Rochester Pubic Library: something for everyone

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Rochester Public Library is centrally located downtown on South Main. (Courtesy photo)

ROCHESTER - With the celebration of its 125th anniversary under way, Director Brian Sylvester is putting the word out to encourage residents to connect with the Rochester Public Library and learn more about how to utilize it.

Rochester's library has come a long way since it first opened its doors in 1893, expanding its offerings from printed books and periodicals to include a broad range of services that can help residents remain engaged with and informed about their community and their world.


Overdrive: Library members have unfettered access to Overdrive, allowing them to borrow e-books and audiobooks for their smartphones, tablets and e-readers directly from the Libby smartphone app.

Hoopla: Residents can use their library cards to stream movies and television shows, as well as documentaries, on their own devices. It also features books, audiobooks and comics. Checkout or streaming is limited to five items per month.

IndieFlix: Movie and film buffs can choose from thousands of independent titles, including more than 8,000 high quality short films, as well as feature-length films and documentaries from 85 counties.

Mango Languages: Library membership allow the opportunity to learn how to communicate across borders by trying language learning software at your convenience.

Off-Site Activities

Theatre Pass Program: The Rochester Public Library offers free or discounted passes to area theaters, including the Seacoast Repertory Theatre, the Rochester Opera House, the Star Theatre and Hackmatack Playhouse. All passes are subject to availability and can be reserved by calling 603-332-1428, extension 2.

Museum Pass Program: Members can visit the library and grab passes to a variety of museums throughout the area, including Boston, at a discount or for free. The program includes - but is not limited to - the Seashore Trolley Museum (two adults and up to four children free per pass), Strawberry Banke (two adults and two children free per pass), Wright Museum (two adults and four children free per pass), Boston's Museum of Science (up to four people for $10 per person) and the Museum of Fine Arts (up to two people for $10 each).

On-Site Activities

The library features a variety of regular and special events, including the upcoming unveiling of a portrait of the city's first librarian. It also offers a weekly get-together of needle crafters - Common Threads - every Monday from 9:30-11 a.m. The library also has regularly scheduled activities on Wednesday evenings, including an upcoming screening of "Dunkirk" on Jan. 31 at 6 p.m.

"We want members and non-members alike to know about the full scope of what the library has to offer," Sylvester said. "We really have something for everyone, and a library membership provides benefits that extend well beyond our walls."

The Rochester Public Library currently has between 8,000 and 10,000 active members. Joining, which is free for residents and city employees and costs $60 per year for anyone else, takes about 10 minutes. To learn more about what's required to sign up for a library card - including accepted types of proof of residency - visit

For more information about all of the library's programs, visit

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