‘beyond our DREAMS’
Community effort makes library renovation possible
November 14, 2012

By MELISSA TANJI – Staff Writer, The Maui News

LAHAINAʻʻAround $300,000 of volunteer work and donations were unveiled Tuesday when the Lahaina Public Library reopened its doors after a three-month renovation made possible by community organizations and volunteers.
“It looks fantastic. We’re so happy it’s open,” said Povi Larsen of Napili, who was reading to her 2-year-old daughter, Kailea, in the library’s new children’s section.

Napili’s Povi Larsen reads to daughter Kailea, 2, at the Lahaina Public Library on Tuesday afternoon, the day the library reopened after a renovation project. Larsen said they have been visiting the library since Kailea was born and had to drive to the Kihei Public Library while the Lahaina facility was closed.

The Larsens, who drove to the Kihei Public Library when Lahaina was closed, had already gathered up a bag full of books to borrow in less than half an hour. Mother and daughter sat on a newly upholstered bench, a donation from a business.
Povi Larsen admired the library’s shiny new green floor. The new flooring replaced the old asbestos tiles that lined the floors, said library Branch Manager Madeleine Buchanan.
“It feels great,” Buchanan said of the renovations as well as finally reopening the library’s doors.
Buchanan noted the various upgrades, 34 new bookcases that replaced the taller and old “mix and match” cases of wood and steel as well as the new granite-covered circulation desk, new desk for the public computers, new coats of paint and new restroom facilities.
“It really makes you appreciate what the community does,” Buchanan said of the volunteer efforts to renovate the 57-year-old library.
Over three years, the Rotary Club of Lahaina, with the cooperation of the Maui Friends of the Library, fundraised and solicited donations for the project, said project coordinator Sara Foley, who sits on the boards of both organizations.

11/3/12 From the Hawaii State Library System

Lahaina Public Library will Re-Open on Nov. 13


Lahaina Public Library,located at 680 Wharf Street, will reopen on Tuesday, November 13 at noon.  The Library has

been closed since August 14 for an interior renovation project that included floor resurfacing, repainting of walls, and

installation of new book shelves, furniture and circulation desk.  The 56-year old library overlooks the historic Lahaina boat harbor. 

                        The Rotary Club of Lahaina, in cooperation with the Hawaii State Public Library System and Maui Friends of the Library,

completed this $280,000 renovation project at no cost to the State.  In this unique partnership, the Rotarians obtained $40,000 in grants,

$155,000 worth of free services from 16 contractors, and provided more than 1,000 volunteer hours for the project.

                        In addition, sixty volunteers packed 35,000 books.  A total of 750 banana boxes to hold the books were collected by one of the

volunteers for 40 straight days, and 5A Rent-A-Space provided free storage and transportation.  

.      A Grand Re-Opening Celebration and Blessing for the Lahaina Public Library will be conducted on Sunday, November 18

from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.  The public is invited to attend this free event which will include the awarding of certificates by Senator Rosalyn Baker,

tours of the library, ice cream and refreshments.

                        The public service hours of Lahaina Public Library are: Tuesday, from noon to

8 p.m.; Wednesday and Thursday, from 9 a.m. to 5 pm.; and Friday and Saturday, from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. 

The Library is normally closed on Sunday and Monday.  For more information, please call the Library at (808) 662-3950.     


# # #



LAHAINA — The Lahaina Public Library facelift project got more good news
this week with the announcement by the Maui Friends of the Library
will fund a complete repainting of the building to make the outside as good
looking as the interior undergoing remodeling.

“Now our library will be beautiful both inside and out,” said Dorothy Tolliver,                                                                                                                   Maui Friends of the Library (MFOL) president.  The groups’ board approved                                                                                                                        the funding last week and a team from Scott Brothers Pacific immediately                                                                                                                          moved in to prep the building.

Working with two other volunteer painting contractors, Scott Brothers
was on hand for more than a week last month to supervise and help
completely paint the interior.  “They did an excellent job of  leading                                                                                                                                        the interior painting.  Having them do the exterior painting is a real plus,”                                                                                                                         said Sara Foley who is coordinating the facelift project for the Maui Friends of the                                                                                                       Library and the Rotary Club of Lahaina.

The success of three Maui Friends of the Library bookstores, the
oldest in Pue’enene, and new ones at Wharf Cinema Center in Lahaina
and at Kaahumanu Center in Kahului played an important role in making
the funding possible , Tolliver pointed out.

Jo Ann Carroll, manager of the Lahaina store who also is a member of
the MFOL’s board, said the stores  next to the Wharf center movie
theatres, at Ka’ahumanu Center and in Pue’ene continues to receive a steady                                                                                                                        flow of donated books to add to  already extensive extensive collections.

