As many teachers might know, the library offers class visits for their students. We read stories, introduce them to the library, and occasionally run a puppet show or scavenger hunt. During the introduction I will usually ask kids what they can borrow from a library – books, movies, CDs etc. I won’t lie though, I love seeing their faces when I tell them that we loan out wheelbarrows and spades, and shovels! And their eyes get even wider when I mention the fishing rods they can borrow! Your local library isn’t just books and movies anymore, we also have some unusual items you can use outdoors or in your house.
The Thunder Bay Public Library has many partnerships, and several offer items to borrow so you can spend your summer days outdoors! The first is TackleShare which was started up by the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (OFAH). The OFAH want people of all ages to have access to fishing rods and tackle and in order to make that happen they bring their rods to the library (as well as many other places across Ontario – including Sleeping Giant Provincial Park!) In the city you can sign out fishing rods at both Waverley and Brodie Library on the ground floor. All you’ll need to do is come to the desk, let us scan your library card, fill out a quick form and then you’ll be on your way with a fishing rod and tackle for three weeks!
If you’re looking to get out and go walking or hiking, Chartwell Select and Glacier Ridge partnered with us to provide library lovers with walking poles! The library system has a total of four pairs of poles, which means each library has its own pair. Just like a regular book, you can check them out for 3 weeks at a time.
While you’re using the walking poles you can also borrow a pedometer which you’re able to borrow thanks to the Ministry of Health and Promotion – Sport & Recreation Branch and Active 2020! If you’re not sure how to use one don’t worry – each one comes with instructions so you can easily track how many steps you’ve taken.
Another unusual item is the Electronic Energy Meters (AKA Line Loggers) that both the library and the EcoSuperior Environmental Program have available to borrow. Simply search “electronic energy meter” in our catalogue and you’ll be able to place a hold on one.
The summer months are also perfect for another hobby – gardening. Roots to Harvest is behind the wonderful smelling cedar tool sheds located at Brodie and Waverley Library. To check out an item you can place a hold or ask staff at the desk, who will bring you the item. Make sure to check them out on your way out though! Carrying a wheelbarrow through the library might allow you to carry more books, but it could also run over some toes. Some items you can borrow are an action hoe, dandelion weeder, post hole digger, various rakes, pruners, a push broom, a sprinkler timer attachment, measuring tapes, saws, a ladder, and the list goes on! For the little gardeners out there we have junior spades and junior tool packs.
So this summer while you’re picking up your books and gearing up for camp, keep in mind that you can borrow a whole bunch of free goodies to make your summer months more enjoyable. Have a great summer season!
Nicole – www.tbpl.ca. If you have a comment about today’s column, we would love to hear from you. Please comment below!