As part of an epic adventure into the Loop today, I stopped at the Harold Washington Library just for a visit. My list visit was easily over four years ago so, obviously, it was time to refresh my memory of the place. And can I just tell you how incredibly magnificent it was?
First, we waked in and heard magnificent voices. As a friendly little reminder that the library really is a Third Place where people can gather and take part in more than just reading and research, the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus was doing a Christmas themed performance. And oh my goodness did they sound amazing. Many points to them. Extra points for their hilarious version of O Tannenbaum. Just seeing everybody stop to listen to them in the middle of the library and be gathered there simply enjoying the music made me so intensely happy.
Next, we visited the Children’s Library and I searched for my favorite picture book (Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog by Mo Willems) and, while I didn’t find it, I still loved it. Met a librarian there who graduated from Dominican and who also does both youth and archives. There is hope for me yet! Took a glance at the Storytime Dollhouse which contains references to bunches of stories including, but certainly not limited to, Curious George, Corduroy, Sherlock Holmes, and many others. Calling me exitedly giddy is an understatement.
Continuing our browsing, we visited their exhibit Actors, Plays, & Stages: Early Chicago Theatre. Having a background in theatre and being, above all else, a theatre kid forevermore, I loved learning about local theatre history and seeing awesome artifacts.
Overall, definitely a great library visit and a friendly reminder that the library really is the place I want to spend the rest of my life.