OPL in the News

Below, you can read selected media stories showcasing Oakland Public Library programs and staff. To view an archive of press releases from the library, click here.

Tuesday, February 28th, 2017, East Bay Times

Patrons and librarians at the Oakland Public Library’s Dimond branch have given way to carpenters, painters and other workers while the building undergoes a face-lift.

The branch at 3565 Fruitvale Ave. closed for renovation in December and is scheduled to reopen around the end of May.

This marks the first refurbishing of the building since it opened 36 years ago. Funds for the $600,000 remodeling project have come from donations and foundation grants. Friends of the Dimond Library, a volunteer group that assists the branch, has raised $40,000 of the $50,000 needed to buy new furniture, said supervising librarian Mary Schrader.

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Wednesday, February 15th, 2017, Oakland North

Members of organizations such as the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU); Speak Out Now, an East Bay revolutionary socialist group; the Oakland Public LibraryShowing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ),  a national network organizing white people for racial justice; and Narika set up information tables to speak to attendees about registering as volunteers, signing petitions, or how to donate or get involved in local activism.

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Friday, February 10th, 2017, KQED

It’s story time at the Dimond Branch of the Oakland Public Library, and librarian Miriam Medow sits before a group of about 30 kids and parents — black, white, Latino, Asian American and Arab American. First Medow leads them in a song where everyone gets to blow raspberries, and then she reads about the all-animal cast in Mr. Tiger Goes Wild. Medow says one of the toughest parts of her job is finding enough books that reflect this very diverse neighborhood.

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Thursday, January 26th, 2017, San Francisco Chronicle

Librarians, however, who have never subscribed to the book’s motto that “ignorance is strength,” will be glad to let card-carrying citizens borrow “1984” for free. Patience is required. In Oakland, only four of 20 print copies were available to be checked out Thursday. There were nine holds on two e-book copies.

“It appears to be a very popular title right now,” said Oakland community relations librarian Sharon McKellar. “You might see this for a new book, but it’s unusual for a classic.”

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Friday, January 20th, 2017, East Bay Times

Oakland’s Tool Lending Library has grown from an inventory of 325 tools when it opened in 2000 to more than 5,000 it now has available to loan out. Every nook and cranny of the small four-room library is stuffed with tools. Even more garden tools are housed in a storage shed.

Last Saturday afternoon, a steady stream of patrons came through the door, picking up tools and asking for advice. One man checked out a miter saw, another sought suggestions on the best way to drill out a lock. A resident found the perfect scoop to help him clean out his gutters, and a woman brought in a push broom with a broken handle the staff helped her remove.

“This is our slow time,” said Rachel Sher, librarian at the Tool Lending Library. “Once it warms up, we’ll have a line out the door.”

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Friday, December 16th, 2016, NBC Bay Area

For most of the kids, Thursday was their first time seeing a Warriors game in person. They have Livingston to thank for it – he was the one who contacted them and set the plan in motion.

“I work at the Oakland Public Library, so he emailed some of the administration at the library and they told me,” said Original Scraper Bike's President Reggie Burnett. “And I was like, ‘Oh, for sure!’ We were stoked to go and overly excited to be here."

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Tuesday, December 13th, 2016, NBC Bay Area

“We’ve always wanted to get this,” Tominaga said Tuesday. “But timing-wise, this fell into place.” She said that the issue of fake news and “post truth” were the backdrops of the conversation the librarians had with their “electronic resources team.”

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Friday, November 11th, 2016, East Bay Times

Under the guidance of library workers and the Rock Paper Scissors Collective, the students took photos of their world, many of which are on display this month as “Through Our Eyes,” an exhibition at the West Oakland branch of the public library.

At a reception there Friday, a small gathering wiped out the refreshments provided and shared some of what they had learned while taking the photos and drafting written comments on them.

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Tuesday, October 25th, 2016, East Bay Times

Siskind said her favorite things about the library include doing story time with local children, and also giving book references. And she said the library’s sense of community is what she finds most notable after 20 years.

“You build a building, and it’s supposed to last forever,” Siskind said. “I feel the building has stayed the same, but the people are always shifting. I meet people with babies and they grow up, and people who I read stories to when they were little are starting to have kids now.”

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Tuesday, October 4th, 2016, East Bay Times

Already showing is work from Fine Arts Project Revisited, a rebirth of a project where artists created and showed work one year after the fire in 35 East Bay locations. Artists Adélie Bisoff, Andy Bergers, Darrell Hunger, Jennie Jabbour, Joell Jones, June Felter, Raphael Shevlev and Susan Felter are displaying those works now through Oct. 14 at the Rockridge Library, 5366 College Ave.

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