“He stood breathing, and the more he breathed the land in, the more he was filled up with all the details of the land. He was not empty. There was more than enough here to fill him. There would always be more than enough.”
– Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451
My family moved to Adams County when I was a high school senior. I graduated from Ranum High School, which is now closed. When we first moved, there was nothing but open land north of 84th Street. There wasn’t much to do except roller skate and or hang out at the North Valley Mall. I was the oldest of six children, and our family never had extra money, but somehow we always had enough. At Christmas, all the kids would pool our savings and go shopping together, making sure that we bought an important, hand-picked gift for each member of the family.
When I left home to go to college, I never thought I would return. I was going to become a writer, hopefully famous enough to support myself. I worked my way through school – in those days it was possible to pay as you go. I waited tables, bartended and worked as a nanny in New York and New Jersey. My first real job out of school was at the Denver Public Library.
I never thought I would become a librarian – such a quiet, boring thing to do. Now, after a life spent working in libraries, I realize it is one of the best ways one could spend their life. Libraries are some of the most trusted organizations in the United States. Our work is about helping to support the success of our communities and our customers. Whatever the dream, the goal or the vision, the library is a partner, a catalyst and a connector.
When I found my way back to Adams County as the Library Director in 2007, I knew we had our work cut out for us. We rolled up our sleeves and, in a barn-raising sort of way, our team turned the old Adams County Public Libraries into the now-beloved Anythink. In September, we celebrate the seventh anniversary of the launch of our new libraries. At the ripe age of 7, we are beginning to understand how far we have come, as well as realizing the distance we still have to travel on our journey to supporting our community.
Our library world has been turned upside down or, at least, sideways, as we sometimes say. I am often surprised when I hear compliments from our customers:
“Anythink has saved my life… When we moved, I didn’t know anyone until I started bringing my daughter to story hour. I met my best friend.”
“Ahhh, I forgot how amazing a library could be – especially this one.”
We know our corner of the world is changing rapidly – more families moving here, transit centers, commuter rail. Our landscape is changing, and we have this unique opportunity to invent our future, not unlike how Anythink invented itself. Adams County is at a crossroads. What do you love about Adams County? What would you like to see in our future? What would make this place one of the best places to live, work and play? Help us make our future a reality. Because at Anythink, we believe that anything is possible.
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