Poll: More Americans Chose Library Visits over Trips to the Movies in 2019

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More Americans chose to visit their local library rather than take a trip to the movies in 2019, according to a Gallup poll published Friday.

Going to the library is still the most common cultural activity Americans partake in, the recent survey found.

The article continued:

The average 10.5 trips to the library U.S. adults report taking in 2019 exceeds their participation in eight other common leisure activities. Americans attend live music or theatrical events and visit national or historic parks roughly four times a year on average and visit museums and gambling casinos 2.5 times annually. Trips to amusement or theme parks (1.5) and zoos (.9) are the least common activities among this list.

These data — collected in a Dec. 2-15, 2019 Gallup poll — are an update from a December 2001 survey. Though the overall rankings at the beginning of the millennium remain the same today, a small decrease has occurred in reported trips to the movie theater (down 1.3 average visits).

However, in September the Pew Research Center found that “Roughly a quarter of U.S. adults (27%) say they haven’t read a book in whole or in part in the past year, whether in print, electronic or audio form.”

Adults with a high school diploma or less were more likely than those with a college degree to say they had not read a book in the 12 months leading up to the survey.

“In general, Americans in high-income households report doing activities the most, while Americans in low-income households participate the least,” the Gallup article said. “Conversely, the library — which is free and offers a variety of services including WiFi — is visited most by adults in low-income households and least by adults in high-income households.”

Despite a person’s age or income level, spending time with a book at the library can help improve a variety of things such as vocabulary, critical thinking skills, and writing skills according to the Young Readers Foundation.

“Reading has a tremendous effect in fueling all aspects of our personality and enhancing our linguistic prowess. In fact, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that the entirety of human life depends on it,” the site concluded.

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