What Adjective Best Describes This Gem in the Cultural Crown of Palm Beach County?

The Rickie Report is pleased to share a gem in the cultural crown of Palm Beach County, FL.  Even if you already know about the Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach, we guarantee there is much more there to explore.  For those who have not stepped into this new-world class library, we urge you to read this and forthcoming articles.  This is NOT your grandparents’ or even your parents’ library!  What adjective best describes this gem?  We believe you’ll need more than one.  Read more here.






“Reading Together” by Judith Peck. Gift to the City of West Palm Beach from Anne Sobel, Originally Commissioned for The Teaneck, NJ Centennial


411 Clematis Street   West Palm Beach, Fl


Almost 2,000 people come to the library each day


Folks using Library-1


The Numbers: 

  •  97,555 card holders


  • 12,643 are children with their own cards but obviously many parents check out books for their children


  • 200 preschools/day cares/public schools have library cards so they can check out books for their children in their care.


  • 25% of card holders are not West Palm Beach City residents



The staff of The Rickie Report has taken a few behind-the-scenes tours of this facility and is amazed each time as we observe the patrons, staff and volunteers of this remarkable institution.   This is the first of many articles where we will explore and share the opportunities here.  Your first step?  Stop by and open an account – it is FREE!


(What’s In It For Me)


  • 157,796 books –checked out on a given day: 12,984


  • 976 ebooks: checked out on a given day: 435


  • 106,792 music CDs: checked out on a given day: 819


  • 38,531 DVDs and BLU-RAYS: checked out on a given day: 8,138


  • The Library’s collection also contains 4,506 foreign language materials (3,076 Spanish language books are included in that number)


  • 219 foreign films (various languages)


  • The Library Collection is comprised of 2,528 large print books





 140 computers


A recent survey showed that 63% come to this library to use computers.


50% of Palm Beach County Residents do not have access to the internet from their home.


Free WIFI is available throughout the building with ability to print from their laptop.


Park, 1900

Park, 1900

In 1895, The Reading Room was the City’s first library on Banyan Street.  In 1912, the Free Reading Room was brought via barge from the Palm Beach Yacht Club to West Palm Beach and established as the first library.



1923 Spanish Style Memorial Library

1923 Spanish Style Memorial Library

Building an artistic Spanish-style Memorial Library near the Women’s Club contained Reading Rooms, Reference Rooms and a Museum.  In 1924 the Memorial Library was dedicated to the men and women who served in WWI.


1924 Memorial Library

1924 Memorial Library

Architect Norman Robson designed a New City Library in 1962, which opened with much flourish and some controversy over its modern exterior.  As the needs of the people increased, the interiors of the Library were refurbished.


In 2009, the Library  moved to its current location at City Center.  In 2012, the Mandel Foundation awarded a $5 million grant to transform the West Palm Beach Public Library into a world-class institution and encourage support for public libraries.

What Do The People Have in Common-1
“This is a state-of-the-art library”, says James Sugarman, of the WPBL Foundation.  It is truly a community service center. And an inclusive place for people of all ages to relax, learn, increase a skill-set or even learn to master the Tango!


The scope and breadth of what this Library has to offer is complex.  It is free and open to everyone and is maintained by the City of West Palm Beach.  The Rickie Report sees opportunities not only on every floor of this building, but some too numerous to mention in specific departments alone.

Front Window-1


Visit the website and you will be amazed at the offerings.  Imagine a buffet filled with the items you expect, but presented in an innovative manner.  Feast on the various items you’ve wanted to try but never took the time.  And dig into what the Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach has to offer!


If you are interested in taking part in a behind-the scenes tour, please contact  Rebecca Weiss  Development Manager  rweiss@mycitylibrary.org   or call 561-868-7704




snail mail

telephone number

Do you prefer a week day

Do you prefer an evening

Do you prefer a weekend


 For more information:

Foundation for the Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach

411 Clematis Street  – 3rd Floor



For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact The Rickie Report at:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420





Carla Golembe SOLO Exhibit at Delray Beach Library

The Rickie Report knows your senses will be intoxicated when you see Carla Golembe’s vibrant artwork.  She is an award-winning artist whose work has been seen in galleries throughout the United States. Her illustrations fill dozens of children’s books and her work hangs in corporate collections around the globe.  She will have a SOLO exhibit at the Delray Beach Library that you won’t want to miss!


