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Woodridge Public Library Board Approves Master Plan

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Last month, the Woodridge Public Library’s Board of Trustees approved a master plan for updating the Woodridge Public Library's interior, the first major redesign since 1997, when the library expansion was completed. In March, the Library Board selected Product Architecture + Design of Chicago over several other firms to develop this plan. In an e-mail to patrons, Library Administrator Susan McNeil-Marshall wrote, “The plan incorporates ideas gathered from focus groups, public comments, and staff.”

The goal of this project is to increase and enhance public space. A library must remain relevant to the community it serves, and since 1997, technology, collections, and overall use of the building have changed. The plan will create more group-meeting spaces, more individual study areas, an improved teen area, and a more efficient computer area. The Children's Department will have more space and it will be more inviting to families, a key to successful early literacy.

The plans call for construction being phased in over more than one fiscal year. Initial phases will begin in the spring.

Ms. McNeil-Marshall also reported that the Woodridge Public Library (W.P.L.) summer reading programs had “ended with remarkable statistics-the Children's Department program, Fizz, Boom, Read, had 1,292 readers who earned prizes by reading for either minutes or books, reading 678,423 minutes. Once they completed their reading for coupons and prizes, they donated tokens, each worth a nickel, to the West Suburban Community Pantry. They donated 1,951 tokens, giving the Pantry $186.65. We also had 64 children sign up for the Wee Readers program and they earned prizes for completing levels of five activities, totaling 337 levels.”

The teen reading program had 149 participants and they read 677 books, while the adult program had 94 participants and they read 474 books. The winners of the teen photo contest, which had three themes, are: Tiffany Nguyen for Motion, Madi Bromfield for Play, and Rachel Mackenzie for Red, White, and Blue. Congratulations!

A special thanks to all our donors from the many companies and organizationswho [sic] contributed over $247,125.50 in coupons and prizes.

The children's department had numerous programs for the kids. They made robots out of recycled materials, did craft projects, and learned about fossils. The adults had a full house for a program on juicing and smoothies.

The Woodridge Junior Woman's Club is sponsoring a school-supply drive for the town’s poor schoolchildren. They will collect items until Monday, August 18, 2014.

Items the club members hope to acquire for the children include backpacks as well as other new school supplies (pencils, pens, paper, rulers, etc.). There is a collection box in the W.P.L. Lobby.

Ms. McNeil-Marshall the W.P.L. had acquired a device to help near-sighted readers that patrons can borrow for up to three weeks at a time. “We have recently purchased a portable electronic magnifier reader (Optelec) which can be checked out for a three-week period. This is to enable people with visual impairments to be able to read newspapers, letters, magazines, or look at photos. The device is small and light-weight and is ideal for use at home or on the go. We also have a full-size desktop Optelec available for home use. The larger viewing area makes it easy to read books and other large materials. If you are considering purchasing low-vision equipment, this is a perfect way to try before you buy. Contact the reference librarians if you have any questions or wish to reserve one of these magnifiers.”

As September is the American Library Association’s Library Card Sign-up Month, Ms. McNeil-Marshall announced a contest for those who sign-up for a new library card next month. “September is library card sign-up month, so if you don't already have a card, that will be a great time to get one! It's also a terrific back-to-school tool for the children. At the end of the month we will have a drawing for prizes for anyone who signed up for a new card!

Ms. McNeil-Marshall also announced the group Literacy DuPage will be training literacy tutors at the W.P.L. next month. “Finally, Literacy DuPage will be offering tutor training here at the Library during September, which is Literacy Awareness month. Can you help change someone's future? Call Literacy DuPage at 630-416-6699, or check out their website for more information.”

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