Thursday, July 12, 2007

I am the Great and Powerful Oz

As I sit here listening to the sound of the electricians replacing our light fixtures (coincidence? You be the judge), I am overcome with a feeling of power and cosmic luck. So, just on the off-chance that I really am on a roll, I would like to officially reiterate why the community of Ketchikan needs a new library building:
1. We haven't had a library building since 1935. For the last 70+ years, the library has been squeezed into extra space in other organizations.
2. The library is not accessible to everyone in Ketchikan. There is no way for people with wheelchairs, walkers or baby strollers to get from one floor to another. (People with baby strollers wanting to get into the Children's library? What's up with that?). The aisles are too narrow for wheelchairs, and there is no way to get a wheelchair into the women's restroom on the main floor - and no way to get downstairs, so for all intents and purposes there is no accessible restroom for women.
3. The building space that the library currently rents ($50, 386 this year) was built before personal computers were invented. The beams are covered with network cables, electrical wires and telephone wires. There are extension cords everywhere. There are only two places in the upstairs library where people can plug in their laptops.
4. There is no more space for books, videos, CDs, magazines, or audio books. For every book we purchase, we must weed an existing title (in other words, a book added means a book removed).
5. The current Teen space is 96 square feet. Surely, if we are worried about providing safe, beneficial activities for the young adults in our community, we can do better than a space the size of my bathroom.
6. There is no space for community programs, meetings, or activities. There is no quiet place to read. There is no place for students to study. There is no place for people to use their laptops. There is no place for the people of Ketchikan to enjoy the library. 'Go in, grab it, get out' is a terrible motto for a library.
So hopefully I have the lucky touch this week, and this blog posting will result in ground being broken on a new library next week (Hi, Mr. Gates!). But if not, at least we've tried to spread the word. We are currently fundraising, so please call or email us to help.

1 comment:

Katie said...

Hi there! I have family that live in Ketchikan--I'm in Arkansas--so I'll be checking in often to see how things progress. Good luck with your fundraising...