Within the library, there is “A World of Possibilities.” That was the theme of the Douglas County Library's “DCL Air,” the opening gala at the Lone Tree Library on July 7. Instead of guests boarding a plane to travel to exotic destinations, the travel-themed event, complete with itineraries, entertainment and in-flight menu, brought the world to them.
As the invited local dignitaries and guests arrived, Haley Somolinos, e-marketing specialist for Douglas County Libraries, greeted them with old-school airline hospitality, a friendly smile, a bag of peanuts and a cocktail.
Once comfortably on board, there was plenty of legroom for everyone. The world travelers were free to enjoy sojourns in Asia, South America and the Mediterranean, where they feasted on local cuisine while listening to traditional regional music or enjoying traditional dancing.
Janell Ayon from Dancing Across Cultures led guests in a traditional salute to the four cardinal points at the South American stop in the second-floor Event Hall. To help her properly complete the dance, which has deep roots in many native cultures in both South and North America, she recruited audience members to participate.
Other excursions included visits to the often unseen inner workings of the drive-up book return box, stops at one of three outdoor terraces and fiddling with the Everbright, an interactive version of the old Lite-Brite but with LEDs that fill an entire wall.
No flight abroad would be complete without a brief word from the flight deck.
“There are a lot of messages that libraries give, but one that I really treasure is that people build libraries, and libraries build communities,” said Bob Pasicznyuk, executive director of Douglas County Libraries.
Pasicznyuk thanked the City of Lone Tree and Ridgegate Development for making the land for the new library available, and also praised library staff for their hard work in getting the library ready not only for the gala but also the grand opening on July 9.
“I can tell that this has been a pleasure. In large fashion, this library has been put together for about a week. That didn't happen just by chance,” he said. “I can tell you that there is an entire staff who have worried, haggled, moved and gotten awfully sore just putting this building together.”
In the book “Night Train to Lisbon,” Pascal Mercier wrote, “We leave something of ourselves behind when we leave a place. We stay there, even though we go away. And there are things in us that we can find again only by going back there.”
For many, the new Lone Tree Library will be such a place where residents can prepare for, take and return from their own journeys and dream of A World of Possibilities.