Spotlight on Sharing: Board Game Renaissance

Board games are entering a golden age. In a time when we all seem to be glued to a screen, more and more people are putting down their devices and clearing their card tables for chess, pinochle, Settlers of Catan, Risk, and Dungeons & Dragons, to say nothing of the new, independent games flooding the market. So what’s the draw? Board games are appealing because they allow us to connect with friends and family while solving problems, strategizing, and being creative. Plus they’re just plain fun.

The library is a great fit for board gamers of all ages. It has the communal space that gamers need, and gaming supports the education mission of the libraries. “Modern board games are uniquely suited to address the critical thinking, inquiry, and social information skills that are critical to the twenty-first century learner.” (Christopher Harris & Brian Mayer. “Child’s Play.” Children & Libraries: The Journal Of The Association For Library Service To Children. Winter 2010.) As a bonus, board games are usually inexpensive and don’t require a lot of program planning, which makes them suitable for libraries of all sizes and budgets.

As you will see in this Spotlight on Sharing post, several libraries around Colorado have already made the connection.

Life-Sized Board Games

  • Rifle Branch Library, Garfield County
  • Tuesday, July 12, 1:00 pm
  • “Teens and tweens are invited to the libraries to play their favorite board games. This time, you and your friends are the game pieces! Be a Hungry Hungry Hippo, try giant Connect Four, and more!”
  • Event website

Learn to Play Bridge

  • Evergreen Library, JeffCo
  • “Spend a few Tuesday nights learning to play Bridge. Or, continue to learn how to play among friends. Our 9-week free course is a continuation of the class from last year and is for beginner/intermediate Bridge players who have some experience and want to improve. The class is based on the book ACBL Play of the Hand in the 21st Century.  We’ll review bidding and concentrate on the play of the hand (making a plan, promoting winners, finessing, trumping losers, etc.). Ralph Haines, life master and certified bridge instructor will be dealing the lesson.”
  • Event website

Teen TableTop Gaming Club @ Library 21c

  • Library 21c, Pikes Peak Library District
  • First Friday of the month, 4:00 – 5:30 pm
  • “Each month we learn and play a different game (and sometimes get out old favorites as well!). Drop by and maybe you’ll discover your new favorite game! For ages 12-18. Co-sponsored by Petrie’s Family Games!”
  • Event website

Chess & Board Game Club

  • Nederland Community Library
  • Wednesdays from 3:30 – 5:00 pm during the school year
  • “This club is designed for elementary-aged kids that are able to read up to 6th grade. Older youth are welcome to watch, help, or play. Popcorn is provided.”

Board Games

  • Englewood Public Library
  • Mondays at 1:00 pm
  • “Come play our many assorted board games and puzzles!”
  • Calendar event

Board Game Friday

  • Bemis Library (Littleton)
  • Second Friday of every month, 3:00 – 4:30 pm
  • For teens
  • “Whether you’re a fan of “Stratego”, or “Magic: the Gathering”, or whether you want to try to avoid a kitten ambush in “We Didn’t Playtest This At All,” we have a board game for you! We have a huge collection of board games for teens and each month we’ll feature something new, so come have some fun!”
  • Calendar event

Get Your Giant Game On

  • Golden Library, JeffCo
  • Saturday, July 16 12:00 – 1:00 pm
  • “Feeling a little bored this summer? Switch it up to giant “board”! Families and those who are kids at heart are welcome. Come play giant board games at the library.”
  • Suitable for: All Ages
  • Calendar event


  • Council Tree Library, Poudre River Public Library District
  • First Friday of the month, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
  • “Players of all ability and experience levels are welcome. Scrabble boards will be provided or you can bring your own.”

This post is part of the Spotlight on Sharing initiative, which aims to increase the visibility of resource sharing in Colorado libraries. Does your library offer board game programming? Let us know by filling out this super short form. If you’re on Twitter, tweet @hitchlib or use the hashtag #spotlightonsharing.

Amy Hitchner
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