Ideas to Make Your Library Shine

Sharing ideas from around the system & around the country, on programming, fundraising, grants, free stuff, and more.
Brought to you by the Winnefox Library System.

7 Success Stories You May Have Missed in March

Pretty Pallet Project silent auction fundraiserHere are great ideas and good news from around the Winnefox Library System:

⇒ The Friends of the Caestecker Library provided the funds to purchase a bird monitoring kit for groups to reserve & check out. "Green Lake County now has a bird monitoring kit available for groups to check out from the Caestecker Public Library. Developed by the Wisconsin Society for Ornithology and the Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative, the kit contains 15 pairs of binoculars, a spotting scope and tripod, five copies of Birds of North America field guide by Kenn Kaufman, an educator’s guide with suggested activities, and other bird identification literature. The bird monitoring kit is suitable for use by scouts, 4-H, school, and adult groups, and will check out for up to one week. There is no charge for using the bird monitoring kit if everything is returned in good condition."

⇒ The Mill Pond Public Library in Kingston's next fundraiser is Pretty Pallet Projects. "Wood pallets have long been vital to shipping processes. Much more recently, they have become popular for home and outdoor projects. It's not hard to see why. Pallet wood is cheaper than regular wood, and using it is a form of recycling. Perhaps more important than that though, is a pallet's character. All wood is unique, but pallets  add to that a patina if you will. They are weathered. They are distressed. They are aged. They have served a purpose and are ready for more. And more is what the library is hoping for! You can stop in and take a pallet home today, to create a unique and rustic piece of furniture, or a fun piece of garden art, or maybe a great storage solution." Local business Dalton Lumber donated the large pallets to the library for the project. The library will hold a silent auction for pallet projects from April 25 - May 7; money raised from the project will go toward purchasing new shelving.

⇒ The Berlin Public Library Friends group began a fundraising effort by placing a donation board next to the book drop: "If you donate one of the amounts listed on the donation board by putting money in the owl bank at the circulation desk, you will get a white sticker to place over the amount you gave. Help us "white out" the board for more programs, activities, materials, and events at the library!"

⇒ The Winneconne Public Library held a Make & Take Fleece Dog Toy family program that benefitted the Neenah Animal Shelter. Participants were invited to make fleece tug toys for their pet, and also make toys that the library donated to the Shelter.

⇒ Brandon Public Library celebrated its 103 anniversary with a customer appreciation day, serving brats (donated by local business Brandon Meats) and cake.

⇒ Campbellsport Public Library hosted a painted board workshop, at which 25 participants created decorative wall hangings. "This workshop was so popular we scheduled a second one that will take place on Monday, April 18th."

⇒ The annual Easter egg hunt at Poy Sippi Public Library was well-attended: "57 kids, 1390 eggs, 30 raffle prizes and the eggs were all found in about 15 minutes." Local businesses & organizations Loyal 4H Club, Poy Sippi Auto Center, Country Rose, 1st National Bank and the Poy Sippi Lions Club donated prizes.

Image credit: Mill Pond Public Library's photo on Facebook


Upcycle Bricks to Create Garden Art "Books"

bricks that look like booksThe bricks would make great garden art or bookends, and your Friends group or volunteers could create them to sell & raise funds for the library.

Here are some DIY resources to create brick books:

Hat tip to Lester Public Library for the idea
Photo source: Light Readling Melbourne


CCBC Spring Book Sale April 23rd

ImageTake a drive to Madison for bargains on gently-used books at the Friends of the CCBC (Cooperative Children's Book Center) Spring Book Sale.

What: Friends of the CCBC Spectacular Spring Book Sale
When: Saturday, April 23, 2016
   8–9am: Friends of the CCBC members only (anyone can join at door)
   9am–1pm: everyone welcome
Where: Room 401 Teacher Education Building (CCBC Conference Room), 225 N. Mills St. on the UW-Madison Campus (map and parking information)

$4 hardcover picture books and non-fiction ($3 Friends members)
$2 paperbacks  ($1 Friends members)
$2 hardcover fiction and board books (everyone)
$3 / bag for all books published in 2010 or earlier (everyone)

What payment methods are accepted?
Cash, check, or institutional purchase order (you must have your institution or district’s tax exempt number, if applicable. Your institution will then be billed).

This sale will feature hundreds of new and gently used children's and young adult books, as well as some older books. The sale will include hardcover trade, formula nonfiction, paperback reprints, and more.

All proceeds benefit the Friends of the CCBC, Inc., which supports the work of the Cooperative Children’s Book Center, a library serving pre-service and practicing librarians and teachers across Wisconsin.

Source: Friends of the CCBC


Free Webinars in April

ImagePlan to attend these free webinars; all you need is your computer & speakers or headphones (no microphone needed.) If you attend a live webinar, it may be counted as a Category B continuing education activity towards renewing librarian certification.

Webinars with a ★ are the ones I think you'll find most useful.


8 Success Stories You May Have Missed in February

ImageHere are great ideas and good news from around the Winnefox Library System:

⇒ Ripon Public Library is planning after-hours NERF™ Battles for both teens and adults. "Outfit yourself with a NERF™ gun and then release your stress with a game of zombies vs. humans & more during this adults-only event. Perfect for busy parents who are in need of some adult time or college students who need a study break! NERF™ guns, 'Elite' ammo, glow sticks, and snacks provided."

⇒ Redgranite Public Library's Weekly Creation Stations "craftivities" centered around Mardi Gras and Valentine's Day, allowing children to practice their creativity and fine motor skills.

⇒ Neenah Public Library's new 3D printer created heart pendants on February 14th, and people of all ages were invited to stop by to create a necklace to take home to a valentine.

⇒ Oxford Public Library is planning a 4-session Calligraphy Class in March: "Inviting all homebodies! Inviting all folks with illegible handwriting! Inviting all who want to just get out and try something new!"

⇒ All proceeds from the Great Menasha Library Chili Cook-Off benefitted the library; tickets sold for $20 in advance and $160 for a table. Attendees voted for the community's best chili, rerpresented by entries from over a dozen area restaurants. The event was sponsored by 16 local businesses, and included a silent auction of literary-themed gift baskets.

⇒ The Mill Pond Public Library in Kingston held an Adult Coloring Class which was very well-attended despite the winter weather. Now those works of art are on display through March 5th so people can vote on their favorites; everyone pays penny a vote, and you can "vote as often and as much as you would like. The two pictures with the most amount of votes will win.  First prize will be an Animal Kingdom coloring book, and 2nd prize is a set of colored pencils and a sharpener."

⇒ Wautoma Public Library collaborated with UW Extension to host programs every Monday in February, so kids grades 3-8 could build science experiments that included paper airplane challenges, aqua rockets, popsicle stick catapults, and making flashlights. And every Monday in March, Plainfield Public Library will be offering these STEAM events for their community as well.

⇒ Fond du Lac Public Library's 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program was the recipient of a $2000 donation raised by Cujak's Wine & Coffee Bar and Fox Valley Savings Bank.

Image credit: Wautoma Public Library's photo on Facebook


DIY Secret Storage Made From Discarded Books

ImageHