Library Board Letter March 2017

March 30, 2017

Dear Library Community,

If you thought you were the last person left alive on earth, where would you go to live?

Well, as the protagonist of “I Think We’re Alone Now,” actor Peter Dinklage is choosing the Hastings Public Library, which is why there will be some disruption to our services as scenes for the movie are shot within and outside the library.

Filming here will take place on April 3, 9, 10, 11 and 23. The library will remain open on each of those days except Sunday, April 9. You will still be able to check out and return materials and, between shooting, browse the stacks. There will be intermittent impact to pedestrian and vehicular traffic on Maple Avenue.

Most of the interior shooting will be between the stacks in front of you as you enter the library, and in the lounge area overlooking the river. We will create a space in the downstairs Orr Room for patrons who usually work in these areas. We will also be moving some of the Internet-access computers on the desks near the north wall to this area. Our wireless coverage will be beefed up. Coffee and pastries will be available to ease the pain.

Also, children and their caretakers will be welcome in the identical space downstairs, where we will provide a selection of books, when shooting involves the Children’s Reading Room. The three Quiet Reading Rooms will not be available for use on April 3, 9, 10, 11 and 23.

The fee we are receiving for use of our facilities will replenish our endowment fund, which we dipped into when costs for expanding the Orr Room and building the deck in 2014 exceeded the Friends’ Above & Beyond fundraising efforts. (Thank you all again for your generosity; we were able to make all of those enhancements — including a new, efficient HVAC system downstairs — without spending a dime of Village money).

Spoiler alert: the film also stars Elle Fanning and will feature an appearance by Paul Giamatti, so maybe Dinklage isn’t quite as solitary as the title suggests. But that’s all I know, except that the crew is very personable and eager to be as accommodating as possible. Having been through this before, we’ve promised the same.

The crew has solicited art from local students for use in the movie, and we are arranging for students from the film and TV classes in the high school to get an up-close look at the production. Director Reed Morano promises to return for a screening when the movie is released. Producer Fred Berger, who grew up in Mamaroneck, will tape an interview with Harvey Lerner on how he arrived in “La La Land.”(He was a producer for that movie, too.)

The Friends, incidentally, are honoring Harvey, who has run the library’s popular “Talking Pictures” program for more than a decade, at their annual fundraiser on June 4. Hope to see you there!

The Friends also recently funded technical upgrades, including headsets for patrons with hearing issues. Come check out your improved local bijou at Harvey’s next screening, or at the “Dewey Goes to the Pictures” program on May 21 featuring “5 Doctors,” a film by Hastings grads Max Azulay and Phil Primason and Matt Porter.

One other note: We’ll make up for the five hours we’re closed April 9 by extending our “summer” hours on two Fridays, June 2 and 9, to 5 p.m., to support students studying for their finals.

We regret any inconvenience to our patrons, but trust that the upcoming film shoot will prove to be an interesting diversion, good PR for our village, and a source of funds for more good things down the road.

Thom Forbes,                                             Joan Vaillancourt
President, Library Board                             Director
Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman
Joanna Riesman
Lauren Casper
Diana Jaeger