CASCO — The Casco Public Library will celebrate the beginning of its 60th year with an open house from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 21, and hopes to use the event to highlight its history and future. The public is cordially invited to attend.
In 1948 the Casco Public Library had its humble beginnings when a group of ladies known as the Farm Bureau decided to sponsor this project as a service for the local readers. Its first home was in the former Casco High School, which is presently the Community Center. After raising funds, the library opened for business in its current location on March 15, 1952.
In 2002 the library received a grant from the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation for an addition. In 2010, this same foundation made necessary maintenance possible.
Casco Public Library is open to the public 30 hours per week and has a collection of 26,920 books. In addition, patrons can find audio and video materials, magazines, CDs and a growing collection of educational and recreational DVDs. The library is also committed to employing modern technology, providing computer and 24/7 Internet access, including connections to various research databases and a free downloadable eBook and audiobook collection.
The library also offers a cafe with coffee, tea and baked goods, a free magazine swap, music collection, graphic novels for kids and adults and more. Copies of local history books and locally made products are for sale in the cafe corner.
Among this year’s fundraisers will be a Casco/Raymond Area Map, which will benefit the libraries of both towns. The first House Tour will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, July 16. Also new this year will be a raffle of two Adirondack chairs built by students at Lake Region Vocational Center, which were purchased for the library by an anonymous donor and will be hand-painted by two local artists, Donna Kantor and Susanne Pride. On July 24, the library will host a coffee featuring Maine author Robert Chute. This summer will be the third year of the Fairy House Challenge where patrons submit their creations to make a fairy village. An annual appeal and ongoing book sale also help supplement the library budget.