Village Library Grand Opening March 16
Massanutten Regional Library will officially celebrate its grand opening of Village Library on Saturday, March 16, 11am-1 pm.
The celebration will feature speeches, snacks, stories, crafts, and more at 175 North Main Street, Broadway. Radio station WBTX will broadcast live from the Village Library location the day of the Grand Opening.
Dale Kipps, a founding member of the Village Library and a past president of the Friends Organization, will give a brief history of the Village facility. Serving the community of Broadway since 1975, Village Library was originally located in the old Broadway School Building. The Friends Organization turned over the community library to the Massanutten Regional Library system in 2000. Since it has been the goal of the Village Library Friends Organization to expand the library facilities for some time, the club donated $50,000 for the new Village facility last fall.
“We have needed more space, for every time we had an event, we were crammed for space. We plan to be involved with the move and with more events and programming not only for the library, but for the community,” states current Village Library Friends President Karen Morris.
The new library has more than doubled its former square footage of 1600 square feet. The Town Manager of Broadway approached MRL to see if there was interest in moving and expanding the Village Library. The Broadway Town Council bought the old hardware store on Main Street and now the old library on Central Street houses the Broadway Police Department.
Local government officials and dignitaries will also be on hand at the grand opening event, and the Broadway/Timberville Chamber of Commerce will celebrate the occasion with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Village Library, which serves the entire northern portion of Rockingham County, is the third busiest branch out of Massanutten Regional Library’s seven locations. Since 1990, the area population has grown 82 percent. Village Library’s circulation of borrowed items has increased 41 percent over the last 10 years.
In the past year Village held 126 programs attended by 2,434 people. 698 area children participated in this branch’s Summer Reading Games. Village Library patrons logged 6,199 hours of free computer use and the staff answered 3,497 reference questions.
Renovation to the old hardware store was completed in January and the library moved its resources the first weekend in February with lots of help from the library staff, volunteers, and citizens of the Broadway community.
“We have been having a fantastic response to our new location,” states Barbara Andes, Branch Manager for Village Library. “We frequently have heard exclamations of ‘Wow’ and ‘I never could have imagined how nice this would look.’”
According to Andes, patrons are particularly pleased with the spaciousness and brightness of the library. “It has been really rewarding to see patrons using and enjoying all the new seating areas and children not wanting to leave the children’s area because they are having such a good time!”
The complete project has cost Massanutten Regional Library $300,000. Although the library is finished, some $100,000 still needs to be raised for the building project, according to Kim Haines, Development Director for Massanutten Regional Library.
Donations can be made the day of the grand opening or mailed to Kim Haines at Massanutten Regional Library, 174 S. Main Street, Harrisonburg, VA 22801, or to Village Library, 175 N. Main Street, Broadway, VA 22815.