Believe it or not, for years the Columbus Public Library has been a pretty happening place in town. Such was the case Wednesday, April 26th, when several people were already waiting to enter the facility before it even opened at 8 a.m.
“We have been blessed to have a lot of support or a big following,” Interim Library Director and Children Services Librarian Brad Hruska said. “The Columbus community definitely supports us.”
The library, located in a temporary location along 14th Street across from City Hall in downtown Columbus, for decades, has offered all sorts of services to the community. It provides print and electronic resources, as well as in-person and online offerings.
Beyond print books, the library has become a hub by giving the public access to computers, tablets, copy machines, printers, a maker space, Wi-fi and a meeting room. The staff has also taken pride in putting on unique and quality programming for patrons of all ages.
This week (April 23-29) marks National Library Week, an annual celebration highlighting the valuable role libraries, librarians and library workers play in transforming lives and strengthening our communities.
“We’re doing our best to celebrate National Library Week, which is a very big deal and very important thing to celebrate and promote,” Hruska said. “Being in our current location, there is not a whole lot we can do.”
CPL currently operates out of the old Columbus Police Department building until it relocates to its permanent location in the Columbus Community Building when it opens later this summer. But the library team isn’t letting the smaller space totally stop them. Throughout the week, residents can stop by to pick up free bookmarks and pencils with a fun library-related print on them.
From 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday, CPL will host a “Cookie Party.” Anyone who stops by will be offered a free cookie to enjoy while they peruse the library's catalog.
Then, from 2 p.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, April 29th, CPL will welcome Beth Sparrow and her “Beginning Genealogy” program. Sparrow will show people how to start researching their families and discuss what records would be useful and how to find them. She’ll also cover what tools of the trade are helpful and what to do if you are stuck. The program, provided by Humanities Nebraska, is meant to serve as an introduction to those interested in genealogy.
Hruska encourages residents to stop by the library throughout the week and beyond, noting National Library Week efforts will be ramped up next year when CPL is in the Community Building.
“We’re really excited to get into the new space,” he said.