Newton Libraries: Main & 2 Branches Run by Volunteers

Newton is lucky to have a wonderful and dynamic library, The Newton Free Library, located at 330 Homer Street (across the street from City Hall). It has (among other things) museum passes, a great audio/visual department, a wonderful children’s room, great gallery space, a good-sized auditorium, and, of course, books. I love the library and volunteer as a Friend of the Newton Free Library – the Friends are an amazing group of energetic women who host the Book Sales, Book and Author Lunch and other terrific community events. There is a YA Board that also hosts events and has a blog4YA @ Newton Free Library.

Until recently, it had branch libraries, two of which, Waban and Auburndale, are now volunteer run stand-alone community libraries.

Waban Library Center

Auburndale Community Library

Check them out!

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6 Responses to “Newton Libraries: Main & 2 Branches Run by Volunteers”
  1. HB says:

    I’m new to town and a librarian, and as we explored Newton I was dismayed to keep discovering so many library branches that had been shut down. Could someone explain what happened to cause these closures? Will re-opening the branches (with paid, professional staff rather than volunteers) ever be a possibility?

    • Pragmatic Mom says:

      Hi HB,
      After they built the new big library, Newton Free Library, only a few branches stayed open. Waban, Auburndale and I think Nonantum. But after the last recession when they cut chorus from the Newton Public Schools for 4th grade, the branch libraries were shut down due to budget cuts. Citizens then rallied to keep the Waban and Auburndale branches open, and while these branches are a huge success, they are not on the Minuteman System and are not technically part of the Newton Free Library. I think they are each their own non-profit. I doubt the branches will ever be reopened with paid professional staff as the non-profit branches seem to be really working out.

    • MA says:

      Hi HB
      I just found your post regarding if the branches will ever be reopened as part of the main library. I am the founder of Friends of Newton Corner Branch Library. It is our project to reopen our branch libraries with a paid librarian. It appears to make sense to have 2 full time librarian positions to staff three branch libraries part time. It makes no sense for the main library to remove the branches and require rent payments and volunteer librarians.

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