Pettee Library Trustees pleased with summer programs


WILMINGTON -- With well-attended summer reading programs at the Pettee Memorial Library, the trustees noted their pleasure.

"We have the summer programs started," said library trustee treasurer Louis Clark. "They have been very popular."

The trustees met on Tuesday, July 8, where it was stated 170 children and 32 adults attended earlier summer events hosted by the library.

The library's 2014 summer reading program will go from June 23 to July 30. All events are open to the public.

Every Monday, weather permitting, the library hosts "StoryWalks" at Molly Stark State Park on Route 9 at 10:30 a.m. A nature-themed book is read then discussed.

Special story hours are scheduled for Thursdays in July.

Starting at 6 p.m. on Wednesdays at Molly Stark State Park, there will be family events. On July 23, author and animal tracker Lynn Levine will be a special guest. Owls will be discussed on July 30 with representatives from the Southern Vermont Natural History Museum

Other family events scheduled throughout the summer include "The Race to Save the World" presented by Summer Encore Theater at Memorial Hall on July 25 at 1 p.m.; "Blueberry StoryWalk" on July 28 at 10:30 a.m. at Molly Stark State Park; and the Blueberry Block Party with Otha Day and Drum to the Beat on the library lawn.

For adults, the Breakfast Book Club is held Thursday mornings from 8 to 9:30 a.m. Books will be selected by the group.

"The summer reading program has been around for several years," Clark said. "But for the last two years, we sort of began pushing it more. It's really expanded and grown considerably."

There also is a focus on getting more teenagers into the library and involved with its programs.

"A lot of them don't have anything to do in the summer so we're trying to provide an outlet for them," said Clark.

With the roof replacement project that was completed last fall, there will not be much on the table as far as other repairs for the time being. According to Clark, that project put a dent into the library's capital budget.

At the end of August, trustees will begin an impact survey. Essentially, Clark says, the Department of Libraries survey will assist with strategic planning for the next few years. It will be disseminated online.

"Really, it's a survey of our clientele and what services they'd like to have the library put on," he said. "They'll give us feedback on what they feel our library needs and where the future of the libraries are going."

The survey also will shape how trustees make plans in the fall.

Soon, the library will be providing services through a "Welcome Baby" program. Books and information about the library are given to a family after a baby is born. It is a service that will be available to anyone in the library's service area, such as Wilmington, Searsburg and Marlboro. Clark hopes the program will be implemented in August.

"We are constantly discussing programming. At the moment, we're really at the limit of our resources. We don't have the staff to expand them anymore," Clark said. "I think our resources are stretched to the limit with the programs."

With the success of the summer programming, he says, the library has seen an increase in attendance.

"Normally, we expect a fairly substantial increase of activity in the summer with visitors and what not," added Clark. "But I would say it's increased fairly steadily over the last few years."

Chris Mays can be reached at 802-254-2311, ext. 273, or Follow Chris on Twitter @CMaysReformer.


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