MAHOMET — You won’t hear “shhhhh!” anytime soon at the Mahomet Public Library: There is far too much going on to be quiet about.
“We just want the library to be the place to be in the community,” said Director John Howard.
Take Saturday, for example. Although the Run for the Library set for 8 to 10 a.m. at Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve, beginning and ending at the Elks Lake Pavilion, won’t physically be at the facility, it’s been all the buzz among the staff and patrons there for weeks now.
Registration for the 5K fun run/walk and 10K run is $30 for adult participants and $10 for youths. Same-day registration begins at 7 a.m. Packet pickup for those who register ahead of time is from 4 to 6 p.m. today at the library. Proceeds benefit the Friends of the Library and the Mahomet Rotary Club, helping support programs and activities for the community. For more details and a map of the route, go to runforthelibrary.info.
“It was a long miserable winter, and the best way to shake that out of your bones is to come out and run through beautiful Lake of the Woods park and to support the library,” Howard said.
The run/walk is the biggest fundraiser all year both for the library and the Rotary.
Music and more
On March 31, the facility hosted the second “Music @ The Library,” following the initial installment featuring the Parkland Jazz Ensemble.
“That is something that is new — at least we haven’t done it for many years,” Howard noted.
Another half-dozen musical acts are lined up so far, he said, and last Sunday’s was a hit with the cast of Mahomet-Seymour High School’s “Les Miserables: Student Edition” offering not just performances in song from the play but also behind-the-scenes tidbits from the production, which is underway now.
“I will go on record as saying I am very impressed with the amount of vocal and acting talent that this high school has,” Howard said.
Beyond the live music, the library has added laminating and exam proctoring among the free services it offers. The facility also has a “Lucky Duck Shelf” for popular books. For example, if a novel or nonfiction book has a long waiting list, an extra copy is obtained, and the “lucky duck” who finds it on the shelf during a visit to the library can take it for one week, although no holds and no renewals are allowed.
The first month of this program, the featured books were read more than 40 times, Howard said.
“It’s just a way for people to walk into the library and be surprised by something they didn’t think they were going to find,” he said.
The library will host work from local high school students as part of the Boneyard Arts Festival this weekend. Staff also are gearing up for the summer reading program and a new program for young children to read with volunteers from the community.
It’s not too early to volunteer, either, Howard noted. Those interested should contact the library with questions.
Family Fun Fridays are in the works, and bigger things are coming too, he said.
“We’ve been adding services in the last month or so,” said Howard, who has been director at the library for about four months. He said his tenure has been about not just maintaining good programming at the library but about additions. “It’s all about, ‘How can we enhance? How can we do things better?’”
The Friends of the Mahomet Library Spring Book Sale will be April 11-14. A preview sale for Friends members only runs from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, although for $5 paid at the door, the public can join the early buyers. Beyond that, the sale runs from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. April 12, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 13 and 1 to 4 p.m. April 14.