On August 26, the library will open its doors to the public after more than a year and a half. It seems like much longer to reading library patrons. We’ve been to neighboring libraries, gone online, ordered from Amazon, read on Kindles and phones, and even gone to yard sales. Readers will do anything to keep a steady supply of books. Tuesday morning, Natorra Moody from the Bacon County Library gave me a private tour of the new library in all its emptiness. There were two carts of new books sitting there, waiting. I couldn’t stand not seeing some titles. I sneaked a peek and almost begged to check one out.
We toured the entire building, which is much larger than the old one. The new smell wafts through the building, which at the moment, holds only a few chairs and odds and ends. On the north end of the building, some county workers were installing shelves so the books can be returned to their rightful places, along with the new ones.
“There’s a whole years’ worth of new books for the Appling County Library,” Natorra said. “The whole time you’ve been closed, the central office in Waycross has continued to purchase your materials. They’ll be here as soon as we have somewhere to put them.”
Of course, the Appling County Library is only one of five that make up the Okefenokee Region. Moody plans to invite several state representatives to the grand opening along with all of Appling County and the county commissioners. These folks were instrumental in getting the library done. In the meantime, Moody and the other workers along with help from the county are busily moving things back in. The books are coming. So are the computers. There’s a small room to archive materials special to this county, like the works of Caroline Miller, if anyone has some to donate. They’d be safe and protected there. The conference room is ready to go. Allison Murray has worked on the decoration of the new building. Put the date on your calendar and get ready. It’s finally about to open.