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Long-awaited new Granby library celebrated

  • <br/>Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/>CAROL LOLLIS


    Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books at the Granby library. The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning.
    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Janice Mcardle, the youth service librarian, leads a group of mothers and their children in songs and books at the Granby Library last fall as part of the library's Snuggle Time Lapsit program. <br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Janice Mcardle, the youth service librarian, leads a group of mothers and their children in songs and books at the Granby Library last fall as part of the library's Snuggle Time Lapsit program.

    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Jennifer Grant, the Granby library director at the front desk Wednesday morning. The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Jennifer Grant, the Granby library director at the front desk Wednesday morning. The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier Wednesday morning.

    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Last week's Mystery Photo showed the Granby Library.<br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Last week's Mystery Photo showed the Granby Library.
    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Carrie Schubert carries her daughter Ellie Schubert, 16 months both of Granby out of the  Granby library with the plans for the new library placed out front.  The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Carrie Schubert carries her daughter Ellie Schubert, 16 months both of Granby out of the Granby library with the plans for the new library placed out front. The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier Wednesday morning.


    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library. The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning.


    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Ezra Block, 1 year old  of Granby,and Diamond Feliciano, 8 months of Granby play, at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Ezra Block, 1 year old of Granby,and Diamond Feliciano, 8 months of Granby play, at the Granby library. The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning.



    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Beth Crosby and her son, Kiernan Crosb, 7 months both of Belchertown, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning.  The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier  that morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Beth Crosby and her son, Kiernan Crosb, 7 months both of Belchertown, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning. The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier that morning.



    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Beth Crosby and her son, Kiernan Crosb, 7 months both of Belchertown, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning.  The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier  that morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Beth Crosby and her son, Kiernan Crosb, 7 months both of Belchertown, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning. The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier that morning.



    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Diamond Feliciano, 8 months and her mother Amanda Turcotte, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning.  The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier  that morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Diamond Feliciano, 8 months and her mother Amanda Turcotte, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning. The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier that morning.



    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library. The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning.


    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

    Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library. The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning.



    CAROL LOLLIS Purchase photo reprints »

  • <br/>Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Janice Mcardle, the youth service librarian, leads a group of mothers and their children in songs and books at the Granby Library last fall as part of the library's Snuggle Time Lapsit program. <br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Jennifer Grant, the Granby library director at the front desk Wednesday morning. The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Last week's Mystery Photo showed the Granby Library.<br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Carrie Schubert carries her daughter Ellie Schubert, 16 months both of Granby out of the  Granby library with the plans for the new library placed out front.  The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Ezra Block, 1 year old  of Granby,and Diamond Feliciano, 8 months of Granby play, at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Beth Crosby and her son, Kiernan Crosb, 7 months both of Belchertown, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning.  The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier  that morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Beth Crosby and her son, Kiernan Crosb, 7 months both of Belchertown, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning.  The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier  that morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Diamond Feliciano, 8 months and her mother Amanda Turcotte, at the Granby Library Wednesday morning.  The ground breaking for the new library took place earlier  that morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS
  • Ellie Schubert, 16 months of Granby, looks through books with her mother, Carrie Schubert, at the Granby library.   The ribbon cutting for the new Granby library took place earlier Wednesday morning. <br/><br/><br/><br/>CAROL LOLLIS

Groundbreaking for the long-awaited new public library drew about 50 library supporters to the site of the planned $5.1 million structure Wednesday on 4 acres off Route 202, opposite Taylor Street.

“It’s a good day for Granby. It’s been a long process,” said Town Administrator Christopher Martin.

He’s not kidding. Library supporters have worked since 1973 to get a new library built to replace the 2,500-square-foot Carnegie Library, which was built in 1917 at 1 Library Lane, according to Virginia Snopek, chairwoman of the Granby library trustees.

State Rep. John Scibak, D-South Hadley, praised Snopek’s commitment to the library project, saying, “No one has been so consistent, so willing and so tireless in this effort.”

Last year, the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners awarded the town a $2.7 million grant contingent on the town’s ability to raise the remaining funds to build a 12,000-square-foot library with features including separate areas for adult, youth and child patrons, a community meeting room and Wi-Fi access.

“A library building project is a tremendous investment in a community’s future,” said N. Janeen Resnick, a commissioner on the state library board. “Congratulations on a job well done.”

State Sen. Gale D. Candaras, D-Wilbraham, presented the library trustees with a proclamation from the state Senate on the success of the Granby project.

Granby voters have approved spending $1.1 million in municipal funds for the project.

The effort has also drawn significant donations, including a $50,000 gift last year from the Dr. Thomas Bombardier and John Fowler Family Charitable Trust. The trust’s donation was accompanied by a “challenge grant” promising matching funds if the new-library backers raised an additional $150,000 by the end of 2011. The challenge was met through donations from local residents and area banks.

The Friends of the Granby Public Library have mounted a determined fundraising effort that continues, now raising funds for library furnishings and other items not covered by construction costs.

The charitable trust’s donation was “payback” from Thomas Bombardier, now a California resident, for his public school education and chance to grow up “in the nicest place there is,” said his mother, Marguerite V. Bombardier, 88. She and husband Gerald B. Bombardier, 89, moved to Granby 63 years ago and raised four children here, she said — three of them now medical doctors and the fourth an engineer.

The new library site was donated by Fred and Alice Stewart. Alice Stewart, who attended the groundbreaking with son John, said she and her husband purchased 75 acres with an inheritance and decided to donate a portion of the land to the library because “they asked me. They needed it.”

State Rep. Ellen Story, D-Amherst, said the new library is the result of “a wonderful, concerted effort by the usual suspects, and even not-so-usual suspects.”

“Libraries are absolutely critical to communities,” Select Board member Mary A. McDowell said. The new library “is living proof that the adage, ‘If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.’ There was a group of committed people who wouldn’t give up on it. All of them can sleep well and have sweet dreams tonight.”

Etta Walsh can be reached at ewalsh.gazette@gmail.com.

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