Tips for Celebrating Depository Anniversaries

Your depository library provides an important and valuable service to the American public. Whether it's been one year or one hundred, every milestone is a celebration. It's also the perfect time to highlight your library's Government collection, services, and resources.

Planning Your Celebration

Start Early!
Clearly define objectives for your anniversary celebration. Draft an action plan, complete with a budget and timeline. Include responsibilities for each aspect of the anniversary celebration.
Mark the Calendar
Plan your events around times when the maximum number of participants can attend. Try to avoid national holidays, major city or town events, et cetera. If you’re located on an academic campus, stay away from summer or winter breaks.
Notify the Media
Plan your events with an eye to media coverage. Concentrate on local media outlets to which your anniversary is the most newsworthy. When writing a press release, keep it short and succinct. Call local and regional newspapers and magazines, targeting the section of the publication most likely to be receptive to your story. Don’t forget to inform local radio stations about events associated with the library’s anniversary.
Reach Out
Share your celebration plans and ideas with the community. Ask for feedback or new ideas to help your community feel involved and invested.
Contact other depositories and share ideas!
Keep It Fun
Plan your events to include contests or games. Some examples are:
  • A contest for students/patrons to design an anniversary logo or poster
  • A drawing that patrons can enter each time they visit the depository
  • A scavenger hunt (Find a Government book or document about…)
  • A coloring contest for young patrons using images like the FDLP eagle or Ben’s Guide graphics
  • An essay contest about patrons’ favorite Government documents
  • A contest to guess the number of Government documents in the library

Promote Your Event Early and Often


Posters and Flyers
Create promotional materials for your library. Hang signs, posters, and flyers wherever they'll draw the most attention, including the entrance, notice boards, around your town or campus, et cetera.
On Your Web Site
Promote the events on your homepage. Download high resolution versions of the FDLP eagle.
Certificates and Plaques
GPO offers certificates and plaques to commemorate your milestone. Anniversary certificates will be provided upon request for any year. Plaques are sent in 25-year increments.
Social Media
Utilize the social media and networking resources around you to build up interest in the events.
Offer and promote library tours. Focus the tour around your library's history and its anniversary. Involve other areas of the library outside of the depository.
Develop a logo that is exclusive to the anniversary celebration for promotional materials and your library's Web site. Incorporate the FDLP eagle.
Create unique and engaging displays in and around the library that feature Government documents resources. Reference how long your library has been serving its patrons and your library's upcoming anniversary. Link those references to the vast number of resources and services available to patrons. Feature your displays on the library's Web site.
Utilize the screen savers or LCD screens in the library to share information about events or fun facts about your depository.
Your Community
If your library is associated with a larger institution, coordinate to see how they can get involved in promoting the milestone. Businesses or local government might want to help too—reach out!

Ideas and Suggestions

Think Big
Have a reception, symposium, opening, or any other event that will make your anniversary newsworthy. Invite local and regional dignitaries. Let the media know who will be attending. Don't forget to invite journalists to your event. If you would like a representative from GPO to attend, simply fill out our Request for GPO Participation form in advance.
Cast a Wide Net
Organize special guests and lecturers to speak on a variety of topics of particular interest to your local community. Ask the speakers to include information on how free access to Government documents impacts their topic.
Appeal to Your Audience
If you're a public library, plan your event to be appropriate for all ages and promote it as a family event. If you're an academic library, try to get faculty and staff involved. Also try to get as much of the library staff involved with any contests, story times, games, et cetera.

Event Tools

Take advantage of the following resources for your anniversary celebration:

After Your Celebration

Share Your Event
Take pictures! Share your ideas, experience, and photos on our community site.
Share Your Ideas
Be a guest contributor and write about your event and/or experience for our newsletter. Volunteer to present your experience through a Webinar.
Document Everything
Save your documentation. When the next milestone comes along, your successors will be thankful.
Update Your Web Site
Create a feature page on your library's Web site. Include fun photographs, articles, testimonials from participants, et cetera.

News & Events

November 25, 2015
This webcast is Part 17 of the GPO Library Technical Services Webcast and Webinar Series. A webcast, "New Additions: The Catalog of... Read More ...
November 23, 2015
The U.S. Government Publishing Office has received numerous inquiries about where to find information about the 2015 Biennial Survey... Read More ...
November 23, 2015
The List of Classes is now available for download in PDF format.  This edition incorporates all data changes through October 15, 2015; it... Read More ...
November 19, 2015
Check out the free, educational webinars this December from the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO). These sessions are presented... Read More ...
November 19, 2015
A live training webinar, "2015 List of Classes Update Project," will be presented on Wednesday, December 16, 2015. This webinar is part... Read More ...
View All

cover image for video

View video of the history of GPO's Federal Depository Library Program.


Get Connected to GPO

  • facebook
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • booktalks
  • pinterest