The library will be closed Monday, Dec. 25 and Monday, Jan. 1, 2018 for the annual winter holidays. The staff wishes everyone a safe and joyous holiday season beginning with Hanukkah this evening all the way through to Epiphany (or little Christmas) on January 6. No matter how your family celebrates, we wish you health and happiness. Thank you for being part of our library family.
A new program called “Look Up” with an emphasis on astronomy will kick off at the library in the new year. Anchored by some of the most entertaining films on space and space exploration with links to NASA’s year-long space education program, the “Look Up” celebration will also feature guest lectures and visits to the nearby Williams College planetarium. Starting with the January 1 supermoon and a chance to view the next January 30 supermoon through our library telescope, we will be building fun and educational tools for patrons to learn more about space exploration and reflect on the wonder of our universe.
Funds and impetus for this flight into outer space come from a special gift given to the library by our late State Representative, Gailanne Marie Cariddi. People have speculated about Gail’s restricted gift, but at the library we like to think she wanted us to reflect on our relative insignificance when looking at the vast and hauntingly beautiful universe. We also think she wanted us to consider the bravery of the men and women who continue to press outward, preparing for exploration on worlds so different from our own. Or maybe she wanted us to be ready for contact
Our first film will be the wild and crazy “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” on Thursday, January 18 at 6 p.m. in the community room. Popcorn will be available.
Seeking to raise money for a very specific cause (weatherization of the belvedere windows), the Trustees have launched “Piggy Bucks.” Bright blue ‘piggy banks’ are now available at the library for a nominal fee of $5. Once a purchased piggy is filled to the brim, patrons may return it, we will keep the coins, and give you back the bank.
The Trustees are unsure of the final cost of weatherizing the windows but are hoping to raise enough to tackle the middle floor of the three-story structure where the large windows offer a 360 degree view of the City and surrounding Berkshire Hills. An added benefit would be bat-proofing the library.
If you need a last-minute gift, these sturdy, blue piggy banks emblazoned with the library’s name, offer a chance to raise a little money for a great cause. See them at any circulation desk or ask a librarian about “Piggy Bucks” today.
Overdrive is extending their loan period from 14 days to three weeks for books and audios and up to seven days (from original three) for videos. This will mean longer wait times for requests unless we all start returning our electronic materials prior to their due date (electronic materials are automatically returned when the check out session expires). To manually return your electronics before they expire check the Overdrive instructions here. Using the “Libby” app will make this process much easier for you.
There’s a new app for selecting books and administering Overdrive with your CWMARS card. Meet ‘Libby’ a great shortcut to our curated collection of electronic materials. Unlike ‘Boopsie’ which connects you to the library in general, Libby will give you reviews, materials sorted by genre or interest, and a better download experience than the card catalog. Look for the new app in your iTunes or Google Play store. It’s free to download. Enter your name in our ‘Show Us Your App’ drawing for the new Amazon Kindle Fire HD8 reader.
We currently have Massachusetts Resident and Non-Resident forms available on the second floor at the library. For many years, the Federal government has been cutting back on paper forms in favor of on-line filing but we now have 1040, 1040A, 1040EZ forms and 1040 booklets.
We are setting up a letter-writing station in the library for interested patrons to contact their state legislators about the importance of their public library. Whether you love inter-library loan, movies, programs, reliable information, Internet access, or just the democratic principle of the thing — your public libraries are working through decreasing funding and increasing costs. The state mandated minimum wage increase is expected to increase delivery costs by 39%. The result will be longer wait times for your requested materials and possible cuts to the delivery schedule. Training opportunities for library staff have been scaled back and most libraries have reduced hours and services. Here is a link to the iBerkshire article covering the recent breakfast in Stockbridge that laid out a bleak picture despite the slight 1% increase in overall funding in Gov. Baker’s budget.
Local school and educational publisher American Graphics Institute provides library patrons with access to their books and curriculum for self-paced learning. The books teach many popular design technology topics ranging from Adobe software applications, digital video editing tools, web design and coding skills, and office applications. The collection serves as self-paced training resources and also include training videos created by the authors as well as lesson files. More than one million of these books are in print, and library patrons and staff can access current and past digital versions of these book titles while on the library’s network.Access the American Graphics Institute digital book collection here.
Please note that AGI e-content is currently available only at the library, not for home use.
Robin Martin and Nicole Gordon are replacing Nicole Prokop and Joan Owaczarksi on the NAPL Board of Trustees effective October 12,2016. Prokop is relocating to New Hampshire where she will head up adult programming for the Concord Public Library. Owaczarski is retiring from the Board to concentrate on family.
Many patrons will recognize Martin as the former reference librarian and interim director of the library in 2012-13. Gordon, a registered pharmacist, recently moved to the area. She has two young children and is a fan of libraries, having attended many story times and devoted countless library hours to study. They join long-time trustees Harris Elder, Hulda Jowett, Donald Pecor, Richard Taskin, and Rich Remsberg to form the seven-member board that meets every second Wednesday of the month to oversee library policies and budget.