Thanks to grants from the Tolland Public Library Foundation in 2017, patrons of the Tolland Public Library could use a 3D printer, research their family tree, meet award-winning authors and learn how to start their own business.
All of these services and more were provided by $22,964 in grants the foundation made to the library in 2017, using income from its Eaton-Dimock-King Endowment.
The foundation’s largest grants came for technology as the library expanded into the old Hicks gym in town hall. They included $4,885 to purchase the projector and sound system for the new Library Program Room and $3,500 to buy a 3D printer, laptop, software, a light tracing box and media conversion equipment for the new library Maker Space.
Library Director Barbara Pettijohn urged library patrons to sign up for lessons on using the equipment and thanked the foundation for its support.
“As the library expansion was being finished in 2017, the foundation’s grants were essential in helping us to outfit the Program Room and Maker Space with technology that was not included in the project budget,’’ she said. “I truly appreciate the foundation’s support.”
Grants from the foundation also funded the Ancestry.com, JobNow and A to Z Database for residents to conduct research on their ancestors, on how to find a job and on companies nationwide, respectively.
A foundation grant is also funding a Tumblebooks subscription for the library. The online database includes 1,100 titles for children in kindergarten through sixth grade, including animated picture books and read-along chapter books.
The foundation also held its sixth annual Teen Poetry Slam in March with more than a dozen enthusiastic poets and is planning its seventh annual slam on April 5. Entry forms will be available soon at the library at 21 Tolland Green.
In 2017, foundation grants also brought authors P.W. Catanese and Caragh O’Brien to the library as well as author/illustrator David Biedryzycki as part of its Eaton-Dimock-King Authors Series. The foundation also sponsored a zentangle workshop in which library patrons learned how to make drawings using repetitive art patterns.
Tolland residents hoping to start their own business also received useful advice from a lawyer and insurance executive, thanks to a foundation grant.
Linda Byam, president of the foundation board of directors, urged residents to attend its programs this year and to check out all of the offerings in the expanded library.
“Our library is a Tolland treasure, and the expansion is allowing it to truly become a community hub for residents of all ages,’’ she said.
For more information on the Maker Space and databases, call the library at 860-871-3620.