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Newly renovated Vernon Library to offer comfort, new equipment

The entry inlibrary is expanded opened for easier access .  VernArePublic Library is final leg it's remodeling project

The entry into the library is expanded and opened for easier access . Vernon Area Public Library is in the final leg of it's remodeling project, and reopens this week. | Joe Cyganowski-For Sun-Times Media.

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Updated: July 27, 2013 2:58AM

LINCOLNSHIRE — When the Vernon Area Public Library closed its doors at 5 p.m. Tuesday, May 21 it was the last time patrons got to see a dinosaur, according to Catherine Savage, communications director for the Library District.

“When we reopen on the day after Memorial Day, the library will be enormously, dramatically different,” Savage said. “People will barely recognize it as the same library.”

The Library District did not perform sleight of hand, but rather spent $1.3 million to renovate and remodel the library in carefully planned stages that allowed it to stay open in pieces until last Tuesday and seemingly magically reappear this Tuesday.

As of Wednesday morning, library workers were in the process of returning some 20,000 items from the temporary library quarters at 4 Indian Creek Road to their refurbished 50,000-square-foot home.

In a sneak preview of the library earlier this week, Savage showcased 16 new spaces and the brightly-colored décor of a modern 21st Century facility.

Upon entering, guests will see a new lobby with a café serving coffee, soda and snacks on the left and the new “holds” section on the right that will allow guests to grab any material they have placed on hold, check out, and exit quickly, she said.

The manned and self-service checkout desks sit across from a retail-style display of audio CDs and new tables and soft chairs that have replaced old wood chairs, Savage said.

“These are actually comfortable,” she smiled. “You can actually get some work done in these.”

Adult computer stations are centrally located near comfortable lounge chairs with end tables and a coffee table.

The central bank of guest rooms was expanded from three study rooms and a computer lab to four larger study rooms and a quiet reading room with a fireplace, individual tables and lounge seats, Savage said.

One study room will serve as the Media Lab Room and will provide a massive Apple Macintosh monitor for publishing and developing electronic projects, she said.

A new teen area will provide a green space with chairs and shelves recalling “The Jetsons” cartoon and a floor-to-ceiling graphic on the back wall, Savage said.

Perhaps the biggest changes at the library are in spaces devoted to the smallest guests. The children’s areas will include a craft station, Velcro wall, magnet wall, 2-foot-high computer stations, and a Picture Book Room where books are sorted by topic, Savage said.

“If you like princesses, we will have a whole rack of princess books,” she said. “They will be separated by topic because that’s how kids approach things. The new library is about putting things into the hands of the people who use them.”

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