The growth of a community usually comes in little steps; it changes over time, not overnight.
But Chilliwack took a big step forward this week with the official opening of the Sardis Library.
The facility has been lending books since early May, but on Monday it received its official welcome to the city’s growing list of public assets.
It was a true community celebration, and one that demonstrates the important addition the library will make to the south end of town, and to Chilliwack as a whole.
The 10,600-square-foot facility fills an important niche in the growing demographic of Sardis. It offers more than books; it provides an important and complementary resource to all members of the community.
Open for just a few weeks, it is has already attracted fans of all ages. It’s now not unusual to see neighours lugging home armloads of books, or children sitting attentively for story time.
The beautiful design provides a bright and comfortable atmosphere, offering plenty of light during the summer, and a cozy fireside nook to curl up next to on a rainy afternoon.
The multipurpose community room offers access to the outside, and the flexibility of after-hour use.
It’s been nestled in neatly to an existing park, helping to defray costs and expand services in the area. When combined with the adjacent playground, tennis courts, skating rinks and park space, the library is a great place for families.
But perhaps its biggest success is yet to come.
Although the new library is a great asset today, its real worth will be measured in years to come. For so many young people, the library will spark a relationship with books and reading that will grow with them over a lifetime. And years from now, when the library’s youngest patrons have children of their own, they’ll remember the Saturday mornings spent amid the books, and the treasures to be shared at home before bed.
Libraries help encourage literacy and that is something we all benefit from.