It’s getting hot up here in Oregon! Today we went through Hells Canyon and hit temperatures in the triple digits. Made it to Halfway, Oregon, just after noon. Ate a massive lunch and then took refuge at the Baker County Library, Halfway Branch. What a treat to step into air-conditioning, find a comfy chair, and pull out my laptop for a while. Wifi openly available with a water fountain and bathroom nearby.
After working for about an hour, we introduce ourselves to Lourdes, the one and only library staff member at the Halfway Branch. She was busy boxing up books for tomorrow’s Library District book sale in Baker, proceeds to support the beautiful garden outside the library, maintained by the Friends of the Library (see photos below). The garden looks great today but Lourdes tells us it is amazing in springtime when the flowers are in bloom. It features two picnic benches and a table and chairs where people can relax and/or use the wifi. John and I took advantage of the garden, its shade, and the wifi, after the library closed at 4pm (beats going back to the hot campground).
Next Thursday will be the fourth and final program for the Summer Reading program in Halfway. Lourdes has a strong group of 10 kids that attend the program, a good number for a town with 300+ population. The upcoming program will play on the national library theme, “Libraries Rock!,” by focusing on the geology of Oregon. Lourdes’ ten-year-old grandson will be bringing in his rock collection and a guitarist will play music. The kids will also be painting rocks, one to take home and one to hide in the community for someone else to find.
In speaking with Lourdes, she tells us how residents support the library, even those that don’t use it. Many people do not have access to a computer or the internet, so the library fills a vital role here in Halfway. And the library itself, with its garden and welcoming space, is central to community life. We certainly enjoyed and appreciated it! Thanks Lourdes and thanks Baker County Library District!