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No. 100: The Northport-East Northport Public Library

Both branches offer food for thought, a warm spot on a cold day, fun programs and movies and discussions.

Northport is never without things to do. In fact, the hard part may be listing only . Don’t forget to send us your suggestions as the year progresses, too. We've already received several great ideas and are hoping for more.

For the swipe of a library card – free to residents in the – patrons of the can watch a movie, see a Contra line dance, learn American Sign Language or how to write a better resume or how to manage a chronic medical condition.

They can check out the latest romantic-comedy video, reserve free passes to New York City and Long Island museums, hear a local student orchestra perform or participate in a discussion about current events. The well-used Northport library is possibly the best deal in town, your tax dollars at work.

The library has two locations, Scudder and Laurel Avenues in Northport and Larkfield Road near Ninth Avenue in East Northport. Parking is tough at both branches, a testament to the library’s usefulness and popularity.

 In Northport, extra spots are available in the south end of the school district’s administration building on Laurel.

Reference librarians will help answer questions or you can use the Internet from one of the library's computers to search for information. There's a children's section downstairs at both libraries, as well as teen rooms.

The Northport branch also has an outdoor courtyard accessible from downstairs, monthly art exhibits, a snack bar and extensive periodicals.

The library also has an extensive summer reading program designed to keeps kids reading when school is out of session and hires many local teenagers as pages to assist patrons.

In 2010, the Library Journal gave our library four stars and ranked it within the top 3.5 percent of libraries nationwide for the third year in a row.

If you can’t make it in to the library, virtual services include “Ask a Librarian’ and online renewal of checked out items. The Homeward Bound Program is available to all district patrons who are unable to come to the library. Materials are delivered and picked up by a library courier once a week.

The extensive local history center houses local history periodicals, genealogy resources, materials on historic preservation, historic photographs, a clipping file, the “Tracks Through Time” oral-history collection, and archival records.

And if you see something the library doesn't offer, ask one of the librarians and there's a good chance they will try to accommodate the request.

For all of these reasons and more, the Northport-East Northport Public Library is the first great thing about Northport to be featured in our new column.

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