Carla Golembe


 “Passionate About Beauty”

April 1- May 31, 2013

Delray Beach Public Library, 2nd floor

 100 W Atlantic Ave  Delray Beach, FL



Carla Golembe is an award winning artist, illustrator, author and teacher.  Her work is shown at galleries throughout the United States. Collections include Hyatt Corp, Pan Pacific Hotels, Sheppard Pratt Hospital, Medical College of Virginia Hospitals, Worcester Art Museum (Worcester, MA), Academy Art Museum (Easton, MD), Boston Public Library and others.  She has received artist residencies from the Hambidge Center in Rabun Gap, GA; Altos de Chavon in the Dominican Republic and Kalani Honua in Hawaii.  As an artist in residence in these places she presented her work to the community by giving talks, demonstrations and exhibitions.


"Evening Doves"

“Evening Doves”

Carla wrote and illustrated several children’s books: A Story of Surfing, The Story of Hula, M is for Maryland, Washington DC ABC’s, Annabelle’s Big Move and Dog Magic. She illustrated Why the Sky is Far Away, The Creation, People of Corn, How Night Came from the Sea and The Woman in the Moon, Sun and Honeybees.  She also wrote and illustrated the Zippy and Zoe series, published in Taiwan.


Carla’s other illustration work includes greeting cards, fine illustration stock images for Artville/Getty Images and Imagezoo, educational and medical projects for children and magazine work. She has received awards for her children’s books from the New York Times, Parent’s Choice, The American Folklore Society and PMA, the Independent Book Publisher’s Association to name a few.

"Forever Friends"

“Forever Friends”

Carla taught fine art and illustration courses at Maryland College of Art and Design and the Maryland Institute College of Art, and Lighthouse Center for the Arts (Tequesta,FL).  She worked with elementary school children teaching them to write and illustrate picture books and fold books through the Center for Creative Education and the Milagro Center. She now teaches painting and drawing at Delray Beach Center for the Arts and the Art School of the Boca Museum of Art .  She’s been doing presentations and workshops for children, teens and adults in schools, libraries, museums and other community based venues for almost  20 years.  Carla has been an artist for five Animals on Parade Public Art Projects including Washington DC’s Party Animals and Pandamania, Ocean City Maryland’s OC Beach Birds, Prince George’s County, Maryland’s Birds-I-View and Palm Beach County’s Wild Things.


Carla tells The Rickie Report, “We live on an increasingly small planet in dangerous times.  The state of our world is impossible to ignore.  Some artists choose to chronicle the specific time in which we live, to reflect our history at this moment.  I choose to paint imagery that transcends the moment.  It is human and universal.  My intention is to create a visual haven that encourages viewers to enter my personal vision, to relax, smile and breathe.”



“Tuscan Days VIII”

Carla goes on to explain, “My paintings are the product of my dreams and experiences.  They speak of hope and love, of mystery and delight.    My work expresses the harmony between individuals, between people and animals, people and nature, within a person’s soul.  They are colorful and sensual, reflecting the tropical beauty of my home and travels. The full spectrum of positive emotion echoes through my work.   Although the pieces express an optimistic attitude they are not naïve, rather they come from an understanding that pain and anxiety are part of life but joy is a more desirable place to dwell…. there is no gravity in my visual world. The figures often inhabit ambiguous spaces, places where earth, sky and water flow into one another and where light and darkness merge.  They are frequently caught in a moment of being or becoming, for it is in that moment that all dreams are possible.”




Color brings life to Carla’s imagery.  She works in acrylic, building layer upon layer of color.  With this layering technique  she is able to achieve a simple but complex depth. The process is always unfolding, always revealing more.  Strong color, shape and composition give impact to the imagery.  Her influences come from both traditional Western art and folk art.  The result is a blend and balance that is her own unique style.


Educated at Bennington College, Bennington, VT. BA in Art (1972) and Instituto Allende, Mexico MFA in Painting, Cum Laude. Assistantships in Printmaking (1979), Carla’s work is part of numerous Corporate Collections, including: Bessamer Venture Partners, McCormack and Dodge, Peabody and Brown, DeVries Direct Marketing Assistance Corp., Ingalls Quinn and Johnson, Goldstein and Manello, Kutak, Rock and Campbell, Boston Public Library, Hyatt Corporation, Fundacion Centro Cultural, Altos de Chavon , Worcester Art Museum ,Lotus Medical College of Virginia Hospitals, Pan Pacific Hotels, Sheppard Pratt Hospital, Academy Art Museum, Easton, MD, Buck Law Group,  JFK Library, Washington, DC, University College, University of Maryland and Montgomery County MD Art in Public Places.


The Rickie Report knows that local organizations are often looking for speakers and would recommend contacting Carla.  Her art work and previous presentations across the US and abroad promise a fascinating program!  Her work is currently available at: Cove Gallery, Wellfleet, MA       Kolbo, Brookline, MA  and Gallery Galleon , Vieques, PR.  To contact Carla Golembe call   561 498-9185 , visit her  website: www.carlagolembe.com  or email   carlagolembe@gmail.com



For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact The Rickie Report at:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420