This blog is retired.

This blog will no longer be updated.  It is now a historical record of the Northfield Library’s Carnegie Centennial Celebration 2010.

Published in: on November 3, 2011 at 8:11 pm  Leave a Comment  

You can watch the History of the Northfield Carnegie Library right here!

The Northfield Historical Society made this available on YouTube, take a look.  It’s very interesting!

Click on the library to view podcast.

Published in: on March 10, 2011 at 9:56 pm  Leave a Comment  

Pictures from the recent Carnegie Centennial Concert- and a BIG thank you!

Thanks for the Memories

Submitted by Lynne Young, Library and Recreation
Services Director, City of Northfield

        A thick file labeled 2010 Centennial Celebration hangs in a drawer in the library office. Looking at the publicity materials from all the Centennial Celebration events planned and enjoyed by so many fills me with a sense of amazement and gratitude – and it also makes me feel as though I am compiling the credits for a major motion picture.  Multiple special author programs (including Siri Hustvedt and T.J. Stiles), twelve centennial concerts (it would have been 13 if we hadn’t had to cancel the last one), a birthday party, an exhibit at the Northfield Historical Society, a video production and premier, a “Party Like It’s 1910” event, a visit from Garrison Keillor, a spelling bee and the publication of a history of the library!  Wow! 

So many people to thank, so little space and time!  Where to start and where to end when we made so many wonderful connections during the year?  The obvious groups of people to begin with are the 2010 Northfield Public Library Board and the Friends of the Northfield Public Library.  As Chair of the Library Board, Margit Johnson stepped up.  She set a schedule, wrote grant applications to fund the projects, recruited people to work on planning various events, organized and introduced the Carnegie Concerts, helped with publicity, engaged Mayor Rossing to speak at the April birthday party, and did everything humanly possible to make every event an enjoyable celebration of the importance of the Library in this community.  Thank you, Margit!

As chair of the library board’s PR and Partnership Committee, Barb Altstaetter was instrumental in working with Hayes Scriven at the Historical Society on the Centennial exhibit and the DVD. (During Crazy Daze 2009, Barb also organized the taping of stories about the library.  You can still view these by going to the library’s web site and clicking on the Centennial Blog.  The format for the blog and posting of the videos was accomplished by Sean Hayford O’Leary and kept up to date by staff member Kathy Ness.) And for the joint birthday party with the Arts Guild in April Barb worked with people like Ann Mosey at the Guild and Mary Williams at the High School.  In turn, Ann worked with the staff at the Guthrie Theatre to engage Marcela Lorca to be the inspiring keynote speaker for the event, and Mary Williams lined up the High School band to play in the birthday parade.  Michele Reese volunteered to help out and recruited the Northfield Youth Choir to sing.  The Northfield Police Department helped the participants safely negotiate the parade route, Econofoods contributed balloons and other supplies, and Quality Bakery provided birthday cake at a reduced cost.  Barb was also the person who contacted Garrison Keillor and worked out all the details of his appearance here in October.  Thanks to Barb and to all the others mentioned above!

All the other library board members (in alphabetical order) – Jerry Bilek, Bob Bruce, Char Carlson, Bill Gruszewski, Adam Gurno, Jan Shoger, Betsy Spethmann were engaged and active, doing whatever else needed to be done.  Outside of the celebration, they continued to actively work on library budget issues, a possible library expansion, a downtown survey about the influence of library use and downtown businesses, and a fundraising feasibility study.  I cannot thank this tireless and committed group of people enough!

And then we come to the Friends of the Library.  Bill North has chaired this excellent group for the last several years.  He follows a group of exceptionally able and dedicated people (you can find a list of them in Everlasting Influences: A Centennial History of the Northfield Carnegie Public Library 1910-2010.)  Bill has been a tireless leader and organizer of the Friends and has contributed brawn as well as brains to the activities this year.  Whenever we needed help moving chairs for a concert, Bill was there.  Along with other volunteers, he was there to get the grounds in shape for the birthday party, and he and his family have been regular donors of popular materials (especially DVDs) to the library.  In addition Bill has worked with a number of Board committees and with Tim Braulick of the Friends Board has worked on a bylaws revision that, if passed, will allow the Friends to become “The Friends and Foundation of the Northfield Public Library.”

Mary Schier of the Friends Board has been the creative force behind the Friends’ newsletter.  Mary also researched and designed the beautiful 2010 Centennial Calendar which offered a great overview of the library’s history.  And we cannot forget that Mary has also been the organizer extraordinaire of the Friends’ spelling bees.

