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The Simple Things

Years ago, while vacationing in Cabo, my husband and I were enjoying a lovely breakfast outside until a bird flew over and "decorated" our fruit plate.  Ever since then, we've been turned off by al fresco dining.  But, over the past few weeks, we've ventured out to a couple of restaurants, specifically looking for those with outdoor dining.  This past Saturday we had such a nice outdoor meal that my husband said it felt like vacation.  Indeed it did.

Many of us are trying to find the silver lining in our world these days, and it's been nice to be able to slow down and rediscover some of the simpler things in life.  Whether you relax by paging through the glossy pages of a magazine, re-watching Star Wars for the umpteenth time, or trying a new yoga pose, the library has something for you.

If you are spending more time with family, the library has kits to explore and games to play together.  Family-friendly movies are held in abundance, both in DVD format and digitally streaming on the Hoopla app.  And, if your family vacation unfortunately got cancelled this summer, the library's virtual reality goggles can take you to the beach, the forest, or even Paris!

Of course, one of life's simplest pleasures is reading.  Many of us have rediscovered that too.  The escape that reading provides is something we can all use right now, and the library can definitely set you up with your next great read!

No matter what you enjoy, it's time for the library to help you rediscover the pleasures held by some of the simpler things in life. 

  

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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My Sleeve Made A Noise.

Every Thursday afternoon, the library staff holds tea time in the break room.  The lovely Jennifer makes some variety of tea and sets out little snacks to enjoy along with it.  Sometimes others bring in cheese and crackers or home-baked goodies.  For some of us, it's the highlight of our workweek.  

During tea time, we can easily entertain ourselves with stories and YouTube videos, but we also like to play games.  One of our favorites is Crack the Case, a game where you have to solve a murder.  The narrator reads the clue which is very vague, usually a description of a crime scene.  And, through a series of yes or no questions, you have to figure out the killer, the motive, and how it all went down.  We worked our way through all of the Crack the Case cards a few months ago, and we're all still in withdrawal.

Some public libraries circulate tabletop games, and we thought we'd give it a try.  We decided to start with 5 to see how they do.  They aren't your regular board games like Clue or Monopoly.  We figure most people own those or are sick of playing them.  No, these games are Ultimate Werewolf, Photosynthesis, Sherlock Holmes, Carcassonne, and King of Tokyo.  I'll be honest, I've never heard of any of them, but I'm sure that they hold hours of group fun with their mysterious cards, tokens, maps, and....energy cubes??  Yes, energy cubes!

At last week's tea time, we gave one of these games a trial run.  We played Ultimate Werewolf where I was quickly outed as a werewolf and lost.  I lost because my sleeve made a noise.  You read that right.  I lost because my sleeve made a noise!  If you don't know what I mean, check out Ultimate Werewolf or any of the other 4 games to see what they are all about.  

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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A Thing of Beauty

I have "liked" a lot of libraries on Facebook.  I see photos of their programs, staff, and facilities.  Recently a library posted an "artistic" photo of their book shelves.  It was taken from one end of a long stack of books, from the bottom up, with sunlight illuminating the shelves.  But, all I could notice was the spine labels.  Because, you see...They weren't evenly placed.

Our two cataloging librarians work quietly behind the scenes processing thousands of titles in any given year.  In 2019, they prepared 6,315 items for our shelves.  They enter the catalog information into our database, which to the untrained eye, looks like absolute gibberish.  Then they meticulously cover, and label our materials.  There is always a Pendleton Community Public Library stamp on page 19.  And, the top of the spine label is always 2 ¼" from the bottom of the book.  

But, the aesthetic of consistent spine label placement fills me with glee whenever I admire our stacks.  I have told countless people that I would put our stacks up against any other library in the state.  Our circulation staff is always blocking, and reading our stacks.  You may not know exactly what that means.  But, it's library lingo for keeping things neat and in order.  

