The Association for Rural & Small Libraries

The Voice of Rural & Small Libraries

Our Mission: ARSL builds strong communities through advocacy, professional development, and elevating the impact of rural and small libraries.

The ARSL Office will be closed on Monday, January 17 in observation of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. We will resume regular operating hours at 7:00 am on Tuesday, January 18.

The Benefits of Membership

ARSL proudly supports and represents rural & small library staff. We welcome library staff of all kinds, partners, and ally organizations to learn more about ARSL membership. 

Become a Member

ARSL Annual Conference

ARSL's annual conference is the premiere conference for rural and small library professionals, advocates, and supporters. Mark your calendars for 2022 to join us in exciting, eclectic Chattanooga, TN September 14 - 17!

ARSL Conference Page


Creating a Building Book for Your Library: Part 2
Thursday, January 20, 2021, 11:00 am PT / 2:00 pm ET

Libraries come in all shapes and sizes and each building is unique as the librarians that run them. You probably know exactly where everything is located, but what happens when you are unable to provide the answers? In part one, Judy Calhoun provided the foundation and tips to creating a building book for your library. In the upcoming second and final installment of this workshop, bring your completed (or incomplete) building book to ask questions, share insights, and converse with others about the process.

If you registered for part one back in August, you can register for part two at no additional cost. If you missed part one, you will receive a recording when you register for part two.

Presenter: Judy Calhoun, Regional Director, Southeast Arkansas Regional Library

Register Now!

ARSL Professional Development Book Club

The ARSL Continuing Education Committee is pleased to announce the inaugural ARSL Professional Development Book Club! Everyone, regardless of ARSL membership status, is invited to join us for a quarterly discussion about a professional development title that is relevant to the needs of library professionals working in rural and small libraries. Our winter quarter (January-March) meeting will be held on March 29th, 2022, featuring an interactive discussion of Rebekkah Smith Aldrich’s landmark book Sustainable Thinking: Ensuring Your Library’s Future in an Uncertain World. In order to accommodate those of us in different time zones two discussion groups will be held at the times indicated below.

March 29, 2022 | Two discussion groups will be held:
Discussion 1: 3:30 pm PT / 4:30 pm MT / 5:30 pm CT / 6:30 pm ET
Discussion 2: 6:30 pm PT / 7:30 pm MT / 8:30 pm CT / 9:30 pm ET

Both discussion groups are free, and open to both ARSL members and nonmembers,

Discussion Selection: Sustainable Thinking: Ensuring Your Library's Future in an Uncertain World by Rebekkah Smith Aldrich

Sustainability may seem like a “pie-in-the-sky” idea, suitable only for larger libraries with bigger budgets to contemplate.  However, much of sustainable thinking and action already takes place within the walls and communities of small libraries.  As Smith Aldrich states, “How fortuitous for us all that what the world needs most right now is what libraries are already very good at.”  How can we leverage our skills and our knowledge to create and support thriving and resilient communities?  

Discussion groups will not be recorded to encourage open, honest dialog about the selected book.

A discount code is available for those who order Smith Aldrich’s book through the ALA Store through January 31, 2022. To take advantage of this offer, use code “SusThin21” at checkout. The book is also available on Overdrive. 

Buy the Book

ARSL Statement on Anti-Racism

Because Black lives matter and library professionals can be agents of change in rural and small communities across the nation, ARSL urges our members to stand up and speak out to end systemic oppression and police brutality. The ARSL Board of Directors is in active discussion about how we will commit to anti-racist work within our association.

Silence is compliance.