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New library attracting record number of enthused patrons


TOWNSEND — The new library is attracting families in ever increasing numbers. With crafts activities, story times and many other activities, there is plenty to do.

Trustee Suzanne Doust said attendance at the library was twice what it was in the old location at the same time last year. Circulation also has doubled.

While she expects things to calm down once people have become acquainted with the new facility, the library continues to draw people in.

“I love it here,” resident Kim Young said. “I use the library all the time. It was definitely a gift to get a new library.”

The combination library, senior center and meeting hall was donated to the town by Sterilite. It opened in October.

“We didn’t do much in the old building because it was crowded and old,” said Kathy Bakke, another library patron. She enjoys seeing both adults and children using what is available.

The women were reading while their children attended the story time and craft program led by a children’s librarian Molly Benenvides, known as Miss Molly to the children.

The library is sparking new and extremely spacious and comfortable. While the craft program went on in an airy room with closed doors to limit sound, other children used books, computers and play areas in the children’s library.

The adult section of the library is separate from the children’s room, so patrons can peruse books in peace while the occasionally more raucous children also enjoy their library time.

It is not only the new facility drawing users to the library. Parents are using the Internet to optimize their experiences.

“Now that you can go online, oh it’s wonderful.” Bakke said. The system sends reminders to patrons when they have signed up for an activity. She appreciates the feature when keeping track of her family’s busy schedule.

“All the rules can be found online, on the first page,” Young said. Children under 10 must be accompanied by an adult.

The library is close to the middle school and students can walk over at the end of the day. Older children have a place to put their coats and bags. There is a special teen area for older students.

The children at the library for the evening program sat at child-sized tables to color and make a glitter ornament. During story time there was plenty of them to sit in a circle around Miss Molly to see the pictures in the book.

After gathering around the tree in the children’s library for a photograph, some played with toys at a special table.

The mothers and children left smiling, holding books and ornaments.