Chapel Hill Library Looking for Artists

CHAPEL HILL – Whether you doodle in page margins or you’re being hired to redo the Sistine Chapel, the Chapel Hill Library wants your artistic talent.

Artists of all ages can submit original artwork as part of the Chapel Hill Public Library’s trading card project for Banned Books Week.

Library director Susan Brown previously implemented this program at Lawrence Public Library in Lawrence, Kansas, for which she won the John Cotton Dana Library Public Relations Award.

Artists should submit 5” by 7” artwork and include the name of the book or author who inspired the piece and a one to two paragraph statement explaining the piece. Artwork and statements can be dropped off at the library or mailed to Shannon Bailey at 100 Library Drive, Chapel Hill, NC27514. Entries are accepted until August 19.

Banned Books Week is from September 22 to 28 each year and is a celebration of the freedom to read.

OC Residents Voice Concern Over County’s Building Plans

CHAPEL HILL- While many are focused on next year’s school budget, members of Orange County Voice are looking ahead to the county’s long-term building plans.

At a public hearing on Thursday, Orange County Voice President Bonnie Hauser asked the board to rethink the list of projects in the county’s $172 million dollar five-year capital investment plan.

“We fear that the county is too focused on new buildings, new campuses and new facilities and there’s not enough attention on the the quality and effectiveness of services,” said Hauser.

She critiqued both the $6.5 million dollar expansion of the Southern Human Services Center planned for 2016, and next year’s $1.5 million dollar renovation to the Whitted Building to provide a permanent meeting space for local governments.

“We’re hearing way too much from architects and designers, and not enough from the major stakeholders and experts on the ground including the professionals, the agencies, the schools, and the everyday users of the county services,” said Hauser. “We ask you to change the way the county plans for our future and make service, not buildings, a priority.”

Marilee McTigue argued in favor of improving cooperation between the Chapel Hill and Orange County library systems before the county invests $7 million dollars to build a library just a few miles away from Chapel Hill’s.

“So the question needs to be asked, should we make significant investments in library facilities, just because it’s been difficult to work with Chapel Hill?” asked McTigue. “What about the rural residents need for library services, many of whom travel more than 15 miles to get to a library. How will there needs be met, and where will the money come from?”

In both cases, Orange County Voice members asked the board to consider creating stakeholder work groups to assess community needs before committing funding to the projects.

The board also heard from those seeking funding for a variety on nonprofits. Northside resident Keith Edwards said Habitat for Humanity’s Brush with Kindness program has proved invaluable in her neighborhood. Volunteers helped repair her house in May.

“The experience was amazing. I know sooner or later I’m going to break down in tears of joy, because I’ve been asking God, ‘Why me?’” said Edwards. “I had a choice between getting dental work done or fixing my house. I chose the dental work, didn’t know how I was going to fix my house, and God blessed me with a brush of kindness.”

Representatives from the Carrboro ArtsCenter and the Marian Cheek Jackson Center also made their case for funding to support children’s programing and neighborhood preservation.

Commissioners will continue budget deliberations at a work session next Thursday at the Southern Human Services Center on Homestead Road.

OC Library’s Strategic Plan Gets Attention Tuesday Night

ORANGE COUNTY – County Commissioners will review a strategic plan for the future of Orange County’s library system when the board meets Tuesday.

Anthony Chow, an assistant professor at UNC-Greensboro, will present the results of a seven month study examining how and where the county’s library system should grow.

The board will also discuss the need for a new county jail facility, and look at local programs that offer alternatives to incarceration.

The board meets Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. at the Southern Human Services Center on Homestead Road.



Chapel Hill Public Library Celebration

Hundreds of local residents gathered Saturday afternoon at the site of the Chapel Hill Public Library off Estes Drive to celebrate the opening of its newly renovated facility— a project that’s been about a decade in the making.