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Get your library card and design a bookmark in September!


Fall is a great time to start something new – like joining the library. September is Library Card Sign-up Month, and librarians everywhere urge everyone, especially kids, to get library cards. Our staff will be visiting classrooms to spread the word, so don’t be surprised if your elementary-school child expresses an urgent desire to visit the library and apply for a card.

When can a child get a library card? Some libraries issue library cards to infants, but at the Mill Valley Library, we believe that getting a library card makes sense if a child is old enough to have an inkling of what it means to have one. Young applicants must to be able to write their first and last names and have a parent or legal guardian with identification (or a library card) present to sign the application. Children who receive their first cards at the Mill Valley Library pose for a celebratory photo and receive a free book in honor of the occasion. Photo bookmarks of all new library cardholders are then posted on our My First Library Card wall for the month. Library cards for both adults and children can be applied for online or at the library.

September also brings our wildly popular Bookmark Design Contest – an artistic way for kids up to age 12 to express their love of books, reading, and our library. This annual event honors the 1998 groundbreaking of our beautiful Children’s Room, part of a three-story addition which spectacularly enlarged the library’s original 1966 footprint. Kids may submit as many entries as they want before the deadline on September 30 at 9:00 p.m. Librarians will choose the top 30 designs, which will be posted in the Children’s Room for the month of October, where library patrons can view them and vote for their favorites. The top five designs will be professionally printed in November and given away for free to all who visit the library. You’ll want to collect them all – they make great gifts, too!

Don’t be afraid to start something new. Bring your youngster in to get a library card (or get one yourself) and join the fun. Find good books, impressive cultural events, excellent children’s programming, and a sense of community all in one place – and, it’s all free! Don’t forget to pick up some Bookmark Design Contest entry forms (or download them here).


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