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December 2017

Library Takes Literacy on the Road
Schools, like libraries, have changed over the years. In and around the East Noble School District, those changes have brought these two entities closer together Read More

More access to films coming to Plainfield Library
The popular on-demand video streaming service Kanopy is now available for free at Plainfield Public Library. Read More

Photo gallery of children seeking adoptive families stops in Danville
The Indiana Heart Gallery is a traveling photo exhibit featuring compelling portraits of children in need of adoptive families and it will be at Danville Public Library through Jan. 2. Read More

Anti-bullying workshop provides suggestions for student victims
Jill Summerlot and Jodi Lemon, both regional program specialists for IN*SOURCE, shared their very personal reasons for why they work so hard to eliminate bullying in Indiana schools. Read More

Reading, relaxing at library's remodeled children's department - Patrons offer rave reviews for library's remodeled children's department
With descriptive works of welcoming, patrons of the Anderson Public Library are excited about the newly remodeled Children’s Department. Read More

Library, task force partner up for literacy
A new partnership is being forged to maintain a program that encourages parents to read to their children. Read More

Elkhart Public Library crochets for a cause
The Elkhart Library held its first annual crocheting program on Saturday, Nov. 4. According to the library’s website, all of the materials that are crocheted will be to help the homeless. Read More

Carmel Library honored
The Carmel Clay Public Library has been named a 2017 Star Library by the Library Journal Index of Public Library Service. Read More 

R2-D2 ‘Star Wars Fest’ appearance at Allen County Public Library helping to show what girls can do
R2-D2’s dome twirled around as “The Imperial March” came from him Sunday afternoon at the Allen County Public Library’s “Star Wars Fest.”  Read More

70-Plus Indiana Communities Awarded 'Frankenstein' Grants
Indiana Humanities says more than 70 nonprofits in the state have received funding to help them participate in a statewide read of the Mary Shelley novel "Frankenstein" in 2018. Read More

Indianapolis Public Library installs life-saving devices following CBS4 report
All of the city's libraries have new life-saving devices, following a CBS4 Problem Solvers investigation. Read More

New Albany-Floyd County Public Library to participate in Beanstack Winter Reading Challenge 
Billionaire investor and “Shark Tank” personality Mark Cuban is sponsoring Beanstack’s inaugural Winter Reading Challenge in support of local libraries. Cuban became an investor in Zoobean, Beanstack’s parent company, after the founders impressed him with their vision on “Shark Tank” in 2013. The New Albany-Floyd County Public Library is one of only three libraries in the state of Indiana participating in the challenge, and the only participating library in southern Indiana. Read More

November 2017

Tipton, Tri-Central students team up to compete in robotics league
For the second year in a row, students at Tri-Central and Tipton elementary schools are working together to create robots. Fourth and fifth graders from the schools are cooperating to build robots that can accomplish a series of tasks as part of the FIRST Lego League, an international robotics competition for grades four through eight. Read More

Faith Brautigam: Library earns area's, colleagues' attention
When the Wall Street Journal released its various college rankings a few weeks ago, I was thrilled to discover the tiny college I attended was well-ranked in “Where College Students Are Most Inspired by Their Peers.” Read More

Alumnus' gift of thousands of historic word books establish the ISU collection as finest in Western Hemipshere -- rivaling Oxford's selection
By Mark Bennett Tribune-Star
As a young girl, Barbara Cordell quietly toted boxes of dictionaries into the house from her father’s car. Warren Cordell had become a passionate collector of the word books, and his collection rapidly multiplied. Barbara’s mother, Suzanne, preferred an orderly house, uncluttered by cartons of dictionaries.
Read More

A Conversation About Indiana University Libraries Moving Image Archive
The Indiana University Libraries Moving Image Archive (IULMIA) has been preserving and digitizing, restoring, archiving, acquiring material, and working with researchers for years now. Read More
County libraries collaborate to bring history program
On Oct. 30, Jasonville Public Library hosted a program by Bill Jamerson regarding the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). The Bloomfield-Eastern Greene Public Library, the Linton Public Library, and the Worthington-Jefferson Township Public Library will be co-sponsoring this program to help ensure that it is a success. Read More
Vigo County Public Library chosen for statewide award
The Vigo County Public Library has been selected to receive the 2017 Indiana Library Federation Programming Award. Read More

