Library Board reviews facility issues, two reading programs

By : 
Gretchen Mensink Lovejoy
Spring Valley Tribune

The Spring Valley Public Library Board of Trustees slogged through slush last Thursday, April 19, to hold the April board meeting, following an epic late-spring snowstorm the day before. 

Spring Valley Public Library Director Jenny Simon brought a list of items for discussion, beginning with the installation of the new front door being completed after the final part arriving.

She also told the board of a site visit that had to be rescheduled from SELCO representatives Pam O’Hara and Cheryl Hill. 

“It’s nice to have SELCO staff here to ask them questions and get some new ideas, and we’ll discuss our library’s circulation rules, collection codes, cataloging, reports, website and more,” she said.  “We’ll work on how to sleek everything in and make it the best it can, our collection and how we want it ordered or…just the expertise.  We’re excited to have them here.”

She was disappointed to report that there is a new hole in the library’s exterior EFIS covering, a stucco-like material that isn’t actually stucco. 

“There is a large new hole in the pillar of the southeast corner of the building, and I still have not found a single soul who will repair, replace or fix EFIS,” said Simon. “The hole seems to have happened this past week, but it was not the snow removal company…and it’s so delicate that if they patch holes, the problem of damaging more comes up.” 

Board member Bruce Hartert questioned whether the company that originally installed the exterior covering is still available, and Simon noted that she would work further to determine what can be done to locate anyone who would be willing to attempt to repair the building.   

In summer reading program news, Simon stated she has been encouraged to apply for a grant from the Spring Valley Area Community Foundation to cover a “Minnesota Jack Sparrow” presentation. If that works out, he’ll be at the library on June 27 and adults will be invited to attend, too, because he comes in character and shares history, noted Simon. She added that she has three performers who are vetted by SELCO set for the summer reading program.

Group reading — or global reading — was another topic discussed as the library chose to participate in Overdrive’s Big Library Read.  Overdrive is the library service that provides e-books to patrons.

“It’s kind of fun to know that we were part of the first-ever global e-book club, and the book that people read was ‘Flat Broke with Two Goats.’  We ended up buying the print copy, too…the nicest thing about it on Overdrive was that everybody could do it all at one time,” said Simon. “It was a fun little thing for us to do.  There were little forums that you could join into and discuss online…our little library was part of something that was happening in India.”    

The board expressed its appreciation to numerous donors, including: Jim Parker for his memorials honoring Grace Ernster and Edith Nadine Nickum; Shirley Gangstad for her memorial honoring Roger Temanson; Buster and Annette Johnson for their donation to the SELCO Foundation in memory of Kaysie Kuehn Kerr; Lee and Carol Himle for their memorial honoring Kerr; Stu and Carol Gross for their memorial for Lyla Davies; Gaye Stockdale for a second donation for the use of the large conference room for the Bluff Country Toastmasters and in memory of her father, Oakley Stockdale; and to Janelle Mosher-Rowe for her donation of dozens of children’s books for the summer reading program. 

Furthermore, the American Legion Post 68 gave a donation that Vince Mangan chose to match, Sharon Goede gave a memorial honoring Robert Blahnik, Susan Thompson brought in “dozens and dozens of DVDs” that were added to the library’s collection, Claire Rowen donated a set of “Cozy Mysteries” books, Joe and Rita Bezdicek gave a memorial honoring Casey Jimenez, and Duane and Lavonne Schwier gave three bags of romance and Western novels that the library did not have. 

“It was a really good month…people remembered the library in so many ways, and we appreciate that,” said Simon. 

The Spring Valley Public Library is open Monday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday from noon to 7 p.m., and the second and fourth Saturdays of the month from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.  The friendly and knowledgeable library staff is available to help patrons and visitors with just about anything they might need — media and internet computer checkout, a key to the restroom or information on upcoming library events — but likely aren’t able to assist with figuring out how to make late-April snowballs thrown back at the clouds stick.  For more information, stop in at the library — just off Broadway in downtown — or call 507-346-2100.