Robbins Library Director Ryan Livergood recently issued a challenge to his colleagues in the surrounding communities.
Livergood wanted to see which community could increase its new library card registration the most in February (percentage increase this February, compared to February 2012).
“When I started as library director in April of 2012,” Livergood said, “one of the things I wanted to do was get out in our community and remind people of the value of a library card.”
Belmont’s library director, Maureen Conners, Lexington’s Koren Stembridge and Somerville’s Maria Carpenter all accepted Livergood’s challenge, and at a Thursday press conference at Robbins Library, the stakes were laid out:
The winning library will receive a platter of baked goods from the losing communities’ favorite local bakeries. If Arlington doesn’t win, Livergood will dress up as “Clifford the Big Red Dog” (yes, he already has the costume) and read at the winner’s children’s story time. Also, Town Manager Adam Chapdelaine and Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone have made a side bet, with the winner getting treated to lunch at his favorite local restaurant.
The visiting directors said they’re up for the challenge.
“Something you should know about Somerville is that we are fiercely competitive,” Carpenter said Thursday.
“I hate to burst your bubbles, but we can’t wait for the cookies,” Conners said.
“I want to wish Belmont, Lexington and Somerville the best of luck,” Livergood said, “but not too much luck, because we intend to win here in Arlington.”
Livergood also spoke about the importance of library cards in general.
“I believe a library card is a golden ticket to one of the most magical places on Earth – the library,” he said. “It’s the one place where everyone in our community, regardless of their background, regardless of their circumstances, they can come in, and they’re empowered to better their lives … in both big ways and small ways.”
Library cards do expire, so you can always swing by the library to see if yours is still valid.
In addition to the competition, in Arlington, the library has partnered with the Arlington Chamber of Commerce, so that in February, if you show your library card at one of 26 local businesses, you’ll receive a special offer (listed below).
February is also amnesty month at Robbins Library, so if you return an overdue book or lost your library card and need a replacement, you will not be charged. In February, you can also Tweet a picture of yourself with your library card to @RobbinsLib with the hashtag “#getcarded” (or email it to email@example.com) and the best submission will win a prize.
Local deals with library card in February
Andrina’s Pizza, When you order five or more large pizzas, you pay only $7 for each, plus $1 per topping (new library cards get free large cheese pizza)
Arlington Package Express, 10 percent off copies and/or fax
Artbeat, Free mini sand painting
Balich 5 & 10, $5 off $25 purchase
Big Picture Framing, $25 off custom framing
Book Rack, Free bookmark
Brigham’s, $1 off per ice-cream cone per visit
Computer Cafe, $20 off new installation of award winning anti-virus
Fitness First, Half off one month membership (not $59, $29.50) for first time customers
Hair Say II, For new clients only: 10 percent off services (not products)
Jackson’s Kitchen, Free drink purchase of prepared meal (limit one free drink per visit)
Little Fox Children’s Resale Shop, Free book with $10 purchase
The Meat House, 10 percent off on-site catering or prepared catering
Menotomy Beer and Wine, 10 percent off (wine only, cannot be combined with any other discounts or offers)
Not Your Average Joe’s, Monday-Friday 10 percent off of entire check (excludes alcohol, tax and gratuity)
Quad Cycles, 15 percent off entire store (except sale items)
Regent Theatre, 5 percent off selected February events when presenting library card at box office, no double discounts, subject to availability
Something Sweet Without Wheat, Free cookie
Star Nails, Pedicure/hot stone/warm towels/essential oils: $30 with $5 off
Things We Love, 10 percent off $25 or more
Tom Yum Koong II, Free crab Rangoon or thai rolls with purchase of $35 or more, free Bangkok fried rice or chicken pad thai with purchase of $55 or more
Tony’s All Sport Barber Shop, $3 off haircut (no weekends)
Tweet Tweet Toy Shop, 10 percent off entire store (except Legos), offer cannot be combined
www.thisorganizedhouse.com, 30 percent off initial three-hour work session for new clients
YourArlington.com, YourArlington offers 10 percent off any advertising rate
Za Pizza, 10 percent discount on food for all take out orders and a 10 percent discount on food while dining at Za during lunch, which is Monday-Friday 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.