Thursday, August 10, 2006

Travels in the great south west!

Emily Sitz, Carolyn Guernsey and Charlene McGuire sped me around South West Kansas Library System (SWKLS) two weeks ago for a tour of libraries. Despite a temperature of over 100 degrees, the libraries we visited were cool and welcoming!

We began the tour with cinnamon rolls and coffee at the Fowler Public Library. Shirley Randall and her board president, Marilyn Dewell, gave us a tour and described the weeding project being undertaken.

Next was the very busy public library in Meade, directed by Linda Kobs. This is a library with a L2 attitude and has wireless internet and circulating laptop computers. Linda told about a very successful summer reading program for adults that had just recently been completed. I also had a chance to visit with board member Pastor Susan Greene, and Banny Orme, the Meade County Governor's appointee to the SWKLS board.

Kismet was next on the tour, and Dave Reed showed us around the library and the good collection of accelerated readers that they stock to supplement the school library. Pictured with Dave and me is Louise Wyrick, board chair.

At Sublette, Jamie (and their library cat!) gave us a look at the library that had formerly been a church. She led us to the basement in which there was a treasure of movie memorabilia that had been donated to the library. Although not documented, the collection included the actual vestments worn by Father Mulcahy in the movie M*A*S*H, and a slip worn by Marilyn Monroe in the Seven Year Itch.

At Montezuma, Sarah showed off the wonderful children's mural painted by a former librarian, and talked to us about her collection. Sarah is a young librarian with a great attitude and good ideas.

Next was a visit to the Lane County Library in Deighton. This library is the only one I have ever visited that was actually located in a county courthouse! Ruby Martin does a great job of serving her customers. Her library may be getting one of the 15 enhanced video meeting room grants. In the picture, Ruby and I are looking at one of the displays at her library.

Last but not least was the Ness City Library. Jean Schagel showed us around and described the services provided. I love the decorating that Jean has done; for example, on the shelves above the section of medical books was an old doctor's bag!

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