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February 5, 2013

Alito and Tino Sosa Castañeda

"Alito" Alessandro Carlos and "Tino" Pablo Valentino Sosa Castañeda

Over 18,000 children ages 6-17 used their Indianapolis Public Library cards in December 2012 during the "COLTSTRONG, LIBRARYSTRONG" campaign designed to promote the benefits of a library card to access the free resources of the public library.

The campaign highlight was a contest for children to use their library cards and be automatically entered for a chance to win a private visit from Indianapolis Colts players Andrew Luck and Dwayne Allen hosted at an Indy Library branch of their choice. In a drawing of all eligible entrants, 6-year-old "Tino" Pablo Valentino Sosa Castañeda, a first grader at St. Joan of Arc School and son of Washington township residents Carlos Sosa and Patricia Castañeda, was selected for an upcoming visit at the College Avenue Branch that can include up to 20 of his friends and family.

Tino will be joined by 8-year-old brother "Alito" Alessandro Carlos Sosa Castañeda, a third grader at St. Joan of Arc, to celebrate not only their love of reading but also each of their upcoming February birthdays. The two are frequent users of the College Avenue Branch as well as the St. Joan of Arc school library, a part of The Indianapolis Public Library's Shared System of schools that have access to the Library's catalog.

"It seems not a day goes by that they're not in the Library overloading their backpacks with books," father Carlos said of his bibliophile sons. "We're so happy that the Library and Colts conceived of this contest that really excited our sons and so many other children."

As one of their first community endorsements since arriving in Indianapolis, Luck and Allen supported the "COLTSTRONG, LIBRARYSTRONG" library card campaign by appearing in month-long television and radio commercials to promote reading and the role the Library plays in lifelong learning. There were a total of 31,566 contest entries from 18,682 children. The average entry was 12 years old. Participation represented 22% of all children in the 6-17 age range with library cards. Also, 362 new cards were issued in December to children ages 6-17, compared to 254 new cards in December 2011.

"This campaign serves as a powerful example of just how effective partnerships can be when it comes to children and touting the importance of literacy," stated Chris Cairo, Director of Programming and Project Development at The Indianapolis Public Library. "We are extremely grateful to the Indianapolis Colts for embracing an issue that's important to us and the entire community."

"COLTSTRONG, LIBRARYSTRONG" was made possible through the generosity of The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation, which provided promotional support.

For more information on obtaining an Indy Library card or accessing services, visit