I have a vague image--a memory—of me somewhere in the neighborhood of four years old at the foot of the stairs in our basement in Alexandria, Virginia, with books on my lap. I know I learned to read at an early age but even before, I must have known I would love them. And a library, for all of my lifetime, has been the mother ship, the place of endless possibility and dreams and voices—the place our humanity is stored, book by book.

Ok, so I get a little dramatic when it comes to books. That’s probably why I am wishing the Delray public library a heartfelt Happy 100th Birthday April 11, just days from now.

 “It’s really a celebration of our town,” says Nancy Dockerty, a member of the library’s board of directors and volunteer chair of the birthday bash. “The library truly is there for everyone in our community.”

Te event will take place Thursday night beginning at 6:30 p.m.--and history will come alive. In one section, guests are likely to see people wearing clothes that were popular about the time the library was first created in 1913. In another area of the library, guests might stumble onto the pre-World War II, and n another, the British invasion with the Beatles.

The $100-per-person event will also feature cocktails and “dinner by the bite”–and free admission to the event to anyone aged 100 or older.

In addition to the bash, there will also be a free community-wide celebration on Saturday, April 13, with a focus on family fun.

The event, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., will kick off with a kids and dogs parade around the library building (with pups decked out for the special occasion) as well as music, stories by “Centennial Sue” and a tea ceremony presented by the staff of the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens.

Co-chaired by Deborah Dowd and David Ranzor, the community event will also feature local dance troupes and of course ice cream and other frozen treats.

To find out more about either event, call the Delray Beach Public Library at 561/266-0194.

Celebrate one of Delray’s most treasured resources and raise a glass to 100 years of magic.