Letter to the editor: Amy Levine

Rockland Public Library is about community

Posted:  Tuesday, February 19, 2019 - 5:30pm

“A library in the middle of a community is a cross between an emergency exit, a life-raft and a festival. They are cathedrals of the mind; hospitals of the soul; theme parks of the imagination. On a cold rainy island, they are the only sheltered public spaces where you are not a consumer, but a citizen instead.” —Caitlin Moran

What an amazing evening! On behalf of the Rockland Public Library, I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to all those who contributed to the success of this year’s—the sixth annual--Love your Library; your Library loves you Open House/Valentine to the Community.”

First of all, though this yearly offering is a Library event, there is no way staff could create this hugely popular celebration of community, without the tireless, cheerful, and dependable energy of the past & present members of the Friends of Rockland Public Library’s Board and many of their spouses and/or other family members; they continue to inspire and amaze. Without them, the Open House never have been able happen, let alone recur each year.  Happily, they also have a great time working on and at this wonderful event.

The following individuals, organizations, and businesses made generous donations of scrumptious food, gifts, money, time, or expertise; some gave all of these:  Rebecca Albright, Jessica Blanchard, Café Miranda, Janet Corcoran, Carney Doucette, Katie Drago, Dorothy Elwin, Nancy Eugley, Friends of Rockland Public Library,  Ed Glaser, Jeanie Gover, Linda  Gundel, Hannaford, Lisa Ignaszak & Dan Wilson, Niki Janczura, Patty King, Julie Kinney, Barbara Klapprodt, Brent Lawyer,  Carol Maines, Jeanne Marshall, Carlotta Miller, Sean Murphy, Jennifer Newman, Ann Rafferty, Jane Ryan, Rockland Public Services Department, Jeanie & Jim Schaden,  Deborah Sealey, Shaws,  Marjorie Strauss, Katie Syrett, Marilyn & Brian Trask, Walmart, and Gerald, Henry,  & Jimmy Weinand.  The entertainers for the evening, Bill Barnes & Doug Kennedy, added so much ambience and delight to all, as did Susan Beebe, who led crafts in the Children’s Room.

It wouldn’t be a party, without the attendees, so thank you to all those who came; we’re grateful you braved the not-very-pleasant weather.  We’ll be posting photos from the event on the Library’s Facebook page, so please check there for some highlights.

This annual event started as a way to thank those we serve; we also hoped to bring back those who hadn’t been in the Library for a while.  We also love every chance we have to let people know that while we’ll always be about books—whatever the format—libraries today offer so much more.  As a reminder, we also lend a telescope, ukuleles, djembe drums, fitness kits, DVDs, binoculars, a pass to Maine State Parks, energy-usage monitors, and more. We have a wide variety of programs for kids, adults, and multi-generational audiences, and we offer them every week. Baby Time, Rockin’ Storytime, basic Storytime, music, talks, discussions, crafts for adults, crafts for kids, STEM programs, a book group, Tech Tools, films, to name just a few.

More than anything, though, Rockland Public Library is about Community.  We’re here for everyone, and the Open House is a time when, and place where, folks who may not interact in their day-to-day lives join together in celebration-- of each other, of our Library, and of our Community.  It’s such a joy to be a part of this.


In gratitude,

Amy Levine is the Rockland Public Library Director