Acting Mayor Wayne Wendt (fourth from left) and Crs David Martin, Kerry Silver, David Morrison, David Pahlke, Cheryl Bromage, Paul Tully and Sheila Ireland cut a cake to celebrate the library’s official opening.

International best-selling author Matthew Reilly, cricket legend Glenn McGrath, and ABC TV kids’ favourites Ben and Holly will be the star attractions for the public opening weekend of the new Springfield Central Library.

The doors will officially open on Saturday, 25 August with a full program of events for the weekend and capped off by an Evening with Matthew Reilly on Monday night.

The $2.8 million library was officially opened last Friday by Acting Mayor Wayne Wendt and seven of his councillor colleagues, with a cake-cutting ceremony and unveiling of the official plaque.

It will eventually have 50,000 books in stock and other state-of-the-art facilities.

The two-level library, located on the corner of Main Street and Sirius Drive, Orion Springfield Central, will be Ipswich City Council’s most modern library ahead of new libraries at Rosewood and Ipswich Central.

Cr Wendt said it was the first new library in Ipswich for more than 20 years and followed the highly successful mobile service which had operated at Springfield Central since 2009.

“Libraries have certainly changed – they are now more than just books,” he said, recalling his school days in Ipswich visiting very different library facilities.

“We are very excited after months of build-up and fitting out. The new Springfield Central Library is ready to open its doors and welcome the entire community,” Libraries and Tourism Committee Chair Cr David Pahlke said.

“And we have amazing welcome weekend of festivities planned, including everyone’s favourite fast bowler Glenn McGrath, and an Evening with Matthew Reilly, one of Australia’s most popular authors. There is something for everyone: children’s favourites and events for teenagers, adults and families.”

Opening day on Saturday will feature live music, giveaways and competitions from 9am. Ben and Holly will be performing in the Children’s Space at 10am and 1pm; Little Miss Organised will advise parents on how to declutter and organise their homes, while the Flipside Circus Performers will juggle, hula-hoop and balance across the whole of library.

Breakfast with Glenn McGrath will be first up on Sunday at 8.30am, with the leading wicket-taker sharing his experiences in cricket and beyond – but you must book for this event.

Kids will be able to play with Duplo building blocks from 10am to 3pm, while the rest of the family can visit HOTspot – hands on technology, for free play with robotics and virtual reality at the same times.

The highlight of the opening weekend will be Monday’s Evening with Matthew Reilly in the Event Space and Reading Central areas of the library between 6pm and 8pm. Bookings are essential.

Reilly’s books have been published in more than 20 countries and sold 7 million copies. Some of his books have also been optioned for film.

Division 1 Councillor David Morrison, who was MC at the opening on 17 August, said the library would offer a new hands-on experience that will delight, inform and build the Ipswich communities digital literacy, while supporting the Smart City initiative.

The facilities will enable members to build their skills, and increase their employment opportunities.

“It will provide Ipswich Libraries’ members a new space to enjoy and a destination where they can relax, learn and grow. The smart lockers will also enable 24/7 access for borrowers,” Cr Morrison said.

Infrastructure Committee Chairperson Cr Cheryl Bromage thanked council staff from Infrastructure Services, Works, Parks and Sport, the ICT and Property branches, and Ipswich Libraries, plus Mirvac, Complete Urban, CK Design, IQ Construct and the State Library of Queensland for the new facility.

The library will include a main collection area, market place selection, public access computers, children’s space, parents’ room, event spaces with supporting kitchens, public meeting rooms, training room, smart lockers, makerspace and modern library resources, Cr Bromage said.

The concept package had been developed in consultation with council’s library management team to ensure that all functional needs had been addressed.

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