“What we try and do with the larger, or all of our events, but the larger ones in particular, is to try and create a lot of diversity, so that there is a cultural component, an educational component … Entertainment that people would normally have to travel to Philadelphia to see,” said Jessica Connor, the library’s manager of events and activities.
Through December, the library will offer performances by the Universal African Dance and Drum Ensemble, Jersey Sound Chorus, Charlie Zahm and the Wind Symphony of Southern Jersey. Smaller programs year-round include art classes, financial planning and women’s history classes.
“ … I like to make sure that we’re offering programs that assist people in all different aspects of their lives …” said Connor. “ … For what we call emerging adults, young adults coming out of high school that maybe need to learn how to write a check or to be responsible with managing their money or their credit cards, things of that nature.”
“ … We do a writer’s critique group at one of our branches, where aspiring writers learn the entire process of writing books, writing short stories (and) how to get them published,” she added. “We’re starting that with music as well.”
Connor also cited a program starting in November for songwriters and the business end of their craft, including how to collect royalties, publish music and get it noticed.
“So we try from all different angles to make sure we’re giving people information to either fill a gap, or maybe give them a new opportunity,” she added.
Connor would like to bring new programs to the library, specifically a series called “All Dressed Up Like Me.”
“ … The thought process with that particular program was to get people to look at other people in their community that might dress differently, wear their hair differently, practice different religions, and do so with more understanding and acceptance,” she explained.
“ … I would say in 2023, that’s going to be my main and continued target.”
All programs are supported by the Friends of the Burlington County Library and the Burlington County Library Foundation.
“I think what it comes down to, the thing that impresses me the most, is how many people are willing to step up and make all of this available to so many other people,” Connor pointed out.
“I think that’s the most rewarding part of it.”
For more information, visit https://www.bcls.lib.nj.us.