Julie Andrews, actress and Honorary Chair of National Library Week 2008:
"The world is full of magical places, and the library has always been one of them for me. A library can be that special place for our children."
"A library takes the gift of reading one step further by offering personalized learning opportunities second to none, a powerful antidote to the isolation of the Web."
Congressman Wm. Lacy Clay (D-Mo.):
"When I was a young boy, I loved spending hours in St. Franics Xavier's school library at Saint Louis University. The feel of the books in my hands and the magical new worlds I discovered always drew me back to that fantastic place. Each time I visited, I could expect to find a new adventure and from time to time use my imagination to revisit my favorite place and enjoy Green Eggs and Ham in a house, with a mouse, on a train, on a plane, in a box, with a fox..."
Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.):
"Literacy is the most basic currency of the knowledge economy."
"Reading makes all other learning possible. We have to get books into our children's hands early and often."
"At the moment that we persuade a child, any child, to cross that threshold, that magic threshold into a library, we change their lives forever, for the better. It's an enormous force for good."
"At the dawn of the 21st century, where knowledge is literally power, where it unlocks the gates of opportunity and success, we all have responsibilities as parents, as librarians, as educators, as politicians, and as citizens to instill in our children a love of reading so that we can give them a chance to fulfill their dreams."
"Libraries have a special role to play in our knowledge economy. Your institutions have been and should be a place where parents and children come to read together and learn together. We should take our kids there more."
"...as parents, we have to find the time and the energy to step in and help our children love reading. We can read to them, talk to them about what they're reading, and make time for this by turning off the television set ourselves. Libraries are a critical tool to help parents do this."
Grammy-winning Singer, Songwriter, Storyteller Bill Harley:
Every child needs a safe place to fall - a place where he or she can explore things without worrying about failure and judgment. A library is one of those places. In a library you can learn by following your own nose, which is very different from someone telling you what you should learn. Once a kid learns a library is hers, to use as she wants, the world opens up., I've seen it happen. It happened to me.
Author Lilian Jackson Braun:
“A library card is the start of a lifelong adventure.”
Broadcaster Ed Bradley:
“As a child, I loved to read books. The library was a window to the world, a pathway to worlds and people far from my neighborhood in Philadelphia.”
Actor John Goodman:
“When I was young, we couldn't afford much. But, my library card was my key to the world.”
Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA.):
“If you want to know how many prison cells to build, look at the number of third graders who can’t read.”
Author Joan Aiken:
"Children read to learn -- even when they are reading fantasy, nonsense,
light verse, comics or the copy on cereal packets, they are expanding their minds all the time, enlarging their vocabulary, making discoveries: it is all new to them."
Educator and Writer Mary Ellen Chase:
"There is no substitute for books in the life of a child."
Author Maurice Sendak:
"As a child, I felt that books were holy objects, to be caressed, rapturously sniffed, and devotedly provided for. I gave my life to them. I still do. I continue to do what I did as a child; dream of books, make books and collect books."
Poet and Author Margaret Walker:
"When I was about eight, I decided that the most wonderful thing, next to a human being, was a book."
Poet and Writer Jorge Luis Borges:
"I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library."
Orator, Lecturer and Preacher Henry Ward Beecher:
"A library is not a luxury but one of the necessities of life."
Author Alice Hoffman:
"Books may well be the only true magic."
Actress Katharine Hepburn:
"What in the world would we do without our libraries?"