Library reading room renovations now complete

ROUSES POINT Theres a new look for a familiar space at Dodge Memorial Library. The John Putnam Ross Adult Reading Room was recently renovated, receiving a new paint job, new shelving unit and backdrop for its fireplace mantle. According to library director Colleen Pelletier, the improvements took three months, and involved carefully moving the books from the room and thoroughly cleaning the room before it was painted. When I first saw the room, it was this very dark and dreary room, Pelletier recalled. I believe it had been painted once before, but I think that was many years ago. The room is dark and dreary no more, said Pelletier, and now offers a more inviting atmosphere for people to study or just sit and read for a while. It will also offer people a place to hold meetings for between eight and 10 people at one time, said Pelletier. All they have to do is call the library to see if anyone else is using the room. The reading room was originally used to house the John Putnam Ross Historical Collection, which consisted of items belonging to the late local historian and library board member. The items, which were donated to the village following his death, are now in storage until a museum is developed in the former D&H Railroad Station on Pratt Street. Since its renovation, the room has been used quite a bit by people coming in to check out books, Pelletier said. They go in to look at the biographies and large print books that are shelved in there and it looks so comfortable that they sit down and relax for awhile, she said, adding the librarys adult reading group also makes good use of the room. They especially enjoy it because when they started, they had to meet in the common area of the library or in the childrens room. Both of those areas are much smaller than the reading room. The improvements were funded through money available in the librarys budget, said Pelletier. The cleaning and moving of books was done by Pelletier and members of the librarys board of trustees, who volunteered their time. New furniture was purchased for the library thanks to the generosity of village historian Donna Racine, who donated the necessary funding. Im wowed by Donnas generosity, said Pelletier. I wish there were more people that would support their public library with donations of money to buy furniture or take their local public librarian shopping for supplies for the library. Dodge Memorial Library, located at 144 Lake St., is open Monday through Friday, 12-4 p.m. and additionally from 7-9 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. The library is also open from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday.

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