Cycling for Libraries (aka Living Without a Hair Dryer for 2 weeks) - Day 1

Photo by Panu Entresse

Day 1 - 12.5 Miles Cycled

We met at the National Library of Lithuania with our luggage, bikes, and our newfound crazy love for cycling with 100 people we didn't yet know.

The day began as quite a few of our Cycling for Libraries days would. We mingled, did some stretches led by the fantastic Patrick Otton, hopped on our bikes, and followed the police escort that took us to several beautiful libraries in Vilnius, including a new branch library of Vilnius University that opens in September, the Vilnius Gediminas Technical University Library, the Lithuanian Technical Library, and the Vilnius University Library.

Karen Holt at the cool new Scholarly Communication and Information Center of Vilnius University.

Founded in 1570, Vilnius University Library is the oldest academic library in Lithuania.

Cycling for Libraries participants at the Vilnius University main library in the oldest room in the library

One thing that we discovered on the tours this day is the trend for individual subject-based reading rooms in Baltic Libraries. We really love the concept of the reading rooms. Each one has its own look and feel and we found them all very charming.

Asian Studies Reading Room at Vilnius Gediminas Technical University Library

Philology Reading Room

Graduate Study Carrels with a view at Vilnius University

Another trend we discovered in the Baltics is that whether you are at a cafe or a library, blankets are always on hand to keep you warm. This could be a trend for us to bring back, especially since our library is always freezing in the summer.

Blankets on a book cart at Vilnius University Library

Stay turned for more information on the amazing places we saw over the 11 day tour. If you are just catching up, be sure to read all about the Cycling for Libraries Unconference and see the route.

Day 1 Video

By Karen Holt of Librarian Lifestyle and April Kessler. Karen and April are librarians at the University of Texas at Austin and are still coming off the high of cycling through the Baltics and seeing the coolest libraries and meeting amazing librarians.