The JMRL Nelson Branch library expansion that began in July 2019 has now been completed. A spacious, sunny new area has nearly tripled the library’s size. Susan Huffman, branch manager, said the Grow Nelson Library fundraising effort exceeded the $500,000 goal of and raised $522,000. These funds have provided over 8,000 new items for lending, added 20 new computers and extended Wi-Fi service.
Some work continues, including a special Genealogy Room for research with records storage and space for five persons to work. Another dedicated space is referred to as a business center for classes led by JMRL staff and aid for job applications and resume writing. There are now meeting rooms, include a large room for up to 100 persons, a medium room to seat 10 to 12, and two small meeting rooms for up to 8 attendees. Another room is specified as a “quiet” room, meant as a respite from texting, talking and phone use.
Yolita Ellis, branch specialist, is coordinator for a special project creating a Memorial Walk brick walkway enhanced by a pollinator garden on the northwest side of the building. Each 4×8 brick can be engraved with up to 3 lines of text for personal memorialized tributes. The goal is 200 memorial bricks purchased by the end of December 2020 and they are currently about 40 bricks short. Each brick donation is a minimum $50. Donation with all proceeds going to the purchase of additional books, audiovisual equipment and computers. To donate go to www.thatsmybrick.com/grownelsonlibrary.
The library has a bright new JMRL sign at 8521 Thomas Nelson Highway, in Lovingston. Currently the new facility is open to the public by appointment, and curbside service is offered for lending.