IMPORTANT: All NBPL locations will be closed on Monday, May 27, in honor of Memorial Day.

Central Library Old Parking Lot


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Our families memories at the Central Library are numerous and go back to the Grand Opening Day 25 years ago. My husband & I still have our celebration commemorative magnet from that day on refrigerator, and we still use our library cards issued that day. We go to the library at least once a week to check-out books and DVD's, attend lectures & book readings, enjoy concerts, partake in story times, picnic in the gardens. We are also very fond of showing-off the library proper, its grounds, the statuary indigenous plant park, and the book store off to our visiting friends and family.

One of my favorite days spent at the Central Library combined many of these activities. I was there with my Goddaughters for back-to-back toddler story times in the morning with and an interim snack time in the children's garden. The girls love the sea life mosaic tiles and water fountain, and I love the cozy toddler friendliness of it. We followed-up story time #2 with our favorite children's Librarian Ms Liz with a picnic in the park. At that time the park featured the Cow Parade, the White Bunnies, the California Golden Bears up by the picnic tables and other whimsical and kid-friendly statuary. I didn't take any pictures that day as I had my hands full with the girls (then 3 and 1 1/2), their stroller, and my service dog Uma. But my memories of that great day are vivid. The girls enjoyed signing to and climbing on the statuary. The Milk Bus Cow brought on a chorus of "The Wheels On The Bus" and the Melting Popsicles inspired, "We All Scream For Ice Cream!". The 18 month old was picking i dandelions then holding them up to the noses of all the animals, and sharing their fragrance with them. And her big sister was insisting sissy must sit with her on the backs of all the cows. We traipsed all thru the park, rode the elevator at the top of the hill up and down, just for fun. They took turns pressing the call button and reaching for the floor buttons. On the way home that afternoon, with Uma and the girls napping behind me in car I had a big smile on my face. And in my head, I was already planning our next outing to the Central Library.

Submitted with Faith in Goodwill & Peace, by Lisa

BOOKS AND LIBRARIES “When we moved from Cincinnati to Westwood, it was a hard adjustment for me. We were living in the movie star world, which was very sophisticated. Clothes were important; who your parents were was important. I found myself alone and reading much more. In Junior High School, I had a period of time when I was in the library putting books back on the shelf. And, obviously taking books home to read. I only read about horses. When we moved to Arcadia after John finished law school and I had two very young boys, I read and read to them and went to the library regularly. The racetrack in Arcadia, Santa Anita, had given money for the library so it was a wonderful library. I was also involved with AAUW and we were always working on a study topic. At one time, I was in charge of teaching all ladies in the state organization about China so I spent a lot of time at the library. I took Gretchen to the library when she was 3 days old. The boys needed more books, so there she was with us. Once Fritz managed to turn out the lights in the whole library. I found him quite quickly. Reading was part of all of our lives. It was a special moment each day when I sat down with a book and had two or three children on my lap reading aloud. When Karen was born, she joined the group. Karen read and read. She was not one to rush out the door to play ball or see friends. She read.

 When we moved from Arcadia to Newport Beach, the very first day when we had painters, plumbers, carpet people, movers from three directions, she said I have to go to the library. It also rained and we had some furniture stacked outside because the carpet was not down in one bedroom or John’s office floor was not done. It rained. I told Karen that I could not get to the library but here was the encyclopedia, read that, which she did. The very first place that I found in our new home was the Library, the Corona del Mar Library that was much smaller than the Arcadia one. But, it was close and the personnel were very nice. I took Karen to the library at least once a week. She read 25 books a week when she was 6 years old. The others kids read too. Walter was very methodical and read everything that one author had written. Fritz liked to read about boats, machines, cars. When the time came for a new library, I wanted to be sure that other mothers had a facility with lots of books for their children and that is why we took the job!” -- Elizabeth Stahr

I remember the first time I came into the library, I was very impressed by the video section. There were new releases and so many to chose from. Art on the wall, a variety of magazine choices and a large selection of books. Sunday concerts offered, a cafe upstairs and I knew this was my library. I love a library with variety, a bookstore and many choices. -- Mona Ghodsi


The Central Library has been our second home since we first moved to Newport Beach in 2003. My son grew up with all of the storytimes and SRP programs, and many, many books. Now, as a teenager, he is a member with Y.A.A.C. (Young Adult Advisory Council) and loves volunteering with the kids during the new Lego Saturdays. I don't know what we would do without this place! 
-- Francine


 I learned about Dan Gutman for the first time at the Library and now I love his books. -- Scott Schmitt