Last month in Kendallville, I attended the Community Learning Center’s last farmer’s market for the season.

I bought some vegetables and flowers, all that I could carry, and also came home with some”thing” else.

The idea for this column.

At the market I spotted Jenna Anderson of the Kendallville Public Library with an array of things that piqued my interest. You see, the library’s help with research includes help with researching ... things.

Some of the things were on display at the farmer’s market.

Subsequently, Jenna, the library’s support services manager, with the help of Leah Dresser, adult services manager, emailed me photos of things from the Library of Things.

“When searching the catalog, it’s easiest to type Library of Things and the category to get the most results in the category you are looking for,” Jenna said in the email. “Items can be put on hold; patrons can also come in just to browse.”

The categories of things are:

• Cooking (instant pot, air fryer, bread maker, coffee grinder, cake pans, cookie cutters, stand mixer, buffet server, etc.)

• Crafts (sewing machine, embroidery machine, Cricut maker, Cricut press, crochet hooks, sewing patterns, metal stamp kit, quilting tools, accucut machine)

• Home (luggage scale, cash register box for garage sale, shovel, steamer, gorilla cart, reacher, cooler, blood pressure cuff, garden set)

• Music (theremin, harp, Rokblok portable record player, record players, metronome, keyboard, xylophone, karaoke machine, kalimba, violin)

• Tools and Tech (ghost hunting kit, bird watching kit, Roomba wet/dry vacuum, stud finder, tool set, Dremel wire cutters, screw driver, sander, level, stud finder, measuring wheel)

They also have a fitness collection, board games and yard games.

Items can be checked out for one week at a time and renewed if they have not been put on hold.

The Library of Things lets people try before they buy, Jenna explained.

“We’ve had several people mention that they have bought items that we have because they loved them so much, especially the air fryer,” she said. “We have had decreased foot traffic since the pandemic so we have been brainstorming more ideas to get people in and this is helping. We started building this collection this summer.”

The highest circulating items are the Ninja Air Fryer, Instant Pot, Cricut maker and the Cricut easy press.

The Seed Library isn’t in the Library of Things, but it is one of the library’s newest collections. Seeds were donated by Purdue Extension; the categories are herbs, vegetables, fruits, flowers and beans. Patrons can sign out a seed pack. The hope is that after the items harvest, they will donate seeds back, but that isn’t a requirement.

One last thing. If anyone finds a ghost with the ghost hunting kit, please let me know. It would make a good column.

I think.

GRACE HOUSHOLDER is a columnist and editorial writer for this newspaper. Contact her at

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