Five Questions with Peter Havel
Cedar Grove library director explains what he brings to the town.
Peter Havel has been the director of the Cedar Grove Public Library for the last 15 months and, even though he lives in North Haledon, his grandmother, Linda Havel, is still a Cedar Grove resident, so he has many memories in town. Havel left the Englewood Public Library Jan. 2011. Patch spoke with him about what he wants to bring to the Cedar Grove community:
What aspects do you find appealing about your job?
“I like, pretty much, offering, what I think is the best deal in town,” Havel said confidently. “I like providing things to the public for free like books, music, movies, video games and a public space. I like giving people a place to get together, to learn, to be entertained, watch a movie or hold meetings because that to me is the best part of this job — providing all these resources in one place for the people of Cedar Grove.”
What is the one thing you wish you could tell residents about the library?
“We just bought six Kindles that were going to start loaning out,” he explained. “That will be a way for people who are not really that familiar with e-books to try out an e-book reader. The e-books are going to be loaded with books.”
Also Havel explained his door is always open to residents for suggestions so he can gear the library, as much as possible, to the needs of the community. “I’d like to hear from residents that aren’t getting what they want out of their public library.”
What programs would you like to bring to the library?
“I’m not happy with how our e-book services are working right because I don’t think we are meeting the demands of the community,” Havel said. Even though the library has started to convert more with the purchase of the Kindles, it's a step he describes as, “a step in the right direction.”
“I also would like to be able to work some mobile devices, like iPhones or Androids, into the library,” he said. “I just want them to get more mileage out of them by using certain apps, but as of now, there is just not much currently out there.”
What library programs do you feel if people knew more about, they'd want to attend?
I feel like people would flock to our art classes that do fill up but I think it would bring a more diverse group,” he explained. “We have a watercolor class and a pastel class, which are both free.”
What do you like to do in your free time?
“Well I have a three-year-old and nine-month old, so I like to be a dad,” he said, with a laugh. “I’m a big Rangers fan and I read, just not as much as I used to.”