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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Rediscovering reading with the Boston Public Library

A+patron+of+the+Boston+Public+Library+browses+a+selection+of+books.
Hunter Berry
A patron of the Boston Public Library browses a selection of books. Photo by Hunter Berry / Contributor

Parents always encourage their little ones to read. Many kids fell in love with the stories that the pages brought, even if the act of reading itself created frustration and pain. As these kids grow older, most lose their love of reading, or it translates into a love for movies and TV shows.
It’s important to nurture these connections to the words on the page, even through adulthood. While a lot of kids love reading, some don’t at all. UMass Boston student Emily Walsh tells The Mass Media that she always hated reading because it was difficult for her. However, she said, “after finding the right books and the right genre, my confidence in and love for reading grew.”
A helpful resource for either growing back into reading, or discovering a new passion for it, is the Boston Public Library. With 25 locations, the BPL is accessible to those in all areas of the city. The library’s network is estimated to be one of the largest collections in the country, so visitors will surely find something intriguing (1).
Librarians can help make specialized recommendations for the reader’s taste. There is also a form online to match a reader with their perfect book. In fact, in 2020, over 1000 of these personalized recommendations were given (1).
Every so often, the library network hosts fun events for readers to earn prizes. Over the summer, there was a Summer Reading Challenge Bingo where participants read books that fulfilled various categories, like “read a book with a blue cover,” “read a book by an Asian American author,” or even a non-book-related square like “explore a new neighborhood.” For completing the bingo, players were entered in a raffle for a gift card to a local bookstore, and earned a free tote bag.
Currently, there is a Library Passport challenge, to encourage people to visit other locations besides their usual spot. Every week, a new location is featured on their Instagram—@bplboston—and they have fun events at the location. Library-goers can pick up a Boston Public Library Passport to get a stamp at each week’s location. At the end of the challenge, participants can earn a prize.
Besides these fun activities, Boston Public Library also has a variety of clubs and classes to join. Catered towards all age groups, they have something for everyone. This Tuesday, they have a mindfulness class, a yoga class, a knitting group, a documentary group and an interview-training workshop. On Wednesday, they have a book talk and an English conversation group.
Thursday brings a short story club, an ESL class, a Project Place event, a crafting club and a book club meeting. Friday is another book club, and the weekend provides yoga classes, clothing swaps, writing groups and more! These events occur across all locations, and some are even online, so it is accessible to most people.
The Central BPL location has tons of cool art and architecture shown through an interesting tour. Visitors can also look through the buildings themselves, but it may be more helpful with a tour guide.
The Boston Public Library brings many resources for readers new and old. With all of their fun and engaging activities, it shouldn’t be difficult to participate in one.

  1. https://www.bpl.org/about-the-bpl/?_ga=2.22452155.1616513866.1664522588-853501922.1664522588
About the Contributors
Rena Weafer, Editor-in-Chief
 
Hunter Berry, Photographer