Joan Holzer was celebrated with gifts, cake, song and dance on her final day or work after a long career at the Revelstoke library.
“I don’t want to grow up,” she told the large crowd that came out to her retirement party Friday morning at the library. “From childhood to adolescence to young adulthood, marriage, parenthood, career and now retirement, I’ve had way too much fun.”
Holzer, who was born and raised in Revelstoke, spent 24 years at the Revelstoke library. She celebrated her retirement with her family, co-workers, friends and many patrons present. There was a big cake that was baked by Kathy Bracken and many tongue-in-cheek gifts – including a retirement necklace, ribbon and cap; a fake gold watch, and a bag made out of elastics – given to her by her long-time colleague Zoe Knuff.
“May there be many years filled with the things you love to do,” said Knuff.
Holzer’s contribution to the library was praised by those she worked with and those who knew her. Monica Gaucher, her supervisor with the Okanagan Regional Library, read out an ABC of Holzer’s “qualities, accomplishments and service.”
“Even though you have not been thanked enough, there are those of us who know you have made an incredible contribution to the library and most importantly to the community of Revelstoke,” said Gaucher, who finished off her remarks with a “senility prayer.”
“God grant you the senility to forget the people you never liked anyway, the good fortune to run into the ones you did and the eyesight to tell the difference.”
Coun. Linda Nixon represented the city. She said she’d known Holzer for many years and that they raised their children together. “She has a staff that goes out to lunch together on their days off, so that tells you the workplace culture she has here,” said Nixon.
The surprise of the party came when the gathering broke out into flash mob dance to the song Celebration by Kool & the Gang, and people held up signs saying ‘Yay Joan!’
Holzer left everyone with a message to stay young, keep laughing and keep leanring.
“The library is always there and they’ll always keep the flame of learning alive,” she said. “They keep you learning and they keep you laughing and I think they keep you young.”