Betsy Busa, currently serving on the Friends’ Board, holds the distinction of serving 12 years on the Library Board and then joining the Friends.  Her support of the Library is unparalleled.  Kathy Sommers continues to keep the books and membership records for the 250-member group.  Diana Haselton Genova, Katherine Collman, Debbie Navarro, Charlie Black, Bruce Duffy also served on the Friends’ Board, lending their assistance whenever it was needed throughout the year.  The Friends of the Library also purchased Jennifer Wolcott’s intriguing sculpture, Dancing Bookheads, which was dedicated at the birthday party.

And, at last, we come to one of the reasons for the thank-you event held at the library on January 29:  the publication of a brief history of the Library by Bruce Colwell.  With the Bruce’s help, I wrote a grant application to the Minnesota Historical Society to publish an expanded pamphlet-sized history of the library.  (Bruce and Marston Headley wrote a brief historical pamphlet in 1998 for the centennial of public service.)  We received a $7,000 from MHS to research, write and publish such a history.  As Bruce wrote, he gathered editorial comments from Margit Johnson, Betsy Spethmann and me. Ten months later, we have a much more substantial history than originally intended thanks to substantial additional financial support from the Friends of the Library.  Particular thanks to Bruce Colwell, the Minnesota Historical Society and the Friends of the Northfield Public Library.

        The musicians who made the Carnegie Centennial Concert series so great deserve our special thanks:  Gao Hong with the Carleton Chinese Music Ensemble; Lars Skjervheim Spelemannslag of St. Olaf College (Andrea Een, Megan Peterson, Emily Joynton, Chenoa Albertson, Olivia Krueger, Nate Berry, Eden Ehm and Rachel Jensen); Dave Hagedorn and Kevin Clements Jazz Duo; Occasional Jazz (Mark Pernecky, Steve Kelly, Gary Iseminger , Dave Saunders, Daniel Groll, and Dan Curme); St. Olaf College String Quartets; The Brass Quintet of the Cannon Valley Regional Orchestra; Meredith Fierke and Steve McKinstry; Multe (Jon Thore Bjork, Drew Dixon, (Andrea Een, Bruce Jensen and Dagaz Wornson); The Vintage Band Festival and the WindWorks Quintet and Kentucky Baroque Trumpets; Roger Lasley; and the David Carter String Ensemble (Andrea Een, Lindsie Katz, Jenny Asparro, Elen Hartford, Laura Menard); student brass septet from St. Olaf College directed by Paul Niemisto (Matthew Nelson, Erin Meyer, Amy Meyer, Robert Eisinger, Kim Moren and John Vranich) and Fang Tango, the Carleton Tango Ensemble.

        It’s also important to thank those organizations that financially made our celebration possible – the City of Northfield and Rice County for the financial support of the library and its services and staff, the Friends of the Northfield Public Library, the Northfield Area Foundation, and SELCO/SELS and the Minnesota Historical Society and the taxpayers of Minnesota for grants from the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment.

Others we want to thank include:  Judy Code for her inspired and inspirational work on the library’s gardens and grounds; the Northfield News, KYMN Radio, the Northfield Entertainment Guide and for their coverage of the Centennial; St. Olaf College for providing space for the premier All Grows Better, a video about the history of the library, and, even more importantly for the time, skills and dedication of student interns Sarah Marrs, Kenzie Huffman, Kai Hansen and Joe Erickson; the “Party Like It’s 1910” presenters Scott Richardson, David Gangsei, Sam Demas, and Susan Hvistendahl; the Northfield Teen Advisory Board for their help with the birthday party and other events; the Northfield Union of Youth and Tim Freeland for providing programming for the birthday party; the children of St. Dominic’s school for a beautiful assortment of birthday cards; Bonnie Jean Flom for her song in praise of the Friends of the Library; and the City’s facility team led by Bernard Shakal for their help in making sure that the building was ready for the birthday party and the “Lucies” who make sure that the library is clean and comfortable.

        Although I have left the library staff until last, they are no less important! I particularly want to thank Leesa Wisdorf and Kathy Ness. They know what they did and it was a lot!  I also want to thank the rest of the library staff for setting up, promoting and attending events, sharing ideas and doing whatever they could to make the Centennial celebration a success.  Thanks also to Jim Stenglein, Eric Johnson, Chris Ennis and other spouses of staff and board members who chipped in to help set up programs. And I would like to add a special thank you to Andrew Carnegie – both the original Carnegie whose $10,000 gift started this whole thing – and to my husband Jim Young whose resemblance to Mr. Carnegie prompted me to ask him to step into the role and who did so with grace and good humor! And, finally, thanks to the Northfield community that enthusiastically supported and enjoyed the entire celebration year.

