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April 3, 2020

2/5/2020 4:03:00 PM
Library history lesson

Dear Ken,
I am touched and honored by your recognition this month (as 2019’s unsung hero – ed.). Thank you.
Many amazing unsung heroes in our community have come together over the years in support of the library. Our tiny town shares a big heart and a commitment to quality of life that is remarkable!
When we planned our move to La Conner about 15 years ago, the presence of a library in town surprised me. Then I learned there has been a library here since the late 1920s. Volunteers made it all possible at the beginning with their time and donations of books and furnishings. Over the years the library grew to be an important community resource with the help of the Town and an active Friends of the Library group.
By 1990 it was clear that the library needed a stable source of income to continue to grow and serve community needs. The mayor and other citizens of La Conner decided to ask for help. In 1993 Sen. Mary Margaret Haugen successfully sponsored legislation to allow the creation of a rural partial-county library district, with its own taxing ability. The bill was signed into law, followed by a vote of La Conner citizens to form the first such library district in Washington state. On Nov. 26, 1993, the La Conner Regional Library opened its doors in the old Hallmark shop at 614 Morris Street and flourished at this location for many years. Over time, space limitations led the library board to consider the library’s future. In 2012 the board bought the property at 520 Morris Street and the Library Thrift Shop opened the next year, run by the Friends with the help of Kiwanis.
Turn the calendar to fall 2021, when the new La Conner Swinomish Library will open its doors to the future, welcoming everyone to a destination for life-long discovery and inspiration!
Thank you to all who helped – and keep helping – our little library to get there.
Susan Macek, director
La Conner Library Foundation
Interim Director, La Conner Regional Library

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