With the stated purpose of promoting literacy and building a sense of community, the Little Free Library movement is now active in 40 states and 20 countries. The idea is beautifully simple. Place a weather protected box-like bookshelf in a public place. Put books on it that you want to share with other people. Leave instructions for people to take a book to read and return it or pass it on to someone else and put books on the shelf that they want to share with others. From their FAQ:
If this were just about providing free books on a shelf, the whole idea might disappear after a few months. There is something about the Little Library itself that people seem to know carries a lot more meaning. Maybe they know that this isn’t just a matter of advertising or distributing products. The unique, personal touch seems to matter, as does the understanding that real people are sharing their favorite books. Leaving notes or bookmarks, having one-of-a-kind artwork on the Library or constantly re-stocking it with different and interesting books can make all the difference.
Here is a Little Free Library in Missoula
2322 Duncan Dr.
Lela Autio, Steward – #970
Built by Hugh Warford
GPS Coord: 46.8864627, -113.9762181
And some examples of other Little Free Libraries:
More information about the Little Free Library project can be found here.