Your Saturday Afternoon at the Public Library

If you wistfully remember Patience and Fortitude, regally guarding the Beaux-Arts building on 5th Avenue and 42nd Street, you should give the main branch of the Nashville Public Library a chance.  Located downtown at 615 Church Street, the library, like the Beaux-Arts branch in New York, is like a museum.  Everything is pristine. The grand central lobby shows NYPL’s current celebration, best viewed from above as you lean over one of the balconies. The Civil Rights Room is a beautiful tribute to Nashville’s role in the Movement, complete with a lunch counter that displays the rules for nonviolent protesters. The teen book room alone made me want to morph back to my 17-year old self for the first time ever. The library also boasts a sunny courtyard and fountain, a large special collection, kids’ crafts and story time, and a photography exhibit.  

I only poked around for a couple hours, but it was by far the most relaxing afternoon I’ve had in a long, long time. I haven’t known the warm smile of a librarian in ages, and if we’re honest with ourselves, the libraries in New York are frequently smelly and kind of gross. I’m excited to check out some NPL events, too. 





  1. Also the puppet shows in the children’s theater at the library are amazing. I don’t even have kids and it’s one of my favorite things to do on the rare weekend morning I get up and out of the house in time. This is not a Mr. Rogers type puppet show, we’re talking real marionettes, Bunraku, etc. It has to be the least appreciated amazing performance art in town.

Don't be an idiot.

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