For "book people" the appearance of a shelf of books can be a thing of beauty.  And, here at the Pendleton Library we believe that, even if you don't read them, you can still appreciate them.

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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It's Hard Not Knowing.

I like to go to Yats, the Cajun restaurant around Indy.  They have a "half and half" where you can get half of one delicious thing and half of another delicious thing.  But, since COVID-19, they stopped offering that.  I'm bummed.  I find myself desperately calling them every two weeks or so to ask when they are bringing it back, and the answer is always that they don't know.  It's frustrating, but I can relate because we get calls every day from our dear patrons wanting to know when we are going to reopen.  And, our answer is also that we don't know.  

But, the time has come for me to take a stab at it!  Granted a lot can happen between now and then.  We are under construction, and then of course, there's the Coronavirus.  So there are lots of factors that could put a wrench in our plans, moving forward.  It's anybody's guess.  But, I'm willing to make a guess because sometimes you've just gotta try.

If all goes as planned with construction, and Indiana's phasing plan continues as scheduled, we will open early to mid-August.  There I said it!  It's right here in print.  But, it's still just my best guess.

If we do reopen in August, you might wonder what to expect.  At that point, we may be operating a "Grab and Go" model of service.  You can enter the library, and you can see all of the fantastic work we've done so far.  You can browse books and DVDs to check out.  You can interact with staff to ask questions.  But, we won't encourage anybody to linger.  We won't be hosting in-person programs right away.  And the meeting rooms will have limited attendance, if any at all.  We will all be socially distancing, wearing masks, utilizing acrylic shields, washing our hands, and taking all of the recommended precautions to keep you and our staff safe.

In the meantime, look for us around town as we try our hand at "PCL Pop-Ups," little surprise events where you'll see your friendly library staff leading different activities.

So, that's the plan.  I love a good plan, especially when it goes off without a hitch.  But, with the uncertain world swirling all around us, please don't hold me to it.

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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It's Hard Not Knowing.

I like to go to Yats, the Cajun restaurant around Indy.  They have a "half and half" where you can get half of one delicious thing and half of another delicious thing.  But, since COVID-19, they stopped offering that.  I'm bummed.  I find myself desperately calling them every two weeks or so to ask when they are bringing it back, and the answer is always that they don't know.  It's frustrating, but I can relate because we get calls every day from our dear patrons wanting to know when we are going to reopen.  And, our answer is also that we don't know.  

But, the time has come for me to take a stab at it!  Granted a lot can happen between now and then.  We are under construction, and then of course, there's the Coronavirus.  So there are lots of factors that could put a wrench in our plans, moving forward.  It's anybody's guess.  But, I'm willing to make a guess because sometimes you've just gotta try.

If all goes as planned with construction, and Indiana's phasing plan continues as scheduled, we will open early to mid-August.  There I said it!  It's right here in print.  But, it's still just my best guess.

If we do reopen in August, you might wonder what to expect.  At that point, we may be operating a "Grab and Go" model of service.  You can enter the library, and you can see all of the fantastic work we've done so far.  You can browse books and DVDs to check out.  You can interact with staff to ask questions.  But, we won't encourage anybody to linger.  We won't be hosting in-person programs right away.  And the meeting rooms will have limited attendance, if any at all.  We will all be socially distancing, wearing masks, utilizing acrylic shields, washing our hands, and taking all of the recommended precautions to keep you and our staff safe.

In the meantime, look for us around town as we try our hand at "PCL Pop-Ups," little surprise events where you'll see your friendly library staff leading different activities.

So, that's the plan.  I love a good plan, especially when it goes off without a hitch.  But, with the uncertain world swirling all around us, please don't hold me to it.

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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The Simple Things

Years ago, while vacationing in Cabo, my husband and I were enjoying a lovely breakfast outside until a bird flew over and "decorated" our fruit plate.  Ever since then, we've been turned off by al fresco dining.  But, over the past few weeks, we've ventured out to a couple of restaurants, specifically looking for those with outdoor dining.  This past Saturday we had such a nice outdoor meal that my husband said it felt like vacation.  Indeed it did.

