I was reading the old minutes of the Invermere Public Library and discovered that in 1963, Ray Crook was asked to build a shelf to hold the collection of library books in the community hall foyer. We’ve come a long way since then, and Ray has kept up with us with weekly visits to the library.
When my family moved here in 1985, we climbed the steps to what is now the Summit Youth Centre at the Invermere Community Hall. We were welcomed by Liz the librarian and proceeded to read our way through the collection. There have been three moves since then and each one has been a warm and welcoming place to be.
I started volunteering at the library in 1986 along side Edna Briscoe, Pat Lien, and Albert Rutgers. I was hired shortly after when Liz needed a well-earned holiday. She has been the constant in an ever-changing world. Aside from the three moves, our library has become automated. We introduced the internet to many patrons and now we are on to e-readers. We have two Kobos available for you to try out. We also lend DVDs, stories on CD, and Story Adventure Kits.
It’s been 11 years in the “old RCMP building”. It is wonderful to have the yard for activities in the summer and we’ve managed to squeeze in a comfortable chair or two for patrons. Lots of ideas have flown around about how we can increase our limited space, but as yet there are no concrete plans. It seems to be a constant uphill battle for something that is so well used.
Invermere alone has over 1,000 active library members. That can’t be said about any other organization in town. It is open to everyone, babies to seniors, long time residents and people passing through, residents and property owners from Canal Flats to Spillimacheen. It is used as an office, a waiting room, a day care, social networking, and for the pure pleasure of reading.
Ray Crook still comes in. We have helped him with his cell phone, an e-reader, and finding select books. He has shared tomatoes and photographs with us. He has helped us with history and genealogy queries. His lifelong involvement with the library is appreciated.