Little Free Library Celebrates Solar Eclipse with 25 New Book-Sharing Boxes ‘In the Path of Totality’

By Sarah Nelson

We are excited to announce that 25 Little Free Little Free Library book-sharing boxes will launch today in the path of totality — the area where the total eclipse of the sun will be visible on April 8. Recipients in states along the path received a Little Free Library box and installation package, science-related books for all ages, and a celebration kit including eclipse glasses, bookmarks, and more. This work was made possible by the Simons Foundation and is part of its ‘In the Path of Totality’ initiative.

Although our St. Paul–based nonprofit doesn’t fall in the path of totality, we are thrilled to be part of this national event, which offers a meaningful experience for all to share.

“It is an honor to be part of the Simons Foundation’s ‘In the Path of Totality’ initiative,” said LFL Executive Director Grieg Metzger. “We are able to leverage the natural community-building aspect of a Little Free Library placement to support the Simons Foundation’s goal of bringing communities together to witness and celebrate this celestial event.  But unlike other celebrations across the country, these Little Free Library book-sharing boxes can have ongoing impact in the communities served long after the eclipse is over.”

Recipients of the eclipse Little Free Library grants include the Children’s Literacy Foundation in Waterbury Center, Vermont; the Lake Erie Candy Company in Erie, Pennsylvania; and the Waco Housing Authority in Waco, Texas. Two locations are hosting special events with additional funding from the Simons Foundation: MorPark Inc. in Little Rock, Arkansas, and Confident Girls Mentoring Program in Buffalo, New York.

MorPark is holding a spectacular solar eclipse viewing event for the 750 students of Exalt Academy in Southwest Little Rock. The day will be filled with interactive science-focused activities designed to inspire, educate, and enrich the young learners’ understanding of astronomy. (There also will be refreshments including Capri Suns and Moon Pies.) LFL staffers Talia Miracle and Sarah Nelson will be in attendance to talk with attendees about the LFL global network.

Students at Exalt Academy of Southwest Little Rock show off the books they received on April 8 alongside their new Little Free Library.
Exalt Academy students show off their eclipse-themed art and science projects as they wait in line for free books.

“MorPark has been on a journey worth traveling!” said Kittie Payton, CEO of MarPark Inc. “Investing in our future is the moto of which we stand. It begins with planting the seed! How wonderful It is that I didn’t need to waste a single moment before starting to improve the world one project at a time! Boots on the ground marching to change as we continue to plant the seed and watch it grow.”

Students at Exalt Academy of Southwest Arkansas observe the eclipse as it nears totality.
Exalt Academy students lounge on the playground to watch the eclipse near totality.

In Buffalo, girls aged 6-15 from the Confident Girl Mentoring Program are also hosting an eclipse event named “Confidence in the Cosmos”. This free family-friendly event features various activities, raffles, swag bags, book giveaways, food and fun. The Buffalo Astronomical Association will be present to share their knowledge with attendees. Leading up to the event today, the girls engaged in a workshop organized by the association, which offered advice and essential details on safely observing the eclipse and what to anticipate.

“The Solar Eclipse stands as a rare and awe-inspiring event where the moon moves in front of the sun, creating a shadow on Earth. This humbling phenomenon reminds us of something greater than ourselves,” said Tiffany Lewis, Founder and President. “For the girls at Confident Girl Mentoring, this experience is truly exciting. Just as the moon aligns with the sun during an eclipse, mentorship aligns girls with positive role models, empowering them to shine brightly and conquer challenges. It nurtures confidence and curiosity, showing them that they, too, can delve into the universe’s mysteries and discover their own endless possibilities discussed in our workshops.”

Learn more about our Impact Library, Indigenous Library, and Read in Color Programs. Through these programs we grant Little Free Libraries and diverse books where they are needed most.

Keep reading to learn more about some of the locations where Little Free Libraries were placed along the path of totality!

Westshire Elementary School — West Fairlee, VT

Waco Housing Authority — Waco, TX

Parent Child Center Services — South Burlington, VT

“Lund, located in South Burlington, Vermont, was in the path of totality.  In addition to being in the trajectory of this amazing natural event, it also provided Lund the opportunity to be the beneficiary of a Little Free Library, with funding from the Simon’s Foundation. A new library was installed (onsite to Lund and very close to a community walking path) and Mairav Simon, Lund’s Parent Child Center Outreach Specialist, painted the library with space themed images in honor of the eclipse. The library was filled with brand new STEM books (many eclipse themed) and we celebrated the unveiling of this new free community resource with Mairav reading to several children one of the new books from the library.  The children were excited to hear a new book and know that they were able to, with the support of their caregivers, take and donated books whenever they wanted.  Lund is grateful to Little Free Library and the Simon’s Foundation for the donation of the library and books to get us started.  This will be a great resource for our community and are excited to see it being used so frequently already!”

-Kim Laroche, Associate Director of Parent Child Centered Services at Lund in South Burlington, Vermont

The Little Free Library unveiled in South Burlington, Vermont features space-themed artwork
An astronaut waves from the back of the Little Free Library unveiled in South Burlington, Vermont
An astronaut reads on the moon in the artwork on the Little Free Library unveiled in South Burlington, Vermont

Luther Memorial Academy — Erie, PA

Children’s Literacy Foundation — Waterbury Center, VT

Old Taylor High — Taylor, TX

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