Finally, the new library is open at the cultural center. And, boy, is it magnificent! Better than anything I could have imagined, even when I was working on the project!
As mentioned earlier, this is a joint project combining the Jasper-Dubois County Public Library and the Jasper Arts Department (excluding the performing arts center). I posted photos of the new galleries earlier. I’ll add the classrooms, studio spaces, and the black box theater later.
Today’s photos feature the new library. After nearly two decades of planning, votes, fundraising, the doors were open this week. I took my granddaughter for our first visit afterschool on Tuesday. Then went back alone for a more thorough visit on Wednesday.
In speaking with the library director, she said that people have commented on all the new books. She’s replied, they haven’t added any new volumes; the old library was just that over-crowded. Now it has plenty of room for technology, including a maker space, a teen zone, genealogy room, lots of quiet nooks and meeting spaces. Plus…the books books books. It even has an outdoor balcony for those who like some fresh air while they read.
For now, the entire Cultural Center is open six days a week with plans to expand to seven days a week sometime later. If you come for a visit, don’t forget to save time to visit the nearby Schaeffer Barn, the old school house, the mill and the train depot, all set along the scenic Patoka River in downtown Jasper. Admission is free.
A few weeks ago I eagerly posted some preliminary photos of the new Jasper Cultural Center in Jasper, Indiana. Well, they weren’t quite ready for release yet so I took the post down. However, even though they’re still not quite ready, some of the portions of the Cultural Center are now open. So I’m giving you a preview of those parts.
The three galleries in the center are open to the public. These are really awesome galleries, very large with clearstory windows. They are located in the arts section of the Cultural Center. The idea is to have staggered two-month exhibits featuring local, regional and national artists. The first exhibits this year are John Mellencamp, Gerry Wubben, and a group show featuring local and regional artists. Let me just say, everything looks wonderful in these galleries and Emily Colluci-Peak, the Visual Arts Coordinator, has done a marvelous job of hanging the exhibits. If you have some time, take a drive out to see the exhibits.
They’re still finalizing the classroom spaces. The atrium between the library and the arts section has no furniture yet but it looks ready to go. And the library is waiting for some shelving which is on back order. But the whole shebang will be open in another few weeks. I’ll be sure to post some more updates then.
If you’re feeling housebound these days and looking for a place to go for a drive, I highly recommend that you plan a trip to Jasper in southern Indiana. The new cultural center is at 100 Third Avenue right in downtown Jasper, near the river and many other interesting places to visit. Plenty of parking in the rear of the building (turn north on Mill Street, then east on Fourth Street). And many fine restaurants and shopping areas to visit. Admission is free.
Jasper is a small Midwestern town of only about 15,000. But the whole town came together to build this wonderful site…after many years of planning. Initiated by a major challenge grant from some significant local donors, local businesses and private donors jumped in to help. A decade-long community project has been finally realized.
If you are an artist looking to exhibit in such a fine space, contact Emily Colluci-Peak at Jasper Arts Center. The submission deadline for 2022 is February 12th of this year. Check out this link here. Click here to take a virtual tour of the three exhibits.
I'm a professional artist, retired director of a performing arts center, bona fide book addict, and enjoy the quiet life...most of the time. I'd love to hear from you or get your ideas for future posts. Come back soon!