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150 years of library service marked in Caledon

February 1, 2018   ·   0 Comments

By Bill Rea
There has been some form of library service available in what is today known as Caledon continuously for 150 years, and a year of celebrating has started.
It began Saturday, as the Albion-Bolton branch hosted a kickoff event, as well as Family Literacy Day celebrations.
“I think you’d all agree that we’ve held up pretty well for our age,” Chief Librarian and CEO Colleen Lipp joked.
She added there have two constants over that time. Literacy remains at the core of what a library does, along with the support of life-long learning. She observed social media is often the first source of information and “fake news,” but she pointed out “a library can help you find the right answer.”
The other constant is libraries always represent equal access.
“We are the people’s university,” she declared, adding the growth of the internet has increased that access.
Library access in this area started in 1868 when the Bolton Mechanics Institute opened. Lipp thought people in 1868 would have been astonished with the way things have progressed since then, and she also thought they would have been pleased.
“It’s really a non-stop celebration,” she added.
Janet Manning, chair of the Caledon Public Library Board, observed that the milestone speaks to the support the library has received over the years.
“The library’s the place to be, and all for free,” she remarked, also looking to the future. “We look forward to the changes the next few years will bring for Caledon.”
Manning also expressed thanks to Lipp and her staff for the work they did for the celebration, and for the events that wil be taking place in the coming year.
Mayor Allan Thompson offered his congratulations for “150 years of opening the world to people.”
“One hundred and fifty years later, you’re still opening the world to everybody,” he added.
“Thanks you for the job you’ve done over the last 150 years,” he added. “The biggest law of nature is adapting to change, and the library’s done that.”
“The one thing that’s not changed is the constant need to change,” Lipp added.
Dufferin-Caledon MPP Sylvia Jones, mother of two, said it used to be a big family outing to go to the library, explore and follow their passions. “I have a special love for libraries,” she said, as she stressed the need to address changing needs and wants in the community.
The occasion also saw the launch of the One Book One Caledon campaign.
Manager of Information Services Megan Renkema unveiled the book that will be read throughout the community; Bellevue Square, by Toronto resident Michael Redhill. The book is about a woman in Toronto who has a doppelgänger (a double) and she becomes obsessed with finding her.
Renkema handed out copies of the book to dignitaries who were on hand Saturday, urging them to read it and then pass it on.
“The books are not theirs to keep,” she said. “Let’s get as many people as we can participating in this shared reading experience.”

Mayor Allan Thompson had an attentive audience Saturday as he read the children’s book Still a Gorilla.

Saturday’s celebrations included a ceremonial cake cutting, involving Dufferin-Caledon MPP Sylvia Jones, Mayor Allan Thompson, Chief Librarian and CEO Colleen Lipp, Caledon Public Library Board Chair Janet Manning and Dufferin-Caledon MP David Tilson.
Photos by Bill Rea

Megan Renkema, manager of information services for Caledon Public Library, handing out copies of Bellevue Square by Toronto author Michael Redhill, which will be the subject of One Book One Caledon. She presented Dufferin-Caledon MP David Tilson with his copy.

There were crafts for the young people to work on at Saturday’s celebrations. Peyton Wenzel, 4, of Bolton was working on his craft while his brother Jack, 7, was working on his piece of cake.

         

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