British Columbia Library Association

In brief with Whistler Public Library

By Elizabeth Tracy

Creating Collective Impact

Paper cranes in honour of the International Day of Peace by friends at the Whistler Multicultural Network.

Paper cranes in honour of the International Day of Peace by friends at the Whistler Multicultural Network.

With the relatively limited resources of local non-profits that provide unique and necessary social services, the Whistler Public Library is leveraging its space to support the collective impact of these public resources. The library hosts weekly partner drop-in clinics to provide a centralized location for popular services in the community. Partners in the drop-in include the Whistler Multicultural Network, WorkBC, and the Whistler Community Services Society. Along with the resources provided by the library, visitors are given access to immigrant and settlement services, job hunting and resume building skills, and support for challenges associated with hunger, housing, addiction, illness, conflict, and more. By bringing these organizations together under one roof, the library bridges gaps within the community. In addition, the drop-ins have forged deeper relationships between the partners and the library, opening doors to events like the Whistler Multicultural Festival and the spring and fall job fairs—each of which have attracted hundreds of people to the library each year.

The Library Entertains

Movie-goers cozy up for a night of Star Wars under the stars in Florence Peterson Park

Movie-goers cozy up for a night of Star Wars under the stars in Florence Peterson Park.

As part of the Whistler Public Library’s mission to Inspire Wonder, sometimes the branch takes patrons beyond serious subjects to purely entertaining pursuits—even if it means foregoing books for the big screen. On the evening of August 30 Program Coordinator Jeanette Bruce and her programming back-up crew (comprised of library staffers and partners from the Summit Boutique Hotel) rolled out the red carpet for a night of Star Wars under the stars in the Florence Petersen Park behind the Whistler Public Library. More than 300 people showed up to watch the film, eat bags of movie theatre popcorn, and test their Jedi knowledge for fabulous prizes.


Elizabeth Tracy has been the Library Director in Whistler, BC, for four years. Prior to that she spent eight years at the Wilkinson Public Library in Telluride, Colorado. For Elizabeth, living in places where she can ski, climb, bike, and work in a field that gives back to her community is the ultimate recipe for happiness. Whether in work or play she is a firm believer in the power of doing something scary every day.

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