ACPL to stock overdose-drug kits - Narcan provided to libraries nationwide in opioid fight
Following a national trend, the Allen County Public Library is being equipped to combat the opioid epidemic. Read More
Danville Library honors veterans
The Danville Public Library and the Friends of the Library hosted a free home cooked breakfast for Danville veterans of all wars and conflicts. Read More
Cutting-Edge Technology Helps Lilly Library Digitize Original 'War Of The Worlds' Recording
Indiana University's Lilly Library digitized the original Orson Welles recording of 'War of the Worlds' and you'll able to hear it. Read More
Library offers new digital resources
The Plainfield-Guilford Township Public Library offers many digital resources to serve the community and help library users explore the world without leaving home. Read More
Local projects receive funding
Tuesday morning checks were donated to three special nominees for Project Spotlight, hosted by Beacon Credit Union. “Project Spotlight” is a way to support worthwhile projects in each community that Beacon Credit Union has a full-service branch. Read More
Martinsville library delivers to the homebound
If you can’t leave home to visit the Martinsville library, the library will visit you. Starting November 8th, The Martinsville library began delivering its materials to city residents who are homebound due to age, illness or disability. Read More

Longtime book club shares love of reading
When Mary Ann Mills moved to Ladoga from Indianapolis in 1999, she didn’t know a soul. Seeing a newspaper ad for a new book club, Mills went to the local library, where readers were discussing journalist-turned-author Anna Quindlen’s novel about a woman who escapes from an abusive relationship. Read More

Longmont Library’s Chess Club Takes on Hammond, Indiana Club
The Longmont Library’s chess club isn’t your run-of-the-mill chess club. Last year, they hosted a Live Chess game, in which all the chess pieces are played by live people moving across a huge chessboard, and this year, the club is engaged in a game of virtual chess with the ACME Pawn Pushers chess club of the Hammond Public Library in Hammond, Indiana. This virtual chess game is not online, but virtual in an old-fashioned way – with the two clubs following each other’s moves from the distance of one thousand miles. Read More

School Librarian starts book subscription service 
School Librarian Diane Rogers saw a bunch of displays for book subscription services at conferences she had been to this past summer, and loved what they did.  Some of these services are called OwlCrate, Once upon a Book Club, Shelflove Crate, etc.  Of course all of these cost at least $20 a month.  So, Diane thought wouldn't it be nice to do this with library books for free.

So, she started in October with announcements on the school TV show for 2 weeks and the library  bulletin board.  She made postcards of information, and keeps a stack of those in the media center.

Diane created a Google Form where patrons sign-up.  It asks basic questions about favorites.  Then, she delivers books the first week of each month. She wraps the deliveries so they look like presents - to make it special. She choose different books for each patron that signed up based on their responses on the Google Form, so it is personalized.  She also uses one of her Life Skills classes as delivery people.  They enjoy doing things like this around the building.

From the first month to the second month, the list of patrons signing up has doubled and she has received great feedback from patrons as they returned the books - they loved it! Diane says it has been a lot of fun and recommending books for people is definitely one of the best parts of her job.  If you would like to try this at your school, please contact Diane at  for more information or examples of the postcard or Google form.

October 2017

Mishawaka-Penn-Harris offers digital cards
The Mishawaka-Penn-Harris Public Library now offers digital library cards for adults and students who cannot make it to a branch to pick up a regular library card. Read More

Library offers STEM-related games
The Plainfield-Guilford Township Public Library has expanded its collection of STEM-related games and kits for children. What began as a grant-funded program to build technology competencies in young girls has grown into a large collection for parents and children to discover together. Read More

Indiana Arts Commission to fund six Indiana library programs
During 2018, the Indiana Arts Commission will fund six innovative and engaging library projects across the state.Read More

KHCPL hosts human library event

A Buddhist, a Mormon and a vegan walk into a library.
No, it’s not the start of a joke. It was a reality for the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library Friday night as they hosted the Human Library, an event aimed at allowing people to hear from a variety of diverse perspectives. Read More


September 2017

Two of the ten finalists for Indiana Teacher of the Year are School Librarians!
Congratulations to school librarians Kathleen Rauth at IPS Center for Inquiry and Lena Darnay of Pike Township High School for being TWO of TEN finalists for the Indiana Teacher of the Year by Indiana Department of Education. Read more.

