There are a million reasons you don’t have a library card. You love splurging at the Tattered Cover. You’re addicted to Netflix. You download audio books at Audible. You’re not even sure where your local library branch is, or if they’ll have what you’re looking for.

First, get yourself a library card or, as I like to call it, the Magic Free-Books-and-Movies-Card. You can do it online here or by visiting the local branch of your library, which you can find here.

Now that you’ve got one, here are five ways to put it to good use:

1. Free music

Take a break from your iTunes addiction–anyone else notice that the songs subtly rose 30 cents per single?–and search the library’s catalog for the artist of your choosing. The selection is so extensive you might even find yourself exploring a new genre (use the helpful staff reviews as a guide). Check out the selection here.

2. Free movies

My boyfriend and I have purged our Blockbuster and Netflix addictions thanks to the library’s movie selection. We’ve caught up on past seasons of Mad Men, watched favorite seasons of Lost for a second time, and stayed up-to-date with new-release rentals like Cadillac Records and the first season of Flight of the Conchords. Sometimes you have to place a hold on the movie and wait a week, but the price makes it worthwhile. View the offerings here.

3. Free eBooks

Need something to read on your iPod during your morning train commute? You can download eBooks here. Additionally, there is a new feature in which you can specify your own lending period.

4. Free eFlicks

Since iTunes began offering movie “rentals,” more and more of my friends have been watching movies on their laptops. Now you can have that same service for free with the library’s eFlicks. View the movies here.

5. Free audio eBooks

Summer is the season for road trips, and road trips sometimes need more than your kickin’ iPod playlists. When the Nebraska landscape stretches out blurrily in front of your eyes, download a compelling story to keep your attention in place. I’ve used many of these books on my longer in-state commutes. Check out the selection here.

Bonus: In case you prefer to purchase books but can’t afford the hardback prices, check out the library’s 2009 Used Book Sale at 14th Avenue and Broadway on Friday, June 12 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday, June 13th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and Sunday, June 14 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.