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Lansing Library’s IDEA Lab now open for video and audio creators

By Josh Bootsma

LANSING, Ill. (October 7, 2021) – This week marks the inauguration of the Lansing Public Library’s new IDEA Lab, a two-room space designed for audio and video recording and editing.

As part of the Library’s recent basement renovation, the IDEA Lab was created in response to requests for hardware and software that would make it easier for library patrons to create different types of media.

Equipped for creativity

IDEA stand for “Innovate, Discover, Experience, and Achieve!” The lab has two rooms, an audio room and a video room.

The audio room is designed for users to create audio content, compose or record music, attend virtual meetings, convert audio cassettes to digital files, and perform other audio-related tasks. The room is equipped with a Windows PC, a Blue Yeti microphone, a digital tape recorder, headsets, a webcam, and other equipment. Software in the room includes Audacity, Microsoft Office, and OBS Studio.

Lansing Library
An audio room is part of the Library’s new IDEA Lab, and has hardware and software for high-quality audio content. (Photo: Jennifer Yos)

The video room is for library patrons to record and edit video, create graphics, record voiceovers, create animations, transfer VHS tapes to digital files, and other video-oriented tasks. The room has an iMac computer, Blue Yeti microphone, headsets, a 4K video camera, a webcam, a DVD drive, a VHS converter, and other hardware. Software includes the Adobe Creative Suite, Final Cut Pro, iMovie, Garage Band, and other programs.

“Over the years we’ve had numerous requests for some of the Adobe Suite software,” said Library Head of Technology Kelli Staley. “A number of libraries across the country have added spaces like this and had great success with them, so with the renovation of the lower level, it finally gave us the opportunity to create the physical spaces that we would need for this.”

Opening for Lansing

The IDEA Lab’s first day was Monday, October 7. Currently the lab does not have a set schedule, though Staley said the rooms will be open four days a week. To reserve a room and check open hours, visit the library’s website. Reservations may be made up to a week in advance, and walk-in reservations will be accepted if the desired room is not already in use.

The IDEA Lab is open to Lansing cardholders in good standing, including kids in grades 6-12. Students not yet in sixth grade may use the rooms with an adult.

Staley said she hopes great things will be created at the Lansing Library’s IDEA Lab, referencing Grammy Award-winning Chance the Rapper, who recorded his first album at a media studio at the Harold Washington Library in Chicago.

“Maybe in a few years, we’ll have someone that famous that we can point to and say ‘they started here,'” Staley said. “We’d really like to see people take their creative vision and make them a reality using these spaces.”

The Lansing Public Library is located at 2750 Indiana Avenue, Lansing, IL.


Josh Bootsma
Josh Bootsma
Josh is Managing Editor at The Lansing Journal and believes in the power and purpose of community news. He covers any local topics—from village government to theatre, from business openings to migratory birds.