New Orleans Public

Library Celebrates National

Library Week

In collaboration with Turn the Page, the New Orleans Public Library and the New Orleans Public Library Foundation joins communities nationwide in celebration of National Library Week Monday, April 13 – Sunday, April 19.

An extension of the New Orleans Public Libraries’ “Most Amazing Story Ever Told: Love,” limited-edition Library Love Cards will be unveiled, available to the community at all 14 library branches during National Library Week, at YLC’s Wednesday at the Square and Crescent City Farmers Markets, among other locations. The Library Love Cards offer the community access to the New Orleans Public Libraries’ extensive collection of books, movies, DVDs, and CDs, computers, internet, Wi-Fi, in addition to all products offered on the library’s website.


The New Orleans Public Library is also launching an updated and more user-friendly website, designed to offer an intuitive and streamlined library web experience as well as a new web address, nolalibrary.orgThe website features an event and program calendar searchable by date, location and event type. Users also have a search option allowing them to enter search terms and receive results from the library catalog, archives and event calendar, as well as access to individual webpages for each library branch location.

Open-to-public readings, featuring authors Michael Pitre and Michael Ross, will be hosted at the Rosa F. Keller Library. Pitre is this year’s Fiction award winner for “Fives and Twenty-Fives,” and Ross is the Non-Fiction winner for “The Great New Orleans Kidnapping.”



The New Orleans Public Library and the New Orleans Public Library Foundation will also host the Library Choice Awards Dinner on Tuesday, April 14, at The Southern Food and Beverage Museum, honoring the following recipients: Fiction, Michael Pitre, “Fives and Twenty-Fives”; Non-Fiction, Michael Ross, “The Great New Orleans Kidnapping Case: Race, Law, and Justice in the Reconstruction Era”; Television, Various, “True Detective”; Music – Jazz, Jason Marsalis, The 21st Century Trad Band; and Music – Other, Hurray for the Riff Raff, “Small Town Heroes.”

To close out National Library Week, The Friends of the New Orleans Public Library will hold a “Spectacular Sunday Sale” at the Latter Library Carriage House, featuring sale prices on literary materials, live music, refreshments, a food truck and much more.

Turn the Page Celebrates

Love & Literacy

Turn the Page kicked off its one-year anniversary celebration event this morning at the Main Library, turning the page with students from New Orleans to tell the most amazing story ever told: LOVE.


Personal love letters from participating students to the New Orleans Public Library were on display to illustrate their love for the library and literacy. Click here to write your own love letter to the library!


Students and attendees had the pleasure of listening to a live musical performance with Grammy award-winning musician and Chairman Emeritus of the New Orleans Public Library, Irvin Mayfield, Ellis Marsalis, Shannon Powell and Glen David Andrews.



The anniversary event featured an art exposition presented by ExhibitBe creator Brandan Odums, conveying his visual interpretation of literacy, as well as a discussion with renowned local chef Leah Chase, who spoke of literacy’s impact on her personal experiences and the culinary world.


Chef Leah Chase speaking to students.

The celebration continued with live storytelling from The Moth, a non-profit organization dedicated to the art of storytelling, as well as recognizing the fourteen New Orleans Public Library branch managers who make the journey and experience of reading possible.

The one-year anniversary event for Turn the Page was a celebration filled with music, dancing, laughter and literacy! Click here to share your own love letter for the New Orleans Public Library and to continue sharing the gift of literacy and love with those around you. | The Times-Picayune and WWL-TV stopped by to hear the most amazing story ever told.

Telling the Most Amazing

Story Ever Told

Tomorrow, the New Orleans Public Library and New Orleans Public Library Foundation will “turn the page” with the most amazing story ever told and share it with New Orleanians of all ages.

Celebrating the one-year anniversary of the Turn the Page campaign, an initiative to make  New Orleans the most literate city in America by 2018, the anniversary event will be held at the Main Library the morning of Thursday, Feb. 26.

Irvin Mayfield, Grammy award-winning musician and Chairman Emeritus of the New Orleans Public Library, will highlight the impact the New Orleans Public Library has on the local community along with local literacy advocates, including renowned chef Leah Chase and artist and creator of ExhibitBe Brandan Odums. The event will feature storytelling, art expositions and live music.

Irvin Mayfield at the 2014 Turn the Page event

At its initial kickoff event on January 22, 2014, Turn the Page broke the Guinness World Record for the “World’s Largest Reading Lesson” with 451 New Orleans students at the Main Library. The New Orleans Public Library branches have seen growth since the campaign began. Last year, total circulation increased by 7 percent, with digital circulation rising by 57 percent. Teen and children’s summer reading programs increased by more than 20 percent.

The library also has introduced new programming for kids and started the first-ever Adult Summer Reading program.

