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There’s a Library of Congress Affiliate Near You (And They Have Great Programs to Offer!)

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The following guest post was written by Guy Lamolinara, communications officer in the Center for the Book.

Historian Jill Lepore speaking at the Massachusetts Book Awards ceremony at the Massachusetts State House on September 17, 2019.

You may not know it, but the Library of Congress, through its Center for the Book, has affiliates in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The Center for the Book was established in 1977 to carry out the mission of promoting books, reading, libraries and literacy nationwide—a very big job. Which is why the Affiliate Centers were established: to help the Center in Washington fulfill its mission in a meaningful—and truly national—way.

You can learn about your local Center for the Book by accessing our Affiliates page. As you will see, these centers are engaged year-round with promoting their local literary heritage. They do this by sponsoring programs themselves and also by co-sponsoring programs with the Library of Congress and other organizations.

For example, last year, several centers co-sponsored visits to rural communities in their state featuring then-Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith. With her “American Conversations” project, Smith traveled to seven states. She met and held programs with rural residents in places as diverse as youth detention centers, senior citizen facilities, Native American villages and even an opera house.

Now, you can learn about your local Center for the Book’s public programs in one place. The new Calendar of Events tells you what your state or territory is doing as well as the activities of other Affiliate Centers. And, through the beauty of the internet, you can be a part of programs from just about any state, as the current pandemic has forced almost all programs to go online.

Why not have a look? Maybe you have an idea for an event with your local Center for the Book. Feel free to drop them a line.