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A Farraginous Column

constructionThe word that would best describe this column is farraginous. It is great to read something that flows as smoothly as the brown waterfall of enticing sweetness that cascades from a chocolate fountain. I’d say this column will be more like a popcorn machine: mixed up, jumbled together, and randomly chaotic.

We have been talking about our remodeling project here at Lincoln Library for a long time. Covid-19 was detrimental to everybody and everything, including the process that had to be completed before we could actually begin bringing the development of our ideas to fruition. Phase 1 of our remodeling and expansion adventure has begun. Our goal is to have Phase 1 completed by the 30th of June.

Anytime you have a remodeling project going on, there is going to be a bit of mess and inconvenience. Some days it may be a challenge to be open, but as long as there is an active use of patience on both sides of the counter, we will do just fine! If you would rather avoid our quite noisy atmosphere, just call ahead with what you want and we’ll meet you at the door with your books!

In preparation for Phase 1, we have had to clean out every storage area we have and move most everything next door. Although things are a little less easy now, we are going to be watching a whole lot of wonderful take shape right before our eyes, and we are excited!

Tails and Tales Summer Reading ProgramNow just to take the challenge up a notch, we will be having our Summer Reading Program sign-up beginning June 14th, so there might be just a bit of overlap. We will be holding the sign-up at our annex to the north, the former Mason building. Our book sale, also in our annex, will be going on at the same time as the sign-up. If you are wanting to add to your personal library, this will be a most opportune time to do just that!

Our Summer Reading Program will actually begin on June 21st. Although programming will take place on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, there will always be a variety of other things to do. Early on in our program, on June 24th, Dan, Dan, the Magic Man will be in Medicine Lodge at the Christian Church at 10:00 AM.

When we start gearing up for the Summer Reading Program, I start seeking donations. This is the largest library sponsored program for the entire year and it takes quite a bit of extra everything. Last year we changed things up and it was a good time. This year we are keeping a lot of those changes, but, we are going bigger and better.

So just to simplify the process, we are generous with entry blanks that can be entered into the prize or prizes of your choice. It worked well last year. The people who put in the effort and spent hours and hours of reading during the program, playing the games, and visiting the library frequently, came out of our last programming pretty happy! We had lots of good prizes and readers worked hard for them. You say that is bribing people to read, maybe, but it certainly worked and it was a great time for all ages.

We appreciate donations of individual packaged snacks and drinks; the little bags of chips are a favorite. We’d love donations of craft supplies, prizes, and, of course, money is good!!

Speaking of donations, we have been blessed with a bunch of books and movies recently! (Thank you, Dollar General, Linda, Tom, and Jerry!) We had a patron who walked through the door with a bunch of drink pouches; we so appreciate them, Cathy.

Now, do you see why I described this column as farraginous? Farraginous is a word that runs around in the back of my brain that I like and will use in writing, but not in conversation. It is with all of the rest of the words that I know how to spell, know what they mean, but hate to speak them because of the fear of them coming out of my mouth sounding weird and wrong. Some synonyms of farraginous are mixture, motley, confused, mixed, random, jumbled, haphazard, mottled, and assorted. Farraginous just seems like a good word to sum up this column and the past week in general. Here’s to this week being more like a chocolate fountain and less like a popcorn machine!

Please Excuse Our Mess!

stuff moved to storage areaFirst off, I want to apologize to everyone who comes into the library for any reason. We have started the process of preparing for the contractors who will be completing Phase 1 of the expansion project. This means that there are a lot of books and objects that have been, and more that are going to be, shuffled to another area in the library.

Before this started getting real, as in only in my mind, the preparation seemed fairly simple and straight forward. Then when the actual process began and I realized just how much needed to be moved, I rolled my eyes at myself, and Malorie and I began.

Some shelves have been moved closer together. There is still room for the reader looking for a book, but one must watch how one bends over to look for books or they will displace a portion of books on the next shelf over. I know that to be a fact, from experience!

