Sonoma County: Story of modern public library is a real page-turner

From Sonoma Valley Sun

“According to interim Sonoma Valley Library Manager Diana Spaulding, 2019 was the year of “expanded equity, improved access to library materials, and new staff at the Sonoma Valley Regional Library.” Spaulding went on to acknowledge that the number of monthly visits, which had risen significantly in 2018 due to expanded hours, did not climb in 2019, but there was a small increase in the number of checkouts. Spaulding told the Sun that Measure Y revenue increases “translated into a healthier materials budget and more books purchased, both traditional physical books and downloadable ebooks.” She also highlighted an important new policy at the library: no overdue fines.”

Story of modern public library is a real page-turner

Sonoma County: Emergency preparedness, CERT training coming to Cloverdale

From Cloverdale Reveille

“The Sonoma County Library and Sonoma County Department of Emergency Management are teaming up to provide a preparedness education series and Citizens Emergency Response Team (CERT) training to interested residents.Libraries around the county will be hosting three preparedness events to help Sonoma County increase their readiness.”

Sonoma County Library lends wi-fi hotspots, Chromebooks and more

From Sonoma Index Tribune

“One woman used “SonomaFi” to apply for — and land — a job. Another, who lost her home in the Tubbs fire, used it at her temporary living space to retain a sense of normalcy.Up to 700 residents are using Sonoma County Library- provided wireless hot spots at any given time, taking advantage of a program first rolled out this past spring and growing by the month.“They are very popular,” said Kate Keaton, branch manager for the Central Santa Rosa branch of the Sonoma County Library. “Very rarely do we have anything available.”The Central Santa Rosa branch, on E Street in downtown, has 75 wireless hot spots, known as “SonomaFi,” which makes up about 10% of the 700  Verizon devices owned countywide by the 12-branch Sonoma County Library.Library card holders can check out the hot spots for two-week periods, and Keaton said most people return them on time. Just five are currently missing, compared to countless books.”

Sonoma County: From the library

From The Healdsburg Tribune

” We have enjoyed seeing so many of you lately as our community continues to work through our recovery from the emergency of late October and early November. We continue to stay positive, trying out new ideas every few months as we try to meet our community’s needs.Along this line, we recently had a roll-out of new Chromebook laptops you can borrow from the library. Using the same basic plan as the wildly popular SonomaFi Wi-Fi hotspots, cardholders aged 13 and up may check out a Chromebook for two weeks. The kit actually comes with a Wi-Fi hotspot, allowing the user to access the internet using a laptop when you have network coverage within the continental United States. The new devices were almost immediately all loaned out, but they come in and out constantly and present a potentially useful option for students or anyone in need of mobile Internet service.”

Sonoma Valley library launches new early reading program

From Sonoma Index Tribune

“Read to a kid and you’ll prepare them for a lifetime of reading, say county library officials. In an effort to promote strong literacy skills, the Sonoma County Library is encouraging parents and caregivers to read 1,000 books to their newborns, infants, toddlers and preschoolers before they start kindergarten. The 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program is a nationwide initiative and officially launched in all Sonoma County Library branches on Oct. 28.Participants can track their reading and participation in the program online at and through the Beanstack app. Paper logs are also available at each branch. Children will receive recognition for each 100 books they read and various prizes throughout their reading journey.”

At Petaluma Library, a virtual world awaits

From Argus Courier

“From the pages of classic literature, sci-fi, non-fiction and every genre in between, libraries have long been havens for exploration. At the Petaluma Regional Library, recently-acquired virtual reality equipment is promising to offer community members a new frontier.Alongside Sonoma County’s other 14 branches, the Petaluma location launched its virtual reality program earlier this month, joining a state-wide initiative that places the technology in libraries to encourage educational uses.“You can tour the pyramids of Egypt or you can interface with animal species you couldn’t find here in Sonoma County,” said Vicki Terbovich, IT manager for the Sonoma County Library system.Terbovich said Sonoma County Library recently added updated VR headsets Oculus GO, Oculus Quest and ClassVR to its collection. The county-wide library system began collecting VR equipment in 2017 via a grant program led by the California State Library.”

Sonoma County: Local libraries don’t take a summer vacation

From The Healdsburg Tribune

“It has been a busy summer at the library this year.In July alone, we held more than 70 public events and had over 1,000 attendees at those events.Among the gems were a fantastic visit from author and recovering addict Nic Sheff, the subject of the book and movie “Beautiful Boy,” as well as our Lunch at the Library program, which averaged 21 free lunches for kids served per day throughout the summer. We had nearly 300 participants in our summer reading program and will be awarding raffle prizes in the coming weeks. We’ve truly enjoyed the enthusiasm and cheerfulness of the community visiting the library over the last few months.”