Sunrise Drive Library Media Center Opens

  • It was a grand unveiling of the Sunrise Drive Library/Media Center, named in honor of Dr. Rosemary F. Jones. The fourth- and fifth-grade classes, staff, and attending administrators gathered about the pergola and outdoor educational space under a beautiful morning sky in quiet anticipation.

    Principal Rose Costello opened with words of welcome followed by many thanks to Assistant Superintendent John Belmonte for his oversight of the project, to Buildings and Grounds Superintendent Dan Casali for his diligence, and to everyone who contributed patience, time, talent, and materials to bring the Sunrise Drive Library/Media Center project to a successful conclusion.

    After Librarian Alison McDermott recited her clever poem especially written for the occasion about “the hub of our school,” select students were called to help Superintendent Dr. Walter Schartner with the actual ribbon-cutting. Musical fanfare, provided by Music Department Chairperson Jeff Hoffman, heralded the moment the ribbon was cut and accompanied a procession of the curious into the new library center.

    As the first group of students explored inside, other students awaited their turn, and instead, enjoyed the outside educational space as their teachers read aloud.

    Inside, the students were eager to search the catalog, the stacks, to check-out books, and to sample the assorted seating of cushioned chairs and sofas, round tables and especially the benches of the amphitheater.

    While the center bustled with their excited voices on this first day, the amazing Library/Media Center promises to keep their minds and curiosity excited with an array of knowledge—literally at their fingertips—for a long time to come.

    A former Sunrise Drive student called to our attention--for those of us who may not have known or remembered--a little bit of Sunrise Drive History that coincided with the 2010 Grand Opening of the Sunrise Drive Library/Media Center. The following is an excerpt of historical information provide by Alan Garett, Sunrise Drive Elementary School, 1960-1966. We are thankful for Mr. Garett's wonderful input that helped us place this latest moment of accomplishment in a timeline that has proven to be significant to Sunrise Drive alumni.


    "I read with a nostalgic smile your report of the new media library at Sunrise Drive Elementary School." Mr. Garett responded. "...It also just happened to be the 50th anniversary since the opening of Sunrise Drive Elementary School.  There was no fanfare on that opening day.  As a matter of fact, school opened a day late due to a hurricane (Donna) having roared through the area on what was to be the official first day of school. The children arrived to school  via bus, bicycle, or walking.  There were only two wings of classrooms when the school opened.  The third opened up during the 1965-1966 school year.  For the record, the first librarian was Mrs. Mary Toby who later went on to be a fourth grade teacher.  I relay this to you because Sunrise Drive Elementary School was a grand place to learn even with a  library that was not hi-tech.

      It would have been nice to have recognized the fifty great years of education from a great school. "

    We certainly agree. Thank you, Mr. Garett!