In fact, Carroll said, “we get more donated books than customers.
The more customers we have the better because revenues go to helping
all eight county libraries.”

With the library still closed, lovers of reading unable to borrow
library books in Lahaina can stop in and choose among 7,000 books priced from $1
to $5 to hold them over until the library reopens, Carroll suggested.
Also for people doing some shopping in Central Maui they can shop for books at the                                                                                                      Queen Kaahumanu Store which is near the entrance to the Sears Store.

No date has been set for the library opening even though the
contracting work has always been ahead of schedule, said Coordinator Foley.                                                                                                                    New bookcases to be assembled by Rotarians and other volunteers over four days are
expected to arrive within three weeks, she indicated.



By Sara Foley
If you live on what we call the other side , you may not know about what a facebook follower calls “one of the “good feeling stories of the year.” The emerging story is the $280, 000 community facelift of the Lahaina Public Library made possible by 16 community-minded contractors and others donating or deeply discounting services and more than 70 volunteers. The effort should inspire all of us.

“Lucky we live in Lahaina,” a longtime resident recently said at a meeting as he referred to the townʻs community spirit and willingness to give. The library project brings this into sharp focus. Interest in supporting the project extends island wide.

Seeing the dire need of refurbishing the 57-year-old library during a time when the state couldnʻt afford to do so, the Rotary Club of Lahaina worked with the Maui Friends of the Library to sponsor three benefits the last three years that attracted 600 friends of reading and raised $30,000. Rotary secured another $40,000 in grants and $155,000 donated contracting services. Thirteen contractors are donating all their labor and three are working for lower rates.

The Maui Friends of the Library is supporting the project as co-sponsor, a contributor, advisor and handler and dispenser of funds and the State of Hawaii Library System is fully supportive.

Two weeks ago, 30 volunteers in just three days packed up 35,000 books and 5A Rent-A-Space, one of the 16, brought them to storage. Kihei resident John Tryggestad of the Maui Friends group had picked up from four supermarkets 750 banana banana boxes to hold the books. He did it for 45 straight days!

Once the library was emptied, painters moved in on day seven. Scott Brothers Pacific took the lead and was on hand for six days and JD Hawaii Decorating painted 180 windows and put a first coat on walls in a single day. Crews from Steamer Painting, Inc. varnished wall shelves and did finishing work.

Painters went beyond their original commitment and volunteered to paint bathrooms and a back office area. None had ever worked together on a project. Castaway Construction helped with the move, site management and supervision. RVS construction and will build a new circulation desk volunteered to add the library logo in a new concrete entranceway and then decided to donate and put in a new front door so the door wouldnʻt scrape the logo.

Earlier, designer Rick Cowan of Archipelago Maui created the layout plan, made three -dimensional drawings of a new layout and worked with me to spend hours and hours on the permitting process. He also selected new furniture in coordination with Librarian Madeleine Buchcanan. North Beach West Maui Fund last year gave $50,000 to install a security system allowing the library Front Street door to remain open for the first time.

Assistant project coordinator Norm Bezane, my husband, has taken some 400 work- in-progress photos and posted more than 50 on a new web site timeline to recognize the work of volunteers. You can Google it by searching Lahaina library facelift. It has already had more than 500 views.

Lahaina volunteerism goes way back. The first “library” was stocked and maintained by local residents. Residents lobbied for a real lobby as early as the 1930s. When the library was finally built in 1955, Maui News reported, 145 children and adults worked on landscaping the grounds.

Literacy has long been highly valued in Lahaina. In 1834 missionaries installed the islandʻs first printing press at Lahainaluna to turn out Bibles and grammars in Hawaiian. The Hawaiian people became the most literate in the world.

Todayʻs facelift is a continuing story. Considering the excitement shown by all the participants–including contractors–the bottom line is that volunteering and giving back can be one of the most personally satisfying things one can do in life. Our Super volunteer John Treggestad of the friends group said it best: “This is a way of giving back, and then there is the warm fuzziness you get with it, too.”

There will be more fuzzy feelings next month. Volunteers have 35,000 books to transport, unpack and reshelve. Mahalo to all.
Sara Foley, board member of the Maui Friends of the Library, heads the Rotary Club of Lahaina project.

 _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________VOLUNTEERS REFURBISH



Project could become model

For state  and nation


By Norm Bezane

Lahaina News Columnist


LAHAINA,  August 27–On facebook it is being called the good feeling story of the  year.  A new web site,  lahainalibraryfacelift press.com has had more than 350 visits and nearly 50 photos are on a  progress timeline.

It is the $280,000 facelift of the Lahaina Public Library in historic  Lahainatown facingthe place where King Kamehameha once surfed and  missionaries built up the mountain the first secondary school west of  the Rockies.

