Monday, August 13, 2012

86. St. Paul, Rice Street Branch

I felt a real science/technology vibe here. Perhaps that is because, in a meeting room inside the main door, about 16 boys and girls, grades 3-6, were using wood and hand tools to create catapults. They were obviously having a great time. I wish I could have stayed around for the logical conclusion, when they would have sent something catapulting! A whiteboard in the entry listed, in addition to the carpentry, snack time, Tech Time, a Microsoft Excel class, and an e-reader clinic. Also, this is the branch I've read about that hosts "Collector's Corner"--bring in natural history finds and get help with identification. As soon as I find that skull I've had for many years, I'm going to take it in. Really.

The teen area is very attractive, with "stained glass" on the tall windows. Next to it, the kids' area has couches, soft chairs, kid-sized tables and chairs, and many books. There's a dollhouse with furniture and people.

The librarians told me that this building is about 10 years old. The previous building was very small and reportedly had a dirt floor in the basement. An interesting angle on patrons at this branch: it used to be a very popular spot for teens, until a new youth center opened next door. Now the users have shifted to an older group, those who possibily had found the large numbers of youth intimidating. I can understand that.

When I checked out, I saw that the workroom is right behind the service desk, with a large window wall. I like the idea of patrons being able to see what goes on behind the scenes. The clerk also mentioned that being able to watch the desk while working on backroom tasks allowed better coverage when staff is short-handed.

8/13/12, bus


1 comment:

  1. After you visit this branch, I recommend a visit to Dars Double Scoop, across the street. The pizza menu is intriguing, the ice cream prices are reasonable. I settled for a chocolate malt which was large, tasty, and even had crunchy bits of malt. Excellent!

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