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LI libraries host 'Great Give Back,' a day filled with community service

At the 2017 Great Give Back, volunteers at

At the 2017 Great Give Back, volunteers at the Middle Country Public Library made no-sew blankets for a local shelter. Credit: Suffolk County Library System

Take time out to do something for others on Saturday, when 108 libraries across Long Island participate in The Great Give Back.

Hempstead Public Library, for instance, invites patrons to come in anytime between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. to decorate cards and write letters to be sent to troops, veterans and first responders to thank them for their service.

Center Moriches Free Public Library is sponsoring a meet up at Camp Pa-Qua-Tuck from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. to help them get ready for their annual spooky walk.

Island Park Public Library will be painting wooden stars with messages of hope for the residents of Marshalltown, Iowa, from 1 to 4 p.m. Marshalltown was devastated by a tornado in June; Stars of Hope is a therapeutic program that helps people send messages of healing.

While the Suffolk County Library System originated the Great Give Back last year, this is the first year the Nassau Library System is participating. “They invited us to join them, and we love the idea,” says Renee McGrath, manager of youth services for the Nassau Library System.

“We’re really excited that it’s both counties,” says Derek Ivie, youth services coordinator for the Suffolk County Library System. Young adults who need community service hours can earn them for attending session, Ivie says.

To find out what your local library might be planning, visit

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