Volume XXIX, Issue 51
December 21, 2020
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A coding challenge this holiday season for kids ages 8-18.

For kids ages 8-18 of all skill levels. Participants will create accounts in Prenda Code Club where you can learn how to code and build a special holiday robot project. The best projects will be awarded a drone, Sphero Mini robot, or Makey Makey kit! Contest runs Dec 15 – Jan 31.

Throughout your winter break work on building a new special Mission.  Follow the instructions and build something awesome! 
Click to find out more HERE.

19 Times Libraries Had
the Best Holiday Displays Ever

Libraries are truly the gift that keeps on giving! While us book lovers may not have been able to enjoy libraries quite as much as we may have wanted to this year, that doesn’t mean we can’t admire their holiday decorations from afar. If you’re the kind of bookworm who absolutely loves going to the library every chance you get — and you’ve been dreaming of a bookish holiday season — then you’re sure to adore these dazzling displays, which prove that libraries really know how to tap into the holiday spirit. Read more HERE.

COVID-19 Business Relief Payments

Aid for Restaurants, Bars, Gyms & Bowling Centers

The Minnesota Department of Revenue will send COVID-19 Business Relief Payments to eligible businesses under an economic relief package signed into law December 16.  The people of Minnesota can find out more HERE.

3 stories your library
should be telling right now

Stories make complex information easier to understand. And stories can change the future of your library, for the better.

Story #1: The value your library adds to the community. Your library makes a difference. But instead of just saying that, paint a picture with real life examples of people whose lives were changed by your library.  

Story #2: Investing in the library creates a good return on funds. Show the ways your library’s work, funded by taxpayers, is transforming lives. 

Story #3: Describe your services in a less clinical, more compelling way. The Bridges Library System in Wisconsin created an entire section of their website where they share stories of how various community members use library programs and services.

Read the full article HERE.
from the
Twin Cities librarians fielding more questions about race, social justice in year of George Floyd
By  Star Tribune
December 21, 2020 — 11:06am

If you want to learn how to talk about race, check out a children's book.

That's the sentiment that Tasha Nins, a children's librarian for the Ramsey County Library, has offered to adult patrons seeking help on how to talk to children about race and social justice in the months since the nationwide unrest after George Floyd's death in Minneapolis in May.

The uptick in requests for such books hasn't surprised her and when the library was open pre-pandemic, she loved overhearing adult patrons recommending children's books to other adults for them to read or for their children to read.

Before Floyd's death there was a slow shift happening "with families coming in and saying, 'I would like something other than Winnie-the-Pooh' " to broaden their children's experiences. Nins said all she can do is hope people are checking out these books for learning and not just posting on Instagram.

"We do hope that there are parents reading these books with their children, because I think a lot of times parents and caregivers don't have the answers and they're scared to broach the subject," Nins said. "Even if they don't have the answers, children's books can start those conversations and can lead to more learning for the adults and the children."

Nins pointed out that librarians are navigating this moment as their employers, often deemed an ultimate community haven, are trying to do anti-racism work to address the lack of diversity in the field. They also are doing work on which books librarians are recommending, what kind of books are they buying, being more cautious about how they're treating their patrons and researching what policies have different effects on people of different ages and races.

Nins said she and other Black librarians have not pivoted from the books they were typically recommending before Floyd's death.

In her own household, with her husband and three children, reading has continued to be important.

Her oldest son just finished "Stamped" by Jason Reynolds, and her daughter is reading "The Bridge Home" by Padma Venkatraman. Her youngest son is learning to read, and Nins said as she's gone out to buy books to help him with reading, she has made a point to find ones with Black children in them. Most children's bookshelves feature animals or white children.

She said that as the pandemic has continued, parents have filled out a special form on what books they are looking for and the requests have included books on race but also on dealing with emotions.

Part of the job for Nins and other librarians in recent months has included doing the important but delicate dance with parents and caregivers about children's books to potentially recommend. She pointed out that sometimes they gently but pointedly ask parents: "Is your kid not reading, or are they not reading things you want them to read?"

The requests for books on race and social justice for children have slowed since the summer — something Nins was not surprised by. She said she'll be more surprised if people maintain their commitment to seeking and reading these books.

"Checking out a book doesn't mean you're going to solve racism," Nins said. "What I am hoping is that more people hold each other accountable for this further learning. I'm hoping more and more people do the reading and more and more people have this conversation with their children about race so there aren't such big gaps as a society."

