The Montreal West Public Library has inaugurated a new room in honour of award-winning humorist and The Vinyl Café host Stuart McLean, who died at age 68 in February.
The longtime CBC Radio host was originally from Montreal West and the library chose to honour his legacy by naming a reading room after him.
McLean’s brother Alistair was on hand at Wednesday night’s celebration, telling the crowd he was moved by the gesture.
“It’s very touching that in a town we lived in when we were kids, young kids, that they’ve recognized Stuart. The family finds that very thoughtful of them,” he said.
About 50 people packed into a cozy basement space to hear readings of some of McLean’s most cherished stories.
“I think it was great,” said Alistair McLean. “It was something that was very friendly, something that Stuart would’ve felt very comfortable in.”
Jim Cullen, chair of the Montreal West Library board, told CBC that the community is delighted to do something in McLean’s memory.
“We’re all proud of him, travelling across Canada, and introducing ourselves to ourselves,” said Cullen.
Head librarian Deb Marcogliese said she feels a room in the library is a fitting tribute for one of Canada’s most beloved storytellers.
“The library’s not just about books. It’s about more than that. It’s about a community. And I think that’s why it’s important,” she said.
She said the library hopes the space will go on to inspire future storytellers and bring McLean’s work to a new generation of readers.