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Joint Use Library Now Open

The Mayor cuts the ribbon

By the Editor, 2012-10-19
Until very recently the Ponderosa neighborhood of Anaheim had no ready access to a library. That was, until a scheme was launched to open up the school library at Ponderosa Elementary School to the public. It would mean carefully planned handover of the staffing of the library at the end of each school day from school to city staff, and shared security.

Furthermore it would cost the City only about $800,000 to prepare the facility for joint use.

Terry Lowe explains the project.

City staff and school District staff worked seamlessly together to make this beautiful library a reality; never once loosing focus about the importance of this amenity, not only to the children of this school, but to everyone else in their family and throughout this community.

Although available to the students since the school opened, this facility opened its doors to the neighborhood on Saturday, July 21.

By the time of the official opening on September 27th, in just 192 hours of operation, the library welcomed over 8,100 library patrons, checked out almost 9,100 books and provided internet access to 3,355 people.

Opening the ceremony Terry Lowe, head of Community Services, commended the staff of professionals who are “dedicated to serving the public and helping them to enhance the quality of their lives, these numbers reflect a great need in the community; a need that we can now provide.”

And why not read on the floor?

“As a young professional, a mentor of mine said that ‘money follows good ideas’. That is true in this facility as well. In addition to the support that staff received from the elected officials of both organizations and the administrations of the district and the city, many have stepped up to be a part of this great effort to bring library services to this part of the city.”

Great new computer lab thanks to Toshiba.

Thanks to the efforts of council member Kris Murray, the state of the art computer lab was equipped with 44 laptop computers from Toshiba America. The Anaheim Public Utilities department provided a $5,000 grant for free bilingual computer classes for adults during evening hours.

The Kiwanis club of greater Anaheim donated $10,000 for the purchase of two pre-school educational computers. The Anaheim Public Library Foundation donated $4,000 and the Friends of the Anaheim Public Library donated $2,000 for books and other materials. Thanks to this assistance, the collection here has grown by 2,288 books in just 2 and a half months.

The Grand Opening was attended by Mayor Tom Tait and his wife Julie; city councilors Gail Eastman, Kris Murray and Lorri Galloway; Chief John Welter of the Anaheim PD and his Fire Department counterparts.

The spacious interior.

In fact this was major community turnout from local families, to library and staff headed by the vivacious Principal, Maria Villegas – and many others too numerous to name. Except, perhaps, Assemblyman Jose Solorio from the 69th Assembly District.

The Mayor cut the ribbon and everyone streamed inside to admire the high ceiling and spacious accommodation, the lovely computer lab and beaming children loving every moment of it.

The Public Library Foundation is a member organization of the Anaheim Arts Council, several of whose members were there to welcome visitors to the event.

Excited kids share in the Opening Ceremony.

Our thanks to Terry Lowe whose speech we borrowed and Ymelda Ventura for the photographs.

Photos: Ymelda Ventura



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