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The best gift ever: A library card


Many of us are celebrating Christmas this weekend. There will be visits with friends and family, wonderful meals, special treats as well as receiving and giving gifts.

The next time you are looking for the perfect gift, stop by your nearest Cumberland County Public Library branch and pick up a gift appropriate for all ages that keeps giving all year long: Get a Cumberland County Public Library card.

What makes a library card such a great gift? It’s free, and it fits on your keychain or in your wallet or purse. These days, you can even save it on your phone. A library card gives you access to the world and offers possibilities far beyond its compact size.

Sure, you can use your card to check out a book or DVD, but it offers so much more. As a library cardholder, you’ll be part of a statewide group of libraries with access to more than 3 million items delivered to any of our eight locations.

You will be able to tap into all sorts of digital resources. You will have access to the thousands of books and audiobooks that make up the NC Digital Library so you can take your reading or listening wherever you go. The card gets you into Freegal, a streaming-music app. Listen to up to three hours of commercial-free music each day and download as many as three songs a week.

Your library card provides access to magazines and newspapers in digital format. Read daily editions of The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal or popular magazines like People, Southern Living or National Geographic, as well as thousands of others from across the globe.

Come into the library and research your family tree with Ancestry or check out Fold3 and Heritage Quest from anywhere, just by using your library card. Learn a language with Transparent Languages, and browse CultureGrams to explore what life’s like in other parts of the world.

A library card is a great resource to help schoolchildren. Students have free live tutoring available via Brainfuse. This app also reviews resumes for cardholders who are getting ready to apply for a job. If part of that job prep involves a test, look for study guides and practice tests on LearningExpress, which offers the same thing for academic tests like the SAT and GMAT.

These are just a few of the gifts you’re giving yourself when you have a library card from Cumberland County Public Library. To find out more, call 910-483-7727, stop into your nearest branch, or visit www.cumberlandcountync.gov/library.

It’s one of the best presents you can get.

Nora Armstrong is division manager for community engagement at the Cumberland County Public Library.

Cumberland County, Fayetteville, library, books