The Library of Virginia (LVA) is known for its remarkable collections and its outstanding support for anyone interested in exploring those collections. Many Virginians, though, are not familiar with the Library of Virginia nor is everyone able to easily get to Richmond to visit in person. So in 2023, to help celebrate its 200th anniversary, the Library of Virginia will be on the go, heading out across the state to share its resources and staff expertise around the commonwealth. This exciting project reinforces LVA’s commitment to serving the diverse communities that make up the state and to collaborating with local partners to share the rich content and staff knowledge that are the library’s hallmarks.
Starting in March, LVA On the Go will feature fifteen events around the state. From the Northern Neck to Southwest Virginia and from the Shenandoah Valley to Southside, LVA has partnered with local public libraries to connect communities with their state library. Working through the public libraries gives LVA access to a ready-made audience and reinforces the local nature of the events. Each event in the series has been developed in consultation with the partnering library, and their knowledge of community interests and needs has shaped the diverse presentations that make up the event.
Map showing LVA On the Go stops (click each location for info, or see the full list at the end of this post).
The On the Go events will not only build a stronger understanding among public library staff and users about how they can take advantage of LVA resources from wherever they are but will also strengthen ties between public library partners and LVA, ties that will benefit both institutions as they strive to serve all those people living in Virginia. While LVA is well-known and respected in the scholarly research community, connecting with public library users in their communities offers opportunities for LVA to engage with people that are perhaps unfamiliar with the library and how its resources can support their needs and interests.
LVA On the Go is centered around a new library vehicle purchased with the generous support of the Library of Virginia Foundation. The new On the Go van features technology that will enable LVA staff to share the library’s digital collections such as Virginia Untold, which recovers the stories of enslaved and free Black Virginians prior to 1867; the Virginia Chronicle, which offers genealogists and local historians access to digitized images of over three million newspaper pages; and other great digital content from LVA. In addition to presentations on these resources, On the Go events will include locally-focused programming from LVA and local presenters such as children’s activities, oral history projects, genealogy consultations, and LVA library card registration.
We hope that all Virginians will have an opportunity to attend one (or more) of the LVA On the Go events to learn how their state library and their local public library can help solve problems, find answers, and build strong communities. See you there!
-Barry Trott, Adult Services Consultant & Elizabeth Klaczynski, Education & Programs Specialist
LVA On the Go: Event Schedule
Suffolk Public Library
443 W. Washington Street, Suffolk, VA 23434
Washington County Public Library System, Abingdon Library
205 Oak Hill Street NE, Abingdon, VA 24210
Halifax County-South Boston Public Library, Halifax Branch
177 S. Main Street, Halifax, VA 24558
Montgomery-Floyd Regional Library, Meadowbrook Public Library
267 Alleghany Spring Road, Shawsville, VA 24162
Essex Public Library
117 North Church Lane, Tappahannock, VA 22560
Northumberland Public Library at the Heathsville Farmers Market
73 Monument Place, Heathsville, VA 22473
Botetourt County Libraries, Fincastle Library
11 Academy Street, Fincastle, VA 24090
Prince William Public Libraries, Bull Run Library
8051 Ashton Avenue, Manassas, VA 20109
Lynchburg Public Library
2315 Memorial Avenue, Lynchburg, VA 24501
Jefferson-Madison Regional Library, Nelson Memorial Library
8521 Thomas Nelson Highway, Lovingston, VA 22949
Massanutten Regional Library
174 S. Main Street, Harrisonburg, VA 22801
Blue Ridge Regional Library, Martinsville Branch
310 Church Street East, Martinsville, VA 24112
Chesterfield County Public Library
ChesterFest, 11801 Centre Street, Chester, VA 23831
Central Rappahannock Regional Library
1201 Caroline Street, Fredericksburg, VA 22401
Russell County Public Library, Lebanon Library
248 W. Main Street, Lebanon, VA 24266
How awesome! What a great idea!