Have you looked at your paycheck lately? Like they say, nothing in this life is certain except for death and taxes.  Every payday a portion of your earnings goes to pay taxes and some of those tax dollars go to support public services like your local library.

Put Your Tax Dollars to Work

When was the last time you stopped by to take advantage of the services your local library has to offer? While every city is a little different and the services offered may vary from branch to branch, you might be surprised at how much money you can save by checking in at the local library.

Books, books and more books! For FREE!

Okay, this one may seem too obvious, but in this age of digital readers & mobile devices it’s easy to forget some of the more traditional sources of media.

Your public library is home to thousands of tantalizing tales, hundreds of amazing adventures and shelf after shelf of romantic escapades. With piles of books on poetry, jokes & recipes, and enough reference material to inspire stacks of research papers, the library has something for everyone.

While some prefer the simple pleasures of a 2 hour action flick, with its thunderous booms and whizzing bullets, for many it doesn’t get much better than spending several evenings alone reading - the feel of the page bent beneath your fingers, the familiar scent of paper & ink and the percolating wonder as little by little the plot unfolds. Even if you’re not much of a ‘reader’, why not give it a try? It’s free and who knows, you may have an undiscovered bookworm lurking deep with-in.

Okay, so it IS a bit obvious -  The library has books - it’s not exactly ‘news at 11’ material, but while this tip was more of a gentle reminder, some of these other tips may not be so obvious.

Beyond the books

While I love a good book, sometimes it’s just not what your mind is craving - but don’t cross the library off your list just yet. In addition to their inventory of thousands of books, most branches also carry dozens of magazines and newspapers, and many local libraries carry books on tape or CD, family-friendly DVD movies and even music CDs.

Explore the inventory of your local branch, if you don’t find exactly what you’re looking for at that branch, it might be available at another nearby branch – speak to the librarians and have it delivered to your branch to save you a trip across town.

Let the library pick up the tab

This is something I only recently became aware of, I only wish it had been a few weeks earlier when I really could have taken advantage of it. So I want to share it with you, maybe it’ll save you guys some money.

Turns out some libraries go well beyond lending books & media by supplying FREE access to special programs and cultural centers.

My library allows you to check out a number of different ‘Culture Passes’ giving me free access to many of the area museums, science centers and even the zoo. Check and see what your library offers – I could have saved well over $100 the week we took the family to the zoo.

Check out the public library for significant savings

When the going gets tough, the tough get a library card and see what kind of trouble they can get themselves into. When trying to save money on your entertainment budget don’t forget one of the least expensive and broadest resources in your arsenal.

Saving Money on Entertainment posts

A series of posts with tips for saving money on entertainment.