Beyond books: New adult programs offered at Sooke public library

Board games and colouring pages among unique get-togethers

Play a board game. Learn a new craft. Heck, even show off your colouring book skills.

Those aren’t activities people typically think of doing at a public library, but they’re all possible at the Sooke branch of the Vancouver Island Regional Library.

The offerings are part of a new program aimed at adults, Peter Maguire, library manager for Sooke and Port Renfrew said.

Beginning this month and continuing through August, the Sooke branch starts a self-directed craft night, acoustic open mic, adult colouring night and adult board game night.

“The library programs we’ve pulled together here are based on programs successful at other libraries on the Island,” Maguire said.

For years, library officials have tried to figure out how to draw people back to the library who associate it more with books than they do with technology or social activities.

“I think there’s different things libraries can do within their space,” Maguire said.

“One of the easiest ways to collect feedback from community members is to have casual events. It’s about getting people in to use the space.”

The adult night is Wednesday from 6 to 8 p.m., with a different program offered each week.

The programs include:

• Self-Directed Craft Night – Bring your own supplies and share space with other library users.

• Acoustic Open Mic – Sing a song, tell a story, share a poem, or just stop by to listen.

• Adult Colouring Night – The library provides colouring pages, pencils, and markers, while you provide the talent.

• Adult Board Game Night – Bring your favourite game or try one of the games from the library’s collection.

Maguire said this summer’s program is based around Sooke as an artistic community, and having programs that connect with the community is important.

Following the summer programming, the library will re-assess the offerings, and take input from the community on what it would like to see at the library.

“We’re always looking for feedback,” Maguire said.

“If a group or any community members doing a particular thing, and it’s within the library’s broad mandate of services, we would be interested. It will impact how we will develop things.”

To contact Maguire, please call the library at 250-642-3022.

The Vancouver Island Regional Library at a glance:

• 2.6 million visits each year

• 4.6 million items circulated annually

• Fifth largest library system in B.C.

• 39 libraries across the Island, including Haida Gwaii and the Central Coast

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