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Community turns out to celebrate new Rogue River library

ROGUE RIVER ' Although the remodeled Rogue River Library has more than tripled in size, parking couldn't accommodate the community turnout for the library's grand opening Sunday.

More than a year of construction transformed the former library's 3,800 square feet of space into an 11,460-square foot expanse that will allow the collection of books to grow over 25 years, library administrators said.

Sixth-grader Chelsea Angeletti was already excited about the larger section dedicated to children and young adult reading as she pulled an illustrated copy of Francis Hodgeson Burnett's The Secret Garden from a roomy shelf.

This is such a better library, Angeletti said. In the old library ... you were limited to only a few books.

The children's section also boasts pint-sized tables and chairs, a plush reading rug in primary colors, computer stations with Internet access and a desk for the children's librarian.

Across the lobby, the adult section has an expanded reference collection and eight Internet terminals. Two conference rooms are available by reservation to the public.

There's so much room to grow, said 82-year-old Rogue River resident Tommie Daly.

I'm so tickled for our little town to have this.

The expansion project was funded by a &

36;38.9 million bond measure passed in May 2000 that constructed or remodeled 14 libraries in Jackson County. Rogue River's is the county's fourth library to reopen since Dec. — last year.

Always a draw for Josephine County residents, the expanded library will most likely be even more important as a regional hub, said Scott Rayburn, chairman of the Jackson County Library advisory committee. Patrons can access books from any Jackson or Josephine County library, as well as from Rogue Community College.

Book sales by the Rogue River Friends of the Library will help put more volumes on the shelves, said Mary O'Cain, a long-time patron and library Friend.

The Friends sell donated tomes in a small shop located off the library's lobby. The proceeds support the library beyond what county funds can provide, O'Cain said. Library staff first inspect the books and claim the ones they want before the Friends put them on the shop's shelves. The store will most likely be open during library hours, O'Cain added.

The Rogue River Library is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday; from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday; and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. The library is closed Sundays.

Reach reporter Sarah Lemon at 776-4487, or e-mail .