Juneteenth 2021: Celebrate in community

Juneteenth Idea Box exhibit at Main Library

Juneteenth is the June 19 holiday celebrating the end of slavery in the United States. Long celebrated by the African American community, it is now an Illinois state holiday, an official Village of Oak Park holiday, as well as an official library holiday. And now, for the first year ever, it’s become a U.S. federal … Read more

Meet Matthew, Leading Edge logo designer

Last summer, we held a logo design contest to help spread the word about the Leading Edge Teen Advisory Board (LETAB), one of the library’s Teen Services initiatives. A volunteer group for students ages 13-17, LETAB’s mission is to offer guidance and a teen-centered perspective to the Oak Park community and the Teen Services team. … Read more

Building community: Beehives at the Main Library

Bees on hand

As part of our ongoing focus to sustain the natural environment and to offer new opportunities to learn, we installed two beehives in the spring of 2019, buzzing with up to 20,000 Italian honeybees, on the Main Library’s Green Roof. With our two rooftop hives, the library joined a small community of beekeepers in Oak … Read more

Join us for anti-racism circles this spring

What is a circle? With library staff photo grid

This spring, join us for anti-racism community discussions using the model of circles, a restorative practice which honors our stories, community relationships, and ability to keep learning from each other.  Register for upcoming anti-racism circles Wednesday, March 31, 6 pm: Community Circle – Identifying the Real Story of Rosa Parks. Register in Zoom » Thursday, April 15, … Read more

Updated: Local business and COVID-19

Person shopping with medical mask on

“The information for businesses is changing so fast, and there’s so much information out there,” says Business & Government Librarian Bridget Optholt. Below, find some state and local resources for clarification and further help. The latest Illinois state plans and orders Read the March 18 plan from Gov. J.B. Pritzker: A Bridge to Phase 5 (pdf) and … Read more

Meet Rose, your new Health & Senior Services Librarian

Rose Barnes, Health and Senior Services Librarian

As our new Health and Senior Services Librarian, Rose Barnes is your go-to for resources on health and wellness and senior services. “I am most interested in exploring more ways to incorporate health and wellness programming into the library while also creating spaces for conversation and growth,” she says. “I am passionate about practicing yoga, … Read more

Let’s discuss: ‘How to Be an Antiracist’

Please join the Anti-Racist Book Group on Wednesday, January 13 at 6:30 pm, as we dig deeper into How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi.  Register now in Zoom » ‘We had so much more to unpack’: Book group invites us to keep talking We first discussed Kendi’s How to Be an Antiracist in December, and we’re continuing the discussion … Read more

Meet Alex, our new Teen Services Librarian

Teen Services Librarian Alex Gutierrez

Joining our Teen Services team is Librarian Alexander Gutierrez! “I’ve always wanted to be a librarian and have the opportunity to work with youths because of their energy and optimism,” he says. His path from library volunteer to librarian Alex has been with the Oak Park Public Library since 2016, when he started as a … Read more

Join us for two anti-racist book discussions in December

Register now for December 1: Stamped: Racism, Anti-Racism, and You Join us on Tuesday, December 1, 6-7:30 pm​ for the third family and community discussion of Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Jason Reynolds and Dr. Ibram X. Kendi. Register now » Stamped offers a history of racist and anti-racist ideas in America, from their roots in Europe … Read more

Register now: Virtual Restorative Justice Conference enters final week

Restorative Justice Conference 2019 Community Committee

The Medicine Wheel: Balancing Humanity Oak Park’s third annual Restorative Justice Conference has been taking place virtually all October, and it wraps up on Friday, October 30. This year’s theme is The Medicine Wheel: Balancing Humanity. The goal has been to provide the community with strategies to cope in these extreme times. “2020 has been … Read more

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