Many of us are trying to find the silver lining in our world these days, and it's been nice to be able to slow down and rediscover some of the simpler things in life.  Whether you relax by paging through the glossy pages of a magazine, re-watching Star Wars for the umpteenth time, or trying a new yoga pose, the library has something for you.

If you are spending more time with family, the library has kits to explore and games to play together.  Family-friendly movies are held in abundance, both in DVD format and digitally streaming on the Hoopla app.  And, if your family vacation unfortunately got cancelled this summer, the library's virtual reality goggles can take you to the beach, the forest, or even Paris!

Of course, one of life's simplest pleasures is reading.  Many of us have rediscovered that too.  The escape that reading provides is something we can all use right now, and the library can definitely set you up with your next great read!

No matter what you enjoy, it's time for the library to help you rediscover the pleasures held by some of the simpler things in life. 

  

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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Holiday Spirit at the Library

Many of us are feeling that the holidays are less fulfilling this year, less celebratory. The staff at the library feels that way too, and we have a few ideas that you can use to lift your spirits, and the spirits of those around you, this coming holiday season.

We won’t be having our holiday open house, nor hosting the Friends of the Library’s annual gingerbread cottage contest, but there is still a gingerbread activity sponsored by the Friends! Stop in and grab one of our free gingerbread cottage kits, decorate it at home, then drop it off at the library for our Christmas gingerbread town which will be displayed at the library. Huge thanks to Liza and the Friends for their handiwork in putting these great little kits together!

Maybe you are more creative with a pen and paper. With Pages of Pendleton, you can check out a work in progress. Checkout a book with Netflix recommendations, poems, or parenting advice, all contributed by local residents. Start the of story of “Now that I have a flying car…” and let somebody else pick up where you left off. Come back and check out the same book to see if one of your neighbors put an unexpected twist on your tale or gave you a good recommendation for your next great binge watch.

Perhaps you are missing the exchange of gifts with friends and loved ones. How about grabbing a paper ornament from our Wall of Wishes? These ornaments list specific gift ideas for you to purchase for a local child or family in need. Anything from a warm pair of mittens to a new Amazon Kindle is bound to make somebody’s holiday special; and, you’ll feel good about it too!

Or maybe you just want to warm up with a cozy winter mystery, watch your favorite holiday movies on DVD, or check out a book filled entirely with cookie recipes. Whatever the holiday has in store for you, the library is here to make it as bright and festive as possible!

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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Pages of Pendleton

This is not an article about COVID-19. This IS an article about how we celebrate the creativity of the people around us. Our Adult Programming & Outreach Specialist, Ashley Grounds, had a great idea. She wanted to help local residents feel connected with each other, and their community, and so she created the Pages of Pendleton

When you check out a book that is a part of the Pages of Pendleton series, you will find these words inside:

The book you are holding is filled (or soon will be) with the thoughts and energy of our community. Get comfy and take your time reading through the completed pages. When you’re ready, begin your story on the first blank page. You can write, draw, or collage your entry.

 Each journal has a theme. We ask that you please stick to the theme. Some are serious, some light-hearted, and others are more informational. Once the book is filled, it will be added to our collection for others to view for years to come.

I happened to pick up one of these journals up the other day, and I was immediately taken. I learned about Wangari Maathai who somebody wrote about in the I’d Love to Meet…(this historical person) volume. In the When I grow up… volume, I read about the career goals of a young person who wanted to join the military, then the CIA, before retiring at the age of 40. I even got a few good recommendations for what to watch next on Netflix when I peeked inside the volume entitled What I Recommend on Netflix.

The entries are touching and heartfelt. They are funny. They are helpful. They are creative. And best of all, they belong to you. Share your thoughts, your stories, and your recommendations. Let’s stay connected.

Curious to learn more? Explore the Pages of Pendleton.

