COLUMN: Flattened Squirrel Fricassee, and other fun facts

Donald Trump was in the Nelson Public Library on April 1 on his book tour for Make America Great (by Annexing Canada).

Did you catch Donald Trump's reading at the Nelson Public Library on April 1?

Donald Trump was in the Nelson Public Library on April 1 on his book tour for Make America Great (by Annexing Canada). It coincided with our in-house promotion for Findings: Great Roadkill Recipes of the Kootenays (a companion to our previous cookbooks, Seasonings and Pairings).

Parents could sign up for a workshop entitled Doing the Hokey Pokey: Is That Really What It’s All About? And our e-newsletter announced the really big news: a $4.4 million purpose-built library on the waterfront designed by celebrated architect Theodor Geisel, known for the award-winning Whoville development.

It was all in good fun, although at least one person called to ask us about that typo in the start date for the new library, which was April 1, 2061. If anyone was offended by our hijinks, rest assured that our chief librarian, who was not at work Friday, April 1, knew nothing about it.

We have a good time at the library. That doesn’t make us less professional, however: we do our best to provide efficient, friendly service. We’re always open to feedback, and you haven’t let us down. Here are a few comments from the past year:

“I feel like since I’ve discovered the Nelson Public Library a world has opened up. I’m reading my favourite authors. I love it! I love the staff.”

“It has been very pleasant receiving free books at the Nelson Food Cupboard book bin.”

“I love the library in winter, when I have time to read more and study, in the spring when I need garden books and how-to, in the summer novels on the beach and the boat, and in fall, when the evenings are long and it’s cozy inside.”

“I currently live in Balfour, and am no longer eligible for free membership at the library. As an older woman living on a fixed income, it would be difficult for me to meet the membership fees for non-residents. So I am very grateful for the subsidy program that allows me to use Nelson’s wonderful library. It makes a big difference in my quality of life.”

And, regarding our outreach program to Mountain Lakes and Lakeview Village: “Excellent service and selection. I find out about things from this service and appreciate its availability.”

It’s not all goodness and light, of course. You’ve told us when things get louder than they should be, and it’s true that your enthusiastic librarians can sometimes be the perpetrators. To be fair, libraries are not the cathedrals of silence they once were, but we will try to keep it down. We get great comments about the free computer access and Wi-Fi service no card necessary! and some disgruntlement about the strength of the wireless signal. It’s getting better.

Check out our annual report, available in the library and on our website at nelsonlibrary.ca, for more of your comments, an overview of the year past, and our key statistics, among them:

11,404 cardholders

480 daily visits and 740 items checked out daily, on average

260 programs for adults, teens, and kids with 4,416 attendees

36,000 visits to our website

15,066 eBook and eAudiobook downloads

5,600 online database visits

No foolin’! Your library is a going concern, on site and online.

If you think that a Geisel-designed, purpose-built waterfront library is a good idea, let your city officials know. If you think Donald Trump should stay stateside, let the federal government know. If you think of anything we’re doing right or could do better, let us know. And if you think you want to try making the Flattened Squirrel Fricassee with Hot Sauce maybe try one of the awesome Nelson chef’s recipes in Pairings instead.

Anne DeGrace is the adult services coordinator at the Nelson Public Library. Check This Out runs every other week. For more information go to nelsonlibrary.ca.

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