Library Receives Grant to Digitize Irwin-Sweeney-Miller Documents
The Bartholomew County Public Library has received an $11,000 grant digitize historic materials related to the Irwin-Sweeney-Miller family and 301 Washington Street, the former site of Irwin’s Bank and of Irwin Management Company. The project, titled “301 Washington Street: Cornerstone of Columbus, Indiana,” is a partnership between Bartholomew County Public Library, Columbus Indiana Architectural Archives and Bartholomew County Historical Society.  Read More

Muncie Neighborhood Projects Get Lift
A $250,000 grant from Lowe's Companies Inc. (NYSE: LOW) will support neighborhood revitalization efforts in Muncie. Greater Muncie, IN Habitat for Humanity says it was the only Indiana organization to receive part of the company's $1.75 million national commitment. Read More

Washington Library Looks to become County Wide
The Washington Carnegie Public Library is looking to make some big changes in the coming year. During an informational meeting Library Director Teresa Heidenreich formally announced the library will no longer provide contract services that allowed residents in Steele, Veale and Washington Townships usage of the library. Read More

Indiana Pacers Trainer is on the Run for the Greenwood Public Library
Josh Corbeil, the head athletic trainer and senior director of medical operations for the Indiana Pacers, is competing in a Rugged Maniac race to raise money for the Greenwood Public Library. Read More

Eckhart director receives Jack Randinelli Remembrance Recognition Award
At this year's Auburn Cord Duesenberg (ACD) Festival, which takes place every year on the weekend before Labor Day in Auburn, Ind., Eckhart Public Library Director Janelle Graber was presented with the Jack Randinelli Remembrance Recognition Award. Read More

From department store to library APL began new chapter when taking over Sears site 30 years ago
By Bill Hartley For The Herald Bulletin
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Anderson Public Library’s residence in its present location. On Oct. 26, 1987, the library opened its doors for the first time in the newly renovated former Sears, Roebuck and Company building that it presently occupies at 111 E. 12th St. Read More


Information and Library Science department ranked second in the world
The Information and Library Science department was named second in the world by the 2017 Academic Ranking of World Universities published by the ShanghaiRanking Consultancy in China. Read More

40 years with Wakarusa library comes to an end
How many people can say that they worked a job for 40 years? Marcia Parcell of Wakarusa can. Read More

August 2017

Music is Escape for Library's 'Hip-Hop Intern'
By MEGAN ERBACHER Evansville Courier & Press
Since she was 9 years old, Brown hasn't hesitated to try out for school musicals or the choir. Music is her way of expressing herself. "I'm in my happy place when I sing," Brown, 18, said. "As soon as I start, I'm being myself and enjoying myself."

A passion for music is what landed the Bosse High School graduate the Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library's paid summer internship through a new program sponsored by the Public Library Association. The Inclusive Internship Initiative is a public library internship awarded to about 50 high school juniors or seniors across the U.S. who come from diverse backgrounds. Read More

Whole New Outlook: Library adds glasses to help color blind people 
By RYAN TRARES Daily Journal  
The colors were so vibrant, so crisp, so alive that it was hard to turn away.

Joe Whetstine stood in his backyard and just marveled at what he was seeing for the first time. The 47-year-old Franklin resident had been born colorblind. Shades of red, blue, green and purple did not show up well in his vision, giving the world a brownish hue. But with a special pair of glasses from the Johnson County Public Library, he was finally seeing the full colors of the trees, grass, flowers and bushes. Read More

Library receives international attention following Banksy announcement
When Kokomo-Howard County Public Library announced last month that it would play host to an original Bansky piece, the world responded.

