Picton Gazette

Our fundraising campaign in support of It’s Time To Renew is based on a vision of enhanced facilities and services to the community.

A recent study conducted by Culture Track Canada states that the most popular leisure activities involve community, connection and discovery. The study goes on to say that “these types of activities bring together audiences with shared interests, provide opportunity for sociability, and often expose participants to new things.”

A sense of community is introduced when people with like interests come together, engendering a sense of belonging. When people interact with other people it increases their understanding of others and through connecting with others who may have different life experiences we gain in understanding. Finally through discovery – taking in new ideas, histories and ways of thinking individuals gain in perspective. Succinctly put Canadians value culture because they recognize the intrinsic value and view culture as a force for good in our society.

The library, through its many and varied programs, creates an environment where people can congregate, learn and interact. It is not unusual on a visit to the Picton branch to encounter a senior’s fitness class in progress in the basement, with a learn-to-knit program going on in the children’s room across the hall. Nor is it unusual that when the fitness class breaks up, one of its participants stops in to help with the knitting lesson. Our tech team of Julie, Dave, Michele and Aaron are on a first-name basis with many patrons who have come late to technology. You will often overhear a short exchange wherein a technological problem is solved and the perplexed patron, perplexed no more, goes off happily until the next time. The Picton library is a place where a teen can come to jam on Friday afternoons and our volunteer Mario (who runs the group) writes a song about you.

This will sound like the story your grandfather told you about walking 25 miles to school…but I know from personal experience that when I had a young family, little mobility (we only had one vehicle) and little disposable income, the library meant a lot to us. We could walk there, meet other families there, be entertained, learn something, and borrow entertainment to take home with us. There were the absolute favourite books that would be “misplaced” when we were heading off to do our weekly book exchange, and sometimes tears when the children were encouraged to join the storytime circle, but it was our destination of choice for many, many, years.

Many in the community have the luxury of an abundance of choices as to how to spend their leisure time. I am often told by people who are busy and don’t attend a lot of our programs that they are so impressed with our offerings. They value them even though they don’t always partake of them. They recognize that they are valuable to the community. Our goal is to continue to position the library to be an inspiring environment that offers learning, hospitality, social interaction and personal growth.

Join us July 10 when Charlotte Gray visits the Picton Town Hall on Ross Street at 2 p.m. Charlotte is lending her support to our fundraising efforts and talking about her latest book The Promise of Canada. Tickets are $25 available by calling 399-2023, ask for Tracy, or at the Picton branch. Copies of Gray’s book will be available to purchase and have autographed.

Also hurry to procure you “David Frum and Thomas Harrison in Discussion” tickets, Those tickets are also $25 and available from the Regent Theatre box office or online at theregenttheatre.org. That event is coming up on July 19 at 7 p.m. at the Regent Theatre.

So as we turn to the community for support we look for your comments and suggestions. How can we serve you better? Will you offer financial support for our vision?

-Barbara Sweet