The Milton Public Library Food Truck Rally on Sunday was probably one of the biggest yet, according to library director Ashlee Kunkel.

Four hours and 10 food trucks helped raise more than $1,000 for the library, Kunkel said.

The food trucks were spread out on the east side of the city but within a half mile of each other. Some of the trucks sold out of food.

The next food truck rally is scheduled for Aug. 29 and Kunkel said the food trucks will again be spread out.

Funds raised at the food truck rallies benefit the library.

Story Gardens

Meanwhile, fundraising for Milton Public Library’s Story Gardens, described as an open air branch of the library, continues.

“We recently got a good bump with the Pennies for Pathways fundraiser with the schools,” Kunkel said. Students from Milton East, West, Consolidated and Harmony elementary schools and Northside Intermediate School raised more than $7,200.

A number of grants have been applied for, specifically for the walkway and the entryway arch, she said.

According to Kunkel, the priorities are the outdoor programming space and walkway and the hope is to have a gazebo and walkway installed this year. The price tag for the walkway has been quoted at $24,000. The gazebo price is somewhat uncertain.

“We’re trying to figure out the best way to get the gazebo/outdoor programming space built,” she said, adding they have talked to local companies.

Increased lumber prices may alter the timeline.

“We had some funding set aside specifically for materials, but that may not completely cover the costs now,” she said.

Ramps installed to the north and south aim to make the gardens fully accessible. A walking path around the perimeter will connect the two ramps and the front and back parking lots at the library. City staff is working with the Rock County Chapter of the Ice Age Trail Alliance to create a minor reroute to allow the trail to go through Story Gardens.

“With the updated site plan, we’re hoping to really step things up, as we’re able to provide a better picture of our ideas,” Kunkel said.

Previously, the ramps were in different locations. With the ramps moved, other adjustments had to be made, she said.

If funding allows, work will continue in 2022 with the addition of more unique aspects of the gardens.

Art pieces, additional gardens, educational spaces and outdoor exploration stations are all part of the Story Gardens’ plan.

Other fundraising projects include Story Gardens greeting cards and the Story Gardens store. All donations will be graciously accepted, the website says.

Other news

In other library news:

  • Materials returned to the library no longer need to be quarantined due to the pandemic. Kunkel reported the decision was made at the April 21 Arrowhead Library System directors’ meeting and based on updated CDC guidelines. An April 5 CDC science brief states: “The principal mode by which people are infected with SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) is through exposure to respiratory droplets carrying infectious virus. It is possible for people to be infected through contact with contaminated surfaces or objects (fomites), but the risk is generally considered to be low.”
  • Like other libraries, Kunkel said the Milton Public Library is seeing an increase in digital downloads through Overdrive and Hoopla, an increase libraries they thought they would see last year at this time. With fewer movies and DVD being released, Kunkel reported she is putting more money into the monthly Hoopla budget.

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