Jay library celebrated for its role in community

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Saturday the Jay-Niles Memorial Library celebrated its founding 100 years ago with a book sale and open house. Faith Jones of Wilton brought her grandson, Cutler Cash, was seen looking through a picture book about grandmothers. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser)

JAY — Saturday morning a book sale, furniture contest and grand opening of the new Makerspace were all part of the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Jay-Niles Memorial Library.

Avery Ryder and Lily Bailey were busy using large pieces of cardboard and duct tape to create a couch. They were sure they were going to win the contest.

Cutler Cash looked through picture books for children. Books about a farm and grandmothers were put in the plastic bag held by his grandmother, Faith Jones of Wilton.

The Jay-Niles Memorial Library held a book sale and open house Saturday to celebrate its 100 anniversary. Skylar Condon plays the piano donated to the library in 1925 by Eugene Niles, one of the five sons who built the library in memory of their parents Mehitable and Varanas Niles. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser)

Skylar Condon of Jay sat at a piano donated to the library by Eugene Niles in June of 1925. She has been taking piano lessons with Jan Gill, the music teacher at the Spruce Mountain Primary School, for two or three years.

Tammylee Tryon sat in a chair while looking through a library scrapbook.

The Jay-Niles Memorial Library held a book sale and open house Saturday to celebrate its 100 anniversary. Tammylee Tryon and Steve Bien are seen looking through some of the many library scrapbooks on display. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser)

At 11:30 a.m., Library director Tamara Hoke gathered everyone around a table featuring a 3-tiered decorated birthday cake. Before the cake was cut, she read a letter from Maine State Librarian Jamie Ritter.

“Congratulations on the opening of the new Makerspace – a fitting event which underscores the continuing eveloution and relevancy of your library,” she read.

In her letter Ritter said the Jay-Niles Memorial Library emodies the Maine State Library’s mission to help people, make libraries stronger and transform information into knowledge.

“The library has no doubt been the special “community living room” to so many people in your community over the last 100 years. From supporting book programs and interesting programs for people of all ages, to ensuring that you’re providing blazing-fast internet connectivity, you continue to demonstrate that you fill a vital community need.

“May this 100 celebration not only serve as a respectful reflection on your rich history as a library but also serve to generate interest, support and continued vision for the library’s role in your community over the next 100 years. Sincerely and Congratulations, Jamie Ritter, Maine State Librarian,” Hoke read.

The Jay-Niles Memorial Library held a book sale and open house Saturday to celebrate its 100 anniversary. Lillian Sears looks on as Ron Leighton cuts the cake he created for the celebration. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser)

Rep. Tina Riley, (D-Jay), presented Hoke with a Legislative Sentiment.

“We’re tremendously lucky to have the librarian we have. With meager resources she’s kept this library open and taking it inot the future with the Makerspace room,” Steve Bien said.

The Jay-Niles Memorial Library held a book sale and open house Saturday to celebrate its 100 anniversary. Library director Tamara Hoke looks on while Rep. Tina Riley, D-Jay, reads a Legislative Sentiment. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser

“I’ve been lucky to have the board of directors I work with, the many supporters over the years,” Hoke responded.

After singing “Happy Birthday” to the library, cake creator Ron Leighton of Winthrop cut the cake. Slices of the three-tiered chocolate cake which featured a depiction of the library on top were served along with cups of cider to the guests.

Leighton is the father of Jay resident Amy Ryder.

“He spends a lot of time with us. He’s always done cake decorating as a hobby since I was a little girl,” Amy said.

The Makerspace features a 3-D printer and sewing machine. Children eight years of age through teen agers can use craft materials and LEGOs to create a variety of things.

Meanwhile, downstairs patrons were seen walking through the stacks looking for the books they wished to read next.

pharnden@sunmediagroup.net