by David King
(Updated) Andrew Drynkin, 8, of Clayton will be attending 3rd grade this fall at Mt. Diablo Elementary and yet, he has launched his own little free library. His grand opening was on July 8, 2018 and is still going strong.
Little Free Library is a nonprofit organization that inspires a love of reading, builds community, and sparks creativity by fostering neighborhood book exchanges around the world.
Through Little Free Libraries, millions of books are exchanged each year, profoundly increasing access to books for readers of all ages and backgrounds.
There are two other Little Free Libraries in Clayton, but Andrew’s is the only one ran by an 8-year-old. It is located in the Oakhurst neighborhood off Buckeye Terrace.
“Since Andrew was a little baby, he had an interest in reading,” Andrew’s mother Katie said. “He loves books.” Between ages 4 and 7, Andrew was interested in non-fiction books. He liked to learn about electricity, molecules, different kinds of animals, nature, machines, you name it.
When he turned 7, he expressed an interest in reading fiction books. One of his favorite series is “Jigsaw Jones Mystery.” In one of these books, he read a story about a Little Free Library.
“I thought it would be cool to have something like that in our neighborhood, “Andrew says. “The rule is: take a book, return a book.”
Andrew’s library will be mostly focusing on providing books for kids, but there will be books for adults as well. He believes that this library will bring kids together by inspiring a love of reading.
The difference between a public library and a little free library is that if you like the book you can keep it forever, you don’t have to worry about returning it in time. In exchange, bring a book that you already read and want to share with other kids. Andrew’s library holds up to 20 books for adults and 20 to 30 books for kids.
Andrews parents, Alex and Katie couldn’t be prouder of Andrew nor more grateful to those from the community that supported him in this endeavor. “We have many to thank for making Andrew’s dream come true. Oak Hollow 2 Maintenance Corporation for supporting Andrew’s idea, Nicole Lukino and Alex Pyankov of Alcon, Inc. and Nathan Smith of Smith and Bernal Roofing Co. for help with building Andrew’s Little Free Library, and Chris Throop, the Magician, for running the magic show and entertaining our guests during Grand Opening event,” says Katie.
The way it works is simple. Andrew stocked the Library with a variety of good quality books to start. Anyone can take a book that they would like to read. You are encouraged to leave a book worthy of sharing such as favorite books from your childhood or books you would recommend to a friend. The books are always a gift. They are never for sale.
Little Free Library’s Mission is to “Promote literacy and love of reading and build a sense of community.” For more locations near you or information on this program, go to www.littlefreelibrary.org .
“I always think it’s good to do nice things for the community and help others,” Andrew reminds us. In this case, I think mission has been accomplished.
Andrew’s friend Nicole Lukinov helps build the library.