Libraries need a little more love; lower the level for voters to approve tax increases

From The Sacramento Bee

“Californians love their libraries so much they don’t think libraries are part of government.It’s a love so deep Californians are willing to pay higher taxes to improve their libraries. In Northern California, five ballot measures were approved in November that will invest tens of millions of dollars in local public libraries.Library-specific tax increases, as opposed to a general local tax increase, don’t win unless two-thirds of voters say “yes,” which means to win there has to be a whole lotta bipartisan love goin’ on.”

Stockton-San Joaquin County: Children read to rescue animals at sanctuary’s library event

From Record Net

” To a small child learning how to read, picking up a book and pronouncing words to an adult can be quite intimidating.But two guinea pigs named Estella and Pip don’t mind being read to. Especially if there is spinach, carrots and dried cranberries to munch on.Dozens of children got the chance to read to and touch rescued farm animals at the Weston Ranch Library on Thursday afternoon, brought in by Christine Morrissey from the Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary.Morrissey said Thursday’s Rescue Readers Club “reading to the animals” event was the first the sanctuary has done, and hopes for more similar events to be done every month at libraries across San Joaquin County.”Our organization has been around for a long time – about 10 years – but the Stockton community doesn’t know much about us,” she said.Located in French Camp, the nonprofit organization provides life-long care for 200 abused and neglected farm animal.”

Santa Clarita Public Library Launches Dial-A-Story Program

From SCV News

” The Santa Clarita Public Library is bringing story-time home to families and children: residents can now listen to stories by dialing the library’s main phone line at (661) 259-0750 and dialing extension 4. Families calling in can listen to pre-recorded stories read by favorite, local children librarians, a branch manager and even a bilingual storyteller.The books featured on the Dial-A-Story line are specially selected by Santa Clarita Public Library staff to ensure a wide variety of stories are available for children of all ages; from babies and toddlers, to those in elementary school.The idea sprouted from the library’s popular Storytimes programs which are offered at the library’s branches in Canyon Country, Valencia and Newhall.”

UC Riverside Receives Grant from Council on Library and Information Resources

From UCR Today

” The University of California, Riverside, has been awarded a $376,191 grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR). The grant, “Digitizing Special Collections and Archives,” by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will support the project “The Sherman Indian Museum Digital Collection: Increasing Access to American Indian Off-Reservation Boarding School Archives.” “It’s going to benefit people all over to be able to access these materials, and it will also to protect them so we won’t be using originals as research access,” said Cliff Trafzer, who holds the Rupert Costo Endowed Chair in American Indian Studies at UCR.The project is in collaboration with the Sherman Indian Museum. The museum is part of what is now called the Sherman Indian High School in Riverside. In 1902, the federal government through the Office of Indian Affairs (Office of Indian Education) established Sherman Institute, an off-reservation American Indian boarding school aimed at assimilating Native American children by eradicating their culture and training them to become laborers and domestics. In 1970, Sherman Institute became Sherman Indian High School, an off-reservation federal Indian boarding school devoted to honoring native cultures while preparing American Indian teens for college and careers.”

Yolo County: Grant-writing workshop set at Davis library

From Davis Enterprise

” Community agencies and grant writers are welcome to attend a free workshop on census data grant-writing on Monday, Feb. 13, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The workshop will take place at the Stephens Branch Library, 315 E. 14th St. in Davis.Participants will learn how to access the most current data from the United States Census Bureau’s products via the newly enhanced American FactFinder and how to successfully capture community profiles relevant to specific grants and program developments.”

San Marino : Helping Hands for Hand-Held Devices at Crowell Library

From Pasadena Now

” Electronically savvy and patient volunteers from the National Charity League will be available on Saturday February 25 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Crowell Public Library’s Barth Community Room to help frustrated people figure out how to use their hand-held devices. Many people have iPods, Androids, tablets, iPhones, and other gadgets, but can’t figure out all of the features. The young volunteers are familiar with many of the concepts behind these devices, so even if they haven’t used a particular gadget, they may be able to help a person figure out what to do.”

