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A Real Page Turner: A Look Inside the Library

Posted on April 28, 2017 in Community Highlight

Home to books, magazines, audio books, kindles, movies, music, and more, the Pennswood Village library is the place for residents to go when they’re looking for a good read, or some quality entertainment.

“It’s always open,” says Caroline Swain, Pennswood resident and Chair of the Library Committee (pictured above, in blue). “You can go whenever, and check out anything at any time.”

Located in the Community Building, the library is easy to access. Conveniently located near the mailboxes, café, dining room, and lounge, it’s easy to stop by to pick up a new book, catch up on current events or check out a movie for the evening.

“We have about 6,500 books,” adds Caroline, “which is a fairly large collection for a retirement community. We also have a lot of large print books, a magnifying reader, and a reader that is able to scan materials and read them out loud.”

A Volunteer Effort

The Pennswood library is completely run and maintained by volunteer residents, with the help and direction of the Library Committee. There are about a dozen residents on the committee, and dozens more residents who volunteer their time regularly.

“The committee is responsible for deciding which books to order, budgeting, organizing the book sales, and solving any problems that may arise,” says Caroline. “Volunteers help us with things like shelving and tidying up. Everyone does a little slice of the work. It’s pretty amazing actually.”

Caroline became Chair of the Library Committee several years ago after she volunteered to help during the renovation of the library. Because the administration included the Library Committee in the renovation planning, as a volunteer, Caroline was able to help determine how the library would be arranged, and took charge of the logistics for moving the collection. When the seat for Chair became open, Caroline was happy to step up to the plate.

“One of my favorite things about the library is the large involvement of the volunteers,” says Caroline. “The other thing that really stands out to me is that about 75% of our books have been donated. That means our collection reflects who we are and where our interests lie.”

A Special Collection

This high percentage of donated books, with the rest hand-selected by the volunteer residents, makes the collection a relevant resource for the topics Pennswood residents enjoy most.

“While many of the books are donated, we keep it current by constantly adding new books people are reading, hearing about and suggesting to us,” says Caroline.

The Library Committee reads through book suggestions and reviews each month to make a determination of which new books to order. The group meets and makes a decision together to ensure that the funds are being put to the best use possible.

Another unique attribute of the Pennswood Library is its collection of books written by Pennswood residents. The collection contains nearly 130 books, all authored by those who call Pennswood home.

“Many people also use the public library that is close to us, and scheduled transportation makes trips there frequently too,” says Caroline. “But it’s so convenient to have the library right here. It’s a place that’s comfortable to people, and it’s truly a welcoming place that fits who we are.”

For more information about the exceptional amenities at Pennswood Village, give us a call today at 866-740-4977, or visit us online.