Little Free Libraries are a global phenomenon. The small, front‐yard book exchanges number more than 75,000 around the world in 85 countries — from Iceland to Tasmania to Pakistan.
Now, a new Little Free Library at 805 Phil Hansen in Canutillo will join the movement to share books, bring people together and create communities of readers.
Tim and Lora Holt decided to put up a Little Free Library (LFL) in their neighborhood to encourage not only literacy and reading, but also to encourage neighborhood engagement in the Canutillo Heights neighborhood.
“Our Little Free Library doesn’t just belong to us, it belongs to the whole neighborhood.” says Holt. “It’s our hope that this Little Free Library will bring a little more joy, a little more connection and a whole lot more books to our community. Hopefully, over time, the LFL will become sort of a small community watering hole where ideas and books are exchanged.”
Now, their official LFL #84469 is open for anyone to “Take a Book and Leave a Book.”
The LFL was created from an old free newspaper stand, found at the Habitat for Humanity thrift shop in the east side, and painted in a way that was inspired by the bus from the old television series “The Partridge Family” which might have just maybe was inspired by the Bauhaus artist Peit Mondorian.
The library holds about 50 books at a time for all age levels and all reading levels, and anyone is encouraged to come and explore the book offerings, taking what they want to read, and returning them when done, or replacing them with a book that they bring.
The Canutillo Heights LFL is set up so that anyone can access it. “It is made of sturdy plastic and has a door that springs shut, so it is weatherproof. It just recently survived our rain and wind storms and come through with flying colors.” After only three days, the LFL has already seen ten books taken and 15 books left for others to take.
There are over 50 Little Free Libraries in the El Paso area, but many of them are located inside schools or other public buildings that are closed on weekends or holidays. The Little Free Library in Canutillo Heights is open every day, all day.
The Holt’s encourage people to drop by the LFL to take a book and leave a book.
“There are a lot of LFL’s around the world that are much more beautiful and inspired than ours, but ours belongs to our little neighborhood. I hope, over time, that parents and kids will see the value of their own LFL in our neighborhood.”
The Little Free Library nonprofit organization has been honored by the Library of Congress, the National Book Foundation, and the American Library Association, and Reader’s Digest named them one of the “50 Surprising Things We Love about America.”
Each year, nearly 10 million books are shared in Little Free Libraries.
To learn more, please visit littlefreelibrary.org or come by 805 Phil Hansen in Canutillo and get a book for Spring Break. To find a Little Free Library near you, check out the world map of official Little Free Libraries online.