Park City Library’s new, non-traditional book club is ready for some action | ParkRecord.com
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Park City Library’s new, non-traditional book club is ready for some action

Katrina Kmak, Park City Library youth and Spanish services librarian, left, is working with Kate Mapp, adult services librarian, right, to form an action book club. The club is different than a traditional book club in that people of all ages can read books aimed at their reading level about a theme and then participate in an activity suggested by the library.
Tanzi Propst/Park Record

What: Action Book Club with the Park City Library

When: Quarterly, starting Oct. 6

Phone: 435-615-5602 or 435-615-5603

Web: littlefreelibrary.org/actionbookclub

The Park City Library wants to spur the community into action, and it will do that by kicking off an Action Book Club on Oct. 6.

The concept is different from a typical book club and is based on the Little Free Library’s Action Book Club, which is centered around reading and social engagement, said youth and Spanish services librarian Katrina Kmak.

Free Little Library is a worldwide nonprofit that promotes local book exchanges through small public bookshelves set up in neighborhoods.

Each quarter the club will informally read books about a timely topic, discuss them with their friends and families when they can and participate in different activities, she said.

“(Adult services librarian) Kate Mapp had built her own Little Free Library for her home, and stumbled upon the Action Book Club idea on the Little Free Library’s website,” Kmak said. “She brought it to our attention in the summer, and it made sense because as a library we always want to do something inclusive that could be a part of homeschooling curriculum, or to engage people who haven’t been able to see their friends or be a starting point for a family discussion.”

The autumn theme is Good Neighbors, according to Kmak.

“We want to celebrate the power of community kindness, and encourage book club members to take action where they live,” she said.

The librarians came up with a list of good-neighbor themed books that people can choose from. The list includes books for children, young adults and adults, Kmak said.

“People don’t need to read the same book to discuss what being a good neighbor is,” she said. “So kids can read books on their reading level, but still be able to talk with their parents or siblings about what being a good neighbor means to them.”

The action component of the club is provided at the beginning of each month through “action bags,” Kmak said.

“Similar to our Crafternoons to Go that we’ve been doing, we will provide kits that folks can pick up at the library,” she said. “We can accommodate curbside pickup or people can come into the library and grab one. We created these kits to build up our community so we can still feel connected during these pandemic times.”

The October kit, which will be available Oct. 6, will include a plant bulb that people can plant in their yard, or their neighbor’s yard, with permission, as a kind gesture, Kmak said.

“The bulb will bloom in the spring and be a beautiful reminder of being neighborly,” she said.

November’s action kit that people can pick up starting Nov. 3 will include some stationery.

“Folks will be able to log off the computer and write handwritten letters to their neighbors or people who used to be their neighbors,” Kmak said.

The librarians hope club members will come up with their own good-neighbor ideas.

People can do things like giving blood to save neighbors’ lives, donate food or money to local nonprofits or check in on the elderly, according to Kmak.

“The sky’s the limit, and I’m excited to see what people will come up with,” she said. “I will tie the quarterly themes in our virtual and outdoor story times and Crafternoons to Go packets.”

Kmak and Mapp have already come up with a winter theme that will launch in December and run through February.

“It will be Moving Forward, which will celebrate growth, resilience and well-being for all,” Kmak said. “Looking around I think our community will embrace the Action Book Club, and we thought this would be a perfect fit for the Park City community. We’re really excited to start this up.”


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