Lexington, Kentucky (April 20, 2023) – The Lexington Public Library today announced a $100,000 gift from Keeneland to the Library Foundation’s capital campaign for the new Marksbury Family Branch to open on Versailles Road late this year.
The Library broke ground last August on the new branch which will replace the former Village Branch and provide more educational and civic resources for the neighborhoods it serves. The new branch will reflect the community’s vision for a state-of-the-art community hub, one that offersrobust resources and a myriad of program and service offerings.
“Our support of the Lexington Public Library Foundation continues Keeneland’s founding missionto enhance the quality of life in our community,” Keeneland President and CEO Shannon Arvinsaid. “In this case, the Marksbury Family Branch will positively impact a neighborhood wheremany horse industry workers and their families live. We are thrilled to have a resource nearby for these families to take advantage of important educational opportunities.”
In recognition of their generous donation, the Library will name a 16-seat meeting room on the first floor of the Marksbury Family Branch in Keeneland’s honor. The new branch will stay intimatelyconnected with its neighborhood, which is among Lexington’s most diverse areas. The VillageBranch pioneered bilingual library services in Lexington, and the new facility will expand resources available to Lexington’s Latinx, immigrant, and refugee communities.
“The new Marksbury Family Branch will reflect the community it serves,” said Lexington Public Library Executive Director Heather Dieffenbach. “Throughout the planning process, the Libraryworked closely with residents and stakeholders to ensure this new, state-of-the-art branch, wouldaccommodate the needs of the children, families, and individuals who will be using the facility ona daily basis.”
The new two-story facility will replace the former Village Branch with nearly triple the amount of space available for library services. The new building will include community and study rooms, a dedicated classroom, makerspace, outdoor reading area, expanded adult and children’s areas, and a drive-thru window where customers can pick up and return borrowed materials. The Libraryestimates that it will serve approximately 1 million visitors per year at this location. The LibraryFoundation has committed to raising $5.3 million in support of this $18 million project through a public-private partnership.
LPL began the development of a master plan in late 2018 to determine the vision and need for library space and facilities, and to provide a framework and guide for future improvements andgrowth.
The planning process was highly participatory, striving to include as many voices as possible in thedevelopment of the plan. During the year-long planning process, more than 2,400 library staff, stakeholders, and community members engaged in the conversation about the vision for libraryfacilities in Lexington-Fayette County. Overwhelmingly, the community supported a reimaging and expansion of this site as the future of the Lexington Public Library.
“It’s been exciting for Keeneland to have a hand in making the Marksbury Family Branch a reality,” Keeneland Senior Director of Operations and Community Relations Kara Heissenbuttel said. “As a state-of- the-art space, this facility offers tremendous potential to both welcome visitors to Lexington and to serve people of all backgrounds.”
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For more information about the Lexington Public Library and their partners, please visitlexpublib.org and their social media pages @lexpublib.
Marksbury Family Branch Media Kit: Marksbury Groundbreaking Media Kit
About the Lexington Public Library
The Lexington Public Library serves the greater Lexington area of approximately 325,000 people through six library locations, a virtuallibrary, and community-based programming. The Library welcomes millions of visitors each year, lending over 3 million items annually.From educational resources to entertaining titles and technology to meeting spaces, there is something for everyone your local public library. Visit us at www.lexpublib.org or call 859-231-5500 for more information.
About the Lexington Pubic Library Foundation
Lexington Public Library Foundation funds innovation within our public library system. The Library’s vision is for a community engaged in a lifetime of discovery, and private donations help Lexingtonians learn and play in dynamic new ways.
Donations do not fund day-to-day library operations, meaning that 100% of your gift is used to create change by adding new services, programs, facilities, or technology. Because the Library serves all people, businesses and organizations, your charitable donation to the Library Foundation is quite literally a gift to our entire community.
About the Marksbury Family Foundation
The Marksbury Family Foundation started in 2009 primarily to give back to the University of Kentucky; the alma mater of our founder, Davis Marksbury. What started as a way to give back to the UK School of Engineering has evolved over the years. In the 2010s our foundation’s focus was on educational opportunities in Central Kentucky. As we are moving further into the 2020s, our foundation has expanded once more with a broader mission and new criteria search.
We are interested in innovative projects that result in sustainable and measurable growth for individuals, communities, and local economies. We are broadening our search to include all of Kentucky, as well as the Charleston, SC area. We are seeking to partner and collaborate with leading non-profit organizations to design new, financially self-sustaining projects, as well as to expand proven, high-quality programs into new geographical territories.
Founded By Horsemen
Since opening in October 1936, Keeneland has been unique in the Thoroughbred industry. Only at Keeneland are world-class racing and industry-leading sales united under one mission-driven entity.
Today, Keeneland continues to be guided by its original mission, taking a leadership role in the industry to improve safety, promote integrity and strengthen the sport of racing.
A Global Leader in the Thoroughbred Industry
Keeneland is the world’s largest and most prominent Thoroughbred auction house and hosts world-class racing twice annually during its boutique Spring and Fall meetings. Owners, trainers, riders and fans from all over the world travel to Lexington each year to participate at Keeneland.