top story

A Place We Call Home: Longboat Library

  • 0

Longboat Library is the only library on Longboat Key. It started in 1957.

The library moved into the building at 555 Bay Isles Road 45 years ago and is completely run by volunteers.

"We lease the building from the town but we pay for all the expenses, for the books and maintain of the building and we have a wonderful staff of 55 men and women who help us run this place."

Mary, a retired English teacher is a volunteer herself. Their book collection has grown over the years.

"We started with 1,300 books and today we have 6,000 books in our collection but we also have 1,200 for sale at any given time."

And those books sell for between 25 cents to $6. And on Wednesdays, they are half-price.

Every month they add 25 new books to their collection, mostly focusing on recreational reading for older people.

"Best-sellers, mysteries, we have some non-fiction, books of local interest gardening and things like that ."

The library still uses an old-fashioned card catalog.

"We have a card catalog. We don't have computer services for looking up books, we use the card catalog and we still stamp our books with a date stamp which a lot of people haven't seen in a long time, we're kinda a throwback."

Why you might ask does Long Boat key, one of the richest spots in the country, need a library?

"People don't want to read a book in isolation, they want to read a book and get excited about it and come in and talk to somebody about it. We have a lot of people who want to chat about books and make a recommendation to one of us or ask us for something that would be interesting to them."