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Rex and Paul chew the fat about their sojourn in western Arkansas (part one), starting at Texarkana and heading north. And admiring four beautiful lakes, checking out the museum at Ashdown, pondering the origins of the name De Queen and admiring cool things going on there, humoring Rex’s sore feelings about a football state championship of long ago,
A perfect blend of library and coffee shop arrives at CALS Main Library this Saturday, December 15, as we open the new Nexus Nook! This coffee shop and gathering space will offer beverages, snacks, a vibrant atmosphere and a host of new possibilities for connecting with others.
The Nexus Nook and its seating area enhance the ground floor of the library in exciting ways.
Mystery of Notorious Arkansas Murder Explored in New Book
The brutal murder of a young girl in the Arkansas Ozarks triggered shock and the threat of mob violence, followed by decades of mystery: now author Nita Gould unveils the remarkable story in her book Remembering Ella: A 1912 Murder and Mystery in the Arkansas Ozarks, just released by Butler Center Books.
Our Gathering Place
As public library systems offer more and more digital resources to patrons, the image of libraries is changing, but the value of public libraries is not. Today, the public library is more essential to American culture than it has ever been before, as the library remains one of the enduring pillars of communal life in America. As sociologist Eric Klinenberg writes, “Building places where all kinds of people can gather is the best way to repair the fractured societies we live in today.”
A healthy, peaceful society is built on community connections, and people often seek and create those connections through public libraries. We go to club meetings, public lectures, business classes, movies, art exhibitions, and music concerts at CALS. And while we’re there, in the communal circle created by the library, we meet others who are different from ourselves. We bridge cultural gaps, learn through dialogue, and gain new understanding.
CALS patron Christa Abernathy-Meredith feels that the library provides a community environment where people can learn and grow. “My Girl Scout troop meets in the library,” she says. “I do crafting and cooking classes at the library. I attend [fan conventions] at libraries. It’s not just about the books.”
“What’s not to love about public libraries?” asks patron Michelle Mills. “I love the ease of getting any book I’d like, the spaces that can be used by the community, the access to computers & internet for anyone who needs it, the programs for kids & adults—so much to appreciate!”
This winter, a new coffee shop, the Nexus Nook, will open in the Main Library at Library Square. Like Jimmy’s Serious Sandwiches in our Bookstore, this new space for sharing beverages, snacking, and relaxing will enhance the options for our patrons to make community connections and meet with others in our comfortable library setting. Every additional option for connecting serves a larger purpose when people venture out of their homes and find companionship, fun, and unexpected human rapport.
Here at CALS, we understand the crucial role that libraries play in our cities, our counties, and our civic culture. Whether CALS is hosting mayoral candidates in four of our branches or early voting in three additional branches—whether we are supporting local artists and musicians or helping local businesses or community clubs—we know that all our libraries are places for people to come together, share common interests, and learn from each other. And everybody is welcome here at the library, one of our strongest civic gathering places.
Central Arkansas Library System