The Bexley Public Library, 2411 E. Main St., unveiled a new children's play space on May 2 that is designed to inspire the next generation of lifelong learners.

The Bexley Public Library, 2411 E. Main St., unveiled a new children's play space on May 2 that is designed to inspire the next generation of lifelong learners.

To fund the new play space, members of the Bexley High School class of 1965 donated more than $5,000 to the library in honor of their 50th class reunion in 2015. The revamped play space features new paint and flooring, furniture designed to facilitate creative play and an updated look.

The space will benefit the more than 200 children who participate in weekly story times and hundreds more who visit the library throughout the week, said Ken Flower, the library's director of advancement and community relations.

"We have new flooring, which is designed for durability and play, with a lot of kids coming through," Flower said. "The new paint brings kind of a vibrant feel to the space."

The space is designed to encourage interaction between children and parents and facilitate group learning and discovery, Flower said.

"The furniture is built and laid out so that it encourages caregivers and children to play together," he said. "It encourages collaborative play."

The library began making plans to update the space when the 1965 alumni inquired about the library's needs and how they could contribute, Flower said.

"The class of '65 expressed an interest in supporting the library. They were particularly interested in supporting ideas that would support the next generation (of library patrons)."

The class gift supports the library's goal of fostering an environment that sparks children's imagination and promotes lifelong learning, Flower said. For more information, visit bexleylibrary.org.