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Class visits at Central Library

* If you would like to visit a city branch or town library located across Erie County, contact them directly.

A visit to Central Library in downtown Buffalo, NY is a great way to extend classroom learning and expose your students to the wide range of books, media and technology available through the library. Visits can be customized to meet the needs of your specific group.

All public spaces are accessible for persons using mobility aids or wheelchairs however, the building is large, covering two city blocks. Let us know if anyone on the tour will require special accommodation.

  • Tour requests must be received at least 2 weeks in advance
  • Dates and times available are subject to staffing.
  • Allow (3) business days for a response to your request.
  • Request Visit
  • By phone: (716)858-8900

The basic tour includes a walk-through and description of book and media collections, Launch Pad makerspace, and exhibits. The tour may also include time to browse in the Kids’ Space. Basic visits last 45 minutes but please plan for time needed for arrival and departure from buses, lunch or other optional activities. Bus drop-off is typically at the Ellicott Street entrance (which has an escalator to the Main Floor). Please note there is no extended parking option at the library for buses. Visitors who are walking or arriving from the Metro Rail may enter at the Washington Street entrance.

Grades PK- 6: Optional Activities

  • Read-aloud stories
  • Theme-based activity
  • Library Cards*

Grades 7-12: Optional Activities

  • Guided tour of current gallery exhibit
  • Guided tour/activities at the Launch Pad makerspace
  • Gallery exhibit-related programs
  • Library cards *

*Library Cards for School and Group Visits

Follow the steps below to ensure library cards will be completed and ready to distribute at for your visit.

  1. Download and print applications
    Call (716) 858-8900 to have forms mailed to you.
  2. Distribute forms to your students.
  3. Collect and check completed forms
    1. Parent/guardian signature for all students 16 and younger.
    2. Clarify any text that may be difficult to read.
    3. Initial each completed library card application under the parent/legal guardian signature, verifying the information for each student.  
  4. Return completed forms to the library including a note with the date/time of your visit, school information and your contact information at least (10) business days before your visit.  

Note: For students 16 and younger, library cards received at a class visit are for book borrowing privileges ONLY, unless the boxes to obtain Internet and /or DVD borrowing privileges are checked.


Parent/Legal Guardian can also apply for a library card online for their child.

Youth Cards (Erie County residents, 16 and under)
A youth card allows you to check out books, music, and videos.  You can also borrow eBooks and Audiobooks, download music, use library computers, and get homework help using online encyclopedia and magazine articles.
Print a Library Card Application.  Available in multiple languages.
Apply online  Parent/Legal Guardian permission required.
Once processed a library card is mailed to the youth’s residence.

Student Digital Cards (Erie County residents, K-12 schools)
A Student Digital Card allows you to borrow eBooks and Audiobooks, download music, and get homework help using online encyclopedia and magazine articles.
Apply online
Once processed a library card number is emailed for digital access and a physical card is mailed to the student residence.