TENNERTON — The Upshur County Public Library is experiencing a few new and innovative transformations under the leadership of Keyth Sokol, the library’s assistant director.
With just three months under his belt, Sokol is bringing fresh ideas to the county library, creating a buzz of excitement that’s drawing people in.
One of the exciting changes at the library is the introduction of a free coffee bar, adding a warm and inviting touch to the atmosphere. Drawing on his past success with a similar project, Sokol said, “I’ve seen the success that a coffee bar offers. People who didn’t even like coffee were driven into the library, and our program traffic increased.”
Local business Mountain Roaster Coffee has generously supported the initiative, providing the necessities, and Sokol said anyone is welcome to try it.
“Anybody can come in, and we hope that they’ll stay for a while or at least promise themselves they’ll come back,” he said.
Sokol recognizes the importance of dispelling the misconception that the library appears nondescript from the outside.
“It’s like a shotgun building, you know – it goes way back – and there’s tons of stuff in here, and it’s a beautiful inside,” he says. “We represent Upshur County in every way possible; we have something for everybody.”
In addition to the coffee bar, the library is gearing up for the Dec. 2 Dickens Festival, for which Sokol will be hosting a hands-on ornament decorating event at the library on Friday, Nov. 17, from 3:30 to 5 p.m. and Saturday, Nov. 18, from noon to 2 p.m. A free event targeted toward children ages 18 and under, participants will have the opportunity to unleash their creativity and contribute to the festive spirit.
The official Dickens Festival & Faire tree, set to be displayed in Jawbone Park, will be adorned with those decorated ornaments during the Dec. 2 holiday extravaganza.
Sokol is also keen on promoting the library’s free access to state databases for tutoring and educational resources to UCPL patrons.
“Those databases are all through the state, and we have free access for anybody,” he explains.
Upshur County Public Library staff say the entity is a dynamic space for learning, creativity and a good cup of coffee. You can learn more about their events and future additions at https://upshur.wvlibrary.info and by following them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/upshurwvpl/.