Way Public Library has been given the highest ranking of a 5, in the new Library Journal Index of Public Library Service. The 2009 edition of the LJ Index, based upon 2006 public library statistical data published by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, was released on February 15.
With annual operating expenditures of $1.6 million, Way was one of only 10 libraries across the country in its $1 to 5 million annual expenditure category to receive the "5" rating. It is the only library in northwest Ohio to receive a "5." Of the 7,115 public libraries in the United States which were included in the Index, only 256 received a 3,4 or 5-star ranking.
Way Library opened its doors in June of 1881 with 347 books. The library has flourished in the past 10 years to become a community hub and gathering place for many seeking to enrich their lives in a variety of ways. There are children's programs of all kinds, four book discussion groups, a PBS program club, play readers group, a topical discussion series, concerts, college and career workshops, lectures on historical subjects, intergenerational programs, author visits, a health series, and computer and craft classes. Way Library Director Nancy J. Kelley was named the 2007 Ohio Librarian of the Year.
On February 28, 2009 the Way Public Library Foundation will present its sixth annual fundraising event. This year's community favorite brings twists and turns, once again, in Way Library's version of "Dancing aWay with the Stars II". Proceeds from the event provide income to support programs and the Library Endowment Fund.
Way's annual event, which consistently sells out, is vital to funding for programs and the endowment fund. Our community has come to deeply value our outstanding programming and the endowment fund is necessary to secure our Library's future. Across the country, state funding for libraries is being significantly reduced. The Foundation's mission is to protect Way by securing an ongoing source of income to maintain and enhance our library.