Orcutt Library is $5 Million Closer to a New Home

The first library that served Orcutt patrons during the 1930’s was located in a house at 200 South Broadway at the corner of Clark Avenue in Old Town Orcutt where a mobile home park is now.

Close to 100 years ago, a large metal gate (see picture) opened and closed for scores of Orcutt folks entering the small white building during the depression. The same gate in on display at the current library in the Orcutt Union Plaza at 175 South Broadway, just a stone's throw away from its first location. Along with the original gate, a collection of Old Orcutt historical photos greets visitors as they enter the 4000 square foot library.

The location of the Orcutt branch, administered by the City of Santa Maria Public Library, has jumped around the Orcutt community the past several decades. For years the library was situated in the Oak Knolls shopping center next to Oak Knolls Hardware.

The current leased location in the Orcutt Union Plaza has been the home for about ten years.

Another change is in the works. Fourth District County Supervisor Bob Nelson says that thanks to private donations, contributions by the County, and two million federal dollars from the 1.7 trillion dollar federal budget passed by Congress and signed by President Biden in December, there is a total of 5 million dollars set aside for a stand-alone library somewhere in Orcutt.

Library Director Dawn Jackson, who has worked as librarian for the Santa Maria Public Library for almost 10 years, including oversight of its branches in Orcutt, Guadalupe, Los Alamos, and Cuyama, says there is an absolute need. “There are recognized library space standards to serve communities of various sizes. In its leased space and in a growing community, Orcutt certainly qualifies for needed additional space.”

As to where the new library will be located and when it will be operable, Supervisor Nelson says that he will be happy to make the announcement as soon as details arefinalized. “Iamexcitedabout the prospect of a permanent library and community center for the town of Orcutt and the progress we have made so far. The work of those in our area, Congressman Carbajal and our office is ensuring our tax dollars beneift our families for the long-term.”

Steve Southwick reporting