“You have to be quiet now. We are in the library, and the books are sleeping.”
Did you ever hear that as a child as you entered the stately building where everyone whispered, if anyone even spoke at all?
You don’t hear that warning if you are walking into the Victoria Public Library now. We don’t encourage running and yelling, but there is occasional singing, dancing and a few giggles from time to time.
The Victoria Public Library is where the books live. It also is where babies develop their language and motor skills, toddlers are introduced to books, teens can explore careers and talk about things of importance, adults can play board games, yarn crafters can create their art, writers can share their stories and book lovers can share thoughts over a brown bag lunch or on a walk through downtown Victoria. Basically, the Victoria Public Library is a center for the community.
In 2019, almost 200,000 people visited the library. We offered more than 550 programs, with attendance at those programs nearing 22,000. Our patrons checked out more than 340,000 physical materials in addition to 28,000 digital checkouts.
We offer 36 public computers with internet access as well as software to create resumes and develop job skills.
We offer quiet areas where patrons can sit in comfortable chairs and enjoy newspapers from across the nation, or just read a book. We have more than 120,000 books in our collection.
Library patrons don’t even have to go to the library to enjoy our services. We offer connections to hundreds of online resources. For the mechanically inclined, the Chilton Auto Repair manuals are available on patrons’ personal devices, like phones and tablets. The Small Engine Repair Center offers 410 manuals for repairing everything from lawnmowers to snow blowers (there’s not much demand for that particular manual down here in Texas).
Patrons can access basic legal documents specific to Texas in Word and PDF formats. We have historically accurate maps of Texas and genealogy resources. Students can get help with research and homework projects. Patrons can access online practice tests for everything from the GED to the GMAT. Mango offers conversational speaking lessons in a variety of languages.
You can start your library experience by getting a free library card. You need to have a photo ID with proof of address. Children can have their own library cards as long as a parent, grandparent or other close adult relative or legal guardian co-signs the card application. You don’t need a library card to take part in any of our programs.
Next week, great deals on books will be available at the Friends of the Library Book Sale. The funds generated from the sale benefit VPL programs and facilities. The book sale is open to the public during regular library hours. To learn more about the sale and all of our programs, visit victoriapubliclibrary.org.