Libraries are amazing. You may have forgotten this sometime in your schooling, when a grueling all-nighter replaced any fond memories you may have had of storytime in preschool. I urge you to think again. There are books, movies, magazines, classes, and events. What's the big deal? All of these things are also FREE. It's hard to find free anything anymore, but libraries remain free as ever. So use yours! To use your library, however, you need to use your library card, and you cannot use your library if you don't have one. This how-to guide will help you with that.
To do this Instructable you will need:
-Proof of Address (if your I.D. does not say you live in Boston)
How to get a library card in Boston is an item on the Neighbors Project Neighbors Checklist.
Step 1: Find the Library.
The Boston Public Library is hard to miss; its shadow looms not-so-ominously in Copley Square. In fact, it is the largest public library in the United States, the third largest library in the United States, and one of only two public libraries to be a part of the Association of Research Libraries (the other one is the New York Public Library). If this all sounds a little overwhelming or inconvenient, don't worry! The Boston Public Library has 27 branches, and one of them is probably in your neighborhood. To know what branch is most convenient for you, check the website for a better idea. You can get a card anytime, but just make sure you're going when the library is in fact, open.
Step 2: Bring Your I.D. and Proof of Address.
The library needs to know two things:
That you are, indeed, really you, and that you do in fact live in Boston.
So you will need either:
A Driver's License or Massachusetts State ID that says who you are and your address in Boston.
Any out of State Resident ID or Driver License, Passport, School, Alien Registration, Military, Consular, or Employee.
Proof of Address. You can use a copy of your lease, a postmarked piece of mail that was mailed to you in the last 30 days, an imprinted bank check or deposit slip, a current rent receipt, or a utility bill from the last 30 days.
Step 3: Fill Out the Application.
Upon asking for a library card, a librarian will take the one or two materials needed in Step 2, and hand you an application. A green, page long application, it asks for your name, address, and a signature. It should take around 20 seconds to fill out.
Step 4: Free Books and More!
You are now the proud owner of a library card. Woot! You have access to nearly anything you would want in the largest public library. The possibilities are endless. Use your cards generously, but return materials when they are due, or the library will be no longer free for you. You can renew your materials online by logging into your account. In addition to all the books libraries are known for having, there's a great collection of CDs and DVDs circulating the Boston Library System. Also, there is a pretty full line-up of events and exhibitions at all library branches that can be viewed here.