McConnell library to celebrate national library week with open house

MCCONNELL AIR FOCE BASE,Kan. -- The library has the ability to bring the world to your fingertips. National Library Week, from April 15 through April 21, celebrates the importance of having libraries in our local communities and its place in America's society. Having such resources available to Airmen and their families not only enhances them with innovative knowledge, it also keeps them up to date with current events.

This year's theme is "Come Together @ your library;" bringing the McConnell community together to see what the library has to offer.

On April 18, the library is hosting its open house with guest story teller and puppeteer, Judy Nichols, who is scheduled to perform at 9:30 a.m. in the old Information Tickets and Tours room. This program is open to preschool and school age children and families.

Following story time, visitors can enjoy light refreshments from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. while reviewing new books and the DVD collection.

While the children are entertained, adults can browse the selection of more than 30,000 materials. The library also has more than 8,000 materials for children, CDs, free computer and internet access, reference resources and much more.

"We try to encourage young children's interest in reading books by exposing them to great literature with wonderful illustrations in our Story Times for all ages," said Darla Cooper, the base's library director.

"We offer programs for children by reading and discussing the literature, we sing, use puppets, go on educational field trips, and bring in entertainers that encourage reading," said Ms. Cooper.

Ms. Cooper said that is very important to make it a habit at a young age to visit the library.

"The more you visit, the more comfortable you become using the library and the resources it offers to you," she said.

Door prize drawings will be held at the close of Open House April 18 and also April 21 at the Family Festival of Fun. Several guessing contest for all ages will be available in addition to a library scavenger hunt. Prizes include gift certificates, books, book bags, poetry magnets and many other items.

The exchange of information in today's world can be faced-paced. The base library may be just the pathway you and your family need to explore it.

"I've been at McConnell for two weeks now, and I've been using the library for Internet access and the service is high-speed," said Airman Erik Mann, a tactical air control party airmen attendant the First Term Airmen's center, from Ft. Riley, K.S.

"The library is a great for people new to the base, and I had a great first impression compared to other military libraries I've been to," he said.

"Everything we do, we try to make fun, educational, and interactive," said Ms. Cooper.

National Library Week is a national observance and was first sponsored by the American Library Association and libraries across the county each April.

For more information, visit the base library at the Robert J. Dole Community Center, call 759-4207 or visit the library's Web site at http://www.22svssq.org/library.htm.