At CMLE, we so enjoy all our different types of libraries, archives, and other members! Seeing all the work you are doing is so inspiring; and we want to return the favor by helping you to find some of the great programming going on around the profession.
Each week we will share an interesting program we find. It may inspire you to do exactly the same thing; or to try something related; or just to try out some different programming ideas.
Are you looking for something new? A way to have all kinds of fun things in the library?? Programs to bring in new people? A strategy that might help to bring up your noise factor??
The Milwaukee Public Library has just the program for you! This is the first in their series of Library Loud Days – which is suddenly my FAVORITE library program series of all time!!
From the Public Librarian website, by ALA Public Programs Office:
“On Friday, Dec. 1, more than 300 fans of all ages gathered at a Milwaukee Public Library (MPL) branch for Crush the Shush, a high-flying Mexican wrestling show featuring the Milwaukee-based Mondo Lucha.
The event was offered as part of a series called Library Loud Days — and rightly so. Event-goers cheered through a series of matches and shouted in protest when one of the wrestlers booed the library and reading as an activity. Later, things calmed down a bit; the luchadores (wrestlers) read stories to kids and signed posters and t-shirts, and patrons created their own wrestling masks and promo videos in the library’s makerspace.
Programming Librarian talked with Eileen Force Cahill, MPL’s community relations and engagement director, to learn what went into this extravagant, shush-busting evening.
Programming Librarian: How did this event come to be?
Eileen Force Cahill: About four years ago, MPL began a strategic planning process that identified three audiences with whom we wanted to establish a deeper relationship. We knew we wanted to change people’s notion of the library as a place where an old librarian with glasses would shush you, and reintroduce them to the library as a place where people of all ages in every neighborhood could gather and take advantage of the institution’s limitless resources. We worked with a local marketing agency who partnered with us at no cost, and created what we refer to as an “awareness” campaign, but it’s really more of a “perception” campaign.
Library Loud Days was born in summer 2016. For our first event, we closed down a major downtown street in front of the Central Library to host a hip-hop concert with the group New Age Narcissism. Along with the concert, we had food trucks, spoken-word performances and interactive stations throughout the library, including musical instrument demos.
We followed that with Haunted Central, where we created a haunted experience throughout the library, including a special tour of the “Forbidden Fourth Floor.” Last summer we had a birthday party for our mascot, Browser, with music, balloon artists, face painters, crafts, cake and more. (Read more about past Library Loud Days events.)
Crush the Shush was our latest endeavor. We were looking for something highly unusual and unexpected. The Library Loud Days team had a relationship with one of the producers of Mondo Lucha, and the idea was born. Continue reading Spotlight Program: Library Loud Days: Mondo Lucha at the Library