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Little Free Library comes to Heidelberg

| Wednesday, April 24, 2013, 9:01 p.m.
Submitted photo
Little Free Library is located near the Ellsworth Avenue Playground. It is about the size of a mailbox and is based on the honor system.

“Free” does not come with a catch at Heidelberg's newly developed Little Free Library near the Ellsworth Avenue Playground.

Don't expect to see any construction, though – Heidelberg's Little Free Library is about the size of a mailbox.

The Little Free Library project, which has locations around the world, focuses on one simple premise: the simple, free exchange of books.

Heidelberg councilman Robert DeBar brought the idea to his community seeing other Little Free Libraries in his travels.

“People put in what they want and take what they want,” he said. “There are no rules, no dues — it's the first thing that's actually really free.”

The library is based on the honor system.

“That's basically the idea,” he said. “You put a book in. If you want to take one out, you take one out.”

Debar encouraged residents to drop off books they don't want anymore.

“Everybody has books around the house they don't know what to do with,” he said. “This is a place for them.”

So far, he said, people seem to like the idea, though he thinks the concept of “free” gives residents pause.

“‘Free' scares people,” he said. “People think there's a catch. Once people get used to it, I think they'll like it.”

The location near the playground was chosen in hopes of making the books accessible to children.

“We thought it might encourage kids to grab a book,” he said.

Should response to the first Little Free Library near the playground be positive, DeBar hopes to add more throughout the community.

“It's an easy program,” he said. “This is a good town, and there are good people in this town. I think it's a good thing for the community.”

Megan Guza is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5810 or mguza@tribweb.com.

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