Displays at Bertha Bartlett library appeal to many interests

Kolleen Taylor BBPL Director

What an amazing winter we have had so far … but we are hoping everyone is realizing this may not last. With storms mounting all around us, we have to be prepared for a change that will make us all wish for warm fires and stories to surround us.

We notice the unusually warm days here with attendance and checkouts. When the weather is so nice, families are taking advantage of the winter breaks. But we are also just barely back from the Christmas holiday break and this may translate that Christmas presents, back to school activities and pure exhaustion have taken a toll on our community.

We are trying to highlight some of our collection through the different exhibits throughout the library. Two special exhibits in place right now are the Martin Luther King display, and an exhibit of “How To” books.

Learning new skills and developing new hobbies can be done in many ways, but exploration through a book helps cement knowledge and give one time to fully understand “How” to create, whether it is “How to Talk so Kids will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk,” or “How to become a ventriloquist,” the topics in our library are so varied, there are hundreds of topics that can help teach a new skill. Winter is a great time to look into some of those various topics.

We also have been the recipient of a collection of “The Great Courses,” a video series, which has accompanying books. We have set up a new display featuring those near the audio books, which allow the full set to go home at checkout. The topics for these are also very diverse, and the first batch we have added include Writing Creative Non-Fiction, The Civil War, The Wisdom of History, and A History of Russia, in addition to several sets addressing math, capitalism and life lessons. These unique sets allow the classroom into your home, with professors who have been chosen for their ability to teach.

Another shift we made since summer is moving some of the Classics in our large print collection to make more room for other materials. We have been analyzing how this part of our collection is used, and what types of books we need to have available on our shelves, and have found that we are short shelf space to completely house the wide assortment of books we have and that we continue to receive. The large print collection is being reviewed based on the current usage, watching authors and types of books that are most regularly checked out of our library. As we spend time analyzing to assure we are putting our money in the best place, we have some trial and errors.

Staff Picks and Patron Picks are also exhibits we maintain that ebbs and flows as each of us reads new books we value and enjoy. Watch this shelf for movement in these various areas. If you don’t know where that display is, ask staff as you come in during the week, and we’ll gladly show you.

Story City has an early dismissal day on Wednesday this week, and we try to keep our youthful crowd busy on these afternoons. Starting at 2 p.m., the K-4th students will be doing “Snow Adventures” with Miss Ema, and the tweens will be exploring their own Pokemon/Fakemon creations. We know both groups typically have a wonderful afternoon here at the library, and there is always room for one more.