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July 4, 2020

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A new chapter to a favorite Ada book

Public Library celebrates grand reopening

Photos and story by Monty Siekerman
It’s time to celebrate...cut the ribbon and open the door of the Ada Public Library’s new look, a facility that will probably do the community well into the next century.

Work on the renovation and addition has been going on since last July. Miraculously, the library closed for only one week during that time (to install ceiling tiles and wiring). 

Patrons continued to flow into the library during construction, and they came out in force on Saturday during the Grand Re-Opening, because now all is done, the dust cleared, even the grass seed applied. 

On Saturday, it was smiles all around, from young and old alike—the library improvements were met with happiness and satisfaction by townspeople. After a ribbon cutting ceremony, the library hosted an open house for the next three hours. 

The 2,000 sq. ft. addition includes a meeting room and office area. The area built in 1953 has been refurbished with a new ceiling, flooring, brightly-painted walls, more book shelves, furnishings, and circulation desk. 

A new parking lot on the north provides much needed space for the patrons’ vehicles and parking is safer. Landscaping and signage have been completed, as well. The restrooms have been updated. 

Board President Connie Fleming said the staff was “fantastic” during all of this change, especially keeping the library open during all of the work. Full time employees include Rhett Grant, director, and Natalie Walton, youth services director. Part time employees are Karin Alba, Darlene Bowers, Preema D’Souza, Karen Garver, Max Gauthier and Fiscal Officer Nancy Stauffer.

In addition to Mrs. Fleming, board members who saw the project to completion were Vice President Melissa Mancuso, Secretary Jamie Wills and Scott Allison, Diane Simon, Erin Chrissobolis and Steve Johnson.

About the only area without major change is the comfortable Snyder Reading Room. Barton Snyder was a long-time owner and editor of The Ada Herald, putting out a paper on a weekly basis informing the community of all that happens and was influential in the town’s doings.

Since his passing, many years ago, the paper has suffered with out-of-town owners, starting with Congressman Clarence Brown’s family in Urbana.

Now the paper is owned by another out-of-town company which recently closed its presence on Main Street and primarily operates out of Delphos. Technology makes it possible for the Ada Icon to fill the gap, producing 50-80 stories a week, almost like having a daily paper in the community. 

Mr. Snyder’s picture hangs in the reading room, looking down on an area virtually unchanged. He’d probably be satisfied with the comfortable and welcoming room as it is, but always forward-thinking he would be excited for the addition/renovation that was celebrated Saturday.

Photo, from left: Connie Fleming, library board president; Rhett Grant, library director; Deb Curlis, Chamber of Commerce director.

• Connie Fleming (left), library board president, with Casey Corbet, architect for the renovation/addition to the Ada Public Library. Casey is with Garmann/Miller, architects and engineers located in Minster.

• Brian Bauman (right), a representative from Congressman Bob Latta’s office, presents a flag and certificate to Rhett Grant, library director.

• Tater the Clown, of Kenton, twists balloons together to make an animal for Kaden Clum.

• Children wait for Tater the Clown (right) to make them a balloon animal. Children and youth are a big part of the library book circulation and after-school activities. Many youngsters came to the open house. Tater the Clown was a popular draw during the library Grand Re-Opening.