After a great dinner in the Quarter with more co-workers, I headed to the Hilton for the Blogger Bash. There was a great crowd of both blogosphere folks and representatives of several libraries from the LA and Guf Coast areas. Many of them gave overviews of where they stand, what has happened to the libraries, and their needs in rebuilding. Which are mainly financial. Don't send more old World Books. They don't need em!
The stories were really both heartbreaking and hopeful since the destruction of many of these libraries was so complete and the staff who remain seem so dedicated to rebuilding. The libraries are an essential part of these communities. They're places where people could connect to the outside world post-Katrina. Places where they could connect with FEMA and other relief agencies online. Definitely concrete examples of all the talk out there about community building, reaching out. These places are doing it under waaaaay less than perfeect circumstances in a very real world meaningful way.
Also got to meet several blog folks (waaaay more not linked!) in person. All super cool. Had some good library conversations and great non-library ones about all sorts of stuff including devices and hipsters. Bibliobloggers rock.
Off to session.