Sandy Library Celebrates 25 Years
Aug 03, 2016 09:32AM
By Kelly Cannon
Patrons spin a wheel to get prizes at the Sandy Library 25th anniversary. —Kelly Cannon
By Kelly Cannon | [email protected]
Sandy, Utah - Residents came from all over the city to help the Sandy Library celebrate 25 years of helping the community. The library held a special party for patrons and staff on June 14 to recognize not only the library’s history but also the dedicated staff who have worked there over the years.
“Twenty-five years is a good standard to celebrate. It’s an important anniversary that people recognize,” Darin Butler, library manager at the Sandy Library, said. “I wanted to show the staff appreciation for the many years they’ve been working here and so something to show recognition.”
The party was a simple affair with crafts, cookies, drinks and several drawings for Barnes and Noble gift cards. Butler said that unlike the library’s 20th anniversary, he wanted to make sure the staff were recognized for their hard work.
“I wanted to be very big on appreciation this time,” Butler said.
Butler had the library’s marketing department make up blue ribbons that could be attached to the nametags of the staff members. On those ribbons were the number of years the staff have been working either at the Sandy Library or in the Salt Lake County Library System. Butler, who has been working for the library system for 18 years, wore his badge under his nametag.
“I hope people say things to the rest of the staff about their years of service,” Butler said.
Butler admitted he didn’t know if people would come to the event but it turned out lots of residents came to join in the celebration.
“One woman remembered when the library opened,” Butler said. “She said she appreciated us being in the community.”
Before the library was opened on Petunia Way, the old Petersen branch was located on 700 East. The library moved because it outgrew the demand.
“We have been the biggest and the busiest ever since we opened,” Butler said.
The Sandy Library has between 30,000 and 32,000 patrons come in every month and circulates 1.5 million items each year.
While the library does have 28 public computers, those aren’t nearly as popular as residents bringing their own devices and using the library’s Wi-Fi. According to Butler, as of February the library had 5,500 sessions per month, which account for about 10 percent of the usage in the entire Salt Lake County Library System.
“We have the highest wireless usage in the system,” Butler said.
The Sandy Library also has a series of programs available to the community, nearly every day. While many of the the programs for children are entertainment based, there is an emphasis on literacy foundations including reading, writing, playing, singing and talking.
“We do activities that try to build on early literacy foundations,” Butler said.
The library also provides activities for teens and adults such as gaming or cooking classes.
Kristen Wayman has been working at the library for the past 24 years and will reach her own 25-year anniversary on November 11. She started working at the library in high school as a shelver.
“It seemed like a nice place to work,” Wayman said. “I love to read and there’s something romantic about working in a place of knowledge and language.”
Wayman continued working at the library, eventually making it her career.
“I’ve always loved it here,” Wayman said. “We’re like family here. We always do our best.”
Over the years, Wayman said the major changes have involved technology. With the advent of the internet and e-readers, the library was concerned it would be out of business. However, the library has continued to provide resources for the residents.
“It changed the question but it didn’t end the question,” Wayman said.
Wayman’s favorite part of her job is working and interacting with patrons.
“What other job do I get to inspire people and create things?” Wayman said. “There’s no cheaper way to get knowledge and enjoyment.”
To learn more about the Sandy Library, visit http://www.slcolibrary.org/ and click on the Sandy Library.