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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Getting Greener

Our New Year's Resolution is to make improvements that are kind to our environment.  Our facility is pretty green to start with.  We have carpet made out of recycled fibers, and the flooring in our teen area is made out of old tires.  We recycle paper, ink cartridges, and broken cell phones.  We utilize a geothermal system, and converted all of our lighting to LED.  And when we discard old IT equipment or dead batteries, I schlep them to the appropriate recycling place in Indy.  But still, our work is not done.

In early 2019, we started talked about a bottle-filling station in our main lobby.  They aren't cheap, and so we hemmed and hawed about it, and put it off for a later time.  We've had patrons recommend that we get one, and we would tell them that we were thinking about it. Then, like a Christmas miracle, an anonymous donor came forward and gifted a check so that we could install a bottle filler.  Once it was installed, staff lined up to fill their reusable bottles and giggled with glee as the counter went up, tracking every bottle saved.

We have plans for 2020 too. We thought it might be fun to sell cute little bottles at the front desk to encourage our patrons to reuse and recycle.  Beginning in March, we will use a new trash vendor who is able to provide an affordable solution for recycling cans, bottles, plastics, and cardboard.  We don't figure the Pendleton Library will save the world.  But we are making a concerted effort to be greener because we know that every little bit helps, and together we can make a difference.  That seems like a good resolution to me.

Lynn Hobbs, Director

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Free Fun, Compliments of the Pendleton Library

Our home was built in 1982, and a model train track was part of the original design. Apparently, the first homeowner was so passionate about model railroading that he made it a part of his home. And now it's a part of our home. The train goes from the bar, through a tunnel behind the mantel, and outside around a bay window before turning around to do it all over again.

Although the train is fun to have, my husband and I have not become train enthusiasts. But, we will admit that our train has piqued some interest in model railroading, particularly the Eiteljorg Museum's annual Jingle Rails exhibit. Jingle Rails is a massive model railroad display that transports you to a mini downtown Indianapolis before chugging out to the Great American West. We hope to visit the museum during this exhibit every year, but never seem to get around to it. The season is busy, and excuses come easily. Plus, it costs $15 to get in! Of course, it's free for members, but we aren't members.

This year will be different. This year, your Pendleton Community Public Library became a member of the Eiteljorg Museum, and we like to share. That means that you can check out the library's pass to visit exhibits, including Jingle Rails! Museum passes are the newest addition to our Library of Things collection. Stop in to check out a pass to Minnetrista, The Indiana Historical Society, The Indiana State Museum, and the Rhythm Discovery Center, to name a few. We hope to acquire even more passes so that we can offer a variety of fun, educational, FREE outings for local residents to enjoy throughout the year.

Lynn Hobbs, Library Director

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It's Good Work.

Over the past two weeks, I was scheduled to cover some shifts at the front desk.  Granted, I am often seen at the front desk, and I am well familiar with how to register patrons for library cards and get their materials checked out to them.  I know how to send faxes and help people with the printer.  I was doing it all, and feeling pretty competent in my front desk duties.

But, my feeling of competence quickly dissipated when I realized that I don't have any good suggestions for chapter books for 2nd grade readers.  I have no idea how to look up who lived in your house before you did.  And, I'm totally clueless when it comes to Android.  Luckily, there are other library staff members who are great at all of these things!

My time at the front desk made me realize how nimble public library staff has to be.  When we answer the phone or see a patron approach the desk, we really have no idea what comes next.  Perhaps a young patron just wants to hand us a drawing of a red turtle.  Maybe somebody needs help formatting a resume.  Or somebody wants a recommendation for a scary movie. Library staff is constantly shifting from one role to another to serve our patrons in the best way we can. 

When I got home after working the front desk, I felt a sense of accomplishment.  I felt like I actually made a difference.  Because you see, at the library we make people smile, every day.  We provide a sense of relief for patrons, every day.  We teach patrons a new skill, every day.  And, at the end of every day, library work is good work. 

