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  • From the Director, January 2024

    From the Director, January 2024

    When Alice Walker published her story “In Search of Zora Neale Hurston” for Ms. Magazine in 1975, the author we currently consider to be a prominent voice of the Harlem Renaissance and one of the most brilliant authors in Black literature was all but forgotten. Walker describes the day she first walked into the Eatonville…

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  • Meet You There. Stylized logo with a map pin containing an orange. Photos of library staff at outdoor events overlayed on an orange map of Orange County.

    Meet You There

    As you’ve read in Books & Beyond over the past year, Orange County Library System is committed to breaking down barriers to access, so everyone can take part in what our libraries have to offer. That commitment extends far beyond library walls. In 2024, our goal is to plant deeper roots in the community by…

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  • From the Director Header - December 2023

    From the Director, December 2023

    When we kicked off our 100 Year Celebration on January 7, we promised you that a few good things were on the way: mobile services, programs in the community so people who can’t get to a library can still take advantage of what we have to offer, and a commitment to elevating community conversations with fun and…

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  • Design rendering of the future Horizon West branch.

    Looking Ahead to Our Bright Future

    You’ve heard us say it all year long: At OCLS, we’re proud of what we accomplished in the past, and we’re looking forward to a bright future for our library system. Over the past year, we’ve focused on sharing our story and showing you how the past 100 years have shaped us. As we wind…

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  • Questions and Answers – Orlando Ballet’s The Nutcracker

    Questions and Answers – Orlando Ballet’s The Nutcracker

    Founded in 1974, Orlando Ballet is Central Florida’s only fully residential professional ballet company. On top of producing world class stage productions, they also promote dance education and training through the Orlando Ballet School and Orlando Ballet II. As part the ballet’s 50th anniversary, artistic director Jorden Morris and a world-renowned creative team spent three years reimagining this from-scratch, Broadway-caliber…

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  • The History of Orange County Library System: The Melrose Center

    The History of Orange County Library System: The Melrose Center

    On April 16, 2012, Orange County Library System received the largest single private gift in its history when benefactor Kendrick B. Melrose donated $1 million in memory of his mother, Dorothy Lumley Melrose. The family lived in Orlando during Kendrick’s childhood, and he cited his mother’s strong support of libraries and keen interest in emerging…

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  • From the Director, November 2023

    From the Director, November 2023

    This year, we’ve focused a lot on what our library system can do to be more supportive of our community. We want to be involved and engaged with those doing good things around us.  So, when we learned that Orange County was open to having us participate in the annual Mayor’s Holiday Toy Drive, a…

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  • Mary Anne Hodel looking at panels on wall depicting the library's history.

    The History of Orange County Library System: Mary Anne Hodel & the New Millennium

    In December of 2001, Orange County Library System was poised at the edge of the 21st century. The retiring director, Dorothy Field, had accomplished a remarkable amount to prepare the library system for the new millennium, including opening three new branches and ensuring public computers with internet access were available to all library users. But…

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  • OCLS Blog Post, From the Director, October 2023.

    From the Director, October 2023

    In 2021, we were looking for a unique way to mark an interesting occasion: the 100th anniversary of a huge book donation by Captain Charles Albertson to the city of Orlando, which helped accelerate the progress the city was making toward the establishment of our first public library system. We thought it would be fun…

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  • Boy wearing chef's uniform smiling and waving

    Entrevista a Samuel Bracho, el Joven BizKids

    Durante la primavera de este año, en un evento de la comunidad de Orlando, tuve el honor de conocer a un joven que con tan solo 11 años ya es un emprendedor. Este joven tiene su propio negocio de postres llamado Samuel’s Great Desserts. Cuando lo vi por primera vez, me impresionó su vestimenta de…

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Presidential Preference Primary Election Early Voting at Select Library Locations

Ten OCLS Branch locations will host early voting for the 2024 Early Voting Primary Election from Monday, March 4 to Sunday, March 17 (10 a.m. – 6 p.m.): Alafaya, Chickasaw, Fairview Shores, Hiawassee, South Creek, Southeast, Southwest, Washington Park, West Oaks, and Winter Garden. Learn more about early voting at select library locations >