Hamshaw Lumber provides wheelbarrow to Orange library to collect money for renovations

  • Jessica Magelaner, director of the Wheeler Memorial Library, stands near the wheelbarrow Hamshaw Lumber donated to collect contributions for renovation work at the library at 49 East River St. STAFF PHOTO/DOMENIC POLI

  • Hamshaw Lumber donated this green wheelbarrow to Wheeler Memorial Library at 49 East Main St. so people can contribute money to help renovate the library. STAFF PHOTO/DOMENIC POLI

  • Change and $1 and $5 bills sit inside the green wheelbarrow Hamshaw Lumber donated to Wheeler Memorial Library at 49 East Main St. so people can contribute money to help renovate the library. STAFF PHOTO/DOMENIC POLI

Staff Writer
Published: 7/1/2022 4:02:02 PM

ORANGE — The Wheeler Memorial Library has welcomed a unique piggy bank as it looks to raise money to support renovations.

A few weeks ago, Hamshaw Lumber donated a green wheelbarrow to the library at 49 East Main St. so people can contribute money to help renovate the institution that is more than 100 years old. Library Trustee Priscilla Gaignard came up with the idea and colleague Candy Cross approached business owner Chris Marshall, who Cross said was very receptive.

“He was immediately on board, so it was great,” Cross recalled. “He called the next day with the wheelbarrow.”

The wheelbarrow can be found near some of the library’s computers. It is covered with green plastic chicken wire, with a slot cut out for monetary donations to be inserted. As of late last week, the wheelbarrow contained change as well as $1 and $5 bills.

Library Director Jessica Magelaner explained that, starting July 7, the town will have six months to accept or reject a roughly $5.2 million grant from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners for renovation work. She said the plan is to have the project placed on the ballot in November and hold a Special Town Meeting in December to vote on a debt exclusion to raise and appropriate money for costs not covered by the grant and donations. Magelaner said the Wheeler Memorial Library has been on the state Board of Library Commissioners’ waiting list for six years, nearly her entire tenure as director. One of her first tasks, she said, was writing the grant proposal.

Magelaner said she would like to have an accessible community room, quiet study spaces, repairs to the historic reading rooms, repairs to the crumbling plaster and leaking walls, at least one additional bathroom, and “a children’s room that’s not in the basement.” As for what will come to fruition, she said, that remains to be seen.

“We’re in the process of planning that right now,” Magelaner said.

She said Johnson Roberts Associates is the architect and Daniel Pallotta, of P3, is the owner’s project manager.

Reach Domenic Poli at: dpoli@recorder.com or
413-772-0261, ext. 262.


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