On April 19, community members flocked to Kingwood Librarys grand opening to hear prominent dignitaries speak, visit the technology petting zoo, browse books, view the new media center and go on tours. Refreshments were provided all day by Friends of the Kingwood Library (FOLK.)
We have tried to blend the traditional library that so many of us have grown up with and love and have fond memories of, with the new technology and new ideas that make the public library and the United States the vibrant and dynamic place that it is, said Harris County Public Library director Rhoda Goldberg.
The 30,000 square-foot library includes 109 public computers, 20 laptops and more than 100,000 items that can be checked out, including books, books on CD, music and DVDs, according to Goldberg. Other amenities include a teen media center, community meeting room, childrens activity room, quiet room and four study rooms.
Other guest speakers included Congressman Ted Poe, Mayor Annise Parker, City Council Member Mike Sullivan, County Commissioner Jerry Eversole and Director of Houston Public Library Dr. Rhea Lawson.
Libraries arent just about books, said Parker. Theyre about electronic media; theyre about the Internet, but theyre still a place where communities come together and imaginations are united.
Parker also said the library was certified for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, because the building was constructed using green building materials and methods. During the librarys construction, most trees were spared, said Parker. Other green practices include recycling and providing front-row parking to environmentally friendly vehicles. Theres still a wilderness feel around the library, Parker said.
The activities kicked off at 11 a.m.
Children gathered for story time, got their faces painted and visited Sparky the fire dog.
Older kids, teens and young adults participated in gaming demonstrations from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. and a gaming tournament on the librarys PS3 and a Wii from 3-9 p.m.
[The library is] beautiful. I like how its laid out, especially the young-adult section, said Patricia Green, a library volunteer. They have Wii and PS3 games.
Guided tours were also available throughout the day.
Its very bright and has a lot more room. There seems to be a bigger selection and newer books, said Jennifer Wehrle.
I think its great. Its so roomy and well-organized. It looks like it has a lot of resources, said Penny Kemp, who was browsing in the nonfiction section.
The day ended with choir performances by Bear Branch Elementary Choir at 5 p.m. and Kingwood High School Choir at 7 p.m.
The Kingwood Branch Library is located at 4400 Bens View Lane in Kingwood. For more information and hours of operation, go to www.hcpl.lib.tx.us/.