Sixteen businesses island wide are donating largely free and some   discounted servicesand some 60 volunteers packed up 35,000 books and  emptied the library to the bare wallsin five days earlier this month.

Spearheaded by the Rotary Club of Lahaina with support from the  100-year-old non-profitMaui Friends of the Library with cooperation  from the State of Hawaii Public Library System, the library on a  picturesque site adjoining Lahaina Harbor is getting a complete interior facelift for the first time in 55 years.

The Rotary Club of Lahaina stepped up three years ago when it  determined the library wasbadly in need of a major refurbishing and  the state had no funds to do it.

Rotary held three Savor the Sunset benefits attended by 600 fans of  the library, secured$155,000 in no fee work from contractors, raised  $30,000 and obtained more than $100,000 in grants.

Planners believe the initiative may serve as a model for the state and  nation in an eraof statewide and national budget crunch.  Planners  will speak at a statewide library convention in November to explain  how to do it.

Some 28 packers the first three days placed 35,000 books and other  libraries into 750banana boxes gathered from four supermarkets by a  volunteer who collected them for 45 straight days.

Rotarian Sara Foley, project director and a board member of the Maui  Friends of the library says she is ?in awe of the businesses and  volunteers who have wholeheartedlyjoined the project. All we needed  to do was ask. Lahaina has long been known for its community spirit but  this more than ever demonstrates what people can do when they band together for a good cause.?

Under President Dorothy Tolliver, the friends group has joined a  15-member Rotary Club planning and implementation committee, is  providing advice and counsel, and is handlingdisbursements of funds.

Westin Maui Resort and Spa donated a portion of the paint.  Aloha  Mixed Plate isproviding free daily lunches for contractors. Lahaina  Plumbing Co. called in at the last minute to remove a water cooler  before a specialty company came in to remove the old floor, showed up  in minutes and volunteered to help.  ?We have read a lot about theproject,? owner Ray Michaels said.  “We are happy to come by and help.”

Volunteer John Tryggestad who picked up 750 banana boxes and has been  a jack-of-all-trades during the early refurbishing work said ?this  exciting project is away of giving back and there is the warm, fuzzy  feeling you get with it too.”

Operating like an energizer bunny, the 65-year old is a former  Twinkies Hostess Cupcakessalesmen from Minnesota who ?retired? to  Maui seven years ago. ?The Lord blesses me withenergy.  Yesterday,  was pure fun,?  he said as he hefted still another box of heavy books  for delivery to storage.

A local storage company, 5A Rental Space, donated a truck and driver  to transport the books, will store them, and them bring them back when  the project is finished in October.

First to contribute in a major way was Rick Cowan of Archipelago Maui,  a design firmthat produced a new layout and interior plan and has  helped coordinate the permitting process.  Project director Foley has  spent at estimated 900 hours recruiting and scheduling contractors as  well as working on government permitting, recruiting  volunteers and  supervising on site.

Major contractors participating in the project include Unitek of  Honolulu which discounted its floor removal services, RVS  Construction, painters Scott Brothers Pacific, JD Painting Hawaii,  Steamer?s Painting, Inc., Castaway Construction & Restoration Co,and  Ceramic Tile Plus,  West Maui Electric and Maui Communicators PR.

Contractors in a single day last week painted 280 windows that face  the harbor and Lahainaʻs front Street and added a first coat to the  walls of the 2,800 sq. ft. facility.

When completed the interior will have a few floor with embedded  symbols of the StateLibrary System, painting throughout, a new modern  circulation desk and new bookshelvesthat Foley says will bring the  library into the 21st century.

The  North Beach West Maui Fund   provided a good start to the transformation of the  library two years agowhen it donated $50,000 which allowed to open  its main entrance on busy Front Streetacross the Baldwin Missionary  home for the first time in 55 years. An alarm sounds when someone  tries to remove a book without borrowing it.

Another big boost came when the Atherton Foundation of Honolulu  provided a $30,000 grantthat will help defray the cost of new  furniture and other purchases items.

The State also came through earlier this year by replacing decade old  computers with a bank of new ones.  It also added wi-fi.

John T and some of his 750 banana boxes



 By Norm Bezane


Lahaina News, August 22—The Lahaina Library went bananas last week—boxes that is—thanks to super volunteer John TryggestadTryggestad who lives in Kihea arranged for produce managers for Cosco, Foodland, Safeway and Times Market to save banana boxes to pack 35,000 books for the Rotary Club of Lahaina facelift project of the Lahaina Public Library.   He collected them daily for a whopping 45 straight days.