Lynn Hobbs
PCL Director

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Virtual Reality Is So Real, It's Scary.

Recently we added virtual reality glasses to our Library of Things. I've always wanted to try them, and so I did. I started out riding a virtual roller coaster. I haven't been on a roller coaster for a few years, but I love them. So I thought I'd give that a shot. Well, after about 45 seconds, I had to take the glasses off because I started to feel nauseated. I never even got to the top of the hill!

My staff then recommended that I try the Jurassic Park experience, so I got that all cued up. They assured me that it wasn't scary, but I was scared anyway. Although I was just going for a peaceful walk in Jurassic Park, if there is such a thing, I was certain something was going to jump out and eat me alive. And even when a gentle Triceratops sauntered up next to me to join me on my walk, I was terrified. So, I had to stop that one too.

Finally, my staff recommended Google maps. You can type in any address and get a full 365 degree view of that location. I "traveled" to Red Square in Moscow before cuing up my home town of Rhinelander, Wisconsin. Within a minute, I felt like I was really there, standing outside my hometown McDonald's, just a short walk from the library where I got my start.

The upshot is that virtual reality is pretty cool once you find the experience that's right for you. I don't quite have the stomach for all of it. But, maybe you do. Stop by the library and give it a try.

Lynn Hobbs
PCL Director

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Quackerjack Mini-Series

Sometimes I think the annual lucky duck race, and all that goes into it, has the makings of a good mini-series.  The story begins with the setting, as we zoom in on a creek running through a small town in Indiana.  A town that celebrates fireworks on the 4th of July and Lemon Shake-Ups at the Heritage Fair, it is a picture-perfect snapshot of Americana.

The cast includes a fun group of characters who are planning one of the hottest events of the year, the Friends of the Library's Annual Lucky Duck Race!  The show stars Friends' President, Coco Bill, who leads her volunteers with the motto "If you aren't having fun, you aren't doing it right." Also starring is George Gasparovic who reprises his role as The Judge by driving around town with a giant rubber duck in the back of his pick up truck. Producer, Ann Johnson, and her assistant Alicia Pitman, orchestrate some behind the scenes magic, collecting and sorting hundreds and hundreds of entry forms and rubber ducks. Dawn Mattingly acts as Set Designer by setting the stage for the big Finish Line Party.  The team of Promoters work hard to orchestrate as much fun as possible at the adoption events.  And finally, we have the mysterious person in a duck suit who visits various places in town for photo bombing opportunities. These are just a few of the many likable characters who rally around Quackerjack, an 8' inflatable rubber duck, who has taken on a life of his own. When this cast gets together, the laughs come easily, and the duck puns come even easier.

The plot, of course, is all driven by the big race at The Falls, to be held on September 7th at 2:00 p.m. Which local business will get its name on the winners' plaque? What number will be pulled from the 700 ducks floating that day?  Will it rain!?  These are all of the unanswered questions that have been building up all season long. Stay tuned for the finale!

Lynn Hobbs
PCL Director

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Curbside Convenience

At the library, we are always trying to update our services to meet the needs of our patrons. Not too long ago, one of our favorite patrons called because he wanted to purchase a statewide library card as a gift for his wife.  He was using an oxygen tank, and it was not easy for him to get out of the car and enter the library, and I said that I could meet him out in the parking lot.  We'd get it figured out.  And, we did.  It just took a little more effort, but it was totally worth it because a statewide library card is great gift idea, and I wanted to make it happen!

This got us thinking about several of our patrons who struggle to get out of their cars and enter the library to pick up a book or DVD.  So, we decided to launch curbside service to make their lives a little easier.  Patrons wishing to utilize curbside pickup may select "Curbside" as the pickup location when placing items on hold online.  In the notes field of the request, you may indicate your preferred pickup date and time.  For same day pickup, please call the library by 10:00 a.m.  Pickup services are available Monday and Wednesday, 1:00 - 5:00 p.m. and Saturday, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

When you arrive at the library to get your items, please park in the front lot, by the children’s patio and call 778-7527 to let us know you are here.  At that time, we will check out your items and walk them out to your car.  Please have your library card or ID ready when we hand you the items so we can verify the account.  And, that's all there is to it.