Published in: on February 4, 2011 at 5:22 pm  Leave a Comment  

Centennial Wrap Celebration and Book Release Event

7 pm January 29, 2011

Let’s celebrate the conclusion of a “banner year” in the history of NPL!   In thanks for the great year of the celebration, all attendees will get a free copy of the book Everlasting Influences; a centennial history of the Northfield Carnegie Public Library 1910-2010 by Bruce Colwell.

Published in: on January 7, 2011 at 11:17 pm  Leave a Comment  

Tonight’s 12/11 Centennial Concert has been cancelled.

Our centennial celebration ends this month.  It’s been a great celebration!

Published in: on December 11, 2010 at 4:21 pm  Leave a Comment  

The magic of model trains!

Another great Winter Walk!  Thanks to all those who volunteered their time and trains to make it special!  About 1,700 people came to the library to check out the model trains.

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Published in: on December 10, 2010 at 1:46 am  Leave a Comment  

Snowy Friday!

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What a lovely snow fall.   Be safe everyone!

Published in: on December 3, 2010 at 11:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

Looking for a unique gift? Try the library.

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Support the Friends of the Library while filling your shopping list!  We have colorful T-shirts for kids that say, “I became a reading animal at the Northfield Public Library!” and adult shirts featuring artwork of our library card that say, “The Northfield Public Library Card, your passport to life-long learning.”   The popular FOL canvas bookbags are also available!  Supplies are limited, so come in soon for the best selection.  

The Friends of the Northfield Public Library is a volunteer, nonprofit organization with more than 275 members. Since 1982, the Friends have supported the Northfield Public Library by contributing financial support for supplemental services, by providing materials for children’s programs, and by sponsoring activities for volunteers to aid the library and community.

Some of our aims are:

  • To support and assist the library in serving the community;
  • To receive and encourage gifts and bequests to the library;
  • To stimulate the use of the library’s resources and services;
  • To increase community awareness of the library.

Northfield Public Library 210 Washington St.  645-6606

Published in: on December 3, 2010 at 10:22 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Library’s Carnegie Celebration concludes Saturday, Dec. 11.

 St. Olaf Chamber Music Ensembles lead by Charles Gray

Charles Gray
Professor of Music — Violin and Viola
Gray earned a B.M. from Wheaton College, an M.M. from the University of Michigan, and he received a chamber music certificate from the Eastman School of Music, where he pursued additions study on viola. His principal study was with Paul Makanowitzky and Sylvia Rosenberg (violin), with Atar Arad (viola), and with the Cleveland Quartet (in chamber music). Gray was the violist of the Casella String Quartet, winner of the 1981 Cleveland Quartet Competition and the 1983 Fischoff Chamber Music Competition. He has performed as a solo recitalist at the Ravinia Festival in Chicago and as a chamber musician at the Aspen Music Festival and the Steamboat Springs Festival in Colorado. Previously a member of the Rochester Philharmonic (N.Y.) and the Grand Rapids Symphony (Mich.), and concertmaster of the Bloomington Symphony (Minn.), Gray is currently a substitute member of the Minnesota Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. He is also employed on the music staff of St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, Mahtomedi, Minn. In recent years he has been featured as a violin and viola soloist on many occasions with the St. Olaf Choir, St. Olaf Cantorei, and St. Olaf Orchestra. In September 2008, he was awarded “2008 Minnesota Master String Teacher of the Year” by the American String Teachers Association.

7 PM Dessert and beverages  7:30 – 8:15 PM Concert

Sponsored by the Northfield Public Library, 210 Washington St. All programs are free and open to all!   Supported by the Northfield Area Foundation, Goodbye Blue Monday, the Ole Cafe and the Friends of the Library.

Published in: on November 23, 2010 at 10:12 pm  Leave a Comment  

November’s Carnegie Centennial Concert

Come to the library for another special concert in our centennial series!   Saturday evening  November 13 will feature cellist David Carter.

David Carter is Professor of Music at St. Olaf College. He holds degrees from the University of Minnesota, Indiana University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Though legally blind as a result of the retinal disease choroideremia, Dr. Carter maintains an active performing and teaching schedule. He is cellist of the Melius Trio, Artistic Director of the Bridge Chamber Music Festival, and recently served as Cello Editor for the Minnesota String Teachers Association newsletter, StringNotes. Dr. Carter has served as Principal Cellist of the Wichita Symphony, performing as soloist with that ensemble in addition to the Minnesota Orchestra and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra.

7 PM Dessert and beverages  7:30 – 8:15 PM Concert

Sponsored by the Northfield Public Library, 210 Washington St. All programs are free and open to all!  Supported by the Northfield Area Foundation, Goodbye Blue Monday, the Ole Cafe and the Friends of the Library.

 SAVE THE DATE! Saturday, December 11 St. Olaf String Quartets

Published in: on October 25, 2010 at 8:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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