The Strathmore Municipal Library hosted a Remembrance Day event, Nov. 10, to commemorate the occasion prior to ceremonies on the 11th proper.
Laura Henderson, assistant director of library services, explained the program was designed to be simple, drop in, and free to attend for anyone who wished to participate in Remembrance Day programming.
“We are just doing a really drop in, casual program; it is just an open program for families where they can come in and sign a card that we are going to take over to the legion – that is just one big, giant card,” she said. “Then, we are going to have Christmas cards for veterans that anyone who drops in can fill out and then we will send away after the event, and some story time and crafts.”
The library, in some fashion or another, makes an effort to host an event or programming for Remembrance Day on an annual basis.
Last year, though there was no designated Flex Friday event hosted, cards were still made available for people to drop in and sign. Henderson explained programming tends to depend on scheduling and when the Flex Friday falls during the week and in relation to Remembrance Day.
“Because this kind of event is on Flex Fridays, we typically have a fairly consistent attendance at any Flex Friday program, and then with this one it tends to have good attendance because people want to pay their respects and this is a way that they can do that,” she said. “This one happens to fall right before Remembrance Day, and the kids are off school, and we are open on this Flex Friday.”
On occasions when Nov. 11 falls during the week, the library will not host a similar Flex Friday event following Remembrance Day proper.
“Flex Friday programming is very well received; our Halloween program had about 80 people and so that was a Flex Friday as well. Obviously, a very different type of event but we do tend to see fairly good numbers at them,” said Henderson. “The idea is to provide some education, to provide some information and then also to allow the participants to contribute in some way. Sending out those cards, for instance, or signing the large card that we will take to the legion is just a way for them to participate in Remembrance Day recognition.”
Last year approximately 40 cards were sent out from the library to veterans. When the library is able to have a dedicated program, such as this year, they are typically able to send out more, as people will attend the event for the Flex Friday program specifically and to participate in Remembrance Day.
John Watson, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Strathmore Times