‘A never-failing spring’: Local library still vital part of community

Published 8:12 am Monday, March 25, 2024

With today’s technological resources, a library might seem antiquated. But nothing could be further from the truth, especially when it pertains to the Warren County-Vicksburg Public Library.

Yes, books still line the shelves of the local library that was founded in 1916 with the help of funds from library philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, but in addition to these hardbound copies, the WCVPL’s offerings include audio-visual resources, children’s
programming, an E-library, and an online catalog.

David Scott, who is the director of the WCVPL, said plans for the library are to also become more interactive with the community.

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“We are hoping to do more outreach,” Scott said. And that includes reaching out to other groups who are dedicated to “uplifting” the community and helping to make Warren County the best it can be.”

Currently, the WCVPL partners with the Vicksburg National Military Park and has had archaeologists and rangers come in during the children’s story time.

“We have had a ranger archaeologist bring in a kinetic sand table and the kids had a great time learning about archaeology,” Scott said. “Ranger David Dean from the National Wildlife Refuge also came up from Rolling Fork and he brought some animal skins, so the kids got to feel a real bear pelt.”

The WCVPL has also been offering sewing classes for adults.

“Myra Harris, our program coordinator, has found a very proficient sewer” to lead the workshops, Scott said.

Scott said the library provides sewing machines for the classes. In the future, they are hoping to expand and eventually have
classes for children.

“We’re just trying to make the library more interactive by partnering with the parks and local crafts people who can bring skills
that we don’t have,” Scott said.

On April 8, the WCVPL will have a booth set up in the Vicks-burg National Military Park for the eclipse, and Scott said he will
be part of the programming along with WAPT Channel 16.

The library’s summer reading program will kick off on June 1 and this year’s official theme will be “Adventure Begins at Your

“We will be doing our usual reading challenges and be bringing in presenters along with programs,” Scott said.

With summer still a few months out, Scott said an exact agenda has not been confirmed. But he said they are hoping to offer some type of field trip that would include attendees going to the Vicksburg airport and having the opportunity to “crawl around and get inside a plane.”

In July, the WCVPL will partner with the United Way of West Central Mississippi’s Excel by 5 program and the Vicksburg
Warren School District.

Scott said an Excel by 5 Health Fair will be offered for ages birth to elementary aged children.

“We are very excited about this,” Scott said. “We are planning on filling the whole library with booths and information and
interactive games and fun stuff for kids to do with their families.

“There will be demonstrations for parents on how to properly put in a car seat and seminar/class type things on autism and ADHD,” Scott said. “There will also be various health providers and local groups who will be coming in to talk about nutrition and early education and developmental milestones.” Scott added. “It (the health fair) just keeps getting bigger.”

Scott said all of the agencies who will be offering services during the health fair have not been “nailed down,” but participation is growing. Currently, he has a “rough commitment” from Delta Health Alliance.

“And the State Department of Health may be sending a vaccination squad to give out free vaccinations,” he said.

Scott said the WCVPL is also making long-term goals.

“As the audio-visual part of our library diminishes, as, you know, DVDs aren’t as popular as they were, everyone after COVID got on streaming and with audio books, cars don’t have CD players, that’s also shifting to streaming,” Scott said, therefore, the library’s aim is to turn the area into a “maker-space” with sewing machines and T-shirt presses and cricket machines.

“Not everybody can afford those things and if we can provide that creative outlet, people can do art or make a small business or something and by this we can help improve our community,” Scott said.

Andrew Carnegie once said, “A library outranks any other one thing a community can do to ben- efit its people. It is a never-failing spring in the desert.”

But to provide the “never-failing spring,” Scott said, the WCVPL will need the community’s support.

For more information on all the services and offerings available, visit the WCVPL at 700 Veto St. or online at https://warren.lib.ms.us.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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