The books from the SCKLS rotation have been moved into the reading room. The majority of the Young Adult collection has been compressed to make room for the overflow on the back shelf. The free books found in the meeting room are now in the main room on the very last row of shelving.

The room that is the most disrupted at this point is the children’s room. We are clearing shelves in the main room for many of the children’s books. We are hoping to get most everything done during this cold snap so all of the books will be easily accessible once everyone is out and going and ready to restock!

We are extremely excited to get this project up and running because the end result will be so good for those who use the library! There is going to be a lot of work that takes place between now and then, and we will continue to do our best to put our patrons first in all of the chaos. We ask that you please have patience with us during this process, but never hesitate if you have any questions and need anything that we can help you with.

Oh, and if you see Malorie out and about, maybe comment on the size of her “guns” or ask her if she has been lifting weights. It would be great inspiration to keep her motivated through this physical stage of the project. Or cookies, cookies motivate all of us!!!

Expansion Project Phase 1 Progress

expansion project blueprintsLincoln Library purchased the Mason building, right next door to the north, in August of 2019. Our imagination took off as we discussed the many possibilities that could become reality with the addition of the building to our library. We talked and had meetings. We contacted an architect. Many hours were spent by committee members in fine-tuning the remodeling plans for the existing library and speculating on the most community friendly floor plans for the new acquisition.

I don’t have to tell you how decelerating and interrupting COVID-19 has been to everything and everybody. It definitely slowed down our plans. We continued to move forward, although at a much slower pace. As our plans were finalized, realism crept in, pulling a hefty price tag behind it. We decided to break down the project into several phases and concentrate on the first phase only.

We have thrown around a variety of funding ideas from the very beginning. As we watched our preliminary steps coming to fruition, we decided to apply for the Libraries Transform Grant through SCKLS (South Central Kansas Library System).

SCKLS serves public, school, academic, and special libraries in 12 counties since 1968, including Barber County. The organization not only provides expertise in a large variety of areas, they offer several different grants. The Libraries Transform Grant is a matching grant up to $25,000 to go towards a project and program of change for a community library.

Lincoln Library Board members moved forward with the application process and on Friday, December 4, 2020, we received notification and a $25,000.00 check through the mail.

We had smiling faces and grateful hearts as we spread the news of the grant. As much as those zeros make a difference to this project, even more so is the motivational affirmation that completing phase 1 is within reach.

SCKLS is where we turn when problems arise and advice is needed. We appreciate the staff members and their guidance in the areas we need direction. Receiving the Libraries Transform Grant is just one more reason to be thankful for the staff and for the organization.

Our next step will be advertising for bids. Everyone is welcome to stop by and check out the plans; we would love to show them to you!

Word of the Week: The word of the week is “perspicacious.” The word is an adjective and is pronounced pur·spuh·kei·shuhs (\ˌpərspəˈkāSHəs/) and means having acute mental vision or discernment. The perspicacious salesman earned a great living because he knew how to read his customers.

Moving Forward with Our Expansion Project

Mason building with library in backgroundYes, we are still moving forward with our expansion project. No, we are not running, jumping, and dancing along; our pace would probably be considered a meander, or a ramble, maybe even just a plod! The important thing is that we are still moving.

We have received our working plans and we would like to invite any community member who is interested in what will someday be a reality at Lincoln Library, to stop in and check them out. That invitation is also open to any contractors who might entertain the idea of bidding on the project. After we have checked the plans and rechecked the plans to make sure they are exactly what we want, we will be putting the job out for bids.

We may be moving slow, but we are still extremely excited. Come on in, we would love to share that excitement with you!

Word of the Week: The word of the week is “scrupulous.” It is an adjective and is pronounced /ˈskro͞opyələs/. The word means having moral integrity and acting in strict regard for what is considered right or proper, and being extremely attentive to details. It is important to be scrupulous when dealing with a client’s finances.