Monday, May 25, 2015

339 LaGrange County Public Library, LaGrange, Indiana

This is the main LaGrange County library. It was market day and six or eight wagons were in the street in front of the library. I'll bet the whole block is packed once crops start coming in. I walked past the horses tied in a "wagon parking" area. They seemed calm and friendly, but I just looked and said hello to each one; didn't want to push my luck.

This is another Carnegie library with a newer addition. To enter, I walked along the side of the original building. Just before the door I saw the Adirondack chairs shown in the third picture below. I was surprised when I saw the picture later. In the picture I think they look quite small, but in fact they are so tall, I think my feet would reach the footrest, not the ground. And I'm tall.

Entering the Carnegie lobby I saw extensive materials building excitement for a Superhero-themed summer reading program. There are periodicals and newspapers by the windows, and some of the media collection. The rest of the media is up a half level.

Teens have an area with a "diner booth" and some interesting green rockers, plus books, audio books, and graphic novels. Six computers are nearby.

I went up another level to Adult Services. Here I found a "living room" seating area with a free-standing brick fireplace, chairs, and a couch, with windows nearby. There are a couple of study rooms available. The new part of the building has touches, like brick details, that refer to the design of the Carnegie building. 

Five study tables, one with a chess setup, march down the middle of the non-fiction area. Five computers (three out of order) line the wall.  The fiction area has more casual seating, set off by a couple of area rugs. There are round tables with chairs; one table had a deck of cards waiting for a game to begin. Then I found still another casual seating area, this one with a sign I like: "We can hear you now! Please turn off your cell phone while you are in the library." It was illustrated with a picture of the guy in the "We can hear you now" commercial. (Not a very effective commercial, as I have no idea which company he represents.)

The children's area is to the left of the lobby. The first thing I spotted here was a very unusual reading table. Look at the last picture below;  it's a bit hard to see, but there is a flat square top with four sloping sides and a slight lip at the bottom  to hold a book in place. Can't you just see this table surrounded by youngsters looking at nice big picture books? I'm glad there were no kids at the table when I visited, because I can't/don't take pictures with people in them.

There are tubs of toys on various themes along one wall. I think they circulate, but I'm not sure. Several of these sets, including the one labeled "Vet," are in pet carriers; others are in plain plastic tubs. And of course there are many books. I noticed that the kids also have five computers, like the adults, but all of the kids' computers seem to be in working order.

Not a first, but quite unusual, is the Tween Hideout Station for the upper elementary kids. It's a little space, holding just a single tall, round table and two matching stools, but it's so nice to give these "in-between" kids their own space.

Finally: One good thing about my library visiting hobby is that every library has a restroom, and in my experience they are always clean. But this is the first place I have seen a restroom with a baby-changing area as a built in feature (as opposed to a Koala fold-down plastic tray) AND a sink immediately adjacent. Nice touch!

For more about this library, go to www.lagrange.lib.in.us or visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/lagrangelibraryindiana?fref=ts.

5/23/2015, car


Buggy Parking Area with the library in the background

A closer look at the Carnegie building

It's an optical illusion...the chairs are actually taller than normal, though they look small here.

Best table yet for looking at picture books;
not so much for puzzles or games!

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