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— It’s been longer than we anticipated that we publish a story about the reopening of the Gravette Public Library. That event occurred several weeks ago while we were out of town on vacation.

At that time the library had been closed a month or more as it was being retrofitted with new windows, a new interior and exterior paint job, ceiling repairs and general restructuring of the old school lunchroom building that the school allowed the city to use many years and then deeded to the city a year or so ago.

We wanted to show some pictures of the remodeling and improvements so we decided to wait until some pictures were made available. Forrest White and then-library manager Kimberley Gibson came through with pics.

Gibson later tendered her resignation after serving ably as library manager for several years. In fact the library made such significant progress during her tenure and through her efforts to secure funding for the improvements the city was obligated for only a small portion of the costs.

It was during this time that city finances became a topic with discussion as to whether the library would have to be scaled back to a part-time operation. Several weeks passed. And there was the challenge to secure a new library manager. Several more weeks passed.

Finally, through the persuasion of the governing Library Commission and others, the funding challenge was resolved. The selection of a manager then occupied a few more weeks.

Finally, last week, Kim Boldt was named library manager and we move forward as a city with a growing, much-used library.

Many years ago I wrote, “A town without a library is a town without. . . . .” And it is true; the Gravette facility provides not only a great selection of books, including new best sellers, but also maintains a video department and provides books on tape for the visually impaired. It also provides Internet computer capabilities and much local history on microfilm. And let’s not forget the children’s department and its supportive activities and a books on wheels service to the senior citizen center.

That’s the story behind our story delay.....So read the story on the front page and look at the pictures on page 1B to get more details. Then visit the library and be proud Gravette has a viable, serving facility for all of us and the surrounding area.

-Dodie Evans

P. S. Hundreds of persons have contributed to the library’s success since it was begun as a bicentennial project (all volunteer, all donated books, etc.) in 1976. Many have served on its commission. Many have served on its commission. The present commissioners are Elaine Brandli, Chairperson-Susan Holland, Addie Johnson, Daniel Merkley, Eda Montag, Debbie Querry and Forrest White. Thank them.

And when you see Kimberley Gibson give her a special pat on the back for several years of dedicated service. And wish our new library manager Kim Boldt success with your help and support in the months and years ahead. And, by the way, if you haven’t, why not visit and use the library yourself?

Opinion, Pages 4 on 12/02/2009

Print Headline: Off The Cuff

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