100 Years of CCPL Memories!

CCPL Is my life-long friend. I will always remember my first grade teacher having her class hold hands and walk to the library. I received my first library card, something I will always cherish for life. My next great memory is when I received an email that I will be one of the November 2021 local authors who will be showcased. I will always support all libraries, but especially my CCPL!


I have always loved the library! I come just to relax and read. Or to print and make copies when my computer or printer go down.

~Carol Ford

The library has provided me with an endless supply of books for my five year old. For the last five years, I have been able to read over 1800 unique title books to my child and it grows weekly! The library was able to provide an insight to my child’s interest of sharks, dinosaurs, legos, super heroes, Star Wars… just to name a few! My child is always excited when I bring home a bag filled of books. When we can make a trip together, my child does love picking out books. It is nice to have such a large diverse collection, especially comic books.. a new interest of my child!


As a parent, I value the resources that CCPL offers to families. Pre-pandemic, Waldorf West, was a place I frequently brought my daughter to learn and play. She was excited to color or do puzzles or pretend to be chefs in the play kitchen with other kids. We loved story time and arts & crafts nights and cultural events hosted by the various branches. Older now, my daughter is excited to go to the library. And even though certain offerings may be slow to return or are something new entirely, we still enjoy time digging in the stacks for books, finding new take-home projects, and exploring games on the computers. Now I have a young son, and I want to share all these things with him, too. Thanks CCPL and Happy Centennial!


I first started visiting the library 15 years ago. I started bringing my child for story time. Fun and excitement with Mr.Joe and staff. Reading books, singing and playing his guitar. The library had many wonderful classes and programs that we attended. The Zoo mobile was amazing learning about animals. The Bubble lady. Making amazing arts and craft at the Potomac branch was our weekly family time out. The staff are always helpful and very attentive. There are so many cool activities at the library like audio and recording equipment, sewing machines. We even had movie day and popcorn. The endless collection of free books and movies are the best!

~Savanna Rose

CCPL provided a wonderful opportunity for my child to read and participate in the many library activities. It was such a nice and calm environment for my toddler. He enjoyed walking up and down the aisles searching for books that had award-winning stickers especially the “Caldecott medal”. He also enjoyed playing with the puzzles and the computer games. We concluded our library time with a snack and soda at the vending machine section. I will always cherish the special memories of my mommy-son library time. He is a teenager now and we always look at the library site and reserve books. Thank you CCPL for creating memories and family bonding.


The library has always been a home away from home for me and my six children. We went to countless story times and library events when they were growing up. I’m sure their library experiences benefitted all of them in many ways educationally as well as recreationally. Little did I know after moving to La Plata in 1996, that I would be employed as an Outreach Associate in August of 2008. This job literally saved my life after the death of my husband. It helped me in so many ways and gave me a new purpose to go on. It was a dream job and I can’t thank the then director, Emily Ferren, enough for hiring me. I got to drive the library van around Charles County doing story times at home daycares and schools for 3-5 years olds, and visiting homebound seniors to bring them library materials. The smiles and enthusiasm of the children and the stories of the seniors really touched my spirit and brightened my life at a crucial time. My supervisor, Megan Burroughs, and my co-workers were also very supportive and great to work with. I enjoyed my ten years with the Charles County Public Library as an employee and will always remember and be grateful for the time I spent there.


My working career has always been in public libraries to ensure people have access to information and lifelong learning regardless of age, education, ethnicity, gender, language, income, physical limitations or geographic barriers. Public libraries strengthen communities and help create and sustain a more literate and just society. It was an honor and a privilege to be part of the tapestry of CCPL’s history from 1997 to 2014 as the library director and watch the growth and expansion of the library system, including Waldorf West. I met many interesting people. It is a life of service to help others. I have always used the library as a customer and haven’t stopped learning and growing through the support of public libraries.

~Emily Ferren

Thanks to CCPL who have served/serve our community! Creative, informative, and delightful program offerings are always available virtually and in person. During the height of our crisis, staff members tirelessly met needs with bundles, resources, answers, remote printing, read-a-louds. Crafts proved one of our favorites – increasing family fun, focus, confidence, concentration, reading, new interests, and a memorable keepsake! These not only were educational and entertaining in real time; they bring us smiles now as we revisit the memories, process, and end result. Sharing photos/videos of various projects with family and friends broaden the experience of our local activity keeping us connected.

~P. White

I love Waldorf West and all CCPL Libraries. It feels like coming home every time I step inside. The Conversational Spanish class, Ms. Marcucci, art programs, visititing authors, various cultural music programs and much more brings joy to my and my family.
So much positivity, fun and education. CCPL is my happy place. Every time I’ve visited Waldorf West or any of your branches, the staff was courteous, friendly, patient and knowledgeable; went the extra mile if they didn’t have the answer to any questions. If I could describe visiting CCPL in colors, it’s like a beautiful blue sky with a wide rainbow of beautiful colors going across the sky. Thank You CCPL.😊


I have been attending the library for the past 15 years. I started bringing my oldest for story time. We love the activities, resources and mainly the staff. Potomac Branch is our favorite to go place. My children and I visit weekly to complete homework, check out movies and books. On weekends we visit to do arts and crafts than walk over to the park for hiking and fun play. All the fun educational classes and staff makes it so exciting for us always. From the helpful monthly kits to the printing out papers, the library has all that my family needs and more.

~Shanta F.

“Happy Centennial!!

In reviewing the 100-year history, I see the current La Plata location opened in 1966. I have lived in Charles County for my entire life and the La Plata branch has been my “home” library. As much as my mom loved to read I’m sure we started coming to this library when it first opened and I was very young, especially since it was practically in our backyard! As I got older I remember using the library often to get resources for school projects, do research, use a typewriter or a copier, and best of all – for personal reading. There were days I would walk out of the library with books piled so high I could barely see over them.

