Modernized, more user-friendly LaPorte Library debuts

Photos by Bob Wellinski (click to enlarge)

Preserving the handsome and historic Carnegie Library structure, the LaPorte County Public Library’s main branch debuted the weekend of March 10, 2017. Sporting new, comfy reading nooks and study rooms throughout, the library houses children’s reading and play areas on the lower level and adult texts/audio/video, as well as a new teen room, on the main floor. Enjoy Bob’s photos.     

The library’s Maple Avenue side (still awaiting final touches) features new sidewalks, bike racks and drop-off sites for books and videos.

Across from the checkout desk on the main floor is the Teen Room, featuring this quote on the window.

A view of the desk and video shelves on the main floor, with the Indiana Avenue entrance in the background.

A lounge/study area on the main floor.

Looking from the Indiana Avenue entrance on the main floor toward books, an information kiosk and (at right) the Teen Room.

The main floor.

The reading/periodical area on the main floor.

The glass-enclosed Teen Room on the main floor.

The computer access stations on the main floor.

Kiosks near the Maple Avenue entrance allow patrons to access information.

A reading nook allows generations to connect.

When you enter from the Maple Avenue side and climb the short flight of stairs (or use the elevator), library staffers await you.

The renovated stairway at the Maple Avenue entrance.

A view from the corner of Indiana and Maple.

A young patron uses the latest in technology while perched on a fun seat.

A family checks out some items in the children’s library on the lower level.

Another cool seat in the kids’ library.

Looking for that perfect book.

16 Responses to “Modernized, more user-friendly LaPorte Library debuts”

  1. ILUVLP

    Mar 13. 2017

    That looks FANTASTIC!!! Great job. Very welcoming.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Sharon Kirkham

    Mar 13. 2017

    The quote on the teen room by Aldous Huxley, a man who requested, on his death bed, that his wife inject him with LSD, isn’t exactly what a town with young people dying on a regular basis from drug abuse need to read.

    Reply to this comment
    • Geoff Weliver

      Mar 13. 2017

      Sharon, after serving the public for 26 years, it never ceases to amaze me how negative some folks in this town are. This is a long overdue project that deserves our admiration and respect. How about focusing on the positives?

      I just retired from the library, and I can tell you that none of the administration or the staff would do anything to undermine our community’s efforts to combat the drug problem. I believe this quote is meant to inspire everyone who enters the library to expand their mind through research and education. I see nothing wrong with the quote at all.

      Reply to this comment
  3. B D W

    Mar 13. 2017

    Of all of the GOOD quotes by good encouraging people the committee or person had to select a drug related comment for our drug infested city!!!! What a disgrace.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Maud

    Mar 13. 2017

    Thanks, Bob, for the great pics of our newly-remodeled library! So glad it is open again!

    Sorry, though, to see the comment about the quotation by Aldous Huxley: “There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.” Call me crazy, but that seems to be a perfect quote for a library. The doors to libraries lead us from the unknown to the known!

    Shall we shield our children and young adults from all quotations by famous people who have used drugs? Perhaps we could take that a step further and not allow them to read books written by people who have used drugs. I like to think that we are more enlightened today, and that the days of banning words and books are far behind us!

    Reply to this comment
  5. Deb D.

    Mar 14. 2017

    I don’t want to be a Debbie Downer however I think Sharon has a good point. I’d imagine that there are a lot of alternative quotes that would be more appropriate.

    More importantly, the over/under on how long it will be before the light that illuminates the new sign on the corner is kicked and broken by one of our precious little urchins is 30 days. Anyone want any of that action?

    Reply to this comment
  6. Jerry

    Mar 14. 2017

    “There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.”

    A great quote to inspire the name of a 1960’s rock band, The Doors. Jim Morrison is a great example for LP’s youth to follow.

    Reply to this comment
  7. Caroline

    Mar 14. 2017

    Sharon and BDW, as someone who often works with individuals dealing with substance abuse I can assure you that reading is not a contributing at-risk factor. Socioeconomic problems such as poverty and intergenerational mental illness and addiction is a more appropriate focus of concern. Perhaps you can volunteer your time and energy with programs this community has established? CAYA and CASA are always seeking caring people to get involved with our at risk youth.
    I should only hope that more of our youth fall in love with the worlds reading can take them.

