81st Avenue Library

Library serves more than just books

Jan 22, 2014
Oakland Public Library

The 81st Avenue Library is the newest public library in Oakland. It has a sleek, modern exterior - unexpected angles and large green-tinted windows. Inside, it is just as modern - not just in its architecture or amenities, but in the programs it provides for the community.  The 81st Avenue Library hosts unexpected events like “Game Nights,” for teenagers (substituting Play Station 3s for Monopoly), and offers Zumba classes every Saturday. It is also the school library for the two charter schools next door—ACORN Woodland and EnCompass Academy. Plus, it's the only public library in Oakland that can boast a café.

Eric Hannan was only supposed to work as the 81st Avenue Library's Teen Service Director for a few weeks. He ended up staying two years.

Hear Here: Meet Anthony Propernick

Nov 19, 2013
Audrey DIlling

For about a year and a half now, KALW has been popping into the 81st Avenue East Oakland library to record the stories of the people who live and work in the neighborhood. Today we meet the man who helps make the library a safe and valuable place for the community, Anthony Propernick.

Click the audio player above to listen to the story.

Hear Here producers are once again venturing out to both Oakland and San Francisco libraries-and we want you to come and share your stories! We're bringing our microphones to record your memories, tales, and favorite personal stories. Bring a loved one, bring a few friends, or come by yourself-your stories will be featured online, and may air on 91.7FM!

Libraries are where many people go to exercise their brains, and now there’s at least one where you can exercise your body. The 81st Avenue Branch Library in East Oakland is finding that what people want in their neighborhood is to work out. And, they didn’t have to go far to find the right instructor.

Today's Local Music: Versatile

Aug 5, 2013

The song you can listen to above is being played by Solomon Munghia. Patrons of the 81st Avenue East Oakland library might occasionally hear Munghia practicing in one of the study rooms there. That’s where our community storytelling project, Hear Here, found him one day, getting ready to make some music with his friend Giovanni Gaines. Hear Here producer Audrey Dilling asked Munghia how he first learned to play guitar.