Starting July 2 The Fells Branch Library will temporarily close for renovations that will transform the historic building into a place with unique and intimate early learning experiences. The newly decorated space will feature murals of six of Wellesley’s landmark buildings by artist Jason Sawtelle of BlackBeak Studios as well as hands-on, interactive activities geared toward 0-6 year-olds.
Originally a one-room schoolhouse, the Fells Branch was converted to a library in 1923 and is the oldest municipal building in Wellesley, located on Weston Road. The Fells branch operates 100% on privately raised funds. It is through the generosity of these private donors, and some grants, that the expected $70k – $90k cost of the project will be covered
How the project is funded
WFL Development Director Jennifer Siedman said, “The project is outside the tax impact budget of the Wellesley Free Library (as is all operation of the Fells) The project will be largely funded by the Wellesley Free Library Foundation. The WFL has applied for a small grant from the state and from a few other non-profits. However, the Foundation has been supporting the operating costs of the Fells since it re-opened and will support most of the renovation and all of the operating costs in the near term. The Foundation gala, held in early April, included an appeal to support the renovation and approximately 35k was raised.”
The new learning library will encourage play as a crucial method of learning and the foundation for subsequent academic achievement and lifelong success.
The book drop at Fells will remain accessible during the renovation project for as long as safety permits. In the meantime, please visit the Main and Hills Branch libraries. The Fells Branch library is expected to reopen in late fall, 2018.