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Newmarket resident invites book lovers, sharers to Little Free Library event

Kristyn Little is hosting a celebration of Little Free Library Week at Newmarket Public Library May 18
One of the Little Free Library locations in Newmarket, a place to donate and/or take a book for free.

Bookworms are invited to share their favourite novels as Newmarket resident Kristyn Little will host an event at the Newmarket Public Library to celebrate Little Free Library Week.

Residents can find books in public bookcases around town. Little Free Library Week is a global celebration acknowledging the accessibility of books. The Newmarket event will occur on May 18 from 1 to 3 p.m. 

“It encourages people to read, makes books accessible, and prevents book deserts, moreso in the States, where titles are banned frequently,” said Little. “This gives people access to knowledge.”

Little Free Libraries are boxes around town that offer a variety of donated books for readers of all ages, including early readers, middle-grade, fiction, and nonfiction. They are open seven days a week, 24 hours a day. Accessibility enables residents to pick up books at their convenience.

“Reading books from various perspectives can reflect our own experiences, as well as shine a light on experiences different from our own,” said Margret Aldrich, director of communications for Little Free Library. “Books can make the world a more connected, understanding, and empathetic place.”

In Newmarket, the public bookcases are located at 50 Charlotte St N., 399 Queen St., and 155 Church St.

Little Free Library, a non-profit organization promoting neighbourhood book exchanges, boasts more than 181,000 public book exchanges registered and branded as Little Free Libraries.

The Newmarket event is one of three in Canada, with others in Hamilton and London. Most events will be in the United States in Portland, Austin, Dallas, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Springfield, Tucson, and Las Vegas. 

“We are thrilled that there are more than 180,000 registered Little Free Libraries in 121 countries around the world,” said Aldrich. “The concept of sharing books both to increase access to reading material and build community has struck a chord with people of all ages and backgrounds.”

Little received a small monetary grant from the Little Free Library organization to host the event in the Newmarket Public Library for two hours.

Avid book readers and volunteers will conglomerate to share experiences and celebrate book sharing. Little requests attendees to bring a copy of their favourite book to swap with others. 

Scholastic Canada will also donate 60 books for patrons. Door prizes, such as a Little Free Library box crafted by local artisans, The Knotty Haches, will be available. 

“There are quite a few Little Free Libraries in town, Bradford, Aurora, and the GTA,” said Little. “I’m hoping other library stewards and volunteers come out, and we’re able to network, engage, and talk about our experience as stewards. It will be a fun time.”

Little finds it interesting when there are new books in the display cases and ones that can become a new favourite for readers. She is reading How to End a Love Story: A Novel by Yulin Kuang and some thrillers such as Nightwatching by Tracy Sierra and Listen for the Lie: A Novel by Amy Tintera.

“I devoured all three of those titles,” said Little. “I read pretty well everything, fiction and nonfiction. In my Little Free Library, there is a good mix of early readers, middle-grade, fiction, and nonfiction. There are certain authors that are very popular.”

The organization offers an impact library program that eliminates book barriers by granting Little Free Libraries and books to underserved areas in the United States and Canada. More than 1,500 Little Free Libraries have been funded through this program, bringing the joy of reading to communities that most need it. 

It also has an Indigenous library program that serves First Nations communities in the United States and Canada. 

To learn more about Little Free Library Week, visit the website at