Track C: (International Ballroom West) — Community Engagement – Monday 23 October
13:30 – 14:30
This session features three journeys to community engagement. “All stories consist of a few common structural elements found universally in myths, fairy tales, dreams, and movies. They are known collectively as The Hero’s Journey,” writes Christopher Vogler in “The Writer’s Journey.” Storytelling isn’t just for books and screenplays, it’s an essential component of engaging blog posts, About Us pages, and branding. Get real-world examples of how storytelling has transformed the ProQuest Blog, increasing visits more than 50% over the course of a year. In the thriving music scenes of Minneapolis, Minn., and Seattle Washington, these libraries had a wonderful opportunity to engage the community while promoting itself with the implementation of a local music online system. Hear about its research, contract with a vendor for the application, submission of music, jury for music, going live, and audience reaction. As part of a long-overdue renovation process, the Barrington Area Library decided to “proceed with abandon” (sage advice from Patti Smith) and experiment with large-scale, site-specific, immersive art installations, and a museum-quality children’s department including an Imagination Playground and digital interactives. From a funeral for old technology to a giant coloring mural, collaborations with world-class artists, and kids who ask librarians to photograph their creative work for social media and video sharing, the result has been a powerful burst of community building and creativity, as well as a redefinition of what a public library’s purpose truly is.