The North Bend Eagle


Finishing touches go on wall, but library still growing

by Mary Le Arneal
Published 3/1/17

It has been five years since the new North Bend Public Library opened at 13th and Main streets.

North Bend LibraryTaylor Ortmeier uses a library laptop and the internet as she studies and passes the time before going to her church class. Living in Dodge, the library has given her a nice place “hang out.”

On April 30, 2012, the library officially opened after nine days of moving from the 1913 library and setting up the new, modern library.

On April 23 and 24 students at North Bend schools each contributed to the move by shelving books. Before they left, the students and teachers signed their name on the wall opposite the front door with colored markers. These signatures are still there, but now they are covered up by plaques bearing the names of those who contributed the $1.5 million needed to make this dream a reality. (There is a photo of the children’s signatures in the children’s library room.)

The library has continued to receive sizable donations and there are seven names yet to be engraved on the donor wall. But it is time to draw that to an end. The Capital Campaign for the library will close May 1, 2017. The library will continue to accept donations, as they are always needed to maintain the building and materials. Additional donations will be listed in a Library Foundation Book of Donors or the Library Book of Donations and Memorials.

Whether it be a donation of money, corn, estate planning, in-kind donations, grants – all were put to good use in the building of the library. There are six donor levels recognized on the wall: Browser, $1,000 to $2,499; Reader $2,500 to $4,999; Researcher $5,000 to $9,999; Developer $10,000 to $24,999; Builder $25,000 to $99,999; Ambassador $100,000 and above.

“This is your last chance to join the wall,” library foundation member Jan Hobza said.

Tax deductible donations can be sent to North Bend Library Foundation, 110 E. 13th Street, North Bend, NE 68649.

How the library grew

Head librarian Amy Reznicek shared some numbers comparing the libraries activities in 2012 and in 2016 to show how the library has grown since opening the new building.

Between Jan 2012 and Jan 2016, 72,090 items were checked out of the library, Reznicek said, and 57,154 people have visited the library,

The number of registered borrowers has increased with 175 new card holders. The total circulation at the library increased from 9,646 items loaned out in 2012 to 15,561 in 2016, an increase of 62 percent increase.

“Our annual physical visits are about the same as before,” Reznicek said. “The number of physical items in our library is about the same as before as well, since our budget didn’t really increase that much.”

The library receives $9,000 a year from the city for programs, material, resources and other extras. The city also pays for the salaries, utilities, maintenance, insurance and repairs for the building. Reznicek said the extra funds received from donations are used to offer more services and programs to the public.

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