My love for reading did not dissipate and nor did my use of the library. I must admit I am happier about the way I can now virtually look up reading selections, reserve them online, then pop in to pick them up by scanning the entire collection all at once – WOW! The changes throughout the years have been so very nice compared to the “”olden”” days of having to look in the catalog card files for what I wanted before taking that info to find the books on the shelf, then waiting in line at the desk to check out (there always seemed to be a line LOL)!

When COVID hit, I was devastated thinking I would have to go an extended time without being able to easily feed my reading habit. But nope it wasn’t too long, and we had scheduled drive-up pickup. That was a lifesaver to many, and I would be remiss if I didn’t take the time to THANK everyone who made this happen, especially the staff that braved the heat/humidity and the cold/rain to make sure we got our checked out items!

I’ve had the pleasure of benefitting from the La Plata library and the camaraderie of its wonderful staff for most of their 56 years. With the addition of all the online resources along with all the other features now offered, I cannot imagine anyone not taking advantage of all the benefits just for the simple requirement of getting a free library card. Thank you CCPL and congratulations; here’s to another 100 years!!”


I’m happy to share my story – It’s one I have revisited in my mind many times! One of my earliest recollections as a toddler is going to the Charles County Public Library holding my mother’s hand. At that time, it was housed in a small two story brick building behind the Charles County Courthouse, still standing today, across Washington Avenue from where Sanders Insurance is today. It was a magical place where we picked out books together each week by Beatrix Potter, among others, and began my lifelong love of reading and books. As I moved into elementary school, the library also moved, into a space in the East Wing of the Courthouse. This is where I remember getting my very own library card! I can mentally walk into that library right now and find my favorite blue bound biographies of famous people. More than any history lesson in school, these books brought historical figures to life. I especially loved reading about women such as Dolly Madison, Louisa May Alcott, Betsy Ross, Clara Barton, and Harriet Tubman, and the men – George Washington Carver, various presidents, and inventors. I can also go to the shelves in my mind and find all the Betsy Books by Carolyn Haywood, the Sue Barton books about nurses, and the wondrous world of novels. I found the card catalog to be fascinating and loved the organization and information it contained. During my teens, the library had moved to the present location where I spent endless hours reading and doing research in the volumes of materials there, since this was before the internet! In my late twenties, I did what my mom had done – I took my little girls in hand to (of course) the library, where they had one of their first introductions to organized learning with other children during story time with Mrs. Pence. Our weekly visits also included their first hands-on computer experience as the library had one in the children’s section, long before we had one at home. It was during story time that I met one of my best friends of now almost 40 years, as she and her husband and small children had moved to the area and she, too, was there with her little ones. Through the years my family enjoyed many programs developed by the library, and I attended Girl Scout and other meetings and events in the facilities. When I asked my now-adult daughters about their favorite library memory they said “the paper mache dinosaur” made as part of a summer reading program. The public library has been a part of my life for decades and I treasure these experiences. Even in the world of high tech, to this day, the library is my go-to place for books. I am excited to see what the future will bring and, once again, I will embrace the next home for a new Charles County Public Library.

~Bonnie Levering Rafer

Moved to Charles Co. last year and my daughter and I have definitely enjoyed visiting our local branch and participating in events/programs. It has been a great resource for family time and summer activities. We especially like craft kits and virtual art classes. She was also so happy to win a raffle for last year’s Summer Challenge! Thank you for all that you do for the community!!

~Team Ea

I have used the Charles County Public Library for reading books, using the computers, and even renting rooms for meetings. I have always had good help from the staff when I needed help with finding a book or logging onto the computers or asking for assistance. Thank you for your service!

~Cindy Boyko

Congratulations to CCPL. My most crucial story is last year my PC was compromised so I had to take it to Office Depot for repairs. That caused me a dilemma because I had bills to pay, checks on my accounts, doctors’ emails, etc. So not having any other means of doing these tasks, I went to the Waldorf library and used their computers, at first it was difficult to gain access to my accounts, but I did. I was able to do all the tasks I needed to do, which saved me late fees, and got my info for my doctor’s appointments. I appreciate the help I got from the librarians for their support. KUDOS TO CCPL.

~Ed Rosado

Although all of the librarians at the La Plata branch have been friendly and helpful, I am so grateful to one of your former librarians. Her name is Phyllis (sorry I don’t know her last name) and she retired about 5-10 years ago. She kept after me to read Louise Penny’s books and she said she knew I would love them. I resisted for years (too many other books to read). She was SO right. Louise Penny is now my favorite author, and her new book comes out in November. Can’t wait.

~Carol Anne Rife

I love CCPL ! You have made my life richer. Thank you.


Due to COVID and caring for my husband at home, the library has been a Godsend. I order books online, and dash into the library and pick them up in the HOLD section. Occasionally, I have time to look on the shelves for books. I have found some great books on the Books for Sale shelves. The website tells me a little bit about the books, so I am able to select books that I know I will like. The book renewal feature has been very helpful for me. Thank you to your Library Personnel, you have made my life much more pleasant over the past few years.

~Carol Hodges

Our librarians are the friendliest, most helpful people I have met. I enjoy coming to PD Brown library in Waldorf to special events. There was a great book discussion of a Janet Evanovich novel where snacks were provided with lots of laughs and recollections. Also Joe(now retired)hosted a “Name the tune and the singer” program and being original from Cleveland “rock and roll heaven”, I mistakenly thought it would be a breeze, but I was sure in for a surprise!

~Cynthia Turchek

CCPL has made a wonderful experience in my life!