Florida Library Opens ‘Library of Things’

News & Updates

  Florida Public Library (FPL) announces the debut of its “Library of Things” collection. The “Library of Things” includes a wide variety of useful, entertaining and unusual objects that patrons may need for a project, cannot afford to purchase, don’t have room to store or may need to use once or occasionally.

FPL aims to save Florida residents the cost of purchasing many such items. Senior citizens and new home owners may find the collection of particular use. Categories include the “Tool Library” which includes hand tools (hammer, saw, stud finder, rachets, pliers, stapler, clamps, Allen wrenches, grout floater, voltage tester and many more), power tools (drill, circular saw, sander, etc.) and gardening equipment (pruning saw, spade, shovels, rakes, shears, loppers, bow saw, edger and more.) 

  A complete tool box with commonly used tools for home repairs is also available. FPL’s collection is available seven days a week. Other categories include: “In the Kitchen” which offers a 45 cup coffee maker, specialized cake pans, a chocolate melter, a spiralizer, a juicer and more; “Entertainment” which has littleBits coding kits, Hero and Droid Inventor Kits, board games, card games, ukuleles and more;  and “Arts and Crafts” which includes a pom pom maker, loom kits, a pumpkin carving kit and more. The “Miscellaneous” category includes recreational equipment such as adult and child fishing poles and tackle, a 10’ x 10’ pop-up canopy and more.

Items are Free for Borrowing

   All items are free for borrowing by Florida Library cardholders in good standing who are a minimum of 18 years old. Check outs are limited to a total of two items and may be kept for seven days. To check items out, patrons must sign the Borrower’s Agreement and Use Policy and a Waiver and Indemnification Form.  Photos and descriptions of all items are available on FPL’s website at www.floridapubliclibrary.org and they may be reserved up to three days before check out. 

   “We are pleased to partner with two well-known and historic local businesses: Roe Brothers, Inc. and Werner’s ACE to make this collection a reality. Scott Bieling at Roe’s and Alyssa Werner at Werner’s have been most helpful in getting this project off the ground with their advice and they saved us money with discounts, too,” said Library Director Madelyn Folino. 

Funds for the ‘Library of Things’

  Funds for the “Library of Things” were provided by special legislative aid in 2019 directed to the library by State Senator Jen Metzger for programs or equipment and by a generous donation from Marc and Victoria Appel of Warwick. The library staff also raised money through their annual “Anything but Books” yard sale in May and asked that it be used for the new collection. Early support was also provided by the Friends of the FPL. Staff have been busy figuring out how to barcode, label, store and circulate so many objects of varying sizes. The Library’s full basement has come in handy for storing the items in locked steel cabinets. 

Seeking Volunteers

   In addition to offering the “Library of Things,” program planners devoted many fall program sessions to using items in the collection to build, make, invent and discover for preschool to adult ages. Volunteers are now being recruited to do presentations on how to use tools, kitchen gadgets, arts and craft items and more. 

Due to Covid-19 restrictions, in-person programs are likely to be rare for the immediate future, but library staff are eager to record how-to programs for online viewing. To volunteer, send an email to fpl@rcls.org or call the library at 651-7659. 

Photo provided 

 Village of Florida Mayor Dan Harter (from left) checks out the ‘Library of Things’ with Library Director Madelyn Folino, NYS Senator Jen Metzger & Village Trustee Alyssa Werner. 

Photo provided 

Items from the ‘Library of Things’ were displayed on Florida Public Library’s deck for members of the public to drop by to welcome the new collection. 

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