Sunday, July 17, 2011
A Library Tour: Westgate Branch
Wending my way to Westgate Library, the only library in the system I had never been to before, I did have the sensation of being on an adventure! I drove from Coors to 98th on Sage, affording me views of the edge of town, big sky, & desert underbrush-although I found Westgate to be in a pleasant residential community, definitely less rugged than some of the landscape I passed.
Westgate Library is located at 1300 Delgado SW, just south of Carlos Rey Elementary School in the NW corner of Carlos Rey Park. This branch shares its parking lot with the Carlos Rey Child Development Center. For directions by car or bus, visit the ABC Libraries' website. The library has 8 public computers including 1 express and 2 Spanish terminals. Westgate also offers many of the standard amenities of the ABC Libraries' branches: fax service; voter registration forms, None for the Road DVDs, & bus schedules are all available, but the branch does not have a magazine swap, community room, or study rooms.
Westgate is a small, cozy library-kind of library equivalent of the one-room schoolhouse. Everything happens in this one room-though they have to move some tables & chairs for storytimes, & their Summer Reading programs take place outside, in the shade of a big tree. Their one desk provides circulation assistance & information, the first ABC Libraries branch where one tiny desk does everything!
Westgate is Puerta del Oeste on your Summer Reading passport. If you stop by the branch to get your passport stamped, you can still enjoy programs such as Storytelling with Margaret Edmundson on July 17th & Ready to Read storytimes (for ages 5 and younger) on Thursday mornings until Summer Reading ends on July 30th. Westgate is also featuring a Drop-In Crochet Circle on Thursday afternoons until July 28th. For more information on Westgate's programs & events, visit the library's website!
Why you should make Westgate one of your Summer Reading destinations: location, location, location! Carlos Rey Park, right next door, is an 8-acre park with a playground, two unlit tennis courts, and a playing field. If I wasn't heading back to my own branch after my visit to Westgate, I would have loved to have spent some time there! Also, if you don't make it Westgate during Summer Reading, Carlos Rey Park will be the site for Arts in the Park in September-a good chance to meet some of Albuquerque's local artisans, musicians, and performers.
While you are at the branch, make sure you take a minute to stop by the plaque honoring library staff member John W. Bell, in whose memory Westgate is dedicated. I don't know much about Mr. Bell, but it's a very touching tribute.