The first four book nooks were installed early last week in Many’s Cultural District. The remaining eight were expected to be installed before the end of the week.
The book nooks are loaded with free books for the residents of Many. One shelf contains books for adults, while the lower shelf is stacked with children’s books.
A year-long project of the Many Cultural District Advisory Committee, Mayor Ken Freeman, and the Town of Many, the book nooks are designed to encourage people, especally children, to read more.
“We are so pleased that the book nooks are now ready for our citizens. This ambitious project not only helps beautify our town, but it encourages something very important…it encourages reading,” Many Mayor Ken Freeman said.
Many Book Nooks are a cooperative endeavor of the Many Cultural District Advisory Committee and other agencies, businesses and individuals around Many.
Twelve businesses and individuals stepped up to fund the cost of the book nooks. Each individual business or individual donated $200 to fund the cost of building one book nook. Their names are inscribed on plaques on the roofs of the book nooks.
Nancy Richard, a retired college English professor from New Orleans and Lafayette who lives in Many and is a member of the Cultural District Advisory Committee , coordinated the year long project. Interstate Lumber and Building Supplies provided the lumber and other materials at a substantial discount. Sabine Association for Retarded Citizens (SARC)carpenters constructed the free lending libraries. Artists at the Depot Art Guild decorated and painted the book nooks with different literary themes. Crews from the Town of Many installed the book nooks. People from all around the area generously donated books to stock them.
The twelve book nooks are located all around town. They can be found in such locations as next door to the Many Police Station, just behind Judge Elizabeth Pickett’s office, in front of the Sabine Parish Courthouse, in front of the agriculture center next to the Many Post Office, at two churches located on Martin Luther King Drive, behind the First Methodist Church, in front of the old post office (now the Sabine State Bank offices) on San Antonio, in front of the Many Historic Depot Museum, in front of Lou’s Candles and Gifts, and other locations.
Many Cultural District Advisory Committee chairperson Mary Brocato said, “It’s fun to look for the different locations…kind of like a treasure hunt. You can find the book nooks, see what books are in them, take a book, leave a book, and then check out some of the other book nooks to see what books are there.”
She continued, ” I want to thank Nancy Richard, our sponsors and everyone else who worked so hard on this project. We believe it’s going to be a real asset to our town and our citizens.”
People are encouraged to stop at a book nook, and not only take a book, but leave books for others to read. Sharing books among everyone in the community is a cooperative effort for all.
Freeman hopes Many residents and citizens will cooperate by taking care of the book nooks so they can provide both beauty to Many, but also knowledge. ”
“Let’s treasure these little libraries and let’s take really good care of them. Lots of people worked hard to make them a reality,” Freeman concluded.