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Wood Library in Canandaigua will debut new public reading garden

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  • Staff Report 

The Wood Library is set to break ground on a 2,000-square-foot public Reading Garden, with a kickoff ceremony scheduled for 10 a.m. on Sept. 7.


Designed by award-winning architect Ted Liddell, the garden will boast features such as a pergola, a reading theater, and various thematic gardens, including a Native American and a rain garden. Intended to extend the library’s engagement beyond its physical building, the space will be utilized for activities like storytimes, tai chi, book discussions, and gardening classes. The garden, benefiting from the support of local organizations such as the Ganondagan State Historic Site, will focus on sustainable practices and community-oriented programming.

Jenny Goodemote, Wood Library’s Executive Director, highlighted the garden’s role in supporting the library’s mission of fostering community ties. The garden will offer amenities like free WiFi, accessible pathways for all visitors, dark-sky compliant lighting, and security measures. Leslie Mast, Wood Library board President, anticipates the garden becoming a vital community hub, benefiting neighbors, schools, and homeschooling groups alike. With the generous backing of the community and donations ranging from $10 to $50,000, the $691,578 project is expected to open its doors by next year.