Patrons at Alpha Park Public Library enthusiastically welcomed a different sort of display this past October. Instead of being greeted by traditional ghouls, witches, and vampires in the window display behind the Circulation counter, patrons had a bit more fun. Using the windows separating Circulation from Technical Services, each window was transformed into a comic book panel. The resulting panels formed a Halloween story involving a book lover's potentially greatest fear - spiders (from space), and The Avengers.
The story begins on Halloween with Space Spiders shooting mysterious lasers which have the power to render our books blank! The police, unable to stop the arachnid invasion, call upon the Earth's only hope: The Avengers. After a perilous battle (with generous amounts of bug spray), The Avengers emerge victorious! Halloween is saved and all of the spooky books rejoice in regaining their story.
It was expected that staff would appreciate the kooky comic tale; there are many superhero fans employed at Alpha Park. But what was truly spectacular was the amount of patron enjoyment from the display. Comic book fans loved seeing a format that they were passionate about being represented prominently. Many liked the humor mixed with the fright. A few patrons even had specific questions such as: "Where is Ant-Man?" or "Would Spiderman really be okay with fighting spiders?" For a display that was fairly simple to make, and super-fun overall, it was fantastic to hear and see so many patrons get joy out of something that, realistically, does not matter.
Although, maybe it does? Libraries are much more than just books. They are about community too. And witnessing the patron appreciation for a cheesy display was a reminder to us that every little effort we do helps to make for a better library community. It was a reminder to always be willing to embrace new things, take risks, be a little goofy, and above all try to show love for all of our patrons' interests throughout the year to help everybody feel represented and welcome.
Submitted by Alpha Park Public Library.