By Ida Brown / firstname.lastname@example.org
The Meridian Star
The wait has been longer than anticipated, but Meridian/Lauderdale County Public Library will once again open – just in time for registration for the library's Summer Reading Program.
The library is scheduled to reopen on Monday – one week later than planned.
"We were supposed to open this week, but we had a plumbing issue when we had a flood in the library," said Walt Barrett, M/LCPL's assistant director for technical services.
"They had to take out the old carpet that got wet, then go go ahead and put the new carpet in. So the library was closed longer than we had planned," Barrett said.
The 100-year-old building is currently undergoing a $130,000 renovation project that includes painting walls, disposing of more than 40,000 old books, remodeling bathrooms to make them disabled compliant and replacing carpet. The great thing about the project, said Director Steve McCartney, is that it isn't costing taxpayers a dime, but is solely funded out of the library's general fund.
The discarded books – classified as "dead" because they have not been used or checked out by the library's patrons for a great length of time – were boxed up and shipped to a recycling plant. McCartney said the library will look to replacing those books with newer, more relevant copies in the future.
Because of the delayed opening, registration for the library's Summer Reading Program will be done by phone this week only. Parents may call the library at (601) 693-6771, Ext. 224.
On site only registration for the summer program will resume with the library's reopening, and will continue through June 1, Monday-Saturday, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., in the Children's Services Department.
A grand celebration in observance of the library's centennial anniversary – and new look – is scheduled for later this year.
Meridian/Lauderdale County Public Library is located on 2517 Seventh St. in downtown Meridian. Library hours are Monday-Saturday, from 9 a.m.-6 p.m.