Anton Habovštiak Orava Library

About the Library
  • a contributory organisation founded by the Zilina Self-Governing Region;
  • a regional cultural, informational and educational institution providing services for citizens of all ages;
  • methodical, advisory and consulting centre for public and school libraries in the districts of Dolny Kubin, Namestovo and Tvrdosin;
  • since the 1-st of November 2008 the legal representative of the library is history graduate Peter Huba, Director of the library;
  • provides free access to information, buys universal library collections, which (today) contains more than 98 000 documents ( 43 % of which consists of educational literature for adults, 37 % consists of fiction for adults, 6 % consists of educational literature for children , and 14 % consists of fiction for children), the basis of the collections is formed by hard-back and paper-back book publications, periodicals (magazines and newspapers of a local, regional and national nature), and special documents (photos, cartographic documents, musical documents, slides, records, audio cassette tapes, video cassette tapes, CDs and DVDs, CD-ROMs and other audiovisual documents. The majority of the documents in the collections are in Slovak and the minority is in Czech, English, German, Polish, Russian, French, and other languages;
  • the library’s collection database is accessible to users in the form of an on-line catalogue at the library’s website ( or internally from the library’s individual departments;
Opening hours

September – June
Monday from 08:00 until 16:00
Tuesday from 08:00 until 18:00
Wednesday from 10:00 until 18:00
Thursday from 08:00 until 18:00
Friday from 08:00 until 18:00
Saturday from 08:30 until 12:30

July – August
Monday from 08:00 until 16:00
Tuesday from 08:00 until 16:00
Wednesday from 10:00 until 18:00
Thursday from 08:00 until 16:00
Friday from 08:00 until 16:00
Saturday CLOSED

Time line
1951initial activity of the district public library with 1,817 books
1955the library obtained two individual rooms in Dom osvety (Cultural-Edu¬cational Centre) and the methodical pamphlet for the public libraries’ staff entitled “Librarian” started to be published
1976 a new section of regional literature and bibliography started to offer its services;
1981the library moved into its own building
1985a music department was initiated, records and audio-tapes started to be purchased for the library’s collections
1990the district library was directly managed by the Ministry of Culture SR, it received a second building, inside of which a library branch was established
1994the library’s activities gradually started to become automated, a PC network started to be built; the library-information system “Libris” for the processing of books was introduced
1995the “Biblis” system for processing of articles of a regional nature was introduced
1996the district library was re-named under the Orava Library, it was no longer a legal entity and became a organizational unit of the Orava Regional Centre
1997all departments started to use the automated loan system, so the fully automated operation of the library could start. The library branch was terminated and the second building was sold out
1999the library became a legal entity once again
2000the first public internet station was launched
2002the Zilina Self-Governing Region as a founder
2004reconstruction of the building and re-naming under the name Anton Habovštiak Orava Library
2006on-line catalogue on the library web page available for members
2007development of cross-border contacts with Miejska Biblioteka Publiczna in Limanowa (Poland)
2010development of cross-border contacts with Regionalní knihovna in Karviná (Czech Republic)
2012the library-information system “Clavius” was introduced
2014insulating of the main building and completion of the barrier-free three-storey addition
Library-information services

Conditions for registration and using services

  • a member of the Library can be any physical or legal person who has filled out the application form, submitted ID and paid the annual membership fee according to the current price list; children and young people up to 15 years of age can become members having received approval from their legal representative;
  • a library card is non-transferable to another person and the cardholder must immediately announce the loss of his or her card or any changes to address and other details;
  • any member is allowed to borrow up to 15 items from the library at any one time and child readers up to 10; books can be borrowed for a duration of 30 days, periodicals 7 days and documents from special collections 14 days;
  • users are responsible for borrowed documents and must return them intact by the defined due date; any damage or loss of such documents is subject to penalty fees pursuant to the valid Library and Lending Rules;
  • the borrowing period for documents can be renewed in person, on-line via the user’s account, over the phone or via email if the document is not requested by another user;

 Basic free-of-charge services

  • presence and absence loan services of documents from the library’s collections, which consists of more than 98 000 library items
  • information services – provision of facto-graphic and bibliographic information, advice and consulting when searching and selecting literature;
  • public internet stations – internet available for wide public;
  • home delivery for disabled, handicapped and chronically ill users and for clients in pensioner homes and social services facilities;

Special paid services

  • reservation of documents which are already on loan for others who are interested;
  • interlibrary lending service – lending of books, ordering of photocopies of articles from periodicals from other libraries;
  • retrieval services – processing of thematic lists of literature from the library’s electronic database and external information sources;
  • reprographicservices – copying portions of documents from the library’s collection for study purposes;
  • possibility to scan pictures and documents, to work in text and table editors, to print own documents;

On-line services at

  • searching of documents on the on-line catalogue according to title, author or key words expressing content of a document;
  • searching in the on-line catalogue of the bibliographic database of regional materials and the database of medallions for the deceased personalities of Orava;
  • browsing the user accounts of users, reserving documents located in the on-line catalogue, the ability to renew books borrowed from the library;
  • electronic provision of information and references services;
  • the ability to send electronic requests for the inter-library lending service and to complete research;

