Annual Reports



McCord Memorial Library is dedicated to serving the North East area by assembling, organizing, preserving, and making accessible books, materials, and evolving technologies to provide stimulation, education, and recreation for all citizens.


McCord Memorial Library Board of Directors

Betsy Damon, President                 Judy Schenker, Secretary              Dave Kuchta

Tom Savidge, V. President              Colleen Bahm                                  Ben Mosier

Kathy Buesink, Treasurer              SueAnn Mills                                   Marianne Phillips


McCord Memorial Library is open 54 hours a week, except during the winter months, from EST to DST, when we are open 50 hours a week.  Our service area includes 10,609 residents in North East Borough and Township, though we serve all of Erie County.  Funds we receive from our local governments are necessary to the McCord Library’s ability to operate efficiently. Below are statistics which demonstrate the activity and use McCord Memorial Library offers and benefits our residents receive.


Statistics   January  – December 2016

Circulation – adult/juvenile & databases:   76,014           Patrons:      7,661         Items:  39,411    

Computer use/WiFi/Lab: 6,107          Holds/ILLs: 16,435


January 2016 McCord Memorial Library budget was approved at a projected $224,450

The budget includes areas for: Collection,  Maintenance,  Audit, Utilities, Computer,

Cleaning, Staff, Insurance, & other Miscellaneous expenses.


PROJECTED INCOME                                          RECEIVED

GOVERNMENT ENTITIES                                    12-31-16


$  16,000       N.E. Borough                                    $  14,822

$  30,000       N.E. Township                                  $  32,415

$  49,280       Erie County                                      $  49,279

$  38,000       P.A. State Aid                                    $  38,802


$133,280                                                                    $135,318

As of 12-31-16: 101.53% government funding received.



2016 was a very busy year for McCord Memorial Library.  We celebrated our 100th year in this building.

This historic anniversary was celebrated throughout the year by our North East citizens, patrons, board members and staff.  Many special programs and incentives were offered as well as a celebratory dinner held at the Mercyhurst Ridge Library here in North East.


Pa. Senator Sean Wiley entered a citation into legislative minutes congratulating McCord on its 100th year anniversary.  Senator Casey sent us a congratulatory letter honoring our celebration.


The video of OUR TOWN – North East was produced for our community with many local people involved. They contributed their thoughts about our area including the many significant events that happened here.  The McCord Library was included with other local historic places.


Then & now McCord Memorial Library 100th anniversary 1916-2016 was written about the beginning of library service in North East, by long time staff member and patron, Sue Sveda.  It included our current building’s past and the librarians and events of our history.


We received many grants from local entities.  Our local V.F.W., Post 4789, generously donated early in 2016; The Downtown North East (DNE) organization provided funds that allowed us to continue to refurbish the exterior of our building.  Funds from the American Legion, Post 105, made it possible to update some digital conveniences, as well as move shelving and update the teen area; the North East Chamber of Commerce donated funds for a sign.  Many other improvements were accomplished because of the additional funds received. The painting classes offered throughout 2016 were made possible in part by a grant from Erie Insurance.  We receive designated grants from the North East Community and Erie Community Foundations.


The Library Director was selected to attend three special training conferences through the State Library in Harrisburg.  I LEAD U.S.A is a program that melds leadership, participatory technology, and community problem-solving.  Mary Kieffer, our Librarian, chose the area of unemployment and workforce development as its community problem to solve using the latest technologies.  The team created a website to assist those seeking jobs with skills improvement.   McCord received a free laptop and materials to build robots and 30 books to place in the children’s collection.  The loaded laptop is available at the library.  The Workforce Development site contains links to helpful sites to support interviews and resumes practice, and application completion.


The first month of 2016, no fines or fees were charged for overdue books.


Speaker Series sponsored by the Friends of McCord Memorial Library

  • Feb. 6 – Deadly Medicine:  The Science of Eugenics
    • Jessica Hair and 3 co-teachers at North East Jr.-Sr. High School; Program focused on the history  of eugenics and Hitler’s use of this science regarding millions of Jewish people.
  • Feb. 13– REBORN: Journeys from the Abyss
    • Dr. Winston Chu, retired Erie Plastic Surgeon; Presentation will focus on his personal experiences under the Burmese repressive regime before immigrating to the U.S. and his current political concerns for America as seen through the eyes of an immigrant.  Book signing
  • Feb. 20– Machu Picchu in Peru
    • Barb Fynan, North East resident and experienced hiker; Presented a video program that featured experiences of hiking in the land of the Incas including her visit to the grand city of Machu Picchu
  • Feb. 27– The Most Influential Family in North East
    • Charles Wagner, retired North East educator; Presentation was his educated opinion along with supporting facts of, ‘who the most influential family’?   One person guessed and was awarded a prize.


Our Friends of the Library group held one of their bi-annual books sales in March. One of our most popular fund raisers.


We received a decorated Rain Barrel donated by North East in Bloom and a loyal patron, Part of the Community Rain Barrel Project.  It was placed at our Park Street entrance.


A Cork and Canvas paint class was held at McCord on Saturday, May 7th from 6 to 8 p.m.  The cost was minimal and 20 people participated.


Another paint class was offered along with our Summer Reading Programs.  This class was specifically open to Teens & Tweens.

