Elks Lodge Spotlight Grant will help Waldo Branch

Contact: Brad McClenny

Gainesville, Fla.-

The Waldo Branch of the Alachua County Library District will partner with the Elks Lodge of Gainesville #990 to highlight Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM) programs throughout the month of March. 

The Elks Lodge of Gainesville #990 received a Spotlight Grant of $2,000 from the Elks National Foundation Community Investment Program. The grant is intended to shine a light on important issues facing nearly every American community. 

The Elks decided to partner with the Waldo Branch to highlight family literacy. Through the grant the Elks will provide materials for several STEAM programs as well as a STEAM Open House Event. The grant will also provide funds to purchase books and other STEAM-related items that will be added to the Library District’s permanent collection.

The Elks worked with Waldo Branch staff to determine that there was a need for STEAM programming and reference materials at the library.

“This gracious gift of STEAM materials and reference books will greatly enhance our efforts to offer family programming and literacy that supports inquiry, critical thinking, and process-based learning for our patrons in the community,” Waldo Branch manager Kerry Dowd said.

The STEAM Open House Event will take place Saturday, March 4, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Waldo Branch at 15150 NE U.S. Highway 301. The event will kick off with a welcome by Library District staff and the Elks Lodge. 

Other activities happening at the STEAM Open House Event will be a STEAM Story Time with an Alachua County Sheriff’s Office representative, STEAM stations, and hands-on activities to ignite the imagination. Rigamajig, creative engineering with LEGOs, experimenting with block printing on t-shirts, and drawing with Art Bots are some of the other activities that will take place. Participants can visit community organizations and vendors’ tables outdoors. All ages are welcome. 

STEAM programs sponsored by the Elks Lodge Spotlight Grant will continue throughout the month and involve such activities as Papermaking, Cardboard Contraptions, a Corrugation Station, and more.

By Brad on February 24, 2023