Summery Fun at an Old-Fashioned Library
Stop by the Emma L. Andrews Library & Community Center in Newburyport and experience how libraries used to work. You won’t find bar codes or scannable library cards; books and magazines are checked out with hand-stamped date-due slips, which are tucked into a pocket inside each back cover.
The cozy two-room library is named for a teacher who helped raise $52 to get the “South End Reading Room” started in 1900, and who worked tirelessly until her death to make sure it remained in operation. The library runs now as it did in the earliest days, staffed by a community of fun, friendly volunteers. And, unlike most libraries, eating and drinking are nearly required: coffee, tea and cookies are always on hand.
“The Emma,” as it is known to friends and neighbors, is open from 1 to 8 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays, and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays. When planning summer activities for the kids, remember that weekly themed programs are offered on Wednesday afternoons from 1 to 3 p.m. in July and August.
Many families pack a picnic and arrive early to enjoy lunch on the back lawn. Each week’s program includes a story or two, along with games, crafts and visits from organizations such as the Merrohawke Nature School and the fire department. The final summer event is an old-fashioned ice cream social. Ongoing events for adults include yoga and painting classes. Visit EmmaAndrewsLibrary.org for activity schedules.