Franklin Countys First News

Little Free Library opens for business in Carrabassett Valley

The Fournier family: Venise, Mark, Hannah, Noah and Elijah.

CARRABASSETT VALLEY - Little Free Libraries are a global phenomenon. There are 60,000 small, front‐yard book exchanges around the world in 80 countries: from Iceland to Tasmania to Pakistan. In the fall of 2018, a new Little Free Library, near the Carrabassett Valley Town office, joined the worldwide effort to share books, bring people together and create communities of readers.

The libraries are based around the principle of "take a book, share a book," allowing people to trade their favorite books within the community.

The Little Free Library was made possible by a collaboration between the Carrabassett Valley Public Library and the Fournier Family. Venise Fournier is a board member at the library and shared the good news last fall that her family would donate their time and materials to design, build and install the structure as a gift to the Carrabassett Valley Library and community. Her husband, Mark Fournier, is a local contractor and owner of Fournier Construction Inc. With the help of their three children, Hannah, Noah and Elijah, they spent countless hours designing, building and installing the structure in a place where everyone could enjoy.

The Little Free Library is located adjacent to the town park. Allowing year-round access to the library was important to all, so planning around snowplows was a must. The location is about six miles south of the public library building, giving people another place to access reading materials at any time.

“Our Little Free Library doesn’t just belong to us, it belongs to everyone who visits our community,” said Andrea DeBiase, the CVPL director. "It’s our hope that this Little Free Library will bring a little more joy, a little more connection and a lot more books to our community."

The Little Free Library nonprofit organization has been honored by the Library of Congress, the National Book Foundation, and the American Library Association, and Reader’s Digest named them one of the “50 Surprising Things We Love about America.” Each year, nearly 10 million books are shared in Little Free Libraries. To learn more, please visit

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5 Responses »

  1. What a great story! Love that little town and what a great picture of the Fournier family! Thank you for brightening my day!

  2. As a former librarian, I honestly don't understand the fascination behind these little free libraries when there's a
    big free library in your community & in most communities in our country. Public libraries are one of the institutions that have truly made America great! And they are in peril. If you don't believe me, just check to see how many public libraries in the recent past have had to cut hours, services and staff, and even in some cases close their doors. In our community those budget cuts led to fewer professional librarians (because you just have to love to read to be a librarian), no more bookmobile service, & fewer evening & weekend hours when the working public is able to access the library.
    I see how cute & charming these little structures are but, just like the little free pantries, I also see them as more of a symptom of the unwillingness of our community leaders to actually support the institutions that helped generations of new citizens to this country become educated and able to contribute to our society. If people are hungry in the richest country in the world, are they supposed to find nutritious food for their families at little free pantries? Help me understand this.
    If you truly want to encourage literacy in your community, may I suggest going to the next budget meeting at your city council to make sure they appropriate funding for public libraries & public schools.

  3. I have 20 brand new fiction large paperbacks none older than a year. 2019
    May I send them to you for your library. I.e A Better Man by Louise Penny

  4. Yes, Patricia, we would you accept your book donation! Give me a call at 237-3535 if you need any more information. Thank you!!!

    With regard to the comment "Why a Little Free Library?" You made all the right points and I believe answered the question. It's all about access...choices...and's fun! FREE Access for Outdoor Adventure Camp kids, FREE access (when the driving is bad, you don't have to drive up the S turns!) FREE access to books 24/'s a win-win! Some people can't get to the library during open hours so they can stop at the LFL in a pinch! We are very lucky in the town of Carrabassett Valley; our selectpersons and voters support the library and because of this ...EVERYONE gets a free membership, so we can share our resources with those whose own library may be struggling.

  5. Love this!