Last night my library opened a branch that had been closed for 16 months for renovation. The space doubled from 12,000 to 24,000 and has lots of new materials, computers, study rooms, and all sorts of other things. The reopening celebration was attended by over 1,000 people. (Not bad for a Monday night event) Many people have worked very hard and devoted a ton of effort into getting this facility built. The staff of the branch had to work all over the county while their home was being rebuilt. They did a great job of being flexible with their working locations, hours and assignments. I am very impressed with them. They deserve this new facility.
For the past few months things at HQ have been focused on last night’s event. All of administration worked very hard on getting everything just right and they succeeded. If they didn’t no one noticed. Everyone over here contributed something. Whether it was stuffing 5,500 invitations, getting the collection ready or making sure the place was wired properly. Just about everyone had a hand in getting the library ready to open. The amount of time spent on this opening event is staggering to me. I don’t know how much money was spent or time put in but if we decided to tackle all of our projects with that kind of focus there’s no doubt we can do great things.
I really hope we can devote that kind of attention to some of the things we will need to do over the next few years to make our Library system a 21st Century Library. I’m hopeful but not every project is as public. We’ve got a lot of work to do and a long way to go to become a truly great library system. From what I’ve seen over the past few months, if we can get everyone on board and working toward a shared goal there isn’t much we can’t do.