Kevin Starr, renowned keeper of California history, dies

From SFGate

” Kevin Starr, the former state librarian whose encyclopedic, eloquent writings about California made him the premier chronicler of the Golden State’s history, died Saturday night of a heart attack in San Francisco. He was 76 years old.A San Francisco native and most recently a professor at the University of Southern California, Dr. Starr was perhaps best known for his mammoth series of history books, “Americans and the California Dream.”The anthology covered California from statehood until the early 2000s and received critical acclaim not only for its vivid writing and exhaustive research, but also for Dr. Starr’s illuminating handling of lesser-known aspects of California’s past.”

Overdue Book Returned To SF Library 100 Years Late

From SFist

The San Francisco Public Library’s Fine Forgiveness Period is waiving late fees right now on all overdue items returned before February 14, 2017. But nothing you’ll return will be as overdue as a 1906 volume returned to the Library’s Park Branch on Friday afternoon. Webb Johnson of Fairfield, California returned an outrageously overdue copy of a book (ironically titled Forty Minutes Late) that his great-grandmother had checked out perhaps as long ago as 1917, and was now more than 36,000 days overdue.Do not blame Ms. Phoebe Marsh Dickinson Webb for failing to return this book she checked out from the library in 1917. She died two weeks before the book was due.”

Marin library system offers online diploma, certificate program

From The MarinIJ

” High school diplomas are now available through the Marin County Free Library through a new program called Career Online High School.“We are really excited to offer this opportunity,” said Sara Jones, director of the Marin County Free Library. “People learn in many different ways and this gives another opportunity for an individual to gain important education and a diploma.”Ten Marin residents, ages 19 and older, can take an 18-month course that allows them to earn a credentialed high school diploma and a career certificate.Participants will engage in roughly 10 hours of coursework a week. Any earned high school credits can be transferred over.”

Oakland tool library cater to DIYers

From The East Bay Times

” Tucked in the back of the Temescal Branch Library, down a short flight of stairs to the basement, is a do-it-yourselfer’s dream: tools everywhere, labeled and hung neatly on the walls and in bins and drawers, and any of them can be borrowed for free.Oakland’s Tool Lending Library has grown from an inventory of 325 tools when it opened in 2000 to more than 5,000 it now has available to loan out. Every nook and cranny of the small four-room library is stuffed with tools. Even more garden tools are housed in a storage shed.Last Saturday afternoon, a steady stream of patrons came through the door, picking up tools and asking for advice.”

Sonoma County: Health Literacy

From The Bohemian

” Want to kick off the new year on a healthy note, but don’t know where to start? Check out your local library.The Sonoma County Library is currently hosting an ongoing series, “Healthy Living at Your Library,” at all 12 locations through May. Aimed at educating people on healthful eating and cooking as well as physical fitness, the free classes range from cardio-focused kickboxing workouts to meditation and yoga to cooking demonstrations.Headed by library division manager Jaime Anderson, the series is part of the library’s plan to create a much broader program that touches on more aspects of life. “Most people think of libraries as places to read books, and we have a literacy program where we teach people to read,” Anderson says. “But this idea of a comprehensive services program goes beyond that.”The healthy living series was designed around the 2016 Sonoma County Community Health Needs Assessment, which found that healthful eating and physical fitness are top priorities for county residents.”

Yolo County Library materials to be more widely available

From The California Aggie

“Good news is in the air for Yolo County residents who have limited access to the Yolo County Library. Through the new Books by Mail program, books, DVDs, magazines and other library materials can be delivered right to residents’ front doors, free of charge.Involvement in the program requires a short application process available online or over the phone. Once the process is completed, residents select the materials they wish to receive in the mail. They can even opt for the library staff to choose a custom selection of materials based on personal interests. The library ships their chosen materials in reusable canvas bags with prepaid postage.Books by Mail came about when staff at the Yolo County Library noticed how difficult it was for some residents to commute to their local libraries due to problems such as lack of transportation or limitations of illness. The library’s staff drew inspiration from the San Francisco Public Library’s Books by Mail service and worked to bring the program to Yolo County.”

