Library assistant Kim Whiting and page Lorna Voykin (right) do some decorating at the opening of the upgraded second floor of Red Deer’s downtown public library. (Photo by Lana Michelin, Advocate staff).

Red Deer library has bigger tech plans for renewed space

Digital literacy area to be expanded

An expanded “digital literacy” area is being planned for the renovated second-floor of Red Deer’s downtown public library.

Patrons might be able to learn such skills as working a 3-D printer, or creating in Photoshop, InDesign or other computer programs in an open area behind the book stacks, said Briana Ehnes, manager of the library’s adult services.

Community members will likely be questioned about where their technological interests lie once a new digital literacy manager is hired. Ehnes said this position was recently upgraded to permanent, full-time from a contract position in recognition of the additional duties.

The library already has a digital area in which patrons can learn how to use iPads and how to load library ebooks into their readers. “It’s super basic. We’re moving on to more advanced stuff,” said Ehnes.

Once community interest is pinpointed, Ehnes expects government grants will be needed to purchase some new tech equipment.

The library’s second-floor upgrade was officially opened to the public on Monday, with refreshments, balloons, and self-guided tours.

The City of Red Deer provided $380,000 to renew the space that holds DVDs, CDs, audio books and adult fiction, since it hadn’t been improved in decades.

The old coffered ceiling was replaced and slightly raised, lighting was changed to brighter and more energy-efficient fixtures, a fountain and bottle filler were added, and workers removed old wood panelling, cleaned the carpets and painted the walls.

Also, a ceiling track was provided for the wiring and cabling needs for an expanded digital area.

Library CEO Christina Wilson said the provincial government gave an additional $155,000 for the project, part of which will go for new furnishings. She expressed appreciation for this grant — and also for the government maintaining library funding at last year’s levels — to Red Deer North MLA Kim Schreiner, who was at the opening.

Schreiner said she’s happy the NDP “values the importance of public libraries,” and their role in promoting community literacy. She described the new space as beautiful. “The colours are so warm and inviting… If feels like the kind of space where you want to be.”

Some library patrons were also impressed. “It looks very bright now,” said Christine White, who previously felt the space was rather dark. “It’s very nice,” added her husband Dan White.

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

WATCH: Families make yo-yos and weaved yarn at Red Deer Museum and Art Gallery

It was all about making yo-yos and yarn bombing at Red Deer… Continue reading

Solve mysteries with Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in Red Deer

At three sold-out one act Sherlock Holmes plays in Red Deer, theatre… Continue reading

Quebec man arrested in slaying of Alberta woman 16 years ago

AIRDRIE, Alta. — A Quebec man has been arrested in the slaying… Continue reading

Construction underway at Medicine River Wildlife Centre in Red Deer

The new building is twice the size of the old one

Fish for free

No license is required to ice fish on Family Day weekend

WATCH Replay Red Deer Feb. 18: Your weekly news highlights

Watch news from Red Deer and Central Alberta

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Trump gets angry about election meddling, but not at Russia

‘Weirdest thing’: Trump expresses anger, but not over Russian election-meddling

New doping charge could hurt Russia’s chance at reinstatement

Russia could lose its chance to be reinstated before the end of the Winter Olympics because of a doping charge against curling bronze medallist Alexander Krushelnitsky.

#Metoo movement causing confusion in many men, fear of missteps with women: experts

Being painted by the same sweeping brush as those alleged to have mistreated women has angered men

Virtue and Moir break their own world record

Virtue and Moir break short dance record to sit first in ice dance at Olympics

Calgary man dies in Mexico following sudden illness

Troy Black was with his wife, Lindsay, in Puerto Vallarta when he began vomiting blood on Thursday

Life or death main decision for school shooting suspect

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — The evidence against the Florida school shooting suspect… Continue reading

Man who stole millions from Seabird Island band sentenced to 4.5 years jail

Stephen MacKinnon sentenced in Chilliwack court for stealing $2.3 million over eight years

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month