Apple has now moved into the library business. The historic Carnegie Library in Mount Vernon Square reopened Saturday with a brand-new Apple store for the D.C. area.
The tech giant's CEO, Tim Cook, hugged fans and took selfies with visitors in a surprise appearance. Crowds queued up early Saturday outside the building, which according to the company, is its most extensive historic restoration project to date.
"It's like being in the front row of a roller coaster," said one of the visitors.
Apple announced earlier this month that the new Apple Carnegie Library, which opened alongside the new DC History Center from the Historical Society of Washington, D.C., will be its flagship store in the District. The space will feature workshops and a new event space in the heart of Washington.
The relaunch will begin with a six week "StoryMaker Festival" featuring 40 Washingtonian creatives starting May 18 with a kickoff weekend festival, where D.C. rapper Goldlink will perform.
The festival will wrap with a block party on June 29 hosted by artists No Kings Collective.
Reopening after a two year renovation, the Carnegie Library is one of Washington's historical buildings, dating back to 1903 when tycoon Andrew Carnegie funded construction of the building as part of a larger nationwide move to build public libraries.
Built in the Beaux-Arts style, the Carnegie Library was the District's first public library, though the central D.C. Public Library moved to the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library in Chinatown in 1970 before it also closed for renovation two years ago.