On an international level, the story was picked up by the American Libraries magazine, which goes to libraries around the world. Nationally, it was picked up by U.S. News and World Report. Statewide, it was picked up by Fox 59 and featured in Visit Indiana’s newsletter on the best festivals and events in August. Read More

World religions will be explained at libraries
"A World of Faith and Cultures in Our Neighborhoods" will be presented again Saturday, Aug. 19. The two presentations will be at 10:30 a.m. at the Osgood Public Library, and again at 2 p.m. at the Tyson Library, Versailles. There is no cost to attend, and all are welcome. The Ripley County Community Foundation and Indiana Humanities are providing funding for the project. Read More

Reading program finishes with elegant tea
The Washington Carnegie Public Library was transformed on July 28 into the veranda of an Italian villa for the eighth closing tea for the library's Adult Summer Reading Program. The theme for this year's tea was "Bella Vista Te" or Tea with a Beautiful View. The 69 guests had completed the requirements of reading one of two books and attending four of 13 programs. Read More

July 2017

Bedford Public Library Picked to Participate in NASA Educational Initiative
Bedford library was selected to participate in a NASA initiative that will involve only 75 libraries across the country. The library was selected through a competitive application process to be part of NASA@ My Library, an initiative to engage public audiences nationwide in informal and lifelong learning with the excitement of NASA exploration and discovery. In spring 2017, more than 500 libraries applied to participate.

“We’re thrilled to have been selected,” said Susan Miller, library director. “We understand the importance of science, technology, engineering, and math programming for everyone in our community, especially the children. We are excited to expand our STEM programming and look forward to exploring the universe with our customers of all ages.”

As a NASA@ My Library partner, the library will hold public programs for all ages, from preschoolers through adults, which explore NASA science and technology. The programs will be held from June 2017 through October 2018.

Local Ivy Tech campus gets law library donated by Indiana Tech
By ASHLEY SLOBODA The Journal Gazette
Ivy Tech Community College's Fort Wayne campus will soon have a new resource for students -- a law library made possible by a donation from Indiana Tech. Read More

Kokomo Howard County Public Library Partners with United Way to Improve Kindergarten Readiness
By FAITH BRAUTIGUM Kokomo Howard County Public Library

As a kid, was there a phrase you heard but just couldn’t figure out? Whether it’s a truism, song lyric, metaphor or idiom, most kids run into something they can’t quite wrap their minds around. My mom was fond of saying, “Many hands make light work,” which puzzled me to no end since everyone’s quota of hands is two and work doesn’t weigh anything. Read More

Middlebury Library Features Dungeons and Dragons Figurine Painting for Gaming

Get your swords sharpened and your dragons tamed, the Dungeons and Dragons game is back. A couple has started a group for those that enjoy the role playing games, Dungeons and Dragons, at the Middlebury Public Library. Lori and Steve Sigety, started their Dungeons and Dragons club in October 2016. The group has grown since it started. Saturday the library hosted a figure painting session for anyone who wanted to show up and paint their figures for D&D. Read More

Young robot engineers live 'dream come true' at library
By TORI FATER Evansville Courier and Press
Evan Enghauser grinned as he watched his robot roll up and over the lid of its storage box, whirring along until it reached the edge of the table and he had to pick it up to keep it from crashing. Read More

'The Three Little Pigs' becomes Science Lesson

 A colorful parachute moved quickly up and down as 20 children pumped their arms to generate enough wind to topple their Lego structures during a summer reading program Monday at the Middlebury Community Public Library. Read More


Drag Queens to Read to Children at Library

By LAUREN BAVIS Herald Times

Think of it as adult dress-up with children’s storytime.

Drag Queen Storytime is coming to the Monroe County Public Library later this month. The new program follows libraries around the country in hosting such an event. Read More


June 2017

Muncie Public Library has been selected to receive the 2017 Library of the Future Award
The Muncie Public Library (MPL) in Muncie, Indiana has been selected to receive the 2017 Library of the Future Award, sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and Information Today Inc. publishing company. The library was selected for its innovative “Digital Climbers” program that motivates and inspires children ages eight and up to experiment with technology and master skills that contribute to learning in science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics.

Working from a collection of makerspace projects and activities, Rebecca Parker and Stuart Cotton, employees of MPL, teamed with Drew Shermeta, former MPL employee, to create a program that encourages students to work independently to master technology skills. Participants compete with other students as they chart their progress through badges, rewards, and public recognition. The Digital Climbers program motivates kids to learn using tools such as 3D printers and design applications, snap circuits, Adobe Photoshop, Garage Band, and the Osmo educational gaming system.

