Wichita Falls Public Library officials are looking to upgrade some of the chairs in the children’s area and are turning to the community to help.
According to library administrator Jana Hausburg, many of the chairs in the library are from the 1950s, and even though they are holding up, it’s time for some new ones—especially in the children’s area.
Some of the current chairs have been picked up and then painted or decorated and then auctioned off with the money going back to the library.
Emily Adams, a member of the library board, saw the idea for a “chair-ity” online and thought it was a great way to get the community involved in helping with some improvements at the library, so administrators set aside 60 chairs for community members to decorate and re-vamp for a $10 fee.
“I think anytime you can get the community involved in the idea, they can take ownership of a chair, spend time decorate it, they’ll be more invested in the fundraiser and it will draw more people to it,” Adams said. “That’s what we are hoping.”
The library staff has been working on making a few improvements in the children’s area and the chairs are the next step.
“The staff, especially the children’s department staff, has been painting. You can see the vibrant colors,” Hausburg said. “We have been purchasing some new little tables. The one behind me is like a marker board table, so the kids can mark on it over time we would like to get more things like that. They are very expensive. When Emily had this idea we thought this is a nice way to use another resource for funding.”
The goal is to bring in new furniture that is more inviting to children and children staying longer will have plenty of benefits
“New bright furniture will engage families in a way that will extend literacy, invite exploration and imagination,” Hausurg said. “It will provide a very welcoming space for children to come and really explore the books we have here.”
All of the chairs that are going to be painted and then auctions have already been claimed and seeing that kind of support means so much to everyone at the library.
“We have had a lot of interest from the community,” Hausburg said. “In fact, the email I sent to all the city employees, that had a huge repsonse. We had many people come and like 20 chairs disappeared in one day. I think it’s great. It really makes me feel good.”
Hausburg said it’s great the community is coming together to help the library better teach the next generation.
The library hosts several arts and crafts events throughout the year and partners with others Wichita Falls area organization as well as a variety of activities for all ages.
The library staff members have a few ideas in mind for what kind of furniture they want, but what they buy all depends on how much money the auction brings in. There is not a date set for the auction yet, but it will most likely be the first week of May.