Greenwood Public Library’s nonbook programs are resulting in an increase in books being read by school age students, according to library director Cheryl Dobbs. “We are all about reading,” Dobbs said recently at the annual “Booked for the Evening” event.
“We believe that reading is life-changing no matter how old you are.” Greenwood Public Library, 310 S. Meridian St., has seen a 22 percent increase in books that are checked out at the library, particularly by young readers. Dobbs firmly believes that many new activities at the library are leading to more patrons, young and old.
“Many believe we are something from the past, and there are good memories here,” Dobbs said. “People are coming to the library for lots of reasons, and along the way, they discover that the library is not what they remembered.”
The Studio, opened in March on the second floor, is a creative space with supplies and equipment that can be used on-site for do-it-yourself craft projects such as sewing, painting or origami, entrepreneurs can create marketing proposals, and students can work on videos, podcasts or creative school projects.
In 2020, The Studio will feature a 3-D printer that was unveiled to guests at “Booked for the Evening” that enables students and adults to program and build a 3-D project. The children’s library has an extensive toys and games that can be checked out leaving your shoes with the attendant. Main Street GPL is for children, 8 years and under, who can dress up in theatre costumes, play market, bank, kitchen and storefront and train and LEGO tables.
Storytime is popular among children and parents with some who have never been in a library before. Social workers are utilizing first-floor space for children’s therapy, too. STEAM kits also are available for teens as well as interactive walls in Teen HQ. Teens can create their own journals. On the second floor, adult patrons can check out a bundle of games, books, and DVDs by various subjects.
The annual Greenwood Reads project is popular with teens and adults. And a once-a-month history roundtable has discussions about a certain historical topic. Dobbs said that teen reading has increased 48 percent an children’s reading is up 22 percent, mostly due to the library’s programs and hands-on activities.
Greenwood schools Supt. Kent DeKoninck was the featured speaker during “Booked for the Evening.”
DeKoninck revealed that he was not a child of a family that read. In high school, his English teacher taught Shakespeare in a way that he could understand it – and a door was opened. He is finally back to reading for pleasure again. He sees the value of reading and of libraries daily throughout Greenwood public school’s The community’s leading educator emphasized that the library is the place where:
*Child-parent bonding takes place.
*Young people can learn by reading or taking part in activities in a safe place.
*Adults can come and dream about the possibilities of life.
DeKoninck concluded, “This (library) is one more component of the village that makes Greenwood a great place to live and enjoy life.” Before DeKoninck’s remarks, GPL honored the Sertoma Club of Greenwood, PNC Bank, Duke Energy, Johnson County Community Foundation and the Fisher family for their contributions. GPL has been at its current location since opening in 1963 and undergone constant expansion and remodeling.
GPL is open Monday through Thursday 9 a.m.to 8 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The popular community-wide holiday Greenwood Aglow will be Saturday, Nov. 23, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Info: www.greenwoodlibrary.us.