It was a beautiful day Friday, Nov. 6, with smiles all around as the community gathered to celebrate the reopening of Nicholas P. Sims Library to the public.

As part of the afternoon open house and tour, the Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting to celebrate the completion of construction work, which was overseen by Architexas and Nedderman and Associates.

Library director Barbara Claspell expressed her excitement about the reopening to the Sun and remarked on the new event room that’s now a part of the historic building.

“With this new addition to our library, it brings the old and new together,” she said.

Claspell held the chamber’s large scissors with Mayor David Hill for the ribbon cutting. They were joined by library board president, Steve Chapman, who said, “The idea of having this completed in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic is amazing. This is a beautiful place to have public gatherings.”

Hill said he “fell in love with the new addition when I saw it and I’m happy that it is now ADA-compliant.”

The $1.8 million project was funded through a capital campaign and is one of many projects to improve the library over the years. One of the first 10 public libraries in Texas, Sims Library opened April 26, 1905. It was constructed on land donated by Waxahachie’s first mayor, W.H. Getzendaner.

“This is a wonderful occasion,” said Sandy King, chamber CEO and president, with Waxahachie council member Mary Lou Shipley adding, “I am so proud to see this addition to our library. We are so lucky to have this wonderful building.”

The library has resumed open operations with the following schedule:

• Tuesday – 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m.

• Wednesday-Friday – 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m.

• Saturday – 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.

With the ongoing pandemic, the following guidance from the governor, the CDC and Texas State Library and Archives Commission is in place:

• Limited patron entrance (determined by departments).

• Masks are required.

• Social distancing must be followed.

• Patrons who are sick are asked not to enter.

• Patrons are reminded to wash hands and use sanitizer.

Sims Library is located at 515 W. Main St. For additional information, call 972 937-2671, visit its Facebook page at N.P. Sims Library, its Instagram page or its website at http://www.simslib.org.

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