This library shares space with the Moose Lake Community and Civic Center, and it's larger than I thought from the outside. Right inside the door is one of those comfortable "living room" configurations I like to see, with a large window, a lot of plants, and a couple of computers. A nice welcome, right from the start. There was also a cheerful welcome from the staff working this morning. In larger libraries, I often wander around on my own and then approach staff to say hello; usually in these smaller spaces I'm quickly spotted as a newcomer, and greeted. I'm happy either way!
Just beyond the living room is a second large window and the children's area. Priority for the computer there is given to patrons 16 and under. There is a wide, wooden window sill, with a message: "Please do not allow children to walk or run on the window sill." It would be tempting! The corner has a triangular set of three carpeted steps that provide seating for children's programs. A large poster painted on brown paper has a scarecrow and pumpkins; somebody here is artistic! There are book and audio sets and lots of VHS tapes as well as DVDs. A very nice touch in this area: three framed drawings created by author and illustrator Nancy Carlson during a visit some years ago. [Works by local artists and historic photographs are found throughout.]
Beyond the children's section I realized that the space extends back much farther than you can see in the picture below. A reference section is followed by shelves for oversized books, a section for exercise videos (nice to give them their own spot), two computers for word processing (without Internet access), and a special reader for those with low vision (provided by the Lions). Paperback fiction is shelved on spinners. A sign invites patrons to "read a classic" from the Library of American Classics. The walls are lined with nonfiction books, with fiction stacks in the center. In the 900's, I spotted a five-volume History of Minnesota, published in 1935.
The staff, as I mentioned, is very welcoming. One of the women is also great at selling, witnessed by the fact that I left with a large book about classic toys from their sale shelf!
To learn more, go to http://www.moose-lake.lib.mn.us/.