 The good-humored volunteer who likes to joke would fill his van and makes two trips a day to the Maui Friends bookstore in Puenene where the 750 boxes he picked up were stored before transfer to the library last week. Super volunteer Tryggestad, describing himself as a former Twinkies driver, works for the community seven days a week (sometimes on three different projects a day).   He did not stop with just gathering boxes.  He was on hand along with 28 volunteers to bring the boxes into the library and hand truck the book laden  boxes back into trucks.  The next day he returned at 8 a.m. to disassemble bookshelves and move more filled boxes.  Some 250 were packed by a dozen volunteers the first day.

 Volunteers who joined in the packing ranged from  Kim Camache, a newcomer to Maui who is looking for a school teaching job and plans to start a non-profit to Rotarian and long-time Mauian Greg Nelson, general manager of Napili Kai Resort.

 Stopping for a break during packing, volunteer Diana Longobardi of Napili said she was considering how Maui has lost its small town atmosphere as she drove to Lahaina to volunteer.  Then she remembered,   “when you really get into the community, you see an outpouring of support.”  Willingness of people to volunteer, she said is “awesome.”

 Tryggestad believes that volunteerism here flourishes because  “people who come here are adventurous.  They have had successful lives and now they want to give back.” 

 Many of the volunteers are retirement age but instead of becoming couch potatoes they lead active lives helping not only the library, but cleaning up beaches and  working in places like the Friends of the Library bookstore.

 Tryggestad spends his time monitoring species of endangered fish for the Department of Land and Resources, working on beach cleanups that attract as many as 40 volunteers on a Monday mornings, selling books at the Puennne Maui Friends of the Library bookstore where he also serves as janitor and jack of all trades.

 The super volunteer, A former driver in Minneapolis for Hostess Cupcakes, maker of Twinkies  “retired” and moved to Maui seven years ago but has kept on going at the library book packing like an energizer bunny.   Quitting at 8 p.m., the 65-year-old says “the Lord blessed me with energy.  Yesterday was pure fun.

 “This exciting project is a way of giving back and then there is the warm fuzziness you get with it too, he explained while hefting another box.

 Wednesday morning new volunteers had a talk story fest.  John Lewis and Anna Barbeau reminisced about “the old days when the Lahaina Broiler, Banyan Inn and Blue Max were popular as they packed away.

 They worked and worked but also made new friends, becoming even more a part of the community.    










(Lahaina News, 8/16 — The long-awaited modernization of Lahaina Public Library got underway this week, as more than 20 volunteers packed 35,000 books and other materials for placement in storage before contracting work begins.

The book drop will be locked and not accessible throughout the project. During this time, the library’s floor will be resurfaced, walls repainted, and new circulation desk and book shelves will be installed.

Leading players in the all-volunteer effort include Rick Cowan of Archipelago, facelift designer; Loren Osborn of Castaway Concrete and Restoration, who is in charge of contractors; Rotary Club of Lahaina’s Sara Foley and Librarian Madeleine Buchanan, both of whom will be on-hand throughout the project.

“This is an all-island effort, with support also coming from a major contractor in Honolulu,” said Foley, head of the Rotary committee that is spearheading the effort.

Contractors contributing $155,000 worth of labor and services are based everywhere, from Lahaina and Kahului to Kihei and even Haiku, she said.

Surfers and others who park in library parking spaces when the facility is closed will not be able to do so at any time during the project.

Library spaces will be reserved for contractor vehicles that will be onsite for extended times during daylight hours. Non-contractor vehicles may be subject to ticketing and towing.

Borrowers who have books on reserve can go online and switch the pickup location to another library, Buchanan noted.

During the closure, a library bookmobile will visit the location to serve library patrons. The Maui Bookmobile is scheduled to visit the library on the following Fridays from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and 1 to 3 p.m.: Aug. 31; Sept. 14, 21 and 28; and Oct. 5.

In addition, patrons may log-on to the Hawaii State Public Library System’s website at www.libraries-hawaii.org to browse the HSPLS catalog and get answers to brief informational reference questions by using the “Ask-A-Librarian” E-Reference service.

Rotary initiated the facelift project three years ago with a $5,000 contribution supplemented by the Maui Friends of the Library to purchase new furniture.

The nonprofit MFOL has joined the effort, contributing funds, advice and counsel, and banking and accounting support. Rotary raised an additional $25,000 in the last two “Savor the Sunset” benefits.

When completed, the 57-year-old library will get a new floor, modern circulation desk, new bookcases and a fresh paint job.

Contractors are expected to put in long days to complete the project in a timely manner in coordination with their other jobs.

Lahaina Public Library is tentatively scheduled to reopen in October.

Patrons may call the library’s answering machine at 662-3950 for recorded updates on the project. An announcement will be made when the reopening date is confirmed.


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