Central Library: exhibits, lectures and kid lunches

Central Library

Books are amazing by themselves — but you add art galleries, photo collections, lectures and lunch for children — then you have an amazing utopia. What’s even better, is that this world exists! It is not imaginary! At the downtown Los Angeles Central Library, you can find all of these amazing things, with your library card as the free pass to awesomeness.


After a brief stop in The Library Store and buying a giant octopus plush toy on a whim (we are suckers for octopuses) we spent some time in the children’s section playing with other kids.



After visiting the children’s section we walked around the Annenberg Gallery display of Treasures of Los Angeles – currently featuring items from the Hollywood collection. Remember the Frances Howard Goldwyn Hollywood Regional Branch 11 we just went to? Well, this is a display from Hollywood’s Special Collection.


Next was Pintado: The Colors of Education. We saw beautiful paintings that were used as covers of textbooks in Mexico.

Finally, it was time for what we had originally gone to the library for that day. We went to hear Todd Blubaugh speak about his book Too Far Gone as part of LAPL‘s lecture series after hearing about it on Twitter. I thought my husband John would enjoy it because he has been driving a motorcycle since he was a teenager. So, Riley gave her dad a library date for Father’s Day.

What a lovely talk. Todd had a great story and wonderful photographs. Of course we bought his book and he signed it. A special thank you to Christina Rice and the Photo Collection of LAPL for making the lecture happen.


And toddlers being toddlers, Riley did not last long during the lecture — so we left her dad and the motorcycle and photography enthusiasts for something a little more kid oriented. She was hungry for lunch! And it just so happened there was a free lunch happening in the next room. . .

During the summer, kids can eat lunch at the library. We met a bunch of great people during Riley’s meal – including a nice family from Echo Park and the City Librarian of Los Angeles. The City Librarian, John Szabo, has been to all 72 branches of the LAPL! He is the first person we have met to have done what we are trying to do.

So, if you ever want an amazing day full of art, books, amazing people, conversation and inspiration — go to Central Library in Los Angeles. Not only can you check out books with your library card, you can browse exhibits, artwork and attend lectures. Your kid can even eat a free lunch during the summer. We truly live in an amazing time.

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