Marissa Evans • 612-673-4280


PBS North now offers free streaming

From HomeTown Focus | December 18, 2020

WDSE/WRPT’s PBS North channel is now available to live stream for free across their broadcast area. The live stream is available to anyone with an internet connected device such as a computer, laptop, smart phone, as well as through streaming devices, such as Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire Stick, and smart TVs.

The live stream of the PBS North channel is available at www.pbs.org/livestream as well as on the free PBS Video App, which is available to download for most smart devices.

The addition of the PBS North channel live stream expands access to the PBS North channel to households across the region. Whether households currently receive PBS North over the air, through satellite or cable providers, or perhaps don’t have a TV at all, the PBS North channel live stream is one more way for people to find educational and entertaining programming.

“We are pleased to offer this additional option for viewers of PBS North to access all of our amazing shows,” said Jon Panzer, WDSE/WRPT’s chief engineer. “From our At Home Learning programming block and PBS KIDS programs during the day, to our educational shows in the evening, to our beloved dramas on the weekends, now, more than ever, there are more ways to watch WDSE/WRPT!”  Read the article HERE.

All the opinions from the top sources
From the Reader's Advisory Round Table
of the Minnesota Library Association
The panel provided helpful tips about asking good questions to uncover a reader's appeal factors, expanding your own knowledge by reading widely, and relying on our networks of both colleagues and online resources to help us connect every reader with the right book at the right time. 

Jean's Top Five Picks:

Katie's Top Five Picks:

Gift Ideas for
Fiction Fans

Great recommendations from the Boston Public Library

Read them all HERE.


12 Inspiring STEM Books for Girls

Science, technology, engineering, and math are more important than ever, so Edutopia put together a list of books to encourage girls to persevere in these subjects. Although it's from 2017, this list is still full of inspiration. See it HERE.

 For the full list, click HERE.
Ignite Her Curiosity: 60 Children's Books to Inspire Science-Loving Mighty Girls

Posted on November 8, 2020 by Katherine on A Mighty Girl blog

29 Highly Rated Books
on BookBub This Year
Get the list HERE

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On Demand: "Friend-ly Tips: Effective Friends Marketing"

This webinar recording is now available on YouTube for encore viewing at your leisure (run time 1:22:00).  See it HERE.

Web Archiving for Public Libraries

self pacedFormat.  Developed by: Internet Archive with funding from Institute of Museum and Library Services, Length: 2 hours.  Get it HERE.

ALS Public Library Status Update
PDF file available for printing and download HERE.
Open to the public with restrictions and curbside service also available on Monday and Friday 10:00-5:00; Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 12:00-7:00.  For more information, call 218-229-2021 or visit their Facebook page or blog, aurorapubliclibrarymn.blogspot.com.
Open to curbside service only Monday-Thursday 1:00-5:00 and Friday 1:00-4:00.  Return items to the outside bookdrop. Please call 218-827-3345, see their Facebook page or visit their blog, babbittlibrary.blogspot.com.
Open with restrictions and curbside service also available Monday-Friday 9:00-4:30 and Saturday 10:00-2:00. Returns accepted inside or in bookdrop. Call 218-634-2329 or see their Facebook Page. *
Curbside service offered Monday-Friday.  Please call for complete information at 218-245-1633 or see their Facebook page.
Offers no-contact Book & Media checkout and return services at the side door entrance. Call 218-258-3391 Monday, Wednesday and Friday 10:00-6:00.  For more information see their Facebook page.
Open with restrictions and offering curbside service Monday 11:00 7:00, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 9:00-4:00.  Find out the full details by calling 218-247-3108 or visit their Facebook page.
Open with limitations and curbside pickup offered Monday 1:00-6:00, Tuesday - Thursday 1:00-5:00, Saturday 11:00-2:00. For more information, call 218-384-3322, email bethany.leseman@alslib.info, or see their Facebook page.
Curbside pickup available Monday 12:00-6:00, Wednesday 9:00-2:00 and Friday 10:00-3:00. Return materials to the outside book drop, northeast corner of the building. Call 218-254-7913, email at chisholmlibrarymn@gmail.com or see their page on Facebook.
Curbside pickup of requested materials, kids and adults take-and-make kits, librarian assistance requests and online databases. Monday 12:30-5:30, Tuesday 10:00-2:00, Thursday 1:00-6:00, Saturday 10:00-1:00; closed on Wednesdays and Fridays.  Call 218-879-1531, email Cloquet.library@gmail.com or see their website at cloquetlibrary.org.