New Orleans Public Library

Turns the Page to a New School

Year with Back-to-School Rally

The New Orleans Public Library is celebrating the new school year with a series of Back-to-School Rallies that kicked off at the main branch on Saturday, August 16, 2014.


In true New Orleans fashion, the Back-to-School Rally at the Main Library and Duncan Plaza began with a book parade that featured live music. New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and local musician Irvin Mayfield welcomed all to the event and invited everyone to enjoy the day’s activities. The Back-to-School Rally featured live musical performances by local artists, rock climbing, mobile video games, a library scavenger hunt, free school supply and book giveaways, health screenings, a literacy lounge exclusive for teenagers and much, much more.

WWL-TV and | The Times Picayune stopped by to catch the action.

Each New Orleans Public Library branch will feature its own back-to-school celebration throughout the fall.

Celebrate Literacy and a New

School Year at our Back-to-

School Rally on Aug. 16!

The New Orleans Public Library will “Turn the Page” to a new school year with a Back-to-School Rally at the Main Library (219 Loyola Ave.) and Duncan Plaza on Saturday, Aug. 16, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. An event for all ages, the Back-to-School Rally will feature music, exhibits, food, a book and school supply giveaway and more. Presented by the New Orleans Public Library, Turn the Page, the New Orleans Public Library Foundation and Friends of the New Orleans Public Library, the Back-to-School Rally will serve as the kickoff event for back-to-school celebrations throughout the parish in an effort to promote education and literacy in New Orleans.

BTS Rally Flyer















Turn the Page Breaks Guinness

World Record for Largest

Reading Lesson!

Eric Gordon, Irvin Mayfield, and Morris Bart read to over 200 children at a recent Turn the Page event.

Guinness World Records today notified the Turn the Page Literacy Campaign that it achieved the “Largest Reading Lesson” when 451 children took part in a launch event on Jan. 22, 2014 at the New Orleans Public Library to kick off a major multi-parish wide effort. That event, hosted by Grammy winning trumpeter Irvin Mayfield and co-chair Wendell Pierce, combined the best of New Orleans music and story-telling and easily broke the previous Guinness record.

Turn the Page is a collaborative effort led by the New Orleans Public Library Foundation with a bold goal—to make New Orleans the most literate city in America by its 300th birthday in 2018. New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, Louisiana State Librarian Rebecca Hamilton, area University presidents, chancellors, campaign co-chairs actor Wendell Pierce, Vice Chairman of the New Orleans Public Library Board Christine Guillory, Executive Director of the New Orleans Public Library Charles Brown and Interim President and Executive Director of Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities Miranda Restovic all attended the dynamic kickoff event.

Instrumental in the creation of the campaign is renowned trumpeter Irvin Mayfield who gathered a number of musicians to provide a musical accompaniment to the reading by Wendell Pierce. Noted New Orleans musicians included Ellis Marsalis, Glen David Andrews, Shannon Powell, Don Vappie and Peter Harris. Mayfield was recently named Chairman Emeritus of the New Orleans Public Library as a recognition of several years of completed volunteer service on the board.

“Our goal is to work together to make New Orleans the most literate city in America by our 300th anniversary in 2018, so this record helps bring recognition to such a vital issue for our region,” said Co-Chair Guillory. “We are experiencing a lot of momentum with all our efforts but we have just begun and need everyone to continue to contribute so we can reach our goal and make sure every child becomes literate and learns to read.”

New Orleans is currently ranked as the 19th most literate city among 75 US cities with 250,000 or more in population, according to a 2014 study conducted by Central Connecticut State University. Coming off the heels of our campaign launch, this is a rise from being ranked 25th in the 2013 study. The kickoff event garnered major media attention in an effort to increase awareness about literacy and the Turn the Page campaign. Several local elementary schools, including Mahalia Jackson Elementary, Ben Franklin Elementary, Edgar P. Harney Elementary and James Singleton Elementary arranged field trips for their first and second graders to attend the record attempt and enjoy a dynamic reading lesson based on “The Bourbon Street Band is Back,” written by Ed Shankman and illustrated by David O’Neill.

Turn the Pageis an effective way that local businesses, non-profit organizations, community associations and media outlets can display their commitment to one of the most serious issues facing New Orleans – Literacy.

Turn the Page is an important initiative with a bold goal – to make New Orleans the most literate city in America by its 300th birthday in 2018, which will be accomplished by raising awareness of issues, available resources and programming related to early childhood, school success, digital literacy and adult literacy. The campaign is an inclusive, collaborative literacy campaign spearheaded by the New Orleans Public Library and 10 regional parish libraries across southeast Louisiana. Turn the Page will include ’30 in 30,’ or 30 events in 30 days, targeted at moving the needle on literacy in Southeast Louisiana.