Bibliophiles, rejoice!

John M. Cuelenaere Public Library director Alex Juorio. Arthur White-Crummey/Daily Herald

This week is a special one for the province’s libraries.

Saskatchewan Library Week runs from Oct. 15-21 and libraries across the province will mark it in their own ways.

Michael Shires, who serves as the president of the Saskatchewan Library Association (SLA) said the week has a few messages.

“It helps the association to justify why libraries of all types … are important to the community but in particular public libraries,” he said.

Shire explained that public libraries in particular are especially important in the current day and age as they offer a something special.

“It’s one of the few places left in society where you’re not being asked to buy something,” he said.

Shire said Saskatchewan Library Week is one of the oldest traditions that the organization has going, but despite it being around for a long time, it is still running strong and growing. This year the SLA was able to give out more grants than they had in previous years; 20 in total to libraries all across the province. In past years the organization was only able to provide funding for ten programs. This extra money allows many of these libraries to offer something new and unique to help celebrate the week. The SLA also experimented on the promotional side this year.

“For the first time, we have a Saskatchewan Library Association promotional poster in the Cree language,” he said.

Shire said the most important thing that a person takes from library week depends on who they are. He explained that young children can experience storytelling, while young people can get homework help and newcomers can come and get help learning English.

Prince Albert’s John M. Cuelenaere Public Library is holding a book sale to celebrate library week. While there aren’t many special events at the local branch to celebrate libraries, director Alex Juorio said the week is a good time to take in all the services the library ha to offer.

“It’s a valuable cultural asset in the landscape of city services. We have the support of the community,” Juorio said, citing the large number of people coming through the doors every month.

For more on this story, please see the October 18 print or e-edition of the Daily Herald