In the spirit of all those other year-end lists, we thought we'd take a moment to reflect on what an outstanding year it has been at the Barrington Area Library. Read the list below or click through the slideshow to see the year in pictures.


We begin with three highlights (there were many, many highlights!) from last February's "Barrington Creates" celebration.

1. The LEGO Library, created by Ara Bonsignore. It took Ara one month to build this incredibly detailed replica of our library. See photos and get more details at 365 Barrington.

2. The giant Barrington coloring mural, created by artist Sara E. Michaels. Sara drew the original in black and white, we printed it on our giant poster printer, and you got busy coloring! We put up three versions of the mural so everyone would have a chance to color.

3. The CreatorFair, an afternoon event celebrating the creative spirit right here in Barrington. More than 20 local artists, makers, designers, and craftspersons came out and demonstrated their talents. See photos and more details.

Then in April, it was...

4. Star Wars Sunday! Young and old fans of the classic and beloved movies came out in costume to enjoy crafts, trivia, photo opportunities, and all things Star Wars.

5. Our new library website, with a cleaner, more responsive design that works well on every type of device. We love the results and we hope you do, too!

6. Our annual Local Author Fair. 30 authors from Barrington and all over the Chicago area brought their books and came out to meet and greet with potential readers. We can't wait for this year's event!

June brought an amazing, one-of-a-kind experience to Barrington...

7. The "Elaine" atrium art installation by HOTTEA. Minnesota-based, internationally known artist HOTTEA describes his work as “interacting with public spaces non-destructively.” HOTTEA, whose full name is Eric Rieger, has created an original work of art, "Elaine," commissioned by the Library for its beautiful atrium. You have to see it to fully appreciate it - stop in anytime the library is open. well as the return of a summertime favorite.

8. Summer Library Club for Kids. In 2016, 1,432 Readers and Pre-Readers signed up for the club, reading a total of 14,700 books! Barbara Rose School won the club, with the highest percentage of students who read 10 or more books over the summer.

9. Summer Library Club for Adults. More than 200 adults and young adults signed up for the club, which has a unique twist: readers are challenged to help us reach our total goal of 1,000 books read, so that our sponsors at Barrington Bank and Trust will keep their promise: a $1,000 donation split between the Barrington Township and Cuba Township food pantries!

Our list ends with a highly memorable evening in October...

10. TEDxBarringtonArea Library 2016. As with our first year, we were blown away by the wisdom, passion, and "Ideas Worth Spreading" shared by our four 2016 speakers: Bob Lee, Courtney Quigley, Dr. Brian Harris, and Joyce Palmquist. Watch our speakers from 2015 and 2016 online right here.

What a wonderful year! While these special events and experiences rank high on our list, we hope you also enjoyed the classes, workshops, meeting rooms, concerts, plays, books, movies, music, art displays, and customer service you received at the Barrington Area Library all year long. It's our pleasure to serve this beautiful and supportive community. We look forward to seeing you in 2017!

See which e-books were most popular at BALibrary in 2016
See which books were our staff favorites in 2016