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Somers Library Celebrates 30 Years in the Park

SOMERS, N.Y. – Somers residents turned out in full force on a lovely springlike Saturday to celebrate the climax of the weeklong party celebrating the Somers Library’s 30th anniversary at its Reis Park location. An official proclamation issued by Supervisor Mary Beth Murphy declared April 14, 2012, Somers Library Day.

Clowns sauntered about, balloons blew on high, a juggler flaunted his skills, face painters plied their art, music filled the air, and Sammy the Therapy Dog sat in silent anticipation as children read him the latest best-sellers.

An unusual and delectable treat was provided by the Topsy Turvy Food Tent. What appeared to be hamburgers, french fries and tacos were actually cookies, cake and candy to satisfy the sweet tooth of grownups and children alike.

In the program room, children and adults milled about, browsing through the thousands of used books on sale.

“We advertised for books in early March and got truckloads. It took all week to sort through them,” said book sale co-Chair Sandy De Sena. By noon Saturday about half the books had already been sold.

In the afternoon the impressive birthday cake, adorned with a photograph of the celebrated building, was presented to the crowd and sliced into dozens and dozens of pieces.

“The original building design was fancier,” said library Trustee Jean Reidy. “It was supposed to have a second story and a tower and a big fireplace, but we ran out of funds. So we ended up with a square building.”

“Around 1992 we issued a bond and doubled the size,” she said. “We added the downstairs and we added a reading room and the program room. The program room is the only community room in town. It has a separate entrance so that it can be used independently by community groups.”

In the library’s April newsletter, Director Pat Miller asked, “Where were you in 1982?” Barbara Stockwell, president of the library board, said, “I was living in Paris because my husband had just been transferred there by IBM.”

Miller herself said, “I was a newlywed, working in marketing information for General Foods in White Plains.”

On the opposite spectrum, seventh-graders at the Somers Middle School were asked what they thought the library would be like 30 years from now. Most students forecast wondrous technological advances, including a robotic librarian.

Until the robots take over, the residents of Somers are in good hands with Miller, her devoted staff and her army of volunteers. Happy Birthday, Somers Library!

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