In some libraries, video games–and noise–are welcome

Reaching out to teens with video-game nights is an increasingly common practice for libraries, reports the Los Angeles Times–and one that appears to be paying off in the form of greater attendance. Once a month, the San Fernando Library’s librarians trade their reading glasses for video-game controllers and invite children to come crank up the volume. Elias Ponce and about a dozen teenagers shuffle past the stacks of books to the youth section and play "Guitar Hero," a game that lets them pretend they’re in a rock band. "It makes the library a fun place," said Ponce, a 13-year-old eighth-grader who says he now goes to the library every day even when there are no games. Libraries are turning to video games to connect with teenagers who have outgrown story time. Almost a quarter of libraries surveyed last year by Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies had put on video game events. About half of Los Angeles County’s 88 public libraries hold gaming events at least once a month. Administrators credit the practice with helping boost teenage attendance by about 50 percent since the county started a pilot program two years ago…

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