Domonkas Branch Is Celebrating Its 50th Anniversary! Come To Our Events!
8/26/2014 -- Lorain Public Library System’s Domonkas Branch opened its doors 50 years ago thanks to two bighearted Sheffield Lake residents.
In 1964, the late Stephen Domonkas donated $100,000 for the construction of a library in his beloved city of Sheffield Lake. Thanks to the generous gift from Stephen and his wife, Ruth, our Domonkas Branch was built at 4125 E. Lake Road in Sheffield Lake.
Built on land provided by the city of Sheffield Lake, the then 4,727 square foot Domonkas Branch was equipped with a meeting room that could seat 50 people. When the library opened, it housed over 6,000 books from which the community could choose.
The Domonkas Family
The Domonkas’ made their home on the lakeshore of Sheffield Lake in 1929. Stephen Domonkas, owner of car dealerships in Sandusky and the Cleveland area, and his wife had a love for the city of Sheffield Lake and its lakeshore. Ruth Domonkas once said, "We found Sheffield Lake, watched it grow and wanted to do something good for it.” They simply wanted to pay it forward.
"I have always been interested in education. A library is the best medium for educating youngsters and adults. You're never too old to learn,” Mr. Domonkas said.
The Domonkas Branch Library building is a living tribute to their love for the community, and we are so grateful!
We’d also like to thank the community who has supported the library through the years by passing library levies, and donating their time and money.
Join us in celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Domonkas Branch Library building in Sheffield Lake through festive and historic events in September!
Check out our celebratory events below.
Domonkas Branch has greatly grown and evolved since the Domonkas family’s early gift.
In 1985, a trust fund was established by the estate of Stephen and Ruth Domonkas for improvements and expansion of the Domonkas building.
In November 1989, a 3,700 square foot addition was completed, extending the current building to a total of 8,427 square feet. The addition allowed for computerization of library services, expanded reference and audiovisual areas, and provided space for expansion of the library’s collection.
Pam Coghlan, librarian supervisor at Domonkas Branch since 2006, said she has enjoyed seeing all the changes and improvements at the library.
“We are always striving to stay on top of things,” Coghlan said. “I love when we get new patrons and we’re able to share with them all the new things we have in the library. We offer more than books. We also offer DVDs and music, plus online, electronic media and databases. It’s so wonderful sharing new technology with patrons.”
Coghlan is happy to be part of the Sheffield Lake community, and says the feeling is mutual.
“I like this community. People here really enjoy having a library in the community. Some remember when the library was built and appreciate the changes and updates," Coghlan said. “Community members really like using the library. They say they’re glad we’re here.”
So come and check out what you’ve been missing at Domonkas Branch. Come reminisce with us on the community’s beginnings. Attend our 50th anniversary celebratory events!
Anniversary Events at Domonkas Branch
Wednesday, Sept. 3 at 7 p.m.
Dr. Charles E. Herdendorf, professor of geological sciences and president of Sheffield Village Historical Society, will present From Volcanoes to Glaciers: Three Billion Years of Sheffield in the Making. Learn about the natural history of the landforms and wilderness that greeted the first inhabitants of what is now Sheffield.
Thursday, Sept. 4 at 7 p.m.
Dr. Herdendorf will also present Sheffield's First Inhabitants, a program about Native American cultures and their settlements in northern Ohio. Learn about archaeological investigations of ancient Native American occupation sites in Sheffield and the vicinity.
Saturday, Sept. 6 at 1 p.m.
Visit the library for a special anniversary celebration of 50 years in the Sheffield Lake community! Enjoy live music performed by the Smokin Fez Monkeys. They are loaded with old favorites and originals that someday will be, and armed with a batch of low-tech whizbangs that can barely be classified as instruments. The Monkeys are a special ops unit in the war against seriousness. Enjoy this one-of-a-kind jug band and light refreshments compliments of the Friends of the Domonkas Public Library of the Lorain Public Library System.
Monday, Sept. 8 at 7 p.m.
Concluding his lecture series, Dr. Herdendorf will share information about how Sheffield was originally founded. The presentation includes profiles of Sheffield's founding families and the various ways they made their way to Ohio 200 years ago.
Saturday, Sept. 13, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Remember those "school days, dear old golden rule days" with our display of Brookside High School yearbooks, including most years from 1930 to the present. Enjoy light refreshments and a little nostalgia. Be sure to look up an old friend, a relative or that special someone from your high school years anytime during regular library hours.
Saturday, Sept. 13 at 1 p.m.
In 1862, President Lincoln asked for volunteers to fight for the North during the Civil War. Approximately 1,000 men from Lorain, Medina and Cuyahoga counties answered that call and formed the 103rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry. Visit the library to learn about their stories and experiences during and after the war, and the grounds they established in Sheffield Lake. Participants may tour the grounds and museum of this local history gem, located at 5501 E. Lake Road, following the presentation.