A New Podium for Charles M. Bailey Public Library

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Mary Jane Auns, Trustee Chair, and Richard Fortin, Library Director, with the beautiful new podium made by Mario Meucci

As my grandmother might have put it, this morning I had to get up before breakfast to be at Winthrop High School by 8:30 a.m. I am a night owl, and while I’m usually up by 8:00 a.m., I’m not usually showered, dressed, and ready to go. However, it was well worth the hustle to be at the high school so early. Mario Meucci, a student in Todd MacArthur’s Furniture Construction Class, presented to the Bailey Library a podium that he built.

The podium was presented in a morning assembly in front of the students. Meucci spoke simply yet eloquently about how the podium was made of birch, just as there are birches at Norcross point, a town park by Maranacook Lake. Richard Fortin, the library’s director, thanked Meucci and noted how his gift would still be used in the library a hundred years from now.

How many students can say this about their work? This sense of doing something that will benefit the town well into the future is a subject I’ve discussed in previous posts about the library’s addition. As I’ve written before, most everyday people don’t have the opportunity to work on projects that will be around for over a hundred years. For me, as a volunteer, it has been very moving to be part of such a project, and it moves me even more to think of how this young man has made something that will ripple forward a hundred years. Speakers and authors not even born yet will be using that podium.

And what a beauty it is! Sleek, polished, and gleaming, it has the library’s logo on the front. It will go into the library’s new event room, which will be big enough to hold around 125 people. This birch podium will fit right in with all the wood furniture and shelves the trustees have purchased for the library.

Next week, there will be events and an open house to celebrate the new addition and the refurbishing of the original library.  (The library will be officially opening on June 1.) I’ve had ample opportunity to see the construction in progress and the finished results. Most patrons, however, have not had this chance, and next week will be the first time they will see the fruit of all the hard work—the constant fund raising, the planning, the revisions—that has  gone into this library project.

I hope they will be as thrilled as I am.

And thank you, thank you, Mario Meucci for the lovely new podium. It will be used for the first time on Tuesday, May 26 when Earle Shettleworth, the state historian, gives a talk.

Clif and I will be there.

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Mario Meucci, the student who built the podium; Mary Jane Auns; Richard Fortin; and Keith Morin, high school principal

 

 

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