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|Reopening of Harbour Island's Sir George W.K. Roberts Library is Held|
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|Posted by:||Jan 28th 2004, 12:23:47 pm|
|chapel||Congratulations on all of the hard work done by you and your committee ... such great news!|
|Posted by:||Jan 28th 2004, 12:20:23 pm|
|Don||The Sir George W. K. Roberts Memorial Library was officially reopened on Friday, January 23, 2004 as promised. A huge tent under the Banyan trees lined with little white lights was set up, beautiful palms in planters, and a ribbon stretched between the gracious columns was ready and in place for the occasion.
And what an occasion it was. Between 150-200 persons spilling out into the library grounds came together to celebrate and see the reopening of their library that had been in disuse for 35 to 40 years. In spite of the very cool evening it was given a warm reception. Mr. Glenroy Ahrana, moderator, introduced the youth band and the program began. The band's touching rendition of "One Moment in Time" set the tone of the evening.
Mr. Cephas Cooper, Administrator, Mr. Alvin Smith, and Dr. Gail Saunders preceded our main speaker, Ms. Patricia Collins, Deputy Minister of Education, representing Mr. Alfred Sears, Minister of Education who at the last minute was unable to attend. Honored guests included: Ms. Willamae Johnson, Director of the College of the Bahamas Library System; Mrs. Dorcas Bowler, Senior Education Officer of the Ministry of Education; Mrs. Susan Roberts, daughter-in law of the late Sir George Roberts; Mrs. Clare Sands, granddaughter of Sir George Roberts; and Mr. And Mrs. Monty Roberts, granddaughter of Sir George Robert and her husband and Sir George Roberts great grandson.
Dr. Gail Saunders, Chief Archivist, presented the library a collection of Bahamian history books she has authored and spoke graciously to the people. The Ministry of Education sent copies of his book club selections for January to add to our shelves. The boys and girls from the All Age School read excerpts from the History of Harbor Island's Library compiled at the onset of the Restoration Project. Three skits depicting "Appreciating a Library" were given by members of the schools drama group. So effective and in their own words! The ribbon was very fittingly cut by Tamika Roberts, honor student, and Mrs. Susan Roberts. The crowd entered the library amid orchids, ribbons, and colorful displays throughout both the North and South wings. It was elbow to elbow with people eager to see the transformation.
Over fifteen hundred new and almost new books have been catalogued, processed with spine labels, back pockets, and check out cards- shelved- and are ready to be taken out or read in house. The new Reference Room has 6 new sets of encyclopedias, atlas', dictionaries and houses the Bahamian Collection. Saturday, January 24, was "Membership Day" and 188 membership cards were purchased. Over 70 cups of tea were served in the arbor. It was truly a wonderful two days.
What's ahead? We are training a volunteer staff of community librarians, librarian aides, homework and computer mentors. This is our greatest challenge. February will see the start of our programs beginning with a 3 or 4 part History Series. The first of these will be "Tell Us Your Stories" which will be taped and available for everyone's benefit - the beginning of an oral history collection. An adult book discussion/club will meet on February 7. The first selection is The Secret Life of Bees by Susan Monk Kidd. The Second Book Festival is planned for late March.
The community has much to be proud of and much to be thankful for as well. A library is now in place. Children can come and find a quiet, peaceful place to complete their homework and studies. Books are available that are clean and full of enjoyment. All this accomplished in just 14 months. Just think of what awaits. The book collection will continue to grow and the programs possible are limited only by the imagination. It is a great time for the community.
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