“Little Free Library” encourages reading, community spirit

Derrick Abromeit's Little

Derrick Abromeit's Little

A bookcase with a note reading, “Little Free Library” sits at the edge of the lawn at 2006 Quail Drive, but don’t drive off with the bookcase thinking you’ve scored a free piece of furniture. Instead, open its glass door and take a book home to read.

The Abromeit family, all avid readers engaged in their seventh-annual summer reading competition, planted the new addition to their garden Wednesday to encourage neighbors to swap novels.

“The idea is to get a little more community spirit going,” Derrick Albromeit said. “Hopefully walkers will stop by, grab a book or leave one.”

Abromeit, a government teacher at Gardner-Edgerton High School, was inspired to build his summer lawn project after spotting similar “little libraries” in Iowa City neighborhoods during an April campus visit to the University of Iowa with his daughter, Lily. After two months of work, he completed the bookcase using recycled materials and stocked the shelves with everything from Harry Potter to Steven King.

Abromeit is in last place in his family’s book battle, but with his project finished and a library in his front yard, he hopes to catch up.

To build your own “Little Free Library,” you can register and get free tips at www.littlefreelibrary.org.