New Thurmont Regional Library marks grand opening

August 08, 2008|By KATE S. ALEXANDER

THURMONT, Md. -- When asked if she missed the old Thurmont library in the renovated church on Water Street, Thurmont Regional Library Branch Administrator Erin Dingle's laugh bounced off the perfectly stocked book shelves and echoed in the vaulted ceilings of the new 25,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art library.

"Oh no. I've been waiting for this," she said.

The $6.5 million library opened its new doors on Aug. 2 after 41 years in the old church, and welcomed patrons to explore not just the new building but the thousands of books, CDs and DVDs that have been waiting as many as 10 years in storage.

"Every time I walk out of my new office it is like a family reunion with so many new faces that I never saw at the old library," Dingle said.

Thurmont Regional Library is the third renovation in the Frederick County Library System plan to modernize the reading and researching experience in the county.


Marketing and Public Relations Manager Elizabeth Cromwell said the Frederick County system put a plan in motion to update its libraries more than 10 years ago.

"The plan is to upgrade our facilities and create a combination of regional libraries and community branches," she said.

The Thurmont Library is the last regional library to be built in Frederick County and it completed the first phase of the countywide upgrade plan.

While the Thurmont Library has many of the same features that the C. Burr Artz and Urbana regional libraries have, including meeting rooms for up to 100 people, dedicated children and teen areas and study rooms, Cromwell said there is much about Thurmont which makes it unique.

Dingle said there has not been one person who has not fallen in love with the huge wooden deck off the back of the library or stood in awe of the 40-foot stone tower which resembles the Catoctin Furnace.

"I have talked to people who have spent hours out there already and we have been open only six days," she said. "We have already had live music out here, too."

Sarah May, 14, of Thurmont said she has come to the library every day since it opened and still cannot find a better spot to read than the deck.

"I like to read, get on the computer and then go read some more," she said. "It is a nice quiet place to relax and it's cool for kids who want to read the signs and learn about what we have left of the environment around us."

Thurmont is not the largest library in the Frederick County system, but with more than 65,000 books, CDs and DVDs available for loan and the Thurmont Center for Agricultural History and Reference in house for research, Cromwell said it has much to offer, including the county's first library drive-thru for drop off and pick up.

The grand opening celebration continues through Saturday with live music, informational displays by local businesses, children's games and a rooster naming competition for kids.

If you go ...

Where: Thurmont Regional Library, 76 E. Moser Road, Thurmont, Md.

What: Grand opening celebration

When: Friday and Saturday. All Day informational displays on Friday and Live Musics, Old Fashioned Games, and arts and crafts on Saturday.

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