Oak Park Public Library to host a community celebration on Saturday, Oct. 5

Two major milestones: 10 years in Main Library building and 110 years as a public library

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By Community Editor


Oak Park, IL– Marking 10 years in the current Main Library building and 110 years as a public library in Oak Park, Oak Park Public Library will celebrate at all its locations this October, hosting an Anniversary Celebration on Saturday, Oct. 5, and a community Art Show on Sunday, Oct 6. Activities on both days will be free and open to the public.

"The Oak Park Public Library enhances the quality of life in our diverse community by providing resources and services for lifelong learning and enjoyment, the space and opportunities to gather and connect, and by fostering a love of reading," says Executive Director David Seleb. "Looking ahead, the library's vision will continue to embrace the rich heritage and vibrant future of our community, aspiring to be the best possible library for Oak Park."

Daytime family fun at all locations
On Saturday, Oct. 5, Main Library family fun will feature outdoor children's activities in neighboring Scoville Park, including live performances by story-performer Chris Fascione (10 am), musician Jim Gill (11 am) and a picnic with Caldecott award-winning artist Eric Rohmann (noon). Family fun at Dole Branch Library, 255 Augusta St., will feature the magic of Gary Kantor (1:30 pm), and at Maze Branch Library, 845 Gunderson Ave., a program on Lizards, Frogs, Turtles and More (3 pm). Both daytime branch events require registration. To learn more and register, visit opp.org/anniversary

After-hours party and performances at Main Library
An after-hours party and evening performances at the Main Library will feature The Boogers (rock and roll for families, starting at 7:15 pm) and R-Gang (R&B, funk & soul from the Motown era into the 21st Century for adults, starting at 8:15 pm), as well as an in-the-library Instagram scavenger hunt. Complimentary appetizers, sweets and a cash bar for beer and wine will be available. Materials checkout and library services will not be available during the after-hours party and performances.

Art show and receptions to showcase local artists' "Literary Explorations" at all locations
All month long, Literary Explorations will showcase 40 pieces of original work inspired by literature, with juried selections on display at all library locations. On Sunday, Oct. 6, artist receptions will be held at Dole Branch and Maze Branch from 2 pm to 4 pm, and at the Main Library from 3 pm to 5 pm.

Even more ways to celebrate in October
Free concerts, author lectures
Throughout October, the library will host more community events recognizing anniversary milestones. These events include the original folk music of Cindy Mangsen & Steve Gillette at 7 pm Thursday, Oct. 10, and the swinging sounds of the Latin Suenos Jazz Quartet at 3 pm Sunday, Oct. 27. Both concerts will be free, and held in the Main Library Veterans Room. In collaboration with Writers at Wright, evening lectures at Unity Temple will feature two award-winning authors. Stephen Kinzer will discuss his latest book, "The Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles, and Their Secret World War" at 7 pm Thursday, Oct. 10. Simon Winchester will discuss his latest book "The Men Who United the States" at 7 pm Thursday, Oct. 17. Writers at Wright tickets are $10, and may be redeemed on the night of the event for $10 off the featured books' cover price. To purchase tickets, visit The Book Table, 1045 Lake St., Oak Park, or booktable.net

Love Your Library, Show Your Card to return for 3rd Year
Also all October, Oak Park Public Library cardholders will be able to earn special offers at local participating businesses, just by showing their library card. New this year for cardholders will be opportunities to earn small tokens of love from us, and have unique experiences through a new library loyalty program. For a list of participating businesses and special offers beginning Oct. 1, visit oppl.org/love

Main Library Idea Box installation
"5+5=10," a new Main Library Idea Box October installation will encourage visitors to say five words about the library of their childhood, and five words about what they envision to be the library of the future.

About the award-winning Main Library building
The Main Library building was awarded the Chicago Building Congress Merit Award for Best New Construction - Suburbs for the Year 2003. The award states the building "displays distinctive design, outstanding construction and a positive impact on the surrounding community."

Designed by the firm of Nagle Hartray Architecture in collaboration with interior design firm Eva Maddox Branded Environments, and built under the direction of the general contracting and construction management firm Bulley & Andrews, LLC, the Main Library is the culmination of design goals to create a new important civic building that adds to the strong architectural heritage of Oak Park, reflects the diversity of the community, and minimizes the impact on the natural environment through the use of sustainable building materials and systems. At 104,000 square feet, it is a three-story building with a partial fourth floor for building systems. Underneath the building is a parking garage containing 79 parking spaces including four accessible spaces.

Today, with its environmentally friendly features including a green roof, recycled rubber flooring, organic complements, LED lights and unobtrusive shading, the building remains a gem in the heart of the Oak Park community.

About Oak Park Public Library
Founded as a public library in 1903, today the library serves 53,000 residents through three building locations, offering fiction and nonfiction titles, audiobooks, ereaders, movies, music, video games, magazines, newspapers, public computers, free WiFi and local history information. Through oppl.org and a custom app, the library provides a 24-hour librarian reference service, ebooks, digital music, online tools, continuing education courses, digital archives and more. In 2012, Oak Park Public Library saw more than 1.5 million total physical and website visits, more than 1.4 million items were checked out, event participants totaled more than 41,000 and nearly 5,000 new library cards were issued. Today, cardholders have access to more than 1 million titles through the library's membership in the SWAN consortium, a multi-type library consortium of 77 public, special and academic libraries.The Main Library also is known for its impressive collection of permanent artwork, including pieces by local artists.

Read more about Main Library history at http://oppl.org/about/library-information/hours-locations/main-library/main-library-history.

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