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February 5, 2024


Andrea Castillo

(301) 699-3500 x6158

After long community push, newly renovated Baden Branch Library opens February 6

Largo, Maryland – The Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS) will host a grand opening ceremony for its new Baden Branch Library at 13601 Baden Westwood Road in Brandywine on Tuesday, February 6, 2024, offering a space that is nearly double the size of the original location next door and includes new meeting room space, a cafe with vending machines, more seating and technology to help customers connect to the internet – including 10 public computers, a printer, a scanner and digitizer, and digital signage. Members of the tight-knit rural community in southeastern Prince George’s County advocated for expanded library facilities for more than a decade. 

“Even though we’re small, this is huge to us,” said Dottie Crecelius, Friends of the Baden Library president and PGCMLS Foundation Board of Directors member. 

The original Baden Branch Library opened next door to the new facility in 1970, housed in Baden Elementary School and part of a complex that also includes a community center. As the Friends of the Baden Library celebrated the branch’s 40th anniversary in 2010, they saw an opportunity to expand their small space that could no longer accommodate the crowds from storytimes – or even provide public restrooms – when a health clinic left the complex, Crecelius said. 

From there, Friends of the Baden Library and their supporters began attending Board of Library Trustees and Prince George’s County Board of Education meetings to advocate for the cause, eventually gaining the backing of politicians like the late Maryland Senate President Mike Miller to get the project off the ground.

“We are so excited this has finally come together,” Crecelius said. “The community is so happy and so proud that we’ve been able to do this. They are just so excited to have a fresh new space with added features.” 

Inspired by the Friends of the Baden Library's outdoor garden, the new 4,864-square-foot interior includes treehouse reading nooks, decorative nods to different kinds of plants and trees throughout the space, a comfort room, and soft seating for parents and children. The building was designed by Grimm + Parker Architects and built by NARDI Construction, Inc.

“The new space has allowed us to expand our adult and teen collections, and there is now a distinct separation between the adult area and the children’s area, giving the community places to sit and read or use computers and laptops,” said Tiffany Dickerson, Baden’s supervising public services specialist. “The new children’s department is amazing, with plenty of space for children to play in our Ready 2 Read Center, as well as child-sized tables for completing homework assignments, projects, and arts and crafts. The community will be pleased with their new library!”

The opening-day ribbon-cutting ceremony, which will take place at 11 am, will feature remarks from PGCMLS CEO Dr. Mark Winston, Prince George’s County Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for Health, Human Services and Education Dr. Sanmi Areola, Prince George’s County Councilman Sydney J. Harrison (District 9), Maryland State Librarian Irene M. Padilla, PGCMLS Board of Library Trustees Chair Angela D. Smith, and Interim Chief Operating Officer for Public Services Megan Sutherland.

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About the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System

The Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS) helps customers discover and define opportunities that shape their lives. The Library serves the 967,000+ residents of Prince George’s County, Maryland through 19 branch libraries, a 24/7 online library, and pop-up services throughout the community. PGCMLS is a responsive and trusted community-driven organization. Programs, services, and outreach activities serve book lovers, immigrants and refugees, job seekers, children, young professionals, seniors, and families alike. PGCMLS is the recipient of the 2021 Urban Libraries Council Top Innovator Award for Workforce and Economic Development. Learn more at