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Monday night, April 9th, the Public libraries and Friends of the Library of Simpson County held a banquet kicking off National Library Week. This week is the 60th anniversary of National Library Week.

County and city officials attended the event along with friends and family.

(Pictured:  Brian Kennedy, Pam Smith, Whitney & Brad Baker, & Diane McPhail)

Four counties comprise the Central Mississippi Regional Library System: Rankin, Scott, Simpson, and Smith. During 2017, Simpson County libraries had 93,823 visitors! The CMRLS had a total of 93,183 reference questions; 3,576 programs offered; 91,547 in program attendance; 169,984 public computer sessions, 2,970 Facebook followers, 518,424 website visits, 626,670 times items were checked out; and 7,618 new cardholders!

Pictured is the staff of the Magee Library with Walt Grayson:  Barbara Gauthier, Frances Meadows,  Kathie Jo Ward and Matt Pudas

The evening event began at 6 o’clock and was held at the Mendenhall Community Center. Approximately 80 people were in attendance.

Rhonda Benton, Mendenhall Library, welcomed everyone. Kathie Ward, CMRLS Branch Coordinator gave an over view of the libraries in our system for 2017.

Simpson County board president, Peggy Kelly, gave the invocation. The delicious dinner was catered by Sassi Southern Catering (Melinda Hart, Malisa Jones, and Phyllis Yates). A darling group of children served the meal. The young people did an awesome job and were very attentive to the guest.

Pictured: (left to right) are: Rebekah Crouse, Emma Wallace, Landon Bowen, Jeremiah Wickes, Joshua Wickes.
Front row: Lexi Thompson and Nathaniel Thompson.

Mississippi reporter, writer, and producer Walt Grayson presented the program. Everyone loves Walt!!! His Mississippi stories and library stories were entertaining to the crowd. Following the event, people lined up to have their picture made with Walt!

In closing, Magee Liberian Frances Meadows thanked everyone for their support and attendance.

Pictured: Paula Thornton, Donnie Thomas, and Matt Sullivan

Pictured: “Sweet Server” Lexi Thompson


Your challenge is to “walk in a library” this week!

Main Picture (Simpson County Librarians):
Kathie Jo Ward in very front
Next line: Susan Cobb, Rhoda Benton, Kathy Roberts, Mr. Grayson, Paula Thornton, Sylvia Kennedy
Next line: Joe Benton
Next line: Barbara Gauthier, Kimberly Cook, Peggy Kelly, Felicia Kennedy
Back line: Frances Meadows, Matt Pudas, Dorothy Vance



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