Sunday, March 28, 2010

Library Programming: An Irish Jig

When I started my search for a library program for this class, I asked a fellow student and friend what programs her library had coming up. This friend works at a library on the south side (Greenwood, I believe), and had mentioned a few cool things they'd done for their teen group (if I remember correctly, they had a lock-in a few months ago with somewhere between 30 and 50 teens!) and I figured they'd have some cool adult activities there, too. The first thing she told me about was a Salsa lesson and wine tasting event (Dancing! Booze!), but it was being held right about the time I asked the question, so I couldn't get there in time. The next event they had was an Alice in Wonderland themed tea-tasting (Tea! Johnny Depp!), but alas, it occurred on a Thursday night that we had class.

After failing with that library, I went back to IMCPL's calendar, determined to find something. I eventually decided on seeing an Irish-playing music group in honor of St. Patty's Day (Ireland! Music!). This appealed to my Irish roots and love of music. So on the Sunday before St. Patrick's Day, I made the trek to the Wayne Township branch of IMPCL to see the musical stylings of Alair, a female trio of harp, flute(s), and cello/violin.

The music was lovely and I liked that the library offered this program to its patrons. A few interesting things about what I saw there:

~The event was easy to find, as it was in a room right off the entry way. I've never visited the Wayne branch, and I appreciated the fact that I had no problem finding where I needed to go.
~There were no librarians or staff present for the program. I initially thought the man running the front table and directing traffic was the librarian in charge of this event, but he turned out to be the harpist's husband.
~I would estimate the average age of the audience to be about 70. I was easily the youngest person in the room, besides the musicians' kids. There were about 15-20 people who attended, some couples, some groups, but the majority were older and women.
~The door was left open during the concert. This was nice because some people heard the music and came in for a while, but I could also see this as a possible distraction to the patrons, as the stacks were right outside the room and the musicians weren't exactly playing quietly. I, for one, would dig searching the stacks whilst jigs and reels played in the background, but that's just me.

All-in-all, I thought this was a fun event and I thought it was cool that an older generation was taking advantage in the library's event. It was free and the music was beautiful and the audience really enjoyed it. It's too bad, though, that so few younger people were in attendence; I don't know if this is the standard audience for this library's events, but if it is, I wonder how they could reach out to other age groups.

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