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Girls Rock to start leasing free instruments this weekend.

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Drop that Guitar Hero game.

Girls Rock! camp wants to make sure you have access to the real thing. They're launching a new instrument lending program this weekend at the main branch of the Richmond Public Library.

Local musician Patty Conway (The Ar-Kaics) says that she got the idea after last years Girls Rock camp, when parents kept asking how they could keep their daughters playing.

"A lot of parents expressed concerns about the financial difficulty or impossibility of paying for an instrument or for lessons," Conway says. "We decided to make our instruments available freely and year-round through the library, instead of keeping them cooped up in a storage space."

She hopes that the Free Richmond Instrument Lending Library (FRILL) will remove barriers to playing instruments for kids in Richmond, while promoting a do-it-yourself approach to music with zines and library books on instrument instruction.

"I'm a totally self-taught drummer, and I get to travel all around performing and put out records without ever having paid for a lesson," says Conway. "There's no reason any kid or teenager in Richmond can't do the same one day, especially because they can go pick up a guitar or keyboard for free at the library to try it out. For Girls Rock, playing is about self-expression and not about technical mastery."

For more info on how to check out instruments, read their press release below.

FROM PRESS RELEASE:

The Free Richmond Instrument Lending Library (FRILL) is launching this Saturday at the Main Branch of the Richmond Public Library – 101 East Franklin Street – from noon-3pm.

Richmond youth ages 8-18 can check out instruments from the Girls Rock! collection for free – guitars, basses, keyboards, drumkits, and amplifiers – plus pick up instructional materials, learn how to set up the instrument at home, and check out the library’s holdings of sheet music and music instruction materials. You can have each item for a two-week period, with the option to renew for an additional two weeks. Instrument returns must take place during FRILL hours of operation, every other Saturday from noon-3pm at Richmond Public Library’s Main Branch.

What you need to bring: A Richmond Public Library card, and a parent or guardian if you are under 18, to sign the FRILL release form. Consider how you will transport items home, as some of them are big and heavy!

Our supplies are limited and will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. We hope to see you there early! Check out the flyer below to learn about the awesome People’s Library event happening at the same time as our FRILL launch – we are having a shared reception at 3 pm!

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