CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Cape Girardeau has a brand new library.
But this one is just a little bit different than most.
The Little Free Library isn't the size of a typical library. In fact, it is only about three times bigger than the size of a mailbox. But it's packed full of great books and opportunities for children to enhance their education.
A ribbon cutting was held on Sunday, October 30 for the Little Free Library on Frederick Street near William Street behind St. Mary's School.
Dozens came out for the opening and children immediately began checking out some books.
"It's important for everybody," Kareena Woodson said. "You read in everything that you do so to be able to escape and get a book and kind of tune out the world for a little bit, I think it's a good thing."
"Little libraries around the country and I wanted it to be in my community too," Dot McQuade said.
McQuade donated the library to the community, but the Authentic Voices organization of Cape Girardeau installed it along with a bench where people can sit and read.
"I think it's great to be able to walk three blocks from my house, sit down on a nice day like this a read a book with them and enjoy the day," Woodson said. "Then be able to walk back home. No mess, no fuss, no gas spent. Just spending some quality time with your kid."
Woodson said she feels it's sometimes difficult for families to make the trip to the public library just to check out a book. This offers convenience for anyone to walk up, grab a book and start reading.
"There's not a whole lot of attention brought to the south side," Woodson said. "For the south side to go to the library, it takes them a long way from their homes and their areas. They can't easily access it. Putting a little library where they can was just a good idea."
This is how it works. You don't need to formally check out a book. You just open the door, grab a book and you can take it home or read it right there on the bench beside the Little Free Library.
You can return the book or keep it. Or if you want to place another book in there for others, that is encouraged, as well.
Authentic Voices is an organization that brings community togetherness and awareness to the southern part of Cape Girardeau. The group's mission is to enhance and improve the community along with getting more recognition to the area to improve quality of life.
Along with this Little Free Library, Authentic Voices is also raising funds to try to get a new playground in the southern part of the city.
"We feel we need a place for kids to play and learn through play," Melissa Stickel said. "We feel like the investment in Cape is lacking in the south part of Cape."
In addition to this Little Free Library, organizers said this is the first of several Little Free Libraries the organization is planning for area communities in the city.