The Feminist Library On Wheels (F.L.O.W.) is celebrating five years as a free mobile lending library. Founded in July 2014 by Jenn Witte and Dawn Finley, F.L.O.W. has its main branch at the Women’s Center for Creative Work in Elysian Park, where open library hours and workshops have also been held. The library has received more than 6000 donated books, magazines, journals, DVDs, and zines over the years, 2000 of which are currently checked out to more than 2000 card holders, aged 8 to 101. Anyone can sign up for a free library card and check out as many books as they want, for as long as they want. From Riverside to Westchester, from Westwood to Glendale, from South Central to Eagle Rock, F.L.O.W. has tabled at, hosted, or attended over 80 events, talking about feminism, literacy, and bikes to hundreds of people from all walks of life. F.L.O.W. has also been featured in publications such as the Los Angeles Times, Ms Magazine, Got a Girl Crush, KCET’s blog, and LitHub.
F.L.O.W. is excited to invite all of their friends in the greater Los Angeles area to family-friendly revelry: free vegan treats from Kitchen Mouse, Botanica, and Delicias Bakery (along with beer and wine, fizzy water, and juice boxes for kiddos and kiddos-at-heart); all-ages zine-making with L.A. Zine Fest; a free quilt book-making workshop with teaching artist, printmaker, bookbinder, and zinester Rachel Curry; blackout poetry-making and map-coloring; loads of books and library cards; brand new limited-edition merchandise; tables from Project Q (where there will soon be a small new branch) and Angelena Atlas; a F.L.O.W.-themed photo booth; and party-goers will be the first to see F.L.O.W.’s new wheels, an electric cargo bike and custom-built trailer. You can even write a special message on the trailer’s walls!
Hourly, beginning at 1pm, four Los Angeles-based writers will present short readings from items in F.L.O.W.’s collection: Myriam Gurba (Mean, Painting Their Portraits in Winter: Stories); Kate Durbin (The Ravenous Audience, E! Entertainment); Lisa Locascio (Open Me); and Rocío Carlos (Attendance).
Those who can’t attend the party are encouraged to follow F.L.O.W. on social media (particularly Instagram and Facebook), and visit their new website, which includes links to their searchable online catalog. Anyone wishing to make a much-welcomed financial contribution can do so through their Patreon site; books or zine donations can be dropped off at the Women’s Center for Creative Work, or any of their other drop-off locations. F.L.O.W.’s collection can also be browsed at the WCCW from 10am - 6pm Monday-Friday, or every other Sunday during open library hours (check the WCCW calendar for dates). To become a volunteer or member of the collective, please send an email to email@example.com
The Armory is a fantastic (and air-conditioned!) spot to both see and make art right in the heart of Pasadena. There’s parking on Raymond Avenue just north of the building (the first 90 minutes are free), and it’s across the street from the Memorial Park station of the Metro Gold Line. Lots of restaurants and shopping nearby so you can make an afternoon of the trip, or even head over to museums like The Huntington or the Norton Simon. In Memorial Park bibliophiles can find the restored entry arch of the first free public library in Pasadena (originally built in the 1880s, restored in 1955--a year after the building itself was razed, and fenced in after Northridge earthquake damage in 1994).