Employee appreciation day, June 29th, the staff were given a catered lunch in thanks for special assistance in work load for vacations and ill co-workers.


Many programs (see below) were offered during June, July and part of August as our on-going Summer Reading Programs for all ages.


An additional Cork and Canvas painting class was offered for adults, enjoyed and well attended.  In August we held an open house throughout the week of August 22.  Tours and refreshments were provided, as August 27 was the official 100 year anniversary of the opening of McCord Memorial Library.


The biggest month of our celebration year.  On September 10, we held our anniversary dinner at the Tom Ridge Building, at Mercyhurst University North East.  McCord took part in the annual Wine Festival in North East, this is a fund raiser for us.         


We held our second Friends book sale.


The last 2016 session for Cork and Canvas was held Friday, November 18, with a Christmas painting theme.  This has been a very educative experience for our patrons.

December    A new circulation system Polaris Innovative iii   was launched It is in cooperation with the Erie County Public Library and the other Independent libraries in Erie County.  This new system will make our collaboration of sharing materials, digital and print, etc.  easier for all our patrons and staff. We refer to our consortium as PLEC –Public Libraries of Erie County

Our Reference section was moved and updated with an added wired table for outlets and USBs, making charging units available.  The Teen section was updated to allow younger patrons feel as if they have a unique section to themselves, as we moved and relocated shelving.

Summer Reading Programs



  • There were 206 story times and programs in 2016; 1627 children and 853 adults = 2,480 attendees.
  • In January, the PA One Book, Every Young Child kit “If You Were a Penguin” was utilized.

It included book-related activities, games.

  • In February, the Reading Dogs visited for Valentines stories.
  • “The Cat in the Hat” read to story time classes during Dr. Seuss’ birthday in March.
  • April is “Week of the Young Child”, and the Reading Dogs returned.
  • Children’s Book Week in May involved a book swap. One gently used children’s book was exchanged for another.
  • The last week in May, N.E. Davis School Kindergarteners were given tours and stories were read.
  • The Summer Reading program “On Your Mark, Get Set…READ!” involved  children through fourth grade.  Registration prizes of 240 McDonald’s coupons were given, plus 536 earned prizes. There were 50 programs, 513 children & 250 adults in attendance: 763 total.
  • CMA, a local preschool daycare, was welcomed and children provided special story times every Tuesday morning, from 10:30-11:00. The CMA toddler preschool attended regular story time.
  • Kindergartens through third grade story times were held June 18 – August 8.

Special programs every week on Thursdays after Picnic in the Park.

  • More special programs in June included a professional hoops dancer, bike safety, martial arts, and Reading Dogs. The United Way gave away 200 children’s books, June 24.
  • July special programs were C. Wolf (SeaWolves team mascot), jazzercise, and two local artist workshops:

Cupcakes & Canvas and Fish & Canvas, which were very popular.

The last week of the summer reading program in August ended with the Reading Dogs.

  • October’s Fire Prevention Week with Fuller Hose, VFD, field trips and costume parties were observed.
  • On voting day, November 3, we had an Usborne Book Fair.  We earned $150 in free books, followed by a visit from the Reading Dogs.
  • Homemade Christmas piñatas completed the year.




Summer Reading Program

Tweens & Teens

Get in the Game-READ

87 registered – Completed 4th grade thru high school graduation

Weekly prizes of a free food item and an “item or prize” for checking out books

(Straw Hat, Boston Bean, Little Shop of Donuts, Michael’s, Burger King, McDonald’s)

Wk 1-25, wk 2-8, wk 3-14, wk 4-22, wk 5-21, wk 6-9, wk 7-18, wk 8-6

1 entry was placed in a box for the grand prize of either a $50 or $25 gift card to Millcreek Mall each time a reading log was brought back showing a minimum of 3 hours read that week.

1st  place-Dominic Turiczek (pictures of both were sent to the paper)

2nd place-Cadence Hall

108 entries in total    (1 slip for each survey completed)

Open coloring sessions were available to anyone that wanted to color their bookmarks, posters, Frisbees and plastic carry bags every other Saturday.


Adult Summer Reading Program


This year we focused on a healthy mind and body. We went back to the bingo card game, calling it “brain” card. Each square represented a healthy action or habit.   We offered 4 programs for adults:

  • Walking for health with wellness coach Selina Uglow:
    • A class to learn about health benefits of walking and the importance of proper footwear.
  • Let’s Do Yoga with Deb Phillips:
    • An introduction to yoga and its benefits to your health and well-being.
  • Let’s go back to healthy eating with Pam Skarzenski:
    • An informative class regarding the state of our food today and how to get back to more healthy choices.
  • Brain games and fun night:
    • A variety of fun puzzles designed to challenge the brain.

Refreshments were offered at each program.

In addition to the programs the following statistics were gathered:

250 “brain” cards were made with 245 given out

86 “brain” cards were returned.

57 prizes were handed out for completing the bingo cards.


Additionally, prizes were presented to two women who completed and turned in the walking logs that  were handed out with pedometers at the beginning of the program. They received McCord mugs for their efforts.

As you can ascertain from the details of our Summer Reading Programs, it is a busy time here and we are at our busiest during the summer.   The rest of the year we are also engaged in the many projects and programs.  We offer reading and listening materials, as well as many other services to the public.



Phone:  814-725-4057

Respectfully submitted:

Mary Kieffer

Library Director