Over 100 people attended the library’s recent ribbon cutting reception on March 20 for the official dedication of its newly redecorated children’s room. “Kiner’s Korner” honors Bob and Thelma Kiner, who were longstanding community members and volunteers and were instrumental in the founding and development of the library. Because Mr. Kiner worked for the Enola Yards and was a railroad enthusiast, Kiner’s Korner also celebrates Enola’s rich heritage as a railroad town and features an elevated model railway. Mrs. Thelma Kiner and several members of her family attended and were very touched by the warm tribute.
Also enjoying the event were members of the community, community leaders and elected officials from Cumberland County and East Pennsboro, as well as many board and staff members from Fredricksen Library. Other attendees included: Larry Harrington, of Bachmann Trains (and world traveler); Jim Leonard of the Historical Society of East Pennsboro; and Friends of East Pennsboro Library and Fredricksen Library. This event was warmly received and provided many memories and discussions over refreshments and dessert.
Welcome Aboard to Kiner’s Korner!
Kiner’s Korner is a testimony to Bob and Thelma Kiner. As founding members and visionaries of the library, the Kiners strongly believed that a community library was essential; for over 20 years, they volunteered their time on Tuesday evenings, making children feel welcome and valued when visiting the library. Mr. Kiner was also a railroad enthusiast and a retired railroad employee.
After Mr. Kiner’s death in September 2010, the library wanted to utilize monies donated in his memory in a way that would incorporate Enola’s rich heritage while inspiring and entertaining young patrons. The library decided to honor the Kiners by renaming the children’s room and installing an elevated O-gauge train along with other enhancements. To fully realize this project, the library partnered with the township and community supporters, as well as businesses and manufacturers that could assist with obtaining the model railway system and all that it entails. This is truly a partnership.
This project would not have been possible without the support of many. Thank you to the Kiners – who are an inspiration to all; Bachmann Williams for supplying the train (from engine to caboose) and track; Woody of Woody’s Train Shop, who kept the inspiration alive; John Pietropaoli and East Pennsboro Township, especially Ron Sgrignoli, Keith Laverty and Mike Myers, who created and installed the custom platform and bridges reflecting the community. Also thanks to Friends of East Pennsboro Library for hosting this event and Fredricksen Library for their support.
As this project continues to evolve, we encourage suggestions, donations and ideas that will help showcase Enola’s rich railroading history, inspire and attract young (and old) patrons, and expand upon the vision that made East Pennsboro Branch Library a community gathering center.
Photo (L to R): Maryann Haft, East Pennsboro Branch Library Manager; Mrs. Thelma Kiner and daughters Mrs. Paul Householder, Mrs. Wayne Laepple and Mrs. Byron Ensor.