Little Free Libraries

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A Sunrise Leadership Academy Class of 2013 Service Project

   A Little Free Library Under Construction!

 The City Park Little Free Library
under construction!

Once upon a time, there was a teacher. Her name was Mrs. Esther Bol, and she loved books almost as much as she loved children. When Mrs. Bol passed away, her son Todd wanted a meaningful way to honor her. So he built a tiny shed, filled it with books, and placed in on his lawn with a sign: “Take a Book, Return a Book.” Just like that, in 2009, the first Little Free Library was born in Hudson, Wisconsin.

Today there are hundreds of Little Free Libraries across the globe – in cities like Fremantle, Australia; Accra, Ghana; Rajapalaym, India; Vilnius, Lithuania; Gressier, Haiti; and Bucerias, Mexico.

The City of Sunrise celebrated its first four additions to the Little Free Library world map with a Ribbon Cutting and Reception in February 2013. Special guests at the event – held at the Village Multipurpose Center in City Park – included students from Village Elementary School, poet Ashley M. Jones, artist GG, and award-winning author Edwidge Danticat. These four original Libraries were created as part of a service learning project by students in the Sunrise Leadership Academy. (See below for project details.)

A fifth Little Free Library was added in 2014 - created and donated by students in Professor Tennille Shuster's Book Arts class at Nova Southeastern University.

City of Sunrise Little Free Libraries can be found in the following public spaces:

In the Village Multipurpose Center Gym       
6700 Sunset Strip

Next to the Clubhouse
10200 Sunset Strip

Next to the Concession Stand
10610 W Oakland Park Boulevard
Next to the Playground 
12855 NW 8th Street           

Next to the Ranger Office
11100 NW 44th Street   


We hope you’ll visit these Little Free Libraries and borrow the books they contain. We hope you’ll share your discoveries with your family, your friends, and your neighbors. Most of all, we hope you’ll be inspired by the love of literacy and community that they represent.

"Take a Book, Return a Book." It couldn’t be simpler – or more powerful.

Project Overview
The Sunrise Leadership Academy Class of 2013 collaborated with local elementary schools, community groups and corporate sponsors to bring Little Free Libraries to four Sunrise parks. This service project unfolded over three consecutive Sunrise Leadership Academy sessions:

  • December 2012. The four SLA project teams - comprised of approximately four students each - met with stakeholders from their partner school and community organization. These collaborative teams discussed neighborhood demographics and culture as a means of choosing books appropriate for their Library location. Becky Quiroga Curtis of Books & Books helped guide their conversations.
  • January 2013. The teams met at Young At Art Museum to paint their Libraries. Expert design assistance was provided by Miami-based artist/muralist GG.
  • February 2013. Teams stocked their (installed) LFLs with donated books, and celebrated their opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Village Multipurpose Center in City Park.

Thank You to our Partners and Sponsors!
The City of Sunrise Little Free Library initiative would not be possible without the support of: The Palm Beach Post, Books & Books (and Becky Quiroga Curtis), GG Artwork, IKEA Sunrise, Young At Art Museum, Sawgrass Elementary, Sandpiper Elementary, Village Elementary, Nob Hill Elementary, Elks Lodge #2273, Central Sunrise Residents Association, Eastern Sunrise Residents Association, and the Greater Sunrise Chamber of Commerce.

Book Donations
Little Free Libraries are all about sharing. If you have gently-used paperbacks or hardcovers you'd like to contribute, please place them in the Little Free Library nearest you, or bring them to the Leisure Services office on the second floor of the Sunrise Civic Center (10610 West Oakland Park Boulevard). Thank you!

Sidewalk Storytimes
The City launched its Sidewalk Storytime program on July 2, 2013, at the Welleby Park Little Free Library. Mayor Michael J. Ryan read "The Cat in the Hat" to an eager audience of Sunrise summer campers. Additional storytimes have been hosted by Deputy Mayor Neil C. Kerch, Assistant Deputy Mayor Lawrence A. Sofield, and Commissioner Donald K. Rosen . Stay tuned for additional Sidewalk Storytimes at Little Free Libraries throughout Sunrise!

Cities of Excellence Community Spirit Award
In August 2013, Sunrise received the prestigious Cities of Excellence Community Spirit Award from the Broward League of Cities. The award recognizes the best special events program among communities in Broward.

Little Free Libraries in the News
Watch this NBC News clip to learn more about the Little Free Library initiative:





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