LIVINGSTON -- Yvette Enos grew up in Livingston's library branch and has many fond childhood memories. Twenty-five years ago, Enos took over running the library and hasn't looked back.
The 53-year-old, a library resource technician II, was feted last week as she received her 25-year pin from Merced County. She counts many benefits from her library service.
"You get to meet so many nice people here," Enos said. "For the most part I get along with everybody. I think I have made it a happy memory for kids down the road."
A lifelong Livingston resident, Enos lived a couple blocks from the 1212 Main St. library branch when she was growing up. She called the librarian at the time, the late Helen June Mitchell, her second mother, and remembers taking part in the traditional summertime reading program that's still operating.
While a Livingston High School sophomore, Enos became a library page from 1974-76. Before becoming a library clerk in 1985, she was a waitress at Blueberry Hill restaurant and Rocket Cafe, then built chicken houses for Foster Farms.
While raising her two children, Enos became a stay-at-home farm wife and returned to work as a part-time library clerk when the children started school. When Mitchell retired after more than 24 years, Enos was tabbed for the job.
Livingston's library has 25,000 volumes and 2,060 borrowers, according to Ericka Carr, interim Merced County librarian. She has high praise for Enos and the work she has done.
"She's just a beacon in the community. Her library is spotless," Carr said. "It's a great place for the community to come and get information. She has wonderful programs and she always has great ideas."
Merced County Supervisor John Pedrozo said one can tell she loves her job. What makes the county library system so good is the people who work there, he added.
Livingston's library celebrated its centennial in April 2011.
The library has five computers available for public use, with the limit an hour a day per person. The county library system also has access to thousands of items, including books on tape, CDs and DVDs, through the Interlibrary Loan system, which covers libraries from Merced to Bakersfield.
Enos said many children don't have a computer at home, and the library's computers are a great resource for research. She said she is now working with the second generation of students she served at the library.
As the grandmother of three, Enos delights in reading to her grandchildren, particularly the classics and nursery rhymes which the Livingston branch still has. Along with traveling, crocheting and swimming, Enos' favorite leisure-time pursuit, not surprisingly, is reading -- from mysteries to science fiction and children's books.
Bonnie Key, president of Livingston's Friends of the Library group, said the library is an important place in Livingston.
"She's absolutely wonderful," Key said. "She's great with kids and she knows her library. She plans things out, and she knows what to do and where to go. We're lucky to have her."
Enos said her challenge is to keep people coming in and using as many resources as possible. She praised the library's clerk, Christina Castro, for her efforts at keeping things running smoothly.
"I think libraries are an important part of everybody's upbringing," Enos said. "It's nice to give people access to the books they don't have."
If you get a child interested early, they will read forever, she believes.
Livingston's library is open Tuesday through Saturday for 30 hours a week.
Enos said her job has more perks than downfalls. She feels fortunate to have the support of the Friends of the Library group. There is a request list at the library counter and the friends group is very good at fulfilling some of these wishes.
"I guess I just feel at home," Enos said.
Castro, the library clerk, said working with Enos is terrific.
"She's the best boss I have ever had. She has taught me everything."
Reporter Doane Yawger can be reached at (209) 385-2407 or email@example.com.
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