COLUMBUS, Ohio — Skip Jackson calls himself a book person but he was never much of a library person.
But that all changed for Jackson in 2018 as the long-time pastor of Indianola Presbyterian Church in Columbus was retiring and he had most of the days free and was searching for a new hobby.
“Switched over to cooking dinners and weekdays that took up some time, but OK what would I do? I’ve been looking at all these libraries that Columbus was building and intrigued by them. They’re very interesting architecturally,” said Jackson.
On this day, Jackson and I visited Columbus’ newest branch on Karl Road. It’s the 58th he’s visited in Central Ohio over the last three years.
While on-site Jackson, a husband and father of two, takes photos, notes and checks out a few books.
Jackson said he’s a fan of mysteries, thrillers and science fiction.
After his visit, Jackson returns home and writes about the experience in his blog Skip’s Retirement Explorations.
He also pairs the library trip with a visit to a neighborhood non-chain restaurant.
“I’ve been in parts of the city I’ve never been in before in 18 years in Columbus. It’s made me more familiar with the whole community,” said Jackson.
And with a granddaughter due next month, the first time grandfather is working on building up his children’s book collection.
Overall, the stat-line is impressive.
Jackson said he’s reading 20 books a month and 175 for the year.
He hopes this hobby, turned passion project will help the younger generations appreciate the number of great resources and community provided by the local library.
“The fun thing over this whole project has been discovering all the different things that libraries offer. This room we’re sitting in is a homework help room. There are Kindergarten preparedness rooms. It’s really interesting to see how things vary from to different parts of the city,” said Jackson.
You can read Jackson’s blog here.