2022 has been dubbed the "Year of Libraries" in Estonia and the project was officially opened in several libraries across Estonia on Wednesday.
Tarvastu Library in Viljandi County, which was opened 162 years ago, is the oldest continuously operating public library in Estonia, because local man Hans Wühner wanted people to learn throughout their lives. Although libraries have gone down in popularity since the arrival of the internet, the services have significantly expanded, ETV's daily affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" reported on Wednesday.
"You do not come to a library just for books anymore, you can look at the Patient Portal, the e-state, you get several services at once. And here in Mustla, there is also a post office, so you can get your package. So you come to the library, there are many things here," said Tarvastu Library director Aili Anderson.
The official opening of the library year was visited by the Minister of Culture and several other state and local municipality officials around Estonia. At the same time, the most popular books were listed in 153 public libraries. There are 871 libraries in Estonia with the thematic year hoping to show that a modern library is much more than just a place to sit quietly and read books.
"In the first months, we will try to display libraries as literature and cultural centers, then community centers and we will put libraries on bicycles in the summer and take them all over. In autumn, we will think about libraries of the future and their expanded roles. There are different conferences planned, different national activities," said "Year of Libraries" project director Liina Valdre.
Editor: Kristjan Kallaste