Offering curbside pickup and computer use by appointment Monday-Thursday 9:00-5:00 and Friday 9:00-4:00.  Call 218-245-2315, message them through Facebook or email colerainepubliclibrary@alslib.info.
Offering lobby pickup, Monday-Thursday, 10:00-4:00, curbside pickup available by appointment.  Patrons must call or email ahead to let staff know which day they are picking up items. Return books to the outside book drop.  For more information, call 218-666-2210, email crystal.phillips@alslib.info, see their newsletter HERE or their website, cookpubliclibrary.org.

No appointment curbside pickup at Superior Street Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 10:00-4:00 and Thursday 1:00-7:00.  Computer use by appointment during these hours. Returns accepted 24/7 at the Main Library at both Michigan St. and Superior St. bookdrops.  For more information, call 218-730-4200 or see their website, duluthlibrary.org.
Offering curbside pickup by appointment Monday-Friday 9:00-5:00. Return items to the exterior book drop by the main doors. Call 218-365-5140 and more information is available at elylibrary.org.
Offering no-contact "At the Door" pick-up of requested materials. This service is for picking up items on hold ONLY. No other transactions will be handled. Library staff is available by phone Monday-Friday 9:00-5:00. Return items to the bookdrop. Check for updates on their Facebook page, email to evepublib@gmail.com or check their website, evelethpubliclibrary.com.
Open Monday-Friday 11:00-5:00. Return all materials to the exterior bookdrop. To order materials, call 218-748-2230, email gpldirmn@gmail.com, see their Facebook Page or check their website, gilbert.lib.mn.us/home.
Circulation via pickup window. Computer use by appointment, printing and staff help by phone or email Monday-Friday 10:00-5:00 and Saturday 10:00-2:00. Return materials to the exterior dropbox. Call 218-387-1140, email gmlib@alslib.info or visit their website, grandmaraislibrary.org

Drive through pickup of holds Monday-Friday 12:00-6:00. Return materials to the drive up dropbox. Call 218-326-7640, visit cityofgrandrapidsmn.com/library and check their Facebook page for the most current information.

Contactless curbside pickup of holds offered Monday-Thursday 10:00-4:00.  Return items to the bookdrop. Contact them by calling 218-362-5959, message them on their Facebook page or visit their website, ci.hibbing.mn.us/residents/library.
Open with restrictions Monday-Friday 11:00-5:00. Curbside pickup is available by appointment.  For full information, call 218-225-2412 or see their website, hoytlakeslibrary.org.
Open Monday-Friday 10:00-3:00 and also offers curbside pickup. Books can be returned inside the library or to the bookdrop. Call 218-283-8051, email to ifallslibrary@gmail.com or see their website, internationalfallslibrary.us.
Offers curbside pickup by appointment and delivery within the city limits by calling Paula at 218-969-8977.
Open Monday & Friday 1:00-5:00, Tuesday & Thursday 1:00-6:00, and Wednesday 12:00-7:00. For more information, call 218-247-7676, or message them through Facebook.
Open Monday-Friday 10:00-5:00 and curbside pickup is still available.  Return items to the interior or exterior book drop.  Call 218-485-4424, visit their website, cityofmooselake.net/284/public-library, or see Facebook for more.
Curbside pickup only Monday-Thursday 10:00-4:00. Return all materials to the interior or exterior bookdrop.  Call 218-735-8625, message them on Facebook, email anna.amundson@alslib.info or see their website at mountainironlibrary.com.
Offering curbside pickup by appointment. Return items to the bookdrop. Call 218-226-4331, email silverbaypubliclibrary@gmail.com or see their blog, wwwsilverbaynews.blogspot.com.
Open and offering curbside service Monday, Wednesday and Friday 9:30-5:00 and Tuesday & Thursday 11:30-7:00. Return materials to the exterior bookdrop. Call 218-834-3148, email thplinfo@gmail.com or see their website, twoharborspubliclibrary.com.
Offering curbside pickup of library items on hold Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 9:00-5:00, Tuesday 9:00-6:00 and Saturday 10:00-2:00.  Click HERE or call the library at 218-748-7525 See their Facebook page or virginiapubliclibrary.info
"The joy of brightening other lives becomes for us the magic of the holidays."  W.C. Jones
"It's not how much we give but how much
love we put into giving."  Mother Theresa
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5528 Emerald Ave
Mountain Iron, Minnesota 55768-2069

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