presidential proclamation in 2021 expanded the observance to include Native Hawaiians. The Library pays tribute by offering a collection of books, events and activities, resources, and more that highlight AAPI voices and experiences.
With an estimated 300,000 to 600,000 people expected to converge on downtown Kansas City during the three days of 2023 NFL Draft activities, the Kansas City Public Library will close its Central Library, 14 W. 10th St., and Irene H. Ruiz Branch, 2017 West Pennway, on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, April 27-28-29, to focus our resources on locations that will be more easily accessible to our Library patrons.
Libraries can be such wondrous places. During National Library Week, which began Sunday and runs through Saturday, April 29, it's an appropriate time to celebrate – to reappreciate – the indispensability of libraries to their communities. This year’s theme, There’s More to the Story, calls attention to the wealth of services, programs, and other resources provided by libraries beyond their traditional (and still crucial) role as lenders of books.