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Beyond Words is now a weekly e-newsletter during our time of social distancing. We look forward to sharing information about our available digital resources, virtual programs and other helpful tips with you every Monday.

Contribute to the Archives

DC Public Library wants your help in documenting life in the District during the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic by archiving this moment. Our daily lives are always connected to history, but it is rare that all of us are so drastically and suddenly affected by a worldwide event. Help us share a record of this moment through pictures and your daily stories. Use the hashtag #archivethismomentdc to share on Twitter and Instagram, or email your pictures, videos or stories to

2020 Census

There is still time to complete your Census. Remember, this data is used to determine federal funds for schools, roads and hospitals just to name a few. Practice social distancing and complete your Census online today, visit to get started.

DIY Face Mask

Collect your fabric, prepare the needle and thread, and create your own face mask with this step-by-step guide.

What's Happening This Week at the Library

We are so excited to share with you highlights of our digital content this week.

Queer Book Club

Queer Book Club meets monthly to discuss queer-themed books spanning a variety of genres. The group will meet virtually on Monday, April 20 at 7 p.m. to discuss Check, Please!, Book 2: Sticks & Scones. Please email Librarian Johnna Percell at to join.

goDigital Spotlight

Freegal Music

Pump up the jams with Freegal. Commercial free, 24-hour streaming available with your library card. Enjoy music and artists from the past and today. Listen on your computer or download the app to stream wherever you go. Check out this curated playlist while working from home.

Resources Around Town

Meal Sites

Food resources for students and seniors across the District.

Grow Your Garden with DPR

Now more than ever people are understanding the importance of growing food. During this time of social distancing, DC Department of Parks & Recreation is hosting a webinar version of the Urban Grower Course - a free online course teaching the basics of gardening from building a home garden to cooking and preserving your harvest.

Virtual Tourism

The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery has thousands of collection items available online. Poets and presidents, visionaries and villains, actors and activists whose lives tell the American story.


DC Emancipation Day

The District of Columbia officially celebrates Emancipation Day on April 16. The DC Compensated Emancipation Act of 1862 ended slavery in Washington, DC, freed 3,100 individuals, reimbursed those who had legally owned them and offered the newly freed women and men money to emigrate. It is this legislation, and the courage and struggle of those who fought to make it a reality, that we commemorate every April 16, DC Emancipation Day.

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