Recorded music from Bob Wills wafted through the McAlester Public Library’s lower parking lot, as a clown amused children and some Corgis cavorted nearby.
On a lot below the library, youngsters bounced on inflatables, while others petted a couple of horses with the Therapeutic Equestrian Association of McAlester.
The McAlester Public Library hosted the Tuesday festivities to mark the milestone of having more than 10,000 active cardholders.
Wayne Hanway, executive director of the Southeast Public Library System of Oklahoma, recognized the McAlester Public Library’s achievement as he took in the festivities around him.
“The library’s been pointing toward that for a long time,” he said. “It’s a very significant step ahead.”
Looking over the scene he saw that many of those joining in the celebration appeared to be having a good time.
“There’s all kinds of fun going on,” he observed.
Mandy Carter and Pat Dugger brought the two Therapeutic Equestrian Association horses, Sarah and Sugar, to the event.
“We’re promoting awareness for the program and letting the kids see the horses,” Carter said, as she gave Sugar an affectionate pat.
Kristina Jiles brought along her children, Colton, 9, and Jayci, 3, to share in the fun. They had different preferences about what they liked to do, however.
“She likes the inflatables and he likes the cake,” Jiles said.
Laura Wood also appeared to enjoy the festivities.
“It’s pretty neat,” she said. “It’s fun for kids.”
Meanwhile, firefighters with the McAlester Fire Department pulled a fire truck into the parking lot.
A handler from the Oklahoma Department of Corrections brought some tracking dogs to the celebration, while nearby, an artist applied face paint to children.
John and Dorothy Turnakis had their Corgis on a leash, along with another mixed-breed dog. All three canines enjoyed the attention children, as well as lots of adults, were brandishing on them.
Their newest Corgi, which they said they adopted from Celtic Corgi Rescue in Choctaw, is named Cadfael, after the main character in the Cadfael Chronicles, Dorothy Turnakis explained.
Alicia Meeks brought along her 6-year-old son, Riley, who took a liking to the Cadfael.
Belinda Martin brought along her daughter, Allison, as well as a niece and two nephews. They soon surrounded Cadfael, who was obviously basking in their attention.
“I love it. It’s great for the kids,” Martin said.
McAlester Head Librarian Christine Sauro worked the crowd, heading out cards good for up to $2 on library fines, book sales and other library related activities.
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