Saturday, November 24, 2012

131. MORE, Amery, Wisconsin

The "we care about people" vibe starts as soon as you walk in the door, where a sign lets you know that a wheelchair and walker are available. Containers are provided for collecting box tops, bottle caps, and Campbell's labels, as well as food for a food shelf. The lobby is dominated by the Harvey and Marilyn Stower Coffee Corner--a comfortable living room with newspapers, periodicals, and vending machines close by. The Friends of the Library have a bulletin board that includes posted reports, and a shelf of books for sale. There's also a rack of greeting cards provided by a women's club, for sale to support the library.

Inside, painted silhouettes of children lead the way along the wall to the children'a area, which features (along with plenty of books of all types) a playhouse corner and a wooden train on a low table. There are several large areas for kids of different ages. A "bookworm" table made of five overlapping circles reminded me of the Very Hungry Caterpillar table in Elk River, MN.

There is a large meeting room off the lobby, and I saw at least two smaller meeting/study rooms inside. The adult area has three "living room" type areas, in addition to the space in the lobby. Two of them flank a two-sided fireplace.

Several chess boards were set up, ready for games. The Westerns section has a large number of old Zane Grey books, marked as gifts on the back of the title pages. That's something I don't see every day!

The library is attached to a large assisted living facility by a passageway; I was there early, right after opening, and did not see seniors around, but the whole space would welcome them. At the same time, I can't think that it would in any way put off younger adults or kids.

I spotted few public computers relative to other libraries I've visited. Perhaps I missed them?

The entire space feels very spacious and bright. I think this may be in part because the walls are decorated, not with framed objects, but with painted quotations, like, "No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.  Aesop." These are on the walls in the adult area, also. This large small-town library seems ready to meet the needs of the community.

11/24/2012   car


  1. I visited the old Amery Public Library several times back when I was dating an Amery native. I'm glad to hear they've built a new facility since, because the one I saw was packed to the gills with library material. They'd built makeshift shelves covering most of the windows (which did wonders for the lighting, of course) and had shelving carts permanently out on the floor just sagging with material there wasn't room for. I also remember that a good portion of the collection had bookplates inside noting exactly who had donated each item. Seemed like a nice touch at first, but boy I bet it made weeding a PR nightmare.

    1. McGhiever, you should go back for a visit if you can. Not a shelving cart in sight, lots of windows, lots of space.

      And boy, are you right about the weeding issues with donated books with bookplates!


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