September’s school bells have tolled students back to school, although it still feels like summer. We opened the bids for our library renovation and redesign project August 23 and are currently at work reviewing the numbers and selecting the contractors needed to begin work in October. Our recommendations for approval will be on the September 14 Shaker Heights Board of Education’s agenda since the School Board has final authority over the remaining bond funds from the 2004 school and library bond issue.
Construction could begin as early as October 4 with the addition of new, larger Computer Center and Training Lab facilities on the second floor, as well as new self-service equipment on the first floor. If all goes as planned, work will be completed by March 2011.
Meanwhile, we hope that you will “Pardon our dust” and the dust of our neighbors who are building the Library Court Apartments on property purchased from the City of Shaker Heights just south of the Main Library parking lot. Excavation of the site is well underway for this development. The Community Building and the Main Library will temporarily lose a combined 18 parking spaces while construction is underway. When the complex is finished, we will regain parking spaces and welcome new library customers!
The dust has not slowed our stalwart Friends of the Shaker Library who, once again, has generously supported library services and operations at record levels. At its August meeting, the Friends approved $42,850 in grants to the library, including a special contribution toward a new service desk for the Children’s Department.
If you are not yet a member of the Friends and would like to learn more about the group, members will be at both libraries to “Meet and Greet” you. They will be at Bertram Woods Branch from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays, September 7 and 14 and from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday, September 25 at the Main Library. Stop in and meet some friendly folks. To accommodate our renovation schedule, the Friends will hold it’s a bit early this year. The “Friends Preview sale will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday, October 7 at the Main Library and the regular public sale will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, October 8 and Saturday, October 9. The popular Bag Sale will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, October 10. Come and find some bargains!
The Daughters of the American Revolution will join us for our annual Constitution Read Aloud at 7 p.m. Thursday, September 16 at the Main Library. Poetry Back in the Woods begins another season of verse at 7 p.m. Thursday, September 21 at Woods Branch when “Take Nine,” a group of nine poets, including Gail Bellamy, Kathleen Cerveny, Katie Daley, Rita Grabowski, Meredith Holmes, Bonnie Jacobson, Darlene Montonaro, Linda Goodman Robiner, and Cindy Washabaugh, will perform their poetry.
Teens and their parents will enjoy “Genealogy for Teens” at 7 p.m. Thursday, September 21 at the Main Library when they can learn how to trace their ancestry. In September, we will host two author visits. Tricia Springstubb will speak about her book, What Happened on Fox Street, September 22 and Mano Singham will discuss his book, God vs. Darwin: The War Between Evolution and Creationism in the Classroom, on September 29 at Woods Branch.
Both libraries will delay opening until 2 p.m. on Friday, September 24 for staff professional day. Unfortunately, the economy continues to influence our operations forcing us to close both libraries for another furlough day on Thursday, September 9 and to delay opening on Sundays until October 3.