The library. It’s more than just free books.

Every few months I get on a reading kick and read several books in a row. I only read a book once, so I rarely buy them. I borrow them from the library. My county library systems lets me put “Holds” on the books that I want to read. They e-mail me when they’re available and have them waiting for me on a special shelf. It’s like ordering takeout. You just walk in and pick them up. I’m in and out in less than 60 seconds.

I’m a “card holder” at two different county systems in my area (Contra Costa & Alameda Counties). Both offer the “Discover & Go” program. Each “card holder” gets free or discounted admission tickets to different museums, botanical gardens, and aquariums around the area.  The number of tickets is limited by how popular the attraction is and what day of the week you want to go.  But, it’s definitely worth looking into if you want to get out and do something free or cheap. You do have to do some planning ahead, as you have to log into the library’s link to reserve your admission and print your tickets. It’s not something where you just show up and flash your library card and get in.

It seems to be limited to the San Francisco Bay Area, but I would imagine/hope other libraries around the country offer similar programs. The Contra Costa, Alameda, San Mateo, PeninsulaSan Jose, Redwood City, Santa Clara, Berkeley, Marin, Oakland and many other library systems offer the program.

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