Submitted by Catherine Redden, Library Director
During 2003 the Lane Memorial Library continued to do a record business, circulating 211,790 items, in over 150,000 visits by residents and visitors to the library. We loaned 1266 items out to other NH libraries and borrowed 366 items for Hampton residents. We registered 1233 new patrons.
We started the year with Unitil changing lighting throughout the building making a huge difference in the amount and quality of light in the library. A new Friends of the Library group assisted with the Trustee sponsored program "Schoolhouse Rock" in February, held a bake sale along with the library book sale in June, and designed a Friends of the Library book bag, sales of which benefit the library. Look for the Friends' brochure on your next visit to the library. We ended the year with routine maintenance on the elevator and plans to repair the roof and foyer doors in the coming year.
Adult Services added a seasonal assistant for the summer months. Linda Leubner worked with the influx of summer temporary workers from overseas and quickly established a Spanish/English conversation group. Jeanne Gamage and her regular staff of Barbara Chapman, Sandra Kent, Elli Cyr, and Mary Twomey, coped with the steady increase in library use. The monthly afternoon book group, which discussed titles such as Moonstone and Under the Tuscan Sun, has experimented with adding an evening session; they always have lively and entertaining discussions about their chosen books. Hampton resident Virginia Taylor spoke on her new book Lugano Holiday, and the women from A Group of One's Own have helped local writers form their own group. Outreach continued to Dearborn House and expanded to Partridge House and the nursing home. We continue to be thankful for our wonderful volunteers. A new group of Odyssey House girls has volunteered regularly, as have pairs of Mormon Elders throughout the year. Our steadfast volunteer extraordinaire, John Holman, was honored by the New Hampshire Municipal Association as a Volunteer of the Year!
Children's Services continued their outreach to the elementary and preschools. Cindy, Joanne, and Shelby were assisted by Di Karpman during the summer reading program, "Reading Rocks the Granite State" which kicked off with a Muggles School to celebrate the release of the 5th Harry Potter book. Walmart again donated a bicycle for a grand prize. Joanne and Shelby were inspired by a program at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. A new book group for grades 3 - 5 meets after school, and a new parent and child book group meets one evening a month. Our first Scholastic Book Fair earned us $650 worth of new books! The UFO program proved highly popular, as did the annual Polar Express pajama party.
Reference Services led by Stan Olson with Alice Alford added new online databases such as All Data which provides automotive repair information on virtually every make and model of car, and Opposing Viewpoints which presents material on both sides of popular issues. They had another busy year answering reference queries in person, via phone, and via e-mail. A presentation on Business Reference to the Hampton Rotary Club brought in new patrons. Reference Services and Adult Services combined on a successful grant application which allowed them to purchase English as a Second Language tapes.
Technical Services with Bill Teschek and Jean Keefe continued the technical work, maintaining and upgrading the library's computers, improving the library website and cataloging all the new materials. Bill offered genealogical workshops as well as his regular computer courses this year.
This year, the Board of Trustees consisting of Lenore Patton, Sara Casassa, Judy Geller, Mary Lou O'Connor, Barbara Rallis, and Alternates Dot Gooby and Mary Lou Heran, continued their research and planning for a future renovation of the library building. After completing an in-house needs assessment which included input from staff and trustees, the trustees used the services of a consultant to develop and administer a survey which allowed the Hampton community to rate the library's current services and assist in planning for future changes. In the coming year, the trustees will continue working on the renovation project and will include many of the recommendations from community members in the planning process.