The Morning Journal (Lorain, OH)

Library to reopen science center

Boo By The Woods event returning this fall as well

- By Heather Chapin

DiscoveryW­orks, an interactiv­e learning and science center for youth, prepares for re-opening.

One of the main attraction­s is not only re-opening at the Avon Lake library next month, but getting a new look in the future.

DiscoveryW­orks, an interactiv­e, learning and science center for youth of all ages, is getting ready for its re-opening Sept. 7, said Gerry Vogel, assistant director of the Avon Lake Public Library, 32649 Electric Blvd.

Vogel has worked as the assistant director for about 15 years, and said the uniqueness of the branch is what drew him to the position.

“It’s technicall­y a small science center,” said Communicat­ions Manager Shea Allmont, who joined the Avon Lake library about four years ago.

DiscoveryW­orks has two areas divided by age groups and is the only one of its kind in the area.

“No one else in the state has this … It kind of makes us stand out,” Allmont said.

Currently, the library is surveying the public to ask for input regarding improvemen­ts at DiscoveryW­orks, Allmont said.

The project still is in the discussion stages, so further details will be available as plans are finalized, Vogel said.

Last year, amid novel coronaviru­s pandemic, the staff was forced to close the science center.

As the reopening day approaches, the staff is in the process of “extensivel­y deep cleaning” the facility as well as setting it up with finishing touches, Allmont said.

The Avon Lake City School district’s science classes use the DiscoveryW­orks facility to teach students in a hands-on fashion, she said.

Unlike other library learning programs, DiscoveryW­orks utilizes certified teachers, again setting the library in its own class, Allmont said.

“DiscoveryW­orks has more limited hours than the rest of the library to accommodat­e their handson classes and groups that use the space during the department’s down time,” according to the library’s website.

The library also is excited to bring back the Boo By The Woods event Oct. 16, staff said.

Tickets for the popular event go on sale Sept. 15.

The event will offer new attraction­s this year, including the Haunted Basement, Allmont said.

Additional­ly, there will be a number of food trucks, a haunted walk in the woods that abuts the library’s parking lot as well as trunkn-treating, she said.

“It really, truly is an attraction,” Allmont said.

Avon Lake Public Library opened in 1931 and has grown with its community, according to the library’s website.

Today, it serves a population of more than 22,600 residents, the informatio­n stated.

While there are approximat­ely 10,300 homes in Avon Lake, the library boasts about 30,000 librarycar­d holders, Allmont said.

About 20 percent of the library’s funding comes from the Ohio Public Library Fund with about 75 percent coming from local property taxes, state rollbacks and credits, the website stated.

Fines, fees, interest and other miscellane­ous income sources account for the remaining five percent.

Additional­ly, the library has several items it loans to its members such as bicycles, electronic equipment and more, Vogel said.

To learn more about the library or its programs, call 440-9338128 or visit alpl.org.

 ?? SUBMITTED ?? Avon Lake Public Library Communicat­ions Manager Shea Allmont in DiscoveryW­orks science center.
SUBMITTED Avon Lake Public Library Communicat­ions Manager Shea Allmont in DiscoveryW­orks science center.
 ?? (SUBMITTED) ?? Avon Lake Public Library Communicat­ions Manager Shea Allmont is shown in the library’s DiscoveryW­orks science center. The center was closed last year due to the novel coronaviru­s pandemic but is set to reopen Sept. 7.
(SUBMITTED) Avon Lake Public Library Communicat­ions Manager Shea Allmont is shown in the library’s DiscoveryW­orks science center. The center was closed last year due to the novel coronaviru­s pandemic but is set to reopen Sept. 7.

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