Information from electronic databases

  • entry into the electronic database InfoTrac;
  • National Geographic – electronic version of the magazine in English for issues published 1888 – 1988;
  • database of legal information – JASPI and EPRIS;
Library departments and their activities

Fiction department, reading room

  • responsible for the central records of readers and payment of annual registration fees;
  • facilitates access for adult and youth users over the age of 14 to the collection of classical and contemporary poetry and prose in both original and translated forms;
  • the collection includes literature in Slovak, Czech, English, German, French and Russian;
  • presence and absence loan services of books and periodicals, literature reservations, consulting and bibliographical-information services;

Non-fiction department

  • facilitates access for adult and youth users over the age of 14 to a collection of literature from all scientific disciplines, biographies, books on the arts, architecture and handicrafts, textbooks and lectures, collections of laws and legislation, encyclopaedias, dictionaries, maps, atlases, tourist guides, non-fiction, literature on the instruction of foreign languages, specialised and popular and scientific magazines, music and recorded music;
  • facilitates access to fiction and specialised literature for children and adults in Polish within the Polish Library section;
  • presence and absence loan services of books and periodicals, literature reservations, consulting services with respect to locating and selecting literature, bibliographical-information and research services, inter-library lending service, in-house listening to sound recordings on CD, gramophone records and magnetic tapes, reading of periodicals, Internet access, scanning, copying and printing documents;
  • provides users with access to the internal on-line catalogue of the library’s collection, access to electronic databases, conducts user training for work with the on-line catalogue and for using electronic services;

Children’s literature department

  • facilitates access for children and youth users up to the age of 14 to works of fiction including board books, fairy tales, poetry, novels, short stories, travel books, adventure and fantasy literature, off-reading list literature for primary school pupils and secondary school students, popular and science literature from different scientific disciplines;
  • presence and absence loan services of books, periodicals and audiovisual documents, literature reservations, consulting and bibliographical-information services, free-of-charge public Internet access;
  • provides users with access to the internal on-line catalogue of the library’s collection, conducts user training for work with the on-line catalogue and for using electronic services
  • conducts cultural and educational events for children and youth;

Section of bibliographies and regional literature

  • collects and provides access to a collection of monographs, tourist guides, local history publications of the towns and cities in the Orava region, biographical dictionaries, bibliographies, anthologies, diploma, bachelor and seminar works on regional topics, maps, postcards, posters, invitations and other small printed materials, audio documents, corporate literature, regional, urban, municipal and school periodicals;
  • conducts print media monitoring, processes and facilitates access to a regional database of articles and a database of regional personalities, provides information from regional card indexes and an archive of clippings, processes and publishes bibliographic materials with regional themes;
  • presence and absence loan services of books and periodicals, consulting, research and bibliographical-information services;
Cultural-educational events

Every year Anton Habovstiak Orava Library organizes more than 600 cultural-educational events for citizens of all ages. It arranges informative education and excursions for pupils and students, thematic events, writer-reader meetings, readers and fine arts workshops and competitions, hours of impressive reading, presentations of new books, literary evenings and poetry events dedicated to the anniversaries of esteemed regional personalities, school magazine competitions, “Book of Orava” contest, meeting of Literary Club “Fountain” and Fantasy Club “Unicornus”.

 The most interesting activities

  • Hviezdoslavov Kubin – the library is a long-term co-organizer of the national competition for recital artistic performance. Writer-reader meetings in schools and literary evenings are also organized within the event;
  • Hviezdoslavov klubin – the national meetings of the literary clubs’ members;
  • Slovak Libraries Week – the national event focused on positive publicity and the promotion of libraries as cultural and educational institutions, its promoter is the Slovak Association of Libraries. The library (within this event) prepares a wide range of various activities. SAKACIK, is the prize awarding to libraries for a motivated activity, which Anton Habovstiak Orava Library received 2007;
  • The Best School Magazine – a regional competition of school magazines for the primary schools in the Orava region, which has been awarded since 2004;
  • Friend of the Library – an award given to individuals for voluntary cooperation and generosity;
  • A Night with Andersen – an international event which motives children to read via attractive forms of reading during an overnight stay in the library;
  • Book of Orava – a readers’ poll concerning the most interesting issued book publication with a regional theme;
  • The Library’s Jack-of-all-trades – a regional literary knowledge competition for 5-th year primary school pupils;
  • Reading with the forget-me-not – a regional literary and knowledge competition for first and second-level primary school pupils;

Club’s activities

Fontána (Fountain) – a literary club, which has operated at the library since 1999. Its members participate in literary competitions and live readings; their works are also presented in periodicals, club’s work collections, authors’ readings, and during literary evenings. Several collections of works from their literary creation, in 2007 and in 2010 together with works by the Literary Club’s members in Limanowa were published.

Parent-readers club for those on maternity leave with their children – dedicated to the youngest readers. The Club members meet in the Maternity Centre called “Píšťalka” (Whistle) in Dolný Kubín. Once a month a worker of the library comes to the Maternity Centre and they read, learn nursery rhymes, talk about books, etc.

