Next month is national Library Card Sign-up Month, which is a month long celebration of the amazing facilities that public libraries provide to communities like ours.
It also coincides with students heading back to school, a time during which having a public library card is extremely useful.
The Seattle Public Library has comprised the list below of the 30 things you can do for free at any of their library branches, Ballard included:
- Visit a museum
- Learn how to write.
- Publish your e-book.
- Watch a movie online or at the Library.
- Download (and keep!) three songs a week.
- Get homework help online or in person, in English and Spanish.
- Speak a new language – we’ve got 80 to choose from!
- Learn programming or Web design with Safari Books Online.
- Become an Excel spreadsheet guru with Microsoft IT Academy.
- Find a job.
- Revamp your résumé – Brainfuse offers Live Résumé Help and will edit and return yours within 24 hours.
- Get healthy with easy-to-browse health and medical journals.
- Save money with Consumers’ Checkbook, a guide to Puget Sound services and stores such as auto repair shops, hospitals, plumbers, banks and insurance companies.
- Research your purchases – check Consumer Reports online.
- Download an e-book.
- Not sure how to download an e-book on your new device? Sign up for Tech Help.
- Reserve a computer – up to 90 minutes a day.
- Scan photos or use Adobe Photoshop at the Central Library.
- Research your family history.
- Start a business.
- Learn how to invest your money.
- Attend a story time or take the Lego-building challenge with your kid.
- File your taxes. Free tax help is offered every year from January to mid-April.
- Read a book that the rest of the city is reading – Seattle Reads happens every spring.
- Fix your bike.
- Preview ballet and opera performances or enjoy a concert.
- Hold a meeting – non-commercial groups can book one date per month.
- Use free Wi-Fi.
- Join a book group to talk about books with other readers.
- Get personalized book recommendations with Your Next 5 Books.
A Library card is free for anyone who lives, works, owns property or goes to school in the Library’s free service area. Cardholders from several library systems in Washington may also qualify.
Locals can apply online if they are 13 or older, or can visit a Library branch to sign up. Bring a valid I.D. and proof of your current address, like a utility bill. Young adults and children ages 17 and under do not need to provide proof of their resident address.
The Library has six unique cards to choose from.