Friends of the Library

Youth Art Month Contest

Oceans of Possibilities Youth Art Contest Winners

Winners from left to right include: Ben McClary, Zoa Barker, Emilee Allsop, Mackenzie Wood (top), Remy Niederman (bottom), and Lola Burkson 

In March we asked children to create original artwork using the theme of our summer reading games––Oceans of Possibilities! As usual, you did not disappoint, submitting over 70 pieces of artwork to the contest!

Our staff members were pleased to receive so many creative and imaginative entries.

“It certainly made the decision tough––we ended up choosing six winners!” said Ginny Hosler, a librarian, and the contest’s programmer.

The six winning pieces will be made into collectible summer reading prize bookmarks. Children who participate in the games will receive a bookmark as their 10-point prize.

But we’re not stopping there! “There were so many great submissions that we decided to showcase all of the entries at the Downtown Library this summer. We hope everyone will come and see just how creative our community is!” Hosler said.

   
Infant/Toddler    Preschool    Tween   
Think Library    Adults    Teens    Kids   

April 17–23 is Volunteer Week

National Volunteer Week with photos of two volunteers.

This week, we’re celebrating the volunteers that support the Library’s mission, lending their time and talent to make a difference in our community! Dedicated and knowledgeable volunteers are essential to the success of the Library!

 

Volunteers in Tutoring Adult Learners (VITAL): Mary DePew, Volunteer

According to a recent survey of adult skills, 1 in 6 Americans struggles with basic literacy skills. Locally, 1 in 10 Monroe County residents speaks a language other than English at home. VITAL provides a safe and respectful learning environment for adults who want to improve their reading, writing, math, or English-language skills. VITAL’s volunteer tutors help adults in our community attain greater life success through literacy!

   

Celebrating Black Voices: Jacqueline Woodson & Coretta Scott King Awards Exhibit

Celebrating Black Voices

On Saturday, February 5 from 7–8:15 PM, The Friends of the Library and Monroe County Public Library will host award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater as part of the biennial “Power of Words: Changing Our World One Author at a Time” programming series. The talk is free and open to the public. 

Listen to the internationally acclaimed author, who gives voice to African American life through more than 30 books, ranging from children’s picture books to young adult literature to adult novels. Woodson is a National Book Award Winner for Young People’s Literature for her New York Times bestselling memoir “Brown Girl Dreaming”, among many other awards. The doors will open at 6:30 PM and tickets are not required. Proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test is required per the Buskirk-Chumley Theater’s policy.

   
Think Library    Adults    Teens   

MLK Day Celebration

Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration Events

This Martin Luther King Jr. Day, we’re celebrating Black lives and remembering the tremendous life and accomplishments of Dr. King with a day full of events and opportunities to serve our community. 

 

MLK Day Activities at the Downtown Library

We’ll start the day at 9:30 AM with a storytime featuring "Hands Up" by Brianna J. McDaniel and "Our Skin: A First Conversation About Race" by Megan Madison and Jessica Ralli, followed by crafts to celebrate Black lives and honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Following storytime, at 11 AM, the Bloomington Peace Choir, a community choir that sings to uplift their spirits and the world, will join us for a short all-ages performance in the atrium.

   
Preschool    Tween   
Adults    Teens    Kids   

Tales and Tails of Summer Reading

Tails and Tales Community Reading Goal 1 Million Minutes

 

 

This summer we challenged you to read one-million minutes during Tails and Tales, our animal-themed summer reading games. Even better, the Friends of the Library Foundation pledged to donate $1,000 to the Monroe County Humane Association if that goal was achieved! Not only did you smash the goal in early July, but you kept on reading for a total of 1,894,485 minutes!

In celebration of all the tales you read (and tails you read about), the Friends presented a check to the Monroe County Humane Association, supporting animals in our community! The Friends also provided generous summer reading game prizes, books, and events to readers.

   
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Friends of the Library Pledge $650,000 to New Branch

A rendered image of the Library's atrium shows small meeting spaces on the left and stairs leading to the main floor. In the background, bookshelves and computer workstations are visible behind a large glass wall. Patrons are scattered through the spaces.

On Sunday, June 27, The Friends of the Monroe County Public Library Foundation pledged to donate $650,000 to the Library to equip a new branch on the south side of Monroe County. 

“We are excited to partner with the MCPL in funding the Southwest Branch as just one more way the Friends support the vision and values of the Library,” said Emily Bedwell, Friends of the Library Board President. “We believe that the strength of the community lies in our public libraries and their unique positioning to be centers of growth, learning, and civil engagement.”

“We are incredibly grateful for our long and supportive relationship with the Friends of the Library. This generous financial pledge helps to ensure we can better serve our community,” said Marilyn Wood, Library Director. 

   
Think Library    Adults   

April 18–24 is National Volunteer Week

National Volunteer Week

National Volunteer Week is an opportunity to recognize and thank the volunteers who lend their time, talent, and voices to make a difference in our community! We are fortunate to have so many volunteers who are passionate about the Library’s mission and generously share their skills in a variety of long-term and short-term commitments.

   

Interning at the Library

Sylvia Beaver, Bloomington High School North student and Library intern

Sylvia Beaver, Bloomington High School North student and Library intern

“Despite the challenges presented to all of us in 2020 and beyond, we were excited to find a way to partner again with Bloomington High School North’s internship program. While our opportunities for internships during the pandemic were greatly limited, we created a safe pathway for an internship to take place during this extraordinary time. Our values and goals support experiential learning, with a focus on lifelong learning, inclusiveness, and developing essential life skills. Here at our Library, internships aim to provide valuable career experience, teach important workplace habits, introduce students to new contacts and social connections, and hope their time spent with us is fun and fulfilling. The mutually beneficial support each internship provides to the Library and our constituents is invaluable. Some internships at the Library have brought us talented staff that are now a part of our current team.

   
Think Library    Adults    Teens   

Library Installs Little Free Library in Will Detmer Park

A new Little Free Library has been installed in Will Detmer Park! 

According to children’s librarian, Ginny Hosler, “a Little Free Library is a free-standing book-sharing box. Each Little Free Library has a steward, the person who sponsored and built the library, and each one is super unique to the neighborhood it lives in.” Find more information on the nonprofit organization behind the movement at littlefreelibrary.org.

Little Free Libraries are typically placed in locations where access to books is scarce. “We wanted to install the new library in a spot that would be utilized and helpful to the people who lived around it. Will Detmer Park was a great choice because it’s not near any of the Library’s branches or Bookmobile stops and is in a community park where people frequently go to play, walk, and garden,” Ginny said.

   
Infant/Toddler    Preschool    Tween   
Think Library    Adults    Teens    Kids   

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