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Four Staters "Come Out of the Woodwork" to New Joplin Library - KOAM TV 7

Four Staters "Come Out of the Woodwork" to New Joplin Library

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Joplin, MO -

It's been a busy few weeks for Joplin library workers in their new building.  They've been working almost nonstop because more people have been visiting the new library location.

They say you can get a glimpse of a book by its front cover.  Try to keep up with the front covers of books 10-year-old Kennah Scheurich has checked out from the Joplin Library.

"So this one is Anne of Green Gables," says Scheurich.  "It's an audio book.  And Audacity Jones is one of my favorites.  She goes to help the President stop a kidnapping.  It's really cool."

Scheurich has eight books to read or listen to before she comes back to the library in a couple of weeks.  She says it sometimes takes a week to go through that many books.

20-year-old Austin Henady is a frequent visitor of the new library, too.  He went to the old library once a year, but has already been to the new building twice in the past two weeks.

"The old one, you felt like, get in and get out.  Here, you feel like you just want to relax and hang out," says Henady.

Jacque Gage is the Joplin Library director.

"I really think it's almost a change of atmosphere," says Gage.

Kids like Scheurich now have a whole section of the library to themselves.  Gage says the casual yet trendy atmosphere of the building has been a solid attraction so far.

"We have just been busy!  There are people coming out of the woodwork all the time," says Gage.  "It has been fun, because it has been a good busy!"

There has been a 42 percent increase in visitors, and a 39 percent increase in book circulation.  The library has issued more than 23 hundred new membership cards in the past seven weeks the building has been open.

"It's encouraging life-long learning," says Gage.

"When you're at home, you would rather watch TV.  But now, with a place like this, you can spend your day reading and not even think about it," says Henady.

The younger generation especially appreciates all the new technology, like self checkout.  Scheurich never forgets the past, though, to better appreciate the now.

"The tornado.  How they got back together after the Joplin tornado.  How they rebuilt everything," says Scheurich.

Turns out, this new library is teaching and enriching lives in many unique ways.

The library is working to be even more accommodating to people.  Next week, an outdoor library locker will be installed for people to pick up books when the library is closed.

Soon, a 3D printer will be installed at the library for people to use their creative thinking not just while reading.

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