Library boxes big hit at park
Friends group looking for sponsors
Julie Bahr has been coming to Hartman Creek State Park for many years and grew up in a camping family.
“When Dad got home Friday night, we hit the road for the weekend,” she recalled.
As an adult, Bahr tent-camped on her own and then invested in a teardrop camper. She retired in 2011 and now spends months camping in various places. She was recruited to be a campground host at Hartman Creek a few years ago and devotes many hours to the park with cleaning, maintenance and trail work and helping campers.
Bahr loved the idea of a free library at the park after seeing them pop up all over. She enlisted the help of Blake Johnston at RetroRide Teardrops to build a little library shaped like her camper. Johnston realized the teardrop would not work as a library, but did build two boxes that have been installed at the park. One lives at campsite 23, a camp host site, and the other box is located outside of the park office. Anyone can take a book or leave a book.
While Bahr was a host in August, she saw a dad and his kids reading at the campfire and other evidence the books were a real hit. She moved on to host at other campgrounds after leaving Hartman Creek, but the libraries remain.
The library box in the campground is closed until next spring, but the box outside the park office is open year-round.
Adult, young adult or children’s books – not too many at a time – can be dropped at the park office for future stocking.
The Friends of Hartman Creek State Park sponsor and maintain the boxes, which are registered with “Little Free Libraries,” so should show up on their map of all LFLs in the world.
The Friends group is looking for an individual, family or class to adopt the boxes. Contact the park office at 715-258-2372 if interested.