Lynn Hobbs
PCL Director

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The Magical Mystery of Interlibrary Loan

I worked at my local public library when I was in high school.  I did lots of things there, including shelving, basic reference, checking items in and out, and registering patrons.  One thing I didn't do though was interlibrary loan.  I filled out the form and dropped it in the back to Vivian who made the magic happen.

I had no idea what Vivian really did.  She was one of the few staff members who had a computer at her desk, and yet she spent a lot of time at the typewriter.  However she did it, Vivian was able to get pretty much any book you asked for.  They would come from all over the country, filling patron requests for titles so rare that they surely weren't held at the Rhinelander District Library.

Here in Pendleton, we do the same thing.  And honestly, it still blows my mind when our reference librarian, Christine Bellessis, gets books from all over the country.  The intricate network of borrowing and lending orchestrated over a computer database is a thing of beauty.  Or maybe I'm just a big library nerd.

Either way, the materials on our shelves merely scratch the surface of all that is available to you via interlibrary loan.  All you need to do is fill out a request form, and we'll handle the rest.  Don't be shy.  Give it a try, and let Chris do her magic!  

Lynn Hobbs
PCL Director

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The Magical Mystery of Interlibrary Loan

I worked at my local public library when I was in high school.  I did lots of things there, including shelving, basic reference, checking items in and out, and registering patrons.  One thing I didn't do though was interlibrary loan.  I filled out the form and dropped it in the back to Vivian who made the magic happen.

I had no idea what Vivian really did.  She was one of the few staff members who had a computer at her desk, and yet she spent a lot of time at the typewriter.  However she did it, Vivian was able to get pretty much any book you asked for.  They would come from all over the country, filling patron requests for titles so rare that they surely weren't held at the Rhinelander District Library.

Here in Pendleton, we do the same thing.  And honestly, it still blows my mind when our reference librarian, Christine Bellessis, gets books from all over the country.  The intricate network of borrowing and lending orchestrated over a computer database is a thing of beauty.  Or maybe I'm just a big library nerd.

Either way, the materials on our shelves merely scratch the surface of all that is available to you via interlibrary loan.  All you need to do is fill out a request form, and we'll handle the rest.  Don't be shy.  Give it a try, and let Chris do her magic!  

Lynn Hobbs
PCL Director

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The Magical Mystery of Interlibrary Loan

I worked at my local public library when I was in high school.  I did lots of things there, including shelving, basic reference, checking items in and out, and registering patrons.  One thing I didn't do though was interlibrary loan.  I filled out the form and dropped it in the back to Vivian who made the magic happen.

I had no idea what Vivian really did.  She was one of the few staff members who had a computer at her desk, and yet she spent a lot of time at the typewriter.  However she did it, Vivian was able to get pretty much any book you asked for.  They would come from all over the country, filling patron requests for titles so rare that they surely weren't held at the Rhinelander District Library.

Here in Pendleton, we do the same thing.  And honestly, it still blows my mind when our reference librarian, Christine Bellessis, gets books from all over the country.  The intricate network of borrowing and lending orchestrated over a computer database is a thing of beauty.  Or maybe I'm just a big library nerd.

Either way, the materials on our shelves merely scratch the surface of all that is available to you via interlibrary loan.  All you need to do is fill out a request form, and we'll handle the rest.  Don't be shy.  Give it a try, and let Chris do her magic!  

Lynn Hobbs
PCL Director

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Part of Our Story

May 27, 2019.  It is now a part of our story.  

I have no doubt that in a few years, the Pendleton Historical Museum will have space dedicated to the Memorial Day tornado.  Photos, news articles, artifacts, and documented tales of a community coming together will live among the war uniforms, Mary Aherns paintings, and school memorabilia. All of these pieces put together help us tell our story, the story of Pendleton, Indiana.

