Wednesday, May 12, 2021
Hailey Public Library Looks Ahead to an Artsy Summer
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Saturday, April 10, 2021
 

STORY AND PHOTO BY KAREN BOSSICK

The little green shoots popping through the last little piles of snow aren’t the only thing offering a sign of life and color around the Wood River Valley.

The Hailey Public Library is looking forward to a summer of art and color as it celebrates National Library Week this week.

“As we rebound from COVID, our two new children’s librarians are re-imagining the children’s library and expanding programing options on the west patio, helped by a very generous $25,000 grant from the Wood River Women’s Foundation, which the library matched with another $25,000,” said Library Director Lyn Drewien.

The library is working with the City of Hailey, artist Poo Wright-Pulliam and students from the Wood River High School Advanced Placement art class to paint a woodsy mural on utility units next to the patio, said Drewien.

The library is also partnering with Hailey artist Melissa Graves Brown to paint a Tree of Life inside by the back door.

“In addition, in June we’re launching the valley-wide Summer Reading program in partnership with all Wood River Valley libraries,” said Drewien. “This program helps prevent what’s called ‘summer slide’ which is a decline in reading ability that can occur over the summer months when school isn’t in session.”

Sara Baldwin, who is involved with Friends of the Hailey Public Library, said that those who have not been to a local library lately would be pleasantly surprised at the energetic community-minded places they’ve become.

There’s still a quiet nook to connect with a favorite novel or magazine. But when pandemic protocols are lifted, they will also be full of chatter as children listen to read-aloud stories and take part in hands-on activities and games and adults trade local heritage seeds or listen to a lecture about the history of the Wood River Valley.

“More than 200 hundred years after Benjamin Franklin introduced the first lending library, libraries remain enduring and cherished community resources,” Baldwin said

Today's libraries provide numerous services and functions, she added.  For example, they provide many children with their first exposure to books, teach parents how to safely navigate the Internet with their children, connect homebound seniors with books and periodicals of interest at no cost, provide small business owners with information on how to turn a profit, connect adults through shared interests in lifelong learning and provide students young and old with the skills they need to find, use, and evaluate information. 

Libraries have embraced the latest technological advances while maintaining the traditional programs and services that have made them one of America's most durable and revered institutions. With access to the Internet, online databases and computer training courses, the library is at the forefront of the information age.

“The library is the rare institution that offers opportunity for people of all ages and all backgrounds. As our world has changed, libraries have adapted,” said Baldwin. “And, if you are inspired to make sure that libraries remain an indelible part of the American dream, contact your local librarian or the local Friends of the Library organization to see how you can help.   There are infinite ways you can be a part of continuing the legacy of community libraries.” 

 

 

 

 

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