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Librarians shouting about funding is fast becoming old news. We need to find new ways to take a stand against library budget cuts. A grassroots push is a terrific advertising tool, and it can be really fun to pull off. It's a wonderful motivator to get people out and keep them coming back to do more. An event can score press coverage, and it will allow you to frame the debate the way you want it to be seen. Having a rally, a march, or a read-in gets to the heart of activism and advocacy. Mobilizing people toward a common goal is an incredible achievement, in whatever form you accomplish it.
First, take some time to think about your goals before you go rushing off to organize an event. What do you want to achieve? Do you want to get some press? Are you trying to collect a mass of petition signatures and postcards? Do you want to showyour numbers to politicians and decisionmakers at a public hearing?
If you are trying to get petition signatures, then go where the foot traffic is, even if that is not near your library. If you are tryingto bring the press out, then make sure there is some kind of hook to draw them. Are you trying to rally your supporters in the community? If so, don't plan an event at 10 a.m. on a workday. Think about what you want in the end, then create the event to fit those goals.
If you want a big press event, you need to be creative. "Librarians Protest Budget Cuts" is ... ho-hum. The zing of …