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Ela Area Public Library

The Ela Area Public Library opened its doors in 1972 in the basement of the St. Francis de Sales Church in Lake Zurich and was facilitated by the Lake Zurich Woman’s Club. The library has grown tremendously since then, expanding its resources and collections over the years and moving to its current location in 2002. Along with its extensive collection of books, fiction and nonfiction, the library provides a wealth of other resources to the community. In 2015, the library completed an innovative renovation project that created engaging, user-friendly and improved spaces, collaborative and quiet work areas and a new 21st century makerspace, Forge, equipped with innovative technologies, tools and enrichment opportunities for all. For the past three consecutive years, the library has been rated a 5-star library in Library Journal’s Index of Public Library Service. The prestigious rating is the nation’s highest honor and makes Ela Library the top-rated library in Lake County and the top-rated library among all mid-sized library systems in all of Illinois.

Visit the library Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday noon to 5 p.m. to discover new books to read, attend fun and educational community events, utilize research tools, get homework help or just spend some time reading in a quiet, peaceful environment. A conference room, a cozy reading area and two outdoor patios provide excellent work spaces for library guests. Forge, the library’s makerspace, features Mac computers, a 3D printer, design tools, writable surfaces, sewing and crafting machines and various electronics for users to connect, create and discover. Two media labs provide the community with state-of-the-art tools for recording music, scanning slides and negatives, creating photo slideshows and movies and working with video production. Additional library services include: passport processing, notary, telescope and fishing pole lending, homebound delivery and in-library use of laptops and iPads. Further resources are available even outside of regular library hours. The library’s digital collection allows those with an Ela library card to access eBooks, audiobooks, digital movies and TV, free music, a reference library, newspapers, magazines and more at any time, day or night, from the comfort of their own home.

Several programs are also in place for area kids and teens. Summer Library Clubs encourage children, teens and adults to continue their reading throughout summer by awarding prizes to those who log their reading time. The staff at the library is also an excellent resource for parents who would like help in determining their child’s reading level or finding new things for their children to read.

Area teens will find many databases and resources for homework help, along with test prep and college planning. The newly renovated teen area is equipped with Mac computers as well as a PlayStation, Wii and Xbox for teens who enjoy gaming. Students 12 and older who are interested in learning about the inner workings of the library and helping to improve it may work as a Teen Volunteer or become a part of the Teen Advisory Board.

The Ela Area Public Library is located at 275 Mohawk Trail. For more information, call the information desk at (847) 438-3433 or visit

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