BY IAN OOSTINDIE
Friends of the Sylvan Lake Library (FOSLL) will commit $10,000 to support young people’s program areas within the new expansion of Sylvan Lake Municipal Library.
President Peter Mielke reported he has been looking for ways that FOSLL can support the use of the new space soon to be completed. According to a recently announced public tender by the town, the reconstruction will expand the library into the former archives space.
The Archives moved to the new town administration building by Lions Park last fall.
“We just heard from our acting librarian, Jeri Wolf, that they need assistance in supporting the juvenile and youth spaces. FOSLL made a commitment to raise the last few dollars, to donate up to $10,000 in support of new furnishings, so that young people can use the new space,” said Mielke. “The library can support more books, computers and other digital media, if we can help by making it comfortable and functional so youth will come to the library and want to return. We want to promote literacy by creating a supportive environment that has more tables, chairs, and other furnishings for youth to work comfortably.”
Debbie Oostindie and John Lincoln promoted the motion to allocate funds at the Jan. 18 meeting. Oostindie said, “We need to complete fundraising by having a successful show on March 2nd featuring the Doll Sisters’ Celtic music show at Sylvan Lake Legion. More than half the $25 ticket price is planned to go directly FOSLL will donate $10,000 towards youth areas in library’s expansion to this project.”
Gail Hergenhein reported, “over $700 was raised in the Christmas raffle won by Marg Metcalf. This new money helped us commit up to $10,000 now.”
Treasurer John Lincoln, said, “the last two years of fundraising has built on the legacy of other volunteers who did years of fundraising. We raised over $1,000 in each of the last two annual book sales, plus two Christmas raffles as well.”
“In this day and age of Internet, we hear people wondering if libraries are still used, added committee member Ian Oostindie. “Even when we were heading to our meeting Saturday, two youth were waiting at the door to get in before opening.”
Youth are big users of the library. Youth meet to research, find a quiet place outside their own home, to study for exams; or, access books their family doesn’t have. It is one of the free spaces for youth to meet in our town.
“Even when we moved to town, we depended on the library’s internet services until we were established,” said Oostindie. “I often check out their music collection. Libraries are a place that anyone can access the information age.”
Membership to FOSLL is free. For information or tickets to the Doll Sisters Show Mar. 2nd at 2 p.m., visit the library or call Debbie at 403-887-0968.