    Reply to this comment
    • Observation

      Mar 15. 2017

      Caroline you are so very correct, and maybe if these children did read, had better school support, had teachers who were able to help the struggling kids, a take time to make sure “no child was left behind” we wouldn’t have half of the problems we have in this community. We have teachers who have to many students and not enough pay, parents too busy struggling to put food on the table and keep the lights on to be able to teach these kids, or the parents just too wrapped up in their own misery to care.
      I’m so glad the library is there for the ones who do find it, who are lucky enough to get some attention from a worker, volunteer , or patron who sparks something in them that makes them the 1% that stays out of trouble, and off drugs. We NEED more options for kids, especially the poor kids.

      Reply to this comment
  8. Loud and Proud

    Mar 14. 2017

    What was supposed to be a positive and wonderful thing for the town of La Porte, has once again been put down by folks that have nothing better to complain about.
    No wonder La Porte struggles.
    Perhaps we can cover our kids eyes so they don’t read the horrible quote, or plug their ears so they don’t hear any horrible things in their lives?

    To Deb D – You had to of really studying those photos hard, and really reaching to even thinking about kids busting up that flood light. Get a life!

    Go find something to be happy about folks.

    Reply to this comment
  9. Roberta Strickland

    Mar 15. 2017

    As someone who grew up across the street from this library, I must applaud all of the forethought for this remodeling.
    I would have spent much more time there, had it been this way in my day. Bravo!!

    Reply to this comment
  10. Sharon Kirkham

    Mar 15. 2017

    Oh my…please everyone take a breath. My comment wasn’t about restricting what kids read, banning books, undermining anyone’s efforts to combat the drug problem or volunteering. It wasn’t about the beautiful new library, good or bad teachers and parents. It wasn’t even about the quote. It’s the eight inch bold black lettering emblazoned on the door of a room where impressionable kids go in and out. It’s about a man in whose footsteps I doubt any parent would want their child to travel.

    Reply to this comment
    • Mickey Rogers

      Mar 20. 2017

      Instead of saying, “This quote is bad,” or “This man is a bad example,” we should instead encourage young readers to learn about his writings and try to place them in context, letting them come to their own conclusions (the very point of the quote and of libraries themselves)? Besides, as others point out, any kid who reads Huxley’s words and interprets them as encouragement to engage in drug use is a kid who is quite unlikely to be in a library in the first place.

      I’ll close with Laura Huxley’s own words about his dying moments: “It is true we will have some people saying that he was a drug addict all his life and that he ended as one, but it is history that Huxleys stop ignorance before ignorance can stop Huxleys.”

      Reply to this comment
  11. Don Heichel

    Mar 20. 2017

    My wife and I went to check out the library Saturday. The boys and our little one was there. Maybe I was too busy looking for things that actually would HELP us, because I did not notice the quote.

    We enjoyed the layout. I think there are 95% PLUS POSITIVES about it….but if we’re taking a poll….here are my two things I noticed:

    In the computer area up stairs, there was plenty of space, and the woman a the desk was very helpful. The space in between the little movie area though, is a little cramped. Not a big deal. PARKING….of course, this is the first obstacle we noticed. If you want to enjoy the newly multimillion dollar project, you’ll have to walk. We aren’t lazy people…so we don’t mind parking a block or two, or three away.

    It does look nice though! Just my two cents….

    Reply to this comment
  12. lawman

    Mar 20. 2017

    since the original funding for our library was donated by Andrew carnigie-one of the worst of the ”robber barons” who exploited thousands of American workers in sweatshops maybe we should just close it. we don’t want our kids to learn about that terrible man.

    Reply to this comment
  13. chrissy

    Mar 20. 2017

    My dad use to say we need to learn about famous people even if we don’t agree with everything they have done in their lives. We should read about Andrew Carnegie, who came from poverty, worked very hard, and like Lincoln, was a self-made man. Read Wikipedia for a quick lesson on Carnegie, who gave away 90% of his wealth (350 million). As for Aldous Huxley, his book “The Doors of Perception” is about experiences when taking a psychedelic drug. hmm….maybe the library staff could have done a little more “reading ” about that before using that particular quote.

    Reply to this comment

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