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OPENING CHAPTER: The Huntington Beach Central Library...

OPENING CHAPTER: The Huntington Beach Central Library staff is asking for help with 42,000 children’s books. They don’t want you to read them--just help move them. They’re stocking the new 16,000-square-foot children’s wing of the library, scheduled to open Jan. 8. It’s expected to take about four days to move in all those books. . . . Scheduled to open also: a 319-seat theater, five meeting rooms, a story-time theater, children’s learning and discovery center and a media center.

BEYOND BOOKS: Severe cutbacks at local libraries mean less staff doing more work--and answering more questions. . . . At the Westminster Public Library--next to the sprawling West Municipal Court--they’ve long been prepared to smile and be helpful with the one question asked by men more than any other: “I’m due in court in 10 minutes, can you tell me how to tie my tie?” Or: “Do you have a book on how to tie a tie?” Or: “Can you tie my tie?” County Librarian John Adams says the staff does what it can to help.

A SHE STEVE: For four years, Rachel Lundquist of Santa Ana, now 8, has been prancing around at home imitating whiny-voiced Steve Urkel (played by Jaleel White) of ABC-TV’s “Family Matters.” So when Warner Bros. ran a nationwide Steve Urkel impression contest, her parents sent in a tape of Rachel at her best. She won! . . . . Her reward: Rachel, who wants an acting career, will appear on an episode of the show in February.

RIGHT TURN? Yorba Linda’s Henry Wedaa, the beleaguered chairman of the South Coast Air Quality Management District, spent much of 1993 fighting to keep his job. Conservatives consider Wedaa anti-business, partly because of his strong support for smog-reduction measures such as mandatory car pool plans. Now Wedaa is willing to compromise. He’s sent a letter to local officials admitting the car pool rules should be “modified” to be more “user friendly.”

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