Camarillo : Pages turn as popular library marks 10 years in city

From The Camarillo Corn

” A pirate ship sprouts from the floor of Camarillo Public Library’s Discovery Zone, where moms and toddlers peruse picture books on a spongy mat that simulates the motion of ocean waves.Just around the corner in a separate study area for older kids, natural light streams in through tall windows. On each side of the room, blue plaster pillars created by tile muralist Joe Beserra leap up like waves toward the vaulted ceiling.“I just love this part of the library,” Library Director Jo Rolfe said, pointing out the room’s calming atmosphere. “Even the acoustics are different in here.” Over the past decade, the Camarillo Public Library has become a popular destination for locals and out-of-towners alike. At left, Camarillo Library Director Jo Rolfe talks about the future of the library and plans for its 10-year-anniversary celebration in April. TURNING 10—Over the past decade, the Camarillo Public Library has become a popular destination for locals and out-of-towners alike. At left, Camarillo Library Director Jo Rolfe talks about the future of the library and plans for its 10-year-anniversary celebration in April. When Glendale-based Charles Walton Associates was designing the $27-million library in 2001, architects incorporated ideas that came directly from Camarillo residents.”

Marin County Free Library Now Offers Online Diploma, Certificate Program

From San Rafael patch

” Want to earn credentialed high school diploma or a career certificate? You can now do so through the Marin County Free Library!The Marin County Free Library recently introduced its Career Online High School, a pilot program supported by the state of California and public libraries statewide.The program enables local residents 19 years old and over to earn a credentialed high school diploma or a career certificate. It is available to library card holders who are willing to dedicate about 10 hours per week on coursework.Applicants must have completed eighth grade and have basic English-language, computer and Internet skills. The average time needed to complete a high school diploma course is one year.“Demographics tell us that Marin has one of the country’s highest education levels per capita, but there are many people here who didn’t have the same opportunities growing up and had to join the workforce as teenagers,” said Damon Hill, library services manager of Marin County Free Library.”

San Francisco Library willing to forgive $70K in overdue book fines

From ABC 7 News

” If you want a truly fresh start for the New Year, the San Francisco Library is letting you wipe the slate clean – if you’ll bring back those overdue library books. They’re offering amnesty to patrons who have racked up some serious fines.Snaking its way behind the circulation desk like a bionic bookworm, the San Francisco Library’s robotic book return has been busy. “We are forgiving all fines beginning today through February 14,” SF Library spokesperson Katherine Jardine said.For some patrons, it’s Christmas all over again, or maybe confession. “It’s like being forgiven for your sins,” one said.And costly sins at that.”

El Dorado County : New library program helps determined students succeed

From Village Life

” During her senior year of high school Skyler Ousley lost her drive and dropped out.“After I left Ponderosa High I regretted not having the motivation to work through it and make a better life for myself,” she said.She looked into several alternatives to high school, but had trouble with scheduling and other issues. Then her father told her about the Cameron Park Library’s new online high school diploma program. She completed the self-assessment and interview and was accepted as the program’s first student.”

Homegrown TEDx lectures coming to Camarillo Library

From The Camarillo Acorn

” While working his way through college, Georg Winkler would often get home from his late-night restaurant shift in the wee hours of the morning.Unable to sleep, he would stay up watching TED Talks on YouTube.Launched in 1984 as a conference in Vancouver that merged the topics of technology, engineering and design, TED Talks invites leading thinkers and doers to deliver short, powerful presentations of 18 minutes or less to small audiences, usually about 100 people. The talks are made available free online at Talks speakers have included Bill Gates, Jane Goodall and Sir Richard Branson.“I learned a lot from watching those videos,” said Winkler, who now works as events coordinator for the Camarillo Public Library and manages the library’s Russell Fischer Business Collection.”

Pleasanton Library Implements New Technology Features In 2017

From Pleasanton Patch

” The Pleasanton Public Library is implementing new technology enhancements to make your library experience even better.Now you can borrow a laptop to use in the library! Great for work or play, the laptops feature, Microsoft Office, internet access, and wireless printing. Check one out today! All you need is your library card.”

Most beautiful library in every US state

From Business Insider

” Libraries are a timeless treasure.Even as ereaders make paper books less necessary, people still crave a physical space to surround ourselves with knowledge. When done right, those spaces can be works of art.To find the most beautiful libraries in each state (and a couple bonus libraries at the end), Business Insider looked at past and current award-winners as judged by the American Institute of Architects and the American Library Association awards, and relied on our own judgment for states who have never won. ”