June 11, 2009
Thursday, June 11, 2009—The One-Card Tour continues. Last Friday afternoon, our group checked out the Dover Town Library, located, as you likely have guessed, in the town of Dover (in this case, Massachusetts). I can’t help breaking into the old song, “Put on your old grey bonnet, with the blue ribbon on it, while I hitch old Dobbin to the shay, and through the fields of clover, we’ll drive up to Dover, on our golden wedding day … ” Continuing on that tangent, I just found some neat early-1900s’ recordings of ”Put on Your Old Grey Bonnet” (plus a bonus “By the Light of the Silvery Moon”) at the site of the Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project of the Department of Special Collections, Donald C. Davidson Library, UC Santa Barbara. But I digress . . . (though will go back to that site at some point.)
The Dover Library received thumbs-up from all of us. Oh, let’s face it, it’s hard for us to give any of these libraries a thumbs-down. Still, this one has its own special vibe. From the brickwork out front, and this being an old New England town, I expected a darker, possibly creaky main floor. But when you walk in, it’s quite a different feel altogether. An expansive glass entryway is just beyond the front doors; you can take a moment to observe the sweep of the library before you become part of its activity. High ceilings, skylights, and extra-long windows provide lots of light. Your eye immediately catches the artwork along the white walls.
As far as selecting books, you can browse the stacks or pluck from stack-end library picks, “some great books you may have missed.” The YA area is on the main floor; comfortable—I’d say coffee-shop like, just minus the barista.
Where the upstairs is about light and open space, the downstairs children’s department is cozy and kid-scale. The green book shelves and classroomish-environment transported me back to my own elementary-school years, though the book selection is current and diverse. It’s a visually alive, hands-on room.
A note from the library’s Web site: The Dover Town Library has been ranked 7th in the country, and first in the state, by population category, according to the HAPLR library rankings.
Also noted on the Web site, if you need a new library card, you can donate one nonperishable item to the food-pantry program and receive a free library-card replacement.