Stapleton is now part of a national movement to promote literacy, a love of reading and a sense of community.
And it’s all because of the Little Free Library.
The libraries are traditionally small boxes or containers packed with free books that anyone can borrow.
Brelle Rohwer put one in her front yard for the community to stop by, enjoy and leave a comment in the library’s guestbook.
“And if people want to drop off books and there isn’t room in the library, they can leave them in the milk box or on my front porch,” she said. “I would love to have them, and I’ll rotate the library books every once in a while.”
Brelle installed the Little Free Library after hearing a story about one on the radio.
“I heard a story about little free libraries on NPR over the winter and thought it was a fabulous idea … especially with the location of our house, we get so much foot traffic,” she said. “I was just waiting all winter to put one up.”
When spring arrived, neighbors began to stop by the library’s location at 28th Place and Spruce Street.
Her guestbook is already full of stories. “People have noted how excited they are to live in a neighborhood where people do this kind of thing,” she said. “So many people are out and about. I had one note that said ‘What a nice surprise to find this on my bike ride.’”
Brelle’s library is stocked with 25 to 30 books that she “loved and wanted to share” – everything from Danielle Steel and Jack Kerouac to Toni Morrison and Tom Clancy.
“And I have some children’s books in there too,” she said.
Brelle moved to Stapleton three years ago and knew the library would work in her new neighborhood.
“Stapleton is populated by people who live here because they like the sense of community,” she said. “This fits with that.”