The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.library.books
    MACK DICKSON takes a book off the “blind date” cart at the Fayette library. Patrons can choose a book without knowing what’s inside other than a general category. The books are among those designated for removal so patrons can consider them gifts. In Morenci, new books and staff favorites were chosen from the stacks and must be returned. Patrons get a piece of chocolate, too, to take on their date, but no clue about their “date.” One reader said she really enjoyed her book for a few pages, but then lost interest—so typical for a blind date.

Fayette library observes 40th 9.26

Written by David Green.

Fayette’s Normal Memorial Library passed a milestone in 2007: More than half of its existence has been spent in the building on Eagle Street.

The building is now 40 years old and an open house is planned Saturday in celebration.

From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. during the Fall Festival, the library will welcome guests to stop in for refreshments and commemorative gifts during a birthday celebration.

A library was started in 1931 as a memorial to the former college, Fayette Normal University. Alumni of the school donated $2,000 to buy books and Normal Memorial Library was formed.

 It first operated as a “free association library,” meaning there was no connection with any governmental unit. That lasted for a few years, but uncertain finances led the board to align the organization with the state library system and receive funds through tax receipts.

At that time—the early 1940s—the library became a school district public library, a designation the facility still has today. From its inception, the library was housed inside the school.

In 1964, Fayette citizens endorsed a plan to build a library separate from the school. Voters approved a five-year 1.25-mill levy to raise $50,000 for a new structure. An individual pledged $10,000 and planning began. In May 1965,  the library board learned that a federal grant of nearly $37,000 was approved, enabling a larger design costing $84,000.

The Eagle Street property just down the street from the school was purchased from Franklin Roosa and construction got underway for a facility that would include a main reading room, a work room, a community room and a small kitchen facility.

The facility was dedicated Jan. 8, 1967.

The first major change to the building came after about 20 years, said library director Sue Schaffner. The community room proved popular with residents, but the library was experiencing growth.

“As usage grew, we needed more room,” she said.

The timing was right to convert the community room into a children’s library because the Fayette Opera House had recently been restored and space was available there for community events.

This paved the way for the start of story hour and special programs for youngsters, both after school, in the evenings and during the summer.

The next big change for library operations came in 1996 when the circulation process switched from stamping cards in the back of books to an automated system.

Other service changes include delivery of materials to homebound residents, alignment with the State Library of Ohio’s Know It Now homework assistance program, and the availability of video, audio and DVD materials.

Registered patrons number 1,688 adults and 1,200 juveniles. Circulation reached about 67,000 last year.

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