Community & Environment

The good word – libraries unveil new range of merchandise

Wordsmiths and book lovers rejoice – Hamilton City Libraries has unveiled a suite of marvellous and memorable new merchandise in time for Christmas.

The creative team at Hamilton City Council’s public library service has revamped its traditional calendar, and added magnetised word sets and branded mugs to its annual merchandise offer.

Rob Baigent, Hamilton City Libraries Matihiko/Digital Services Leader, says the team wanted to “do something just a little different” with its popular annual calendar, which incorporates a range of striking images from the service’s Heritage Collection.

Among the images are pictures of former Councillor Joe Di Maio serving pizza in his famous Garden Place pizzeria – where the Central Library is now – in 1992, a group of men stacking beer at a local brewery in 1985, children buying ice creams at the Regent Theatre in 1992, and two men skateboarding at Melville Park in 1979.

“The calendar is one of the ‘hardy annuals’ for our team, and this year we’ve altered the layout to create a calendar which doubles as a planner,” Mr Baigent says.

“And in a change from previous years, it also includes dates for some of the city’s regular events like Fieldays and Balloons Over Waikato.”

The magnetised word sets come as a pack of three, and have a strong regional and city theme – including familiar Waikato place names. Mr Baigent says the sets reinforce Hamilton City Libraries’ focus on literacy, love of reading and learning.

“There’s some great fun to be had with the magnetised words sets – stick them on the fridge door and see how many sentences the family can come up with!”

Completing the package of Hamilton City Libraries merchandise are four different models of mug – each featuring a phrase from a famous book.

“We had 10 quotes from well-known books, and we had an internal vote among the libraries staff to choose the four favourite to feature on the mugs,” Mr Baigent says.

“One is from JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, another is from Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, the third is from JK Rowling’s Harry Potter series, and the fourth is from Hairy Maclary by Lynley Dodd – an absolute Kiwi classic.”

Mr Baigent credited his team with coming up with some great ideas and fantastic designs in producing the merchandise.

“We’re rapt with how everything has come together and we’re confident our customers – and their friends and family – will love them, too.”

The calendars are $8 each, the word sets $9 for a pack of three, and the mugs are either $12 individually or a set of four for $40 – and it’s all available from any branch of Hamilton City Libraries.

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