Can you believe McLean County has had a public library for 10 years?

Make sure to join us for our anniversary celebration on May 7 for a reception from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and then the fun begins at 4 p.m. on May 8.

We will have the following food trucks: Real Hacienda, Tri-R-Tips and Auntie Anne’s Pretzels. We will also have cotton candy by the Buck Creek Baptist Church Ladies. Each vendor will have prices posted.

Along with the food booths, we will have 10 vendor booths. It’s the perfect time to shop for Mother’s Day so be sure to come and check out all the goodies. There will also be a children’s Mother’s Day craft table set up.

The Remote Control Car race track will be set up and ready for anyone wanting to try their hand at 4:30 p.m. I’ve watched a couple of young boys practicing with our cars so you’d better be ready for some competition.

To end the night, Loose Wheel will be on stage at 6:30 p.m. to entertain us. Bring your lawn chair for a great afternoon and evening of celebration.

It seems like yesterday that we were planning our 5th Anniversary. It has been a great time for me. I started my career with the library in 2013 as the Summer Bookmobile driver. The first thing I learned was Betsy, our bookmobile, drives herself. You just hold her steady. She loves chicken trucks — kind of just gets sucked right to them — and when she’s tired and needs a Spa Day, it’s off to Millers Tire to see Wendell. The thing is, her Spa Day usually ends up a Spa Week. I never thought I’d drive a bookmobile and I sure wasn’t a fan of reading. But here it is, 8 years later and I love my job as Outreach Coordinator.

Just like everyone else, the last year has been nerve-racking, to say the least. I wanted to see and hear children laughing and yes, running in the library. I wanted to be with my middle school tweens and play laser tag or hide-n-seek. I wanted to spend the evening with the Ladies DIY and catch up and listen to a few say “I can’t do that.” I really missed playing Bingo with our Senior Adults and aggravating a few of them. I’ve missed our patrons, both young and old. I’m tired of not seeing my “little friends” and even my “big friends,” and so is the Director.

Congratulations to Aimee Newberry for her leadership and dedication in getting MCPL established, with some guidance from the Board of Trustees, and serving the citizens of McLean County for 10 years.

Under her supervision, the library has come a long way. With that being said, the library has provided $29,717,300 of free services to the citizens of McLean County in the last five years. The services included are programs, books, computer usage, electronic data bases, electronic books, “Make & Take” kits, story time, meeting room use, interlibrary loan books and 24,265 public service hours. I thank her tremendously for going along with my crazy program plans and also coming up with some crazy ones of her own. I look forward to planning many more with her. And yes, we have several new ones this month for you to try!

In honor of the last 10 years, let’s look back at some awesome numbers that have been recorded by MCPL.

McLean County has a few over 9,400 citizens. With that being said, 4,704 of those citizens are library card holders. That’s over half of the county. There are 2,506 adults and 2,198 children and teens with library cards. Every student in the McLean County Public School System has library cards and access to our electronic books as do all library card holders.

In the last 10 years, there have been 6,681 programs with 276,454 people attending. In those numbers, 1,764 children anf teens attended our Summer Reading program. Last summer, due to COVID-19, MCPL took Summer Reading to the porches of our patrons. We had 554 participate in our porch drop, the largest Summer Reading we have had. Be on the lookout for our Tails and Tales Summer Reading coming to a porch near you in June.

Every year, Director Newberry has to report information to Kentucky Department of Libraries. As we await the report of the past year (2019-2020) statistics from Frankfort, the following information is a small part that has been reported the last 10 years:

People entering the library and bookmobile: 290,726

Internet/Computer Use (includes use of WiFi): 69,016

Circulation in the library and on bookmobile: 225,089

The most recent stats show the following#1 Children’s Programming per capita (4th year)

Statewide Rankings

#3 Young Adult Programs (12-18 years)

#8 Total Program Attendance (65,649)

#10 Number of Young Adult Programs (266)

#11 Number of Children’s Attendance (29,645)

#21 Total Number of Programs (1,478)

#22 Number Children Programs (744)

The following events will take place this month at the library. Registration is required for most of the events in order to have enough supplies/materials for all.

May 8-10: Anniversary Celebration on Hill Street from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

May 10: Ladies Craft Kits pick up from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

May 11: Family Reading & Craft Night at 6 p.m. Registration is required.

May 18: Family Dinosaur Dig at 6 p.m. Registration is required.

May 20: Family Bingo Night at 6:30 p.m. Registration is required. Bring your own chairs.

May 25: Rock Painting at 2 p.m.

If you would like to register for any of the events, please call the library at 270-278-9184 or text us at 270-499-1699. We are open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday; Wednesdays from 8 a.m. to noon; and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

If you have any questions, please call the library and ask for Aimee Newberry or Angie Smith. We will be glad to help you in any way possible.

One last question for you. Do you have a library card? It’s easy to get your own. Go to our website, and click on the online catalog link. It will take you to our OPAC page and there on the left side you will find the link to register for a library card. Simply complete the information requested and we will have your physical card ready to pick up on your next visit.

Happy 10th anniversary, McLean County Public Library. Here’s to 10 more.

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