Fantasy Club “Unicornus” – has operated at the library since 2007; in cooperation with the library it implements projects dedicated to fantasy literature and its authors. During the summer holidays the club organizes a night-time meeting in the library entitled “Night of the Black Unicorn”.

Editorial activity
  • publishing of personal and thematic bibliographies, recommended bibliography “New Books from the Library Collections”, calendars, occasional and memorial prints and publications about regional personalities, events and the library’s activities;
  • publishing books in cooperation with the authors and publishers;
  • since 2009 Priateľ knižnice (Friend of Library) has been issued, a magazine, which besides providing information regarding the activity of the library, details the calendar of significant anniversaries of outstanding personalities from the Orava Region via data about their life and work. It also introduces current personalities from the field of culture, new books from the region and their authors, introduces a selection from the works by members of the Literary Club “Fountain”, as well as literary texts by other authors;
Project activity

Because of it’s project activity the library successfully obtains extra-budgetary funds to purchase literature, materials, technical equipment, and cultural and edu­cational activities. Since 2001 the projects from the Ministry of Culture SR, “Hodina def om” Foundation, International Visegrad Fund, Orange Account, a grant scheme of the Zilina Self-governing Region have been supported. In 2007 from the European funds within INTERREG III A PR – SR 2004 – 2006, Community Initiative Programme, the Fund for Micro-Projects, the project named ‘Joint Slovak-Polish Library Year’ was supported. The project was realized with the partner cooperation of Miejska Biblioteka Publiczna in Limanowa. The project’s activities – joint exhibitions of documents of a regional nature and material on tourism, performances by locals (Peter Huba, historian, writer and publisher introduced himself in Limanowa, and Zbygniew Sulkowski publicist, in Dolny Kubin), A Night with Andersen with the participation of both-Slovak and Polish children, competition of school magazines from Slovak and Polish primary schools, meeting of literary figures from both municipalities and publishing of a joint collection of works, a tour by the librarians of Anton Habovstiak Orava Library in the libraries in Limanowa, Wieliczka and Cracow, seminars concentrating on issues of regional literature and bibliography, work with child readers and improvement of interiors of children departments and community life in Dolny Kubin and Limanowa.

In 2010 cross-border cooperation with the Limanowa library greatly increased, the Orava Library became the organizer of the project entitled “A Book is a bridge to mutual understanding” and the library in Limanowa the organizer of the Cross-border Cultural Dialogue project. Both projects were supported by the European Union, funded by the European Fund of Regional Development within the Cross-Border Programme Poland – Slovak Republic 2007-2013. Activities of the Orava Library project were the publishing of bilingual fairy-tale book written by regional female authors, writer Blazena Miksikova and illustrator Edita Kubickova entitled “Rozpravkove sarkany – Bajkowe latawce ( Fairy-tale kites)” – ceremonial presentations of the book, writer-reader meetings, fine-art workshops inspired by the issued publication in the libraries in Dolny Kubin, Limanowa and the Public Library in Ruzomberok, educational visits in municipalities and libraries of Limanowa and Zakopane, meetings of the Polish Club’s members and supporters, funds for new publications and films on DVD in Polish, as well as translations of classical and modern Polish literature, linguistic literature, publications on the history of and present day Poland, publications dealing with knowledge regarding the integration processes in both countries were added to the library collections, publishing of Slovak translations of essays, memories and reflections of Christmas by the Limanowa local and publicist, Jerzy Bogacz. The project was finalized in February 2011 at the international conference which evaluates the development and results of the cross-border cooperation between Slovak and Polish cultural institutions.

The year 2010 was the year of establishing the cooperation with Regionalni knihovna (Regional Library) in Karvina , which became a partner during the implementation of the project entitled “Allow us to present some historical traditions”, supported by the European Union, funded by the by the European Fund of Regional Development within the Cross-Border Programme Slovak Republic – Czech Republic 2007-2013 and from the Fund for Micro-Projects administrated by the Trencin Self-governing Region. The activities of the project include exhibitions of regional documents entitled “Let’s get to know each other”, readers and fine-art workshops focusing on regional legends, a publication of an audio book of legends, an educational stay for Slovak and Czech children in Dolny Kubin, an educational visit to Karvina, exhibitions of children’s illustrations, an on-line literary quiz, the issue of a publication on the project’s activities and an international conference focusing on supporting children and young people to read.

We’ve also delivered other projects implemented in cooperation with partnering libraries in a similar spirit. The “Mutual Connection – Past and Present” and “Mutual Cultural Inspirations – Traditional and Innovative” projects were realised within the Cross-Border Programme Poland – Slovak Republic 2007-2013 as well as the “Expeditions for Mutual Cultural Knowledge” and “Culture Connects Us” projects were implemented within the Cross-Border Programme Slovak Republic – Czech Republic 2007-2013.

Both the Polish and Czech partners, the libraries in Limanowa and Karvina have confirmed that they interested and willing to participate in future joint projects.


Peter Huba, director
phone number: +421 43 586 3368