San Mateo County: Beyond the bookshelf

From Half Moon Bay Review

” Sunday marked the start of National Library Week, a U.S. observance first instituted in 1958 by the American Library Association.Things have changed since the 1950s, and libraries are ever-evolving at a rapid pace to meet the needs of the diverse communities they serve.In the beginning, libraries were places where books were shelved for safekeeping, their content carefully curated and preserved. They were reverent places where voices were hushed, and heaven forbid that you bring in a snack while you perused the stacks.“When I was growing up, it was like, food in the library, are you kidding me?” said Greg Lucas who was appointed librarian of California by Gov. Jerry Brown in 2014. “Three years ago, 17 libraries said to each other, you know, when the schools close down for the summer, hunger doesn’t go on vacation. They started serving free lunches in their libraries.”Other libraries soon joined the groundswell. If you walk into the Half Moon Bay Library after school, you may be offered a healthy snack.Alternatively, those attending a special library event may get a nose full of something good that happens to be cooking.There’s no doubt about it, libraries have become modern community centers, a place where lives are enriched and people are transformed.”