On the Wednesday after the storm, I headed to Falls Park to listen to the local press conference.  Walking through muddy tire treads, and carefully stepping over power lines and tree limbs, I made my way to the gazebo where I saw lots of familiar faces.  I asked after their families and homes.  Everybody had a story to share, their accounts of rattling garage doors, trembling children, and stubborn pets.  We will all remember May 27, 2019 and the days that follow.  Because it is now a part of our story.

At the library, we collect stories.  Lots of them. And on June 1st, we are kicking off our summer reading program with the theme, "A Universe of Stories."  At the library, you can find stories of adventure, romance, and triumph. You can find stories of treacherous journeys through fantastic lands and biographies of war veterans, movie stars, and politicians...all rich narratives of hard-fought victories, humbling defeats, and improbable heroism.  

The story of Pendleton, Indiana is still going, and I am certain that the best is yet to come. But, May 27, 2019 will remain a significant chapter.  It is now a part of our story.

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spreading the news

A few weeks ago, I was at a local salon for the first time.  The stylist asked me if I lived in Pendleton, and I told her that I worked at the library.  To that, she sheepishly responded, "Well, I can't say that I spend a lot of time there." I laughed and said that we didn't judge. But, I suggested that she stop in sometime to see what we offer these days.  I happened to mention that she could check out a free power washer from our Library of Things, and she was pretty surprised. 

When I went on to mention that virtual reality goggles, a metal detector, ukulele, and TV antenna were all available, she hollered over to another stylist, "Are you hearing this?" Before she could respond, the woman sitting in the other stylist's chair yelled back, "I'm sure hearing it, and I had no idea!"  And, just like that, I had slyly promoted the public library to three people, all while getting an eyebrow wax.

Sharing news about the good work of public libraries is a never-ending job.  There will always be somebody who just doesn't know what the modern library offers, and we'll take opportunities to let people know every chance we get. 

Last month we embraced National Library Week with our Friends of the Library.  The outpouring of support from our community was reaffirming. We always love the opportunity to share information about the importance of libraries, even with those who visit on a regular basis.  Whether you are a regular user or somebody who hasn't visited in a while, we invite you to stop in and take a look around.  Check out a ukulele while you're at it.

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Libraries = Strong Communities

This year's National Library Week theme is ​Libraries = Strong Communities. I like the idea, but I'm not sure that the equation is completely accurate. The very existence of a library facility within a community will not necessarily create a strong community. You need a strong library to create a strong community. And, you need a strong community in order to have a strong library. Because the library is about the people who use it. 


Say a patron visits the Pendleton Community Public Library for the first time because he needs a document notarized. He may happen upon the Library of Things and quickly find out that he can check out a free power washer. In talking with the library staff, he also learns that a mobile hotspot and telescope are free to check out. Perhaps he sees a new movie that he wants to watch. Maybe he picks up the latest newsletter and learns that the library offers free legal assistance programs and Saturday exercise classes. 
This individual may or may not become a regular user of the library, and that's okay. Of course, we'd love for him to be a steady patron, but at the very least, we'd like for him to be a steady supporter. By spreading the word about the public library and what it offers, others can learn about the services and resources available to them, right here in Pendleton. By connecting individuals to the specific resources they need, the library becomes a more valuable institution, fulfilling the unique needs of our community in a way that only the public library can. 


Libraries help people every day in any number of ways. Sure, we'll help you find a good book. But, we'll also help you find the right tax form. We'll answer your reference questions. We'll also help you with a crossword puzzle. We'll help you navigate a job search or proofread your resume. We'll give you a tour of the community garden and a packet of seeds to try at home. Even if you need a little help putting food on the table this month, we can help. 


Your public library is always here for you. But we need you to be here for us. Without patrons and supporters, the library is just a building. Buildings don't create strong communities. The people inside of them do.

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