When officials of the Columbia Public Library launched the renovation and new addition of the library, they anticipated that the completed project would be a real treasure for the community. With the upcoming grand opening of the new library, their anticipation will be met with a great source of community pride. The grand opening of the new library will be Wednesday, August 1, while a special Dedication Ceremony is slated for Sunday, August 12, at 2:00 p.m. at the library location on 24 South Sixth Street, Columbia, PA 17512.
In today’s ever-changing world, a lot is happening in libraries. Libraries are no longer only the repositories of books, but rather act as gateways to information, education, and opportunity — and the Columbia Public Library is no exception. Not only is the library undergoing a major expansion and renovation, but the Columbia Public Library as a whole is transforming itself into a community and technology hub. The library is improving the community through access to books and technology that individuals might otherwise be unable to afford. Libraries are continually expanding to include information in a variety of formats that meet community requests and needs. Libraries are not just about books; they also provide access to information beyond items that are checked out on a library card. Library resources in the form of online access to databases and programming now define and expand what is available to the public. In addition to books in a number of formats — including e-books, audiobooks, and online resources — there are a number of programs offered that appeal to all ages.
A local craftsman enhances the new library…
Just as librarians continue to master their trade, a local craftsman working on the renovated library hones his skills to provide the library with beautiful hand-crafted furniture. During the upcoming events, the public will notice customized furniture made by local craftsman Greg Pilotti throughout the library.
Pilotti is president and owner of GP Furniture Makers and a graduate of Thaddeus Stevens School of Technology. Pilotti has been collaborating with Thaddeus Stevens by hiring skilled craftsmen since the opening of his business in 2013. He employs nine highly-skilled craftsmen — all graduates of Stevens Trade, which is an educational institution that specializes in trade education and apprenticeship. He is dedicated to preserving the art of furniture making as he applauds the tradesmen that he has employed. He states that he “doesn’t hire — he recruits,” and he relies on Stevens Trade to help him recruit and fill positions. In the process, he develops relationships that lead to keeping skilled craftsmen. He reflects, “We are in a trade that’s a lost art…it’s often hard to find employees. I rely on Stevens Trade to help me recruit and fill positions. I continued to grow the business and develop skills to serve clients. Today we operate in a large, well-equipped modern shop full of young energetic makers. I believe that we are here to serve our clients to the fullest of our abilities and create a high-quality product. By using modern technology and traditional techniques we are able to serve our clients and designers with both custom furniture and cabinetry.”
Columbia Public Library’s Executive Director, Lisa Greybill, is excited about the opportunities the new library offers to the community. “Many residents already visit the library on a regular basis and I hope that our expansion will draw in even more. Our new meeting room and terrace are an excellent venue for programming and community gatherings. Our new furnishings, including those made by Mr. Pilotti and his craftsmen, provide practicality, beauty and comfort to an inviting interior.”
The Columbia Public Library would like to thank all of the contractors and donors who have helped make the newly renovated library a reality. Anyone interested in supporting the library, can make a tax deductible donation online at www.columbiapubliclibrary.org, by mail at 24 South Sixth Street, Columbia, PA 17512, or in person when the library re-opens. For more information or discuss how you can help, call 717-575-9032 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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