Library News

Library Courtyard Will Open on Nov. 13 With Hot Chili

Don’t miss the Grand Opening of the Courtyard! It will be loads of fun with a ribbon cutting and remarks, music, chili and chips, marshmallows for roasting around the fire, beverages, bubbles, and more. See you Sunday, November 13 at 3 p.m. until dusk!

If you are a regular reader of this column, you remember the Library’s 2020/21 Community Needs Assessment (CNA) with the goal of determining what Sedona and Verde Valley residents needed. That study, and the pandemic, showed us that Sedona wanted a place they could call their own, that would capture the beauty of the landscape, and help build a sense of community that many feared they had lost. 

It taught us just how hard it is for locals to find the quiet and beauty they cherish in Sedona because of the often-crowded trailheads and streets. We knew we could meet these needs, and we promised we would. In fact, in our CNA Report: The Next Chapter, we laid out the steps for how we would make community space a reality. We provided the details in our 2021-2024 Strategic Plan, and we have made good on our word. First by opening a full-service library in the Village of Oak Creek which opened a year ago today, and now it is my honor to present to you Chapter One: The Courtyard at Sedona Public Library!

This new beautiful, convenient, safe, and easily accessible courtyard and patio is a gorgeous extension to the Library that has served this community for 65 years. It includes the Friends Fire Circle (think music and stories around the fire), a stage (think drumming, poetry, speakers, plays), and comfortable seating areas, umbrellaed tables, Wi-Fi, and a water station—think meetings and presentations, reading a book or studying, bringing coffee or lunch and hanging out with a friend, or watching the annular solar 2023 eclipse. The Courtyard connects to the Friends Bookstore, so you can easily shop, too! The options are endless, and we can’t wait to share this beautiful space with you. 

In his book The Great Good Place, Ray Oldenburg introduced the idea of the “third place” or “great good place.” A “third place” is the anchor and heart of community life—it is an important place to hang out, enjoy lively conversation and good company; it is a place where community is built. A third place is the spot between your “first place” (home) and your “second place” (workspace); it is a social place where people meet, congregate, relax, engage, and make new and meet old friends. We are proud, and honored, to bring Sedona its long overdue “third place.” Chapter One is waiting for you!

Please join us for the Grand Opening of the Courtyard! Spend an afternoon with friends and neighbors and enjoy the ribbon cutting with a great line up of speakers to welcome you; acoustic guitar by Brian David; acoustic classic rock by Silent Treatment; the Library’s winning chili from the 2022 Rotary Club of Sedona’s Annual Chili Cook-Off; marshmallows for roasting around the Friends Fire Circle; beer from Sedona Beer Co., wine, and much more. See you Sunday, November 13, 3 p.m. until dusk!

Thanks to our supporters who helped make this project possible especially the Carroll Family Foundation, Gordon Reiter, and the Friends of Sedona Public Library for whom the Fire Circle was named. And to everyone who has purchased a paver, please come see it on the patio beginning at the grand opening on November 13. If you haven’t bought one yet, you still can! 

We have three sizes of pavers available: 12”x12” with four lines of text, 18 characters per line for $400; 6”x9” with three lines and 12 characters per line for $175; and 6”x6” with two lines of text, 9 characters per line for $100. Visit to order yours today, or stop by either library location and pick up an order form. 

At Sedona Public Library, we believe that libraries should be thriving, vibrant places that offer materials, programs, services, and spaces designed specifically for their communities. We know our community deserves a library like that, and that’s why we can’t wait to see you on the Courtyard beginning on November 13 at the Grand Opening.

Sedona Public Library is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. To make a tax-deductible donation, please visit or send your check to Sedona Public Library, 3250 White Bear Road, Sedona, AZ 86336. 

As published in the Red Rock News

Library News Column for Nov. 4, 2022
Written by Judy Poe, Library Director


Library News appears each Friday here and in the Red Rock News.