Inlet Public Library: More than 30 years old…and still growing

The Inlet Public Library has experienced a tremendous amount of growth since its beginnings over 30 years ago.

Established first as a reading room in 1982 with community donations and $500 from the Inlet Town Board, the Little Schoolhouse Library Reading Center, as it was called at the time, was housed in the former Inlet one room schoolhouse.

Karen Lee volunteered as the first librarian.

“Eventually the library outgrew the one room schoolhouse and following renovations, was moved into the old firehouse in 1998, the same year it was officially chartered,” said board member, Jean Bird.

The library continues to operate at the building which is leased from the Town of Inlet.

Current library holdings include an Adirondack collection with some out of print editions, an extensive selection of audio books, DVDs, an ongoing book sale room, and a kids section with books, games and puzzles.

Four computers are available for use free of charge to the public along with a copier, fax and printer for a donation and free WiFi.

The Board is very proud of their active members and their librarians past and present.  Former librarians include Lee, Joanne Shwamle and Beth St. Marie who held the post for 21 years. Lynne Durkin is the current library director.

“They have always gone above and beyond with their dedication,” said board member Reggie Chambers.

The library has been awarded a number of grants including matching grants from the New York State library system and CAP-21 that paid for the roof and painting.

Donations from the community include books, flower bulbs, a television, the WiFi system and funds for the Scott Stuart Memorial Garden.

The library continues to grow its community support and visitor numbers, with about 200 visitors per day last summer.

This summer’s programming is in full swing with book sales,  an ice cream social, fundraisers and more on its calendar of events that can be enjoyed by visitors and residents.

A children’s story hour is held at 10:30 a.m. on Fridays through August 9th. Registration is not required and all are welcome to attend with a parent or guardian.

Library supporters will be selling books during Inlet’s Arts in the Park Festival on Saturday and Sunday, July 20 and 21st. And on Saturday, August 4 they will host an ice cream social as a thank you to the community for its ongoing support. The event will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. and donations will be accepted.

A fundraising cocktail party is being planned in August where a number of limited edition Scott Stuart wildlife prints will be on sale. The date of the event will be announced soon.

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