Shortly after being recognized as one of only five libraries in the U.S. to receive the 2013 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County has hit another huge milestone. As signified today by our Web counter featured atop our Library’s homepage, we now have a half million Library cardholders.
You, too, can be among the 500,000 Library cardholders who enjoy a wide variety of free benefits provided by the Public Library. If you don’t have a Library card, be sure to sign up for one online or stop by the Main Library or one of our 40 branches!
To celebrate the occasion, we’re spotlighting images of our customers with their Library cards on our Facebook and Twitter sites. We invite you to post an image with your Library card (as an individual, as part of a book club or group, or as a family). It’s up to you how you want to share in all the splendor of having a Library card.
Library Card Benefits
Your Red Library card opens the door to a wealth of resources and services for your personal, professional, and academic needs. In addition to our regular Library card, which can be used to access a huge collection of bestselling books, movies, and CDs, we also offer several other types of Library cards geared toward specific interests, including our:
- Downloadable Only Library Card - For our customers age 18 and older who only want to use the Library's downloadable resources (ebooks, e-audio books and music).
- Teen Only Library Card - For teens ages 13-17, this card doesn't require a parent's signature and allows teens to check out up to 3 teen books at a time. No fines accrue on this card. When one book is returned, the teen can get another.
- Child Only Library Card - For our users age 12 or younger, this card doesn't require a parent's signature and allows children to check out up to 3 juvenile books at a time. No fines accrue on this card. When one book is returned, the child can get another.
Did you know?
Your Red Library card gives you access to all these great resources!
The Library’s 40th annual Summer Reading Program offers incentives and prizes for preschoolers, children, teens and adults for doing what they love to do best, READ. This year’s theme, Power Up…Read! offers all sorts of excitement by spotlighting "superheroes." To kick off a fun season of reading (June 1-July 31), all Library locations around Hamilton County are holding Summer Reading activities related to this theme on Saturday, June 1. Children and their families are invited to stop by their neighborhood Library to decorate a superhero mask (while supplies last). Sign up and find out more about this year’s program on our Summer Reading website.
Brain Camp, which is held each week in the Main Library’s Homework Central (starting June 3 through August 9), engages students grades 1-8 in activities that boost the mind as well as the imagination. Where else could "campers" design their own superheroes, build LEGO robots, explore the depths of space, embark on a scavenger hunt, discover a land where dinosaurs once roamed, or encounter wildlife close-up? Brain Camp takes students on these mentally inspiring missions for free Monday–Friday, 1:00-4:00 p.m. Register for Summer Brain Camp by calling 513-369-3121. Registrations are taken on a first-come, first serve basis, until class limits are reached. Summer Camps are organized by theme and grade levels.
The Library’s online resources are available to you 24/7 for FREE! You and your family may visit your public library in person to check out books, use a computer or ask for help from a librarian, but you can also visit your library anytime from your home computer using your Red Library card.
You have access to Downloadable eBooks and Audiobooks for FREE. Digital books can be downloaded 24/7 from home without a special trip to the Library, and are returned automatically, so there are never any overdue fines. You’ll find a growing collection of bestsellers, new releases, and classic titles to check out with a valid library card.
You can use our Zinio Digital Magazines service to read digital copies of your favorite magazines on your tablet, computer, or mobile device! Enjoy current issues of your favorite magazines such as Rolling Stone, US Weekly, Car and Driver, Esquire, O, The Oprah Magazine, Consumer Reports, and Elle Decor. Download as many magazines as you'd like 24/7!
with dancers from The Cincinnati Ballet
You can Download Music FREE. Use your Library card number and PIN to download up to five MP3 songs per week from Sony Music’s extensive catalog. Hundreds of thousands of songs in over 100 genres of music are available to download 24/7. All songs work on MP3 players, iPods, iPhones and more. All music is free, legal, and you get to keep it forever.
The Cincinnati Library Mobile Application is a great way to stay connected with the Library’s resources and services, work with your account, scan the catalog, place holds, and more!
Homework HelpNow connects you with tutors online for FREE. Students like you (grades K-Adult) can learn from experts in our "online classroom" on a wide range of subjects. English and Spanish-speaking tutors are available 7 days a week from 2:00-11:00 p.m. All you need is your Library card and PIN (last 4 digits of your phone number).
There’s a Homework Central at the Main Library. Receive FREE homework assistance—in person, by phone, email, and the Internet—in a place that’s just right for studying and learning. Homework Central is located in the Main Library, where there are computer workstations for students (K-12). All of our computers have Microsoft Office and homework-related assignments that can be printed for free. Homework Helpers are also available at several branch locations to help students K-8 with homework assignments and provide skills building assistance on any subject.
The “Hidden Web” assists you with homework assignments. Use our collection of online resources and other databases to locate information on a broad range of subjects from magazines, newspapers, encyclopedias, and books.
KnowItNow24x7 makes it easy to chat with a librarian 24/7. Use this online reference service to chat with a librarian 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at the Main Library and all 40 Library locations.
Microsoft Word, Excel & PowerPoint are available for FREE on every public PC at the Main Library and all branches.
WiFi is available for FREE at the Main Library and all 40 branches. When logged into our wireless network you may now send print jobs to Library printers.