Little Free Libraries, the small, front‐yard book exchanges, are fast becoming a global phenomenon with 100,000 touching down around the world in 108 countries—from Iceland to Tasmania to Pakistan. Now, a new Little Free Library is coming to earth at the Dekalb-Peachtree Airport (PDK) to share books, bring people together, and create entire communities of new readers.
But this time there’s a difference—PDK’s Little Free Library has a direct focus on aerospace and Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM). Its design is inspired by the original WWII hangar still in use at PDK, and the library will be filled with more than 50 aviation and STEAM books specifically written for K-12 students. The driving force behind the project is the Inspire Aviation Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose goal is to bring a world-class air and space museum and educational center to the Atlanta metro area. As an extension of this mission, the idea of the library is the perfect fit, and the organization raised the funds necessary to custom-build the space.
“Our Little Free Library doesn’t just belong to us, it belongs to the whole community,” says Mario Evans, Dekalb-County Airport Director. “It’s our hope that this Little Free Library will bring a little more joy, a little more connection, and a whole lot more books to our community.”
“With this library, we don’t just want to inspire, we want to connect,” said Moreno Aguiari, President of the Board of Directors of the Inspire Aviation Foundation. “Our ultimate goal is to connect starting with children and show them a new world that’s possible, but then to stay with them throughout their lives as we support them in pursuing aerospace careers and beyond. This library is a small but important step as we move forward in our overall development plans for an educational museum.”
The Inspire Aviation Foundation is currently in the process of finalizing an agreement to lease a hangar and office space at PDK to teach the internally-developed ASPIRE curriculum, as well as aviation curriculum developed by the Georgia Department of Education, and nationally-recognized curriculum from the EAA, NASA, and others. It’s estimated that this facility at PDK will be able to host approximately 1,500-2,500 students in the first school year (2022), as well as provide the ability to run aviation camps. At full capacity, the Education Center aims to impact over 15,000 students a year in classrooms as well as digitally. This will be the first step towards the long-term goal of the Georgia Air & Space Museum and Education Center—creating a campus of learning, entertainment, research & development, tourism, economic development, and community involvement.
About the Georgia Air & Space Museum and Education Center
The Georgia Air & Space Museum and Education Center was born by a group of community leaders, educators, business, and aviation professionals in 2017. The foundation is dedicated to the goal of bringing a world-class air and space museum and education center to Atlanta, as well as helping the next generation to build a passion for life in Aviation, Aerospace, Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM). The mission of the Georgia Air and Space Education Center is to create an environment where students are excited to learn and their imagination takes flight. The Education Center will increase awareness of Aerospace STEAM career opportunities and facilitate progression into rewarding career fields. For more information visit www.georgiaairandspacemuseum.org