This December, when it comes to curling up on the couch with a good book or a nostalgic holiday flick, look no further than one of the Tallahassee libraries! Currently, Tallahassee is home to 7 public libraries:
- Leroy Collins Leon County Public Library
- Dr. B.L. Perry, Jr Branch Library
- Jane G. Sauls Fort Braden Branch Library
- Lake Jackson Branch Library
- Eastside Branch Library
- Northeast Branch Library
- Woodville Branch Library
Scroll down for the each library location and phone number, or visit the Leon County Library website, here.
How Tallahassee Libraries Serve the Community
Although the world has become more reliant on technology, libraries still maintain an important role within the Tallahassee community. For instance, libraries offer access to technology and resources that some residents may not have access to in their homes. Moreover, libraries in Tallahassee offer the following benefits as well:
- First, they offer free, educational resources to everyone regardless of age, gender, or socioeconomic status
- Second, they provide internet and free workspace for residents
- Third, they offer community programs to kids and children
Recently, the Leon County officials have spent time touring other libraries around the country. They have taken these ideas and put in place a 3-5 year plan to help modernize the local library system, which includes an increase of audiobook rentals, e-book checkouts, and meeting space options.
Libraries & Covid-19
With the advent of COVID-19, the ability to check out books (audio and digital formats), is beneficial. Firstly, it allows for a no-contact experience, which can reduce the risk of exposure. Secondly, the Leon County Public Library system has put the following ordinances in place, to help protect the public:
- Libraries are open at 50% capacity for essential services
- Visitors will have 1 hour a day in the library
- Masks or face coverings are required
- For one hour per person per day at physically distanced terminals, library computers are available
- Curbside pick-up is available
- From inside your car if you park at the library, Wi-Fi is provided for free
The Leroy Collins Leon County Public Library
This is the main branch library. Located in downtown Tallahassee, just off Call Street and Park Avenue, the library offers special programming for children and teens. That is to say, they have a dedicated children’s area and meeting room space available as well.
Because the Leroy Collins Public Library is located downtown, there is limited free parking available. As such, visitors are encouraged to visit the library website for more information regarding parking when planning their trip.
Address: 200 W Park Ave, Tallahassee, FL 32301
Phone: (850) 606-2665
Dr. BL Perry Jr Branch Library
The Dr. BL Perry Jr Library first opened in its new building on South Adams Street in 2001. Originally named the Bond Branch Library, it was renamed in 1997 in honor of former Florida A&M University president, Dr. B.L. Perry.
Dr. Perry was the president of FAMU from 1968 to 1997, a very tumultuous time in the university’s history, due in large part to the civil rights movement and pressure from the Legislature to merge FAMU with Florida State University; something Dr. Perry was opposed to. When he retired in 1977, he was nicknamed “The Savior of FAMU” as a result of his efforts to save the university.
Address: 2817 S Adams St, Tallahassee, FL 32301
Phone: (850) 606-2950
Jane G. Sauls Fort Braden Branch Library
The Fort Braden Branch Library in Tallahassee, Florida was dedicated in honor of Jane G. Sauls, a former County Commissioner, on October 27, 2016. Jane was a central figure in many key projects, such as the Fort Braden Branch Library. What makes this library especially unique is the fact it was designed around an existing 2,200 square foot house. Consequently, the library maintains a comfortable, “homey” feeling to this day.
Address: 16327 Blountstown Hwy, Tallahassee, FL 32310
Phone: (850) 606-2900
Lake Jackon Branch Library
The Lake Jackon Branch Library in Tallahassee moved to a new, expanded 12,000-foot facility in 2012. Additionally, the adjoining space serves as a community center for those residents living on the Northwest side of town. With a Starbucks in the same shopping complex, this location is the perfect spot to check out a new book and sip on a delicious brew.
Address: 3840 N Monroe St # 300, Tallahassee, FL 32303
Phone: (850) 606-2850
Eastside Branch Library
The Eastside Branch Library is located off of Pedrick Pond in Tallahassee, Florida. After checking out a book, head right outside to enjoy a stroll around the library grounds. The Eastside Branch is conveniently located next to Pedrick Pond, a flat, circular trail made of crushed shell and dirt. The park contains two boardwalks around a small pond, totaling about 0.75 miles in distance.
The library has a storytime on some mornings, which can be nice to attend before or after hiking.
Address: 1583 Pedrick Rd, Tallahassee, FL 32317
Phone: (850) 606-2750
Northeast Branch Library
In December 2010, a ribbon-cutting ceremony was held for the 5,000 square foot expansion of the Northeast Branch Library, which is located on Thomasville Road in the Midtown area of Tallahassee, Florida.
Here’s what one Google Local Guide had to say about the Northeast Branch Library: “A wonderful place to spend time with children and family. There is a small room with kids’ toys and a caterpillar tunnel. The staff is friendly and attentive. The inside is clean, neat, and well organized…[consequently] books and DVDs are well stocked.”
Address: 5513 Thomasville Rd, Tallahassee, FL 32312
Phone: (850) 606-2800
Woodville Branch Library (located just outside of Tallahassee)
In 2011, a new Woodville Branch Library opened in a 2,000 square foot addition to the Woodville Community Center. Unfortunately, many people didn’t know about the new library, particularly because it was located off the beaten path.
However, Verna Brock, the Director, decided to create and host the Woodville Founders’ Festival, which takes place at the Woodville Libary.
The Festival showcases the rich history of Woodville and draws in numerous residents, partners and local organizations. At the festival, visitors enjoy exhibits showcasing the railroad (a tribute to the town’s history), pioneer crafts, music and more.
Address: 8000 Old Woodville Rd, Tallahassee, FL 32305
Phone: (850) 606-2925
Other Tallahassee Libraries
Outside of the Leon County Public Library system, there are a number of other Tallahassee libraries available to residents in the area. That is to say, visitors are not limited when it comes to reading and learning materials!
- Florida State University Libraries: Visitors and researchers are welcome to use any of the Florida State University libraries, with the most well-known being the Strozier Library, located on Honors Way on the FSU campus. Just stop by Guest Services to obtain a guest card for access.
- FAMU Libraries: The FAMU libraries are available to visitors for the purposes of research, learning, and all related academic activities. For more information about visiting hours and policies, visit the FAMU Library website, here.
- Tallahassee Community College Library
- State Library & Archives of Florida
- Little Free Libraries: The Little Free Library is a nonprofit organization that promotes neighborhood book exchanges. In Tallahassee, residents enjoy a number of little libraries scattered through various neighborhoods around the city. Residents will find a concentration of these little free libraries in the Midtown area. Grab a book you’ll enjoy and replace what you take with a book you’ve finished reading!
In summary, there are a number of resources available to Tallahassee residents when it comes to reading and education. In fact, Tallahassee is one of the most educated citites in Florida. Whether you prefer an in-person or virtual experience, there is something for everyone.