Librarians don't mind noisy celebration of World Series trophy in Elgin

Libraries are generally expected to be quiet places.

But Sunday morning, the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin resounded with the strains of "Go, Cubs, Go," as hundreds of fans, many adorned in team gear, including one wearing Cubs pajamas, lined up to have their picture taken with the World Series trophy.

More than 800 fans showed up for the chance to see the trophy up close, some of them lining up as early as 10:30 p.m. Saturday night, said Elgin police Sgt. Kevin Senne.

"You know what you can equate this to? Christmastime. Or a new iPhone coming out," he said.

The longest wait may have been that of Ruth Matthias, a lifelong fan who soon will turn 100.

Matthias said she will take her photo with the trophy back to the Belmont Village senior living community in Buffalo Grove, where she will no doubt be the envy of the many fellow Cubs fans living there.

Matthias, whose memories stretch back to Ladies Day games at Wrigley Field, was accompanied by her daughter, Karen Adams, and son-in-law, Steve Adams. He mentioned that Ruth's grandson, John Adams, is an usher at Wrigley Field.

"I'm so glad that she was able to do it today," Karen Adams said. "She looked at the trophy a long time."

Michelle Gallo of Carpentersville arrived at 5 a.m. with her son and friends.

"I figured Cubs fans are crazy, and they're everywhere," she said of the early arrival time.

Sure enough there already was a line wrapped around the corner when she got to the library. She said the group settled in, wrapped in blankets, and waited for the trophy to arrive at 10 a.m.

James Weatherhead of Elgin also got there at 5 a.m.

"It was kind of emotional," he said of seeing the trophy in person. "I just wish my grandma and my grandfather could be here to see it, too. Both of them lived their whole lives and never saw it, never experienced this."

Getting the trophy was a coup for the staff at Gail Borden, the only library included on its tour of the area.

"We have a tremendous number of Cubs fans that work in the library," said Denise Raleigh, division chief of public relations and communications. "When they won, we had a huge 'W' in the parking lot made with all of our staff members."

After the library reached out to the Cubs and an audition that included a site visit, the library received the good news 10 days ago. That meant the library had to work quickly to make the celebration happen.

"We're very proud and very happy to be hosting the World Series trophy," said Carole Medal, the library's executive director. "That's what libraries should be about. Connecting people with not only knowledge and ideas, but events too."

  Longtime Cubs fan Ruth Matthias of Buffalo Grove spends time with the World Series trophy Sunday at the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin. Mark Welsh/
  James Weatherhead of Elgin has his picture with the World Series trophy Sunday at the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin. "I just wish my grandma and grandfather could be here to see it, too," he said. Mark Welsh/
  Hundreds of Cubs fans showed up early, some even camping out in their cars overnight, to have a special moment with the World Series trophy Sunday at the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin. MORE ONLINE: Cubs fans, some as old as 100, experience a once-in-a-lifetime moment, while visiting the World Series trophy at the Gail Borden Library in Elgin, at Mark Welsh/
Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the "flag" link in the lower-right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.