Saturday, July 23, 2011

On My Town's Library Grand Re-Opening

By Allen Bacon, The Daily Bosco

I am extremely excited about the Grand Re-opening of our town's Public Library this morning. Like a kid on Christmas Day waiting to open his presents excited.

From what I have heard this is going to be an exciting and great center piece...a destination place in our town.

As long as I can remember, the Fullerton Public Library has been one of the center pieces of my life.

When I was a young kid growing up in town, I remember the very first time my mother Lois took my brother and I to the old library on Pomona Ave. (the building where the museum is now). I was three or four years old. My mom didn't drive in the early sixties so we literally would walk from our home by Richman School to the library.

I remember looking up in awe when I first entered the building on Pomona Ave. A whole world was there right in front of me...all I had to do was learn how to read. And that was the mom wanted my brother and I to learn to read early. What better way to stimulate that desire than to go to the Fullerton Public Library.

Plus, the Fullerton Public Library had the coolest children's section. It was underground!!! And as everybody knows, stuff is just cooler underground.

From that moment I was hooked and I never let a week go by without visiting the Library. Or the Bookmobile...which would park out in front of Orangethorpe school every Monday.

I used the Fullerton Library for a lot of things through the years. I worked on many a homework assignments and singlehandedly wore our the Encylopedia Americana from my assignments from Richman Elementary, Nicolas Junior High, Fullerton High, Fullerton College, and Cal State Fullerton.

I would listen to the music upstairs when I was a teenager. They had this tremendous vinyl album and cassette tape library. One summer I spent a lot of time listening and absorbing jazz. Everything from Cal Tjader, to Dizzie Gillespie, to Stan Getz and Herbie Hancock. All through the turntable and head sets at the Fullerton Public Library.

In the early 80's as I was starting my business, before cel phones, I-phones, the internet, laptops and other mobile devices, I used the Library as one of my offices on the road. I would type up proposals and quotes on one of the Library's IBM Selectrics. I would make phone calls and retrieve messages from the pay phone outside the Library. I would make copies on the Library Copy Machine.

I researched my family history and researched other things and looked at reams of Fullerton Trib and Los Angeles Times articles on the Fullerton Library Microfilm machines in my early 20's. The people in the microfilm dept. became my close and personal friends..I was there so much.

I have seen great independent films and listened to lectures from great minds at the FPL. I even have been to a few piano recitals with my children involved at the Osborne Auditorium inside the Library.

The point is, I love the Fullerton Public Library and I can't wait to see what they've done with the place today.

I have a feeling it is going to be awesome.

Photo: The Carnegie Library in Fullerton in the 1920's.
Credit: Fullerton Public Library, Launer Room.

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