“Too often kids come into the library to check out our tech, but don’t actually give it a chance or spend any time challenging themselves to learn it more deeply,” said Rebecca Parker, Technology Coordinator at the Muncie Public Library. “This program gives them the impetus to do that.”

Information Today Inc. publishing company is a leader in providing libraries with resources to meet knowledge management needs. This award, designed to recognize innovative planning, applications, or development of focused patron support relating to information technology in libraries, is given to an individual library, consortium, group, or support organization.

The 2017 ALA/Information Today Library of the Future Award jury members include Rene Erlandson, Elkhorn, Nebraska; Deana Groves, Western Kentucky University; Ben Hunter, University of Idaho, chair; Elizabeth Joseph, Ferguson Library; and John Sandstrom, New Mexico State University.

The ALA/Information Today Library of the Future Award will be presented at the ALA President’s program, Sunday, June 25, 2017 during the ALA Annual Conference in Chicago.

More information on the ALA/Information Today Library of the Future Award and how to submit a nomination is available on the ALA website (

Woodrow Wilson Middle School wins Battle of the Books title
The Vigo County School Corporation Middle School Battle of the Books was held at Ivy Tech Community College on April 13.

Students from Honey Creek, Otter Creek, Sarah Scott, West Vigo and Woodrow Wilson middle schools have been studying for the competition throughout the school year by reading the 20 books from the Association of Indiana School Library Educators’ Young Hoosier Book Award list. Read More

Center for Creative Solutions, Inc.® Honored La Porte County Students & Spark Labs

Throughout April, Northwest Indiana has been celebrating World Creativity and Innovation Week 2017. Sponsored by the Center for Creative Solutions, "Dream BIG!" has been the theme for many community events.

On Friday (April 21), the Center for Creative Solutions hosted a community breakfast in celebration of regional creativity and innovation. Keynote speaker was Justin Kiel, entrepreneur, newspaper publisher and La Crosse Town Councilman.

Highlighting the morning was presentation of the Tej Ram Gupta Scholarships to three, innovative students from the A. K. Smith Career Center and the CREO! This year’s CREO! recipient was Spark Labs of the La Porte County Public Library for its extraordinary efforts to promote an innovative culture in Northwest Indiana.

Spark Labs is a library based makerspace. There, people of all ages are encouraged to learn and explore many Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math related topics. Challenging hands-on and fun activities involving robotics, 3D printing and 3D CAD, electronics, jewelry making, solar energy and much more are presented regularly. These activities can develop skills and confidence in advanced technologies leading to future job skills.

Spark Labs is the result of extensive planning and work of many interested individuals including library colleagues and local volunteers. Their work has been recognized on both a local and national level in several articles and presentations, according to Cynthia Hedge, CEO of the Center for Creative Solutions. Spark Labs activities are available in a new, recently opened dedicated makerspace in La Porte Public Library's downtown library, in all branches of the library and in local schools and other public places, she noted.


May 2017

Indiana Pacers’ summer reading tour to start in June
The Indiana Pacers will begin their highly-successful Pacers Summer Reading Tour at select Indianapolis Public Library branches in June.  The program, produced in partnership with The RoomPlace and the Indianapolis Public Library’s own summer reading program, will tip off on Monday, June 12 at 2 p.m., at the Fountain Square Library, 1066 Virginia Ave. Read More

Library hosts Exposium to show off academic accomplishments
The Cunningham Memorial Library events area was full of students showcasing their research and talent Thursday morning at the Exposium, a program that celebrates and encourages academic and creative work and accomplishments. Read More

The Monroe County Public Library named the 2017 winner of the ALA Excellence in Library Programming Award
The Monroe County Public Library (Bloomington, Indiana) has been named the 2017 winner of the ALA Excellence in Library Programming Award for their program series, “Discuss, Meet, & Act: The Power of Words.”

The award, supported by ALA’s Cultural Communities Fund, recognizes a library that demonstrates excellence by providing programs that have community impact and respond to community needs.

The bi-annual event “The Power of Words,” presented by Monroe County Public Library and the Friends of the Library, features an author who writes on important topics of our time: topics that speak to the average citizen’s ability to positively change the world in which we live.  The 2015 The Power of Words event featured Congressman and Civil Rights leader John Lewis, who recently had announced the publication of his graphic novel "March," accompanied by both of the novel’s co-creators, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell, the graphic novelist, who lives and works in Bloomington. Read More

A.R.I.E.S. Provides Books to Local Henry County School Libraries
“Together We Learn” is a project of A.R.I.E.S. LCC of Henry County, which reaches all school and public libraries in the county.

The objective of project “Together We Learn,” is to provide materials related to substance abuse that teach children and adults related skills for solving problems, coping, social competence, autonomy and a sense of self and future.

Colette Huxford, Shenandoah school librarian, took a major role in this project by helping to select books that enhance learning opportunities, knowledge on substance abuse and to motivate student and family communication. The books selected target students living in an addictive home, students who have contact with another student living in an addictive home, students who may be tempted to use or have used drugs, or the individual who just wants to learn more about timely issues in the lives of citizens. Read More - Provided photo Local students Garrett Goyette and Maryah Bolilng are pictured with a box of gift bags filled with books provided by A.R.I.E.S.

Assistant County Librarian Amy Paget Retires

 The Tippecanoe County Public Library (TCPL) announces the retirement of long-time employee Amy Paget. Amy’s 25-year career at TCPL began in 1991 at the Albert A. Wells Memorial Library. In 2004 Amy became the Assistant County Librarian. Additional responsibilities over the years included Head of Youth Services and Head of Extension Services.


“TCPL has greatly benefited from the breadth of skills, professional expertise, and integrity Amy Paget brings to her work and our operations. Many say Amy is a ‘jack of all trades,’ but she is a consummate professional who really helped TCPL day-to-day operations flow smoothly,” said County Librarian Jos N. Holman. “Her talent and fundraising skills were heavily used in her role as Planning and Development Librarian. She served as operational liaison with the Tippecanoe County Public Library Foundation for the past 15 years.


 “Amy has been a tremendous resource for the Tippecanoe County Public Library Foundation's Board of Directors,” said Foundation Board President Tony Albrecht. “Her organizational skills have been invaluable as the Foundation Board works to raise funds to support Library programs and capital needs, as well as growth of the library system.  She will be sorely missed, and we wish her well in retirement.”


On her final day at work, Wednesday, April 12, 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., the public is invited to share memories and good wishes with Amy. This casual event occurs in the Friends of TCPL Conference Room at the Downtown Library. Refreshments will be served.       


“Having worked here for more than 25 years, this will be a major staffing change for TCPL,” Holman said. “Although Mrs. Paget cannot be replaced, the Assistant County Librarian position is being advertised nationally and statewide. We wish Amy well in all the future adventures and endeavors she may pursue!”


Amy is active in various community activities and national organizations. She and her family plan to remain in Lafayette for the foreseeable future.


Evansville Library Named Finalist For National Honor
By Alex Brown, Multimedia Journalist

The Institute of Museum and Library Services in Washington D.C. has named the Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library a finalist for the National Medal For Museum and Library Service. EVPL Chief Executive Officer Cyndee Landrum says the medal is the nation's highest honor bestowed upon a library. Read More

Rushville Elementary School 
East is 'Wild About Reading' Money raised to go for new K9
By Kate Thurston Rushville Republican

It all started with a passion to help the community by Harley Abbot. 
Abbott, a fifth-grader, wrote a letter after Christmas asking Austin Theobald, the principal at RES East, if they could help the sheriff’s department purchase a new K9. Read More

 Adoption program hopes to 'open hearts, change lives'
By Brent Brown Daily News

Greensburg-Decatur County Public Library held a free presentation to help outline the adoption process in Indiana in an effort to help find permanent, loving homes for foster youth.

Indiana Adoption Program adoption champion Jannie Combs was available to answer questions and detail the adoption process on March 28, at the Greensburg-Decatur County Public Library. The program will “help the community understand the adoption process, the need for adoptive homes, and the needs of children waiting to adopted,” said Anna Wolak, Indiana Adoption Program director of adoption recruitment. Read More

 Friends of the Linton Library active once again: Collecting books for babies born at GCGH

By Kelly Slaven Staff Writer, Greene County Daily World

Mary Palmer, Janis Brett and Cathie Knotts organize DVD’s for the newly purchased secure DVD cases on Monday afternoon, made possible by the Friends of the Library.

Local libraries have always needed ‘friends’ in order to properly function, according to the official website of the American Library Association. Read More

Big changes for little ones at Anderson library - Children's department renovations to cost $500,000
By Ken de la Bastide, The Herald Bulletin

There will be big changes to the children’s department at the Anderson Public Library through a planned $500,000 renovation by the end of the year.

 Sarah Later, director of the Anderson/Stony Creek Public Library, said the children's department was last remodeled in 2001. Read More

Bedford Public Library Provides STEM at Summer Meals
The Summer Meals programs provide a perfect opportunity for Bedford Public Library to provide special programming to children in the Bedford community. Throughout June and July, the Library will provide STEM projects every Wednesday, arts and crafts activities on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and Bridget the Reading Dog on Mondays. STEM projects involve children in helicopter building, creating bottle cap bots, engineering mini parachutes, constructing catapults, and using circuitry. Though the projects are made on a small scale with common household objects and can be completed in a short amount of time, the thinking skills required make use of the science, technology, engineering, and math components that make up STEM. The small STEM projects help the children, many from lower income homes, to discover that science and learning are fun.

IndyPL’s Sharon Bernhardt: 50 Years of Dedicated Service


This year’s observance of National Library Week, April 9 – 15, celebrates the contributions of our nation’s libraries and librarians to promote and support library use. The Indianapolis Public Library is proud to share the story of the longest-tenured librarian in the Library’s illustrious 144 year history.
From her beginnings as a page in 1967 to her current role as overseer of eight Library branches, Sharon Bernhardt reflects upon her career at The Indianapolis Public Library as her life’s one constant that, in turn, has afforded her great opportunities to grow and adapt over the decades.

This year, IndyPL celebrates Bernhardt’s 50th year of continuous service, the most for any Library employee past or present. Her introduction to the Library as a page at the Eagle Branch, then located in a strip center on Tibbs Avenue, served as “a 
good first ‘real’ job” while attending Northwest High School.

Continuing to work at the Library throughout her post-secondary schooling, Bernhardt graduated in 1973 from Marian College (now University) with the goal of becoming a social worker. “But at that time in my life I wasn’t ready for that, so I stayed with the Library.” After earning her Masters of Library Science in 1978, Bernhardt’s stay has become her calling. 

Tracking Bernhardt’s travels throughout the Library system is as daunting as it is impressive. After two stints at the Eagle Branch as a clerk and library assistant, she moved to the Haughville Branch where she was a children’s librarian for four years. Next it was on to the former Marwood Branch for four years as a children’s librarian. Her first branch manager’s position came at the former Prospect Branch where she also served as the children’s librarian. 

Then came positions at the former Wanamaker Branch as manager and adult librarian; a return to the Eagle Branch as manager (“at that time my lifelong career goal”); manager at the Nora Branch and Area Resource Manager for eight Library locations. “In addition to my ARM duties, I am the circulation ARM working with patron issues, process and policy changes.”

In 2015, Bernhardt was named Interim Director of Public Services, a position highlighted by her focus on the merger of the Beech Grove Public Library with IndyPL in the summer of 2016. She has now returned to the ARM role where her attention is split among the Nora, Glendale, College Avenue, Fountain Square, Garfield Park, Southport and Beech Grove branches, as well as the InfoZone in The Children’s Museum.

What differences does Bernhardt observe in library service today compared to the 60s and 70s? “That was a long time ago, but we had shorter hours and didn’t open until noon three days a week. Only Central Library was open on Sunday. I guess you could say things were simpler, but I wouldn’t say things were slower because we had less staff with the reduced hours. I think we knew our patrons better because everything required staff assistance…there was no self-service.”

Bernhardt experienced first-hand the transformation of library services from the card catalog to computerized transactions, such as reserving materials via the online catalog. Whereas these changes have improved access, they elicit from Bernhardt a note of nostalgia. “Back in the day we used a photo-charging checkout system where we actually photographed a person’s library card, as well as the card with the information about the book and a transaction card that was connected to the due date for the material. Oh, how things have changed!”

It’s said in the library profession that “once a children’s librarian, always a children’s librarian.”  It’s that role for which Bernhardt is most remembered by patrons even today. “Sharon was a young, personable, outgoing employee at that time,” says Paula Guthrie, who took her children to the Eagle Branch in the late 60s and early 70s. “She always took time to greet us when we came in, which was pretty much weekly. Stephen, my then six-year-old always looked for her.” Guthrie remembers Bernhardt being taken aback when she brought Stephen’s son to the library some 30 years later. “I’ll never forget the look on her face when she made the connection to the six-year-old all those years ago. Sharon is a special person and we are all very fortunate to have had her in our lives.”

Patron Gloria Keating also remembers Bernhardt during those early years at the Eagle Branch. “It was our Wednesday tradition for myself and my four children to visit the Library. After all these years I can still remember how friendly and kind she was, especially when giving my children a quick peek at the new books, which they really enjoyed. I thank her for all the great memories.”

One of Bernhardt’s fondest memories is of a child care center she visited monthly to tell stories. “One day I got a strange feeling that the kids were getting closer and closer to me as the story went on. So the next time I went to turn a page, I didn’t turn my head and, sure enough, they were scooting up every time I turned a page. By the time I finished the story, they were sitting on my feet!”

Having left her imprint on more than one-third of the Library’s entire history, Bernhardt’s iconic status is being celebrated during a week in which libraries and librarians throughout the country are lauded for the important role they play in the lives of individuals. “If you are called to do something, you’ll put more into it than if you’re just paid for it,” said Jackie Nytes, IndyPL CEO. “I feel Sharon really believes in her work and that has kept her in the game and ready to serve! It is so very fitting that we celebrate her.”

Sharon Bernhardt feels that her calling at IndyPL isn’t done quite yet. “I have no immediate plans to retire. Maybe in a year or two.” 
February 2017

Innovative ideas from Indiana libraries

A lot of the people visiting the nine locations of the Lake County Public Library System are still reading the print editions of newspapers and magazines, and walking out with borrowed books tucked under their arms, according to Carolyn Strickland, who serves as assistant director of public library services. Read more

Hussey-Mayfield Memorial Public Library to recreate Diagon Alley
Diagon Alley, a wizarding shopping area featured in each of the seven books, will occupy most of the rooms on the first floor of the library from 1 to 3 p.m. Feb. 21. Participants will be able to visit locations such as Olivanders, where they will acquire a wand. Read more

Preschool science and math program allows children, parents to learn together
A child held a fish puppet as its shadow formed on the wall and swam past the shadow of a gingerbread man. Above them, the butterfly shadows cast by other children flew by.

The activity involved children making their own shadow puppets and playing with them on the wall as part of a weekly preschool science and math program Tuesday at the Monroe County Public Library. Other activities included light-painting with a flashlight, testing the opacity of objects under an overhead projector and matching shapes with their shadows. Read more

Discover Tech: Engineers Make a World of Difference
The Kokomo-Howard County Public Library is proud to be one of only eight libraries in the country — and the only Indiana library — to host the Discover Tech: Engineers Make a World of Difference traveling exhibit.

The word engineer comes from a Latin word meaning “cleverness.” Plenty of clever people have called Kokomo home. Their engineering marvels — the first automobile, pneumatic rubber tire, push-button car radio, all-metal life boats and rafts — truly have made a world of difference in Kokomo and earned us the title of the City of Firsts.Read more

January 2017 

Creston Middle School Receives Indiana Humanities Grant 
Susie Highley, Creston Middle School Librarian, received a grant through the Indiana Humanities Council to have Indianapolis native Edward Kelsey Moore visit her school. Susie said she had read his book The Supremes at Earl's All-You-Can-Eat a couple of years ago, and really enjoyed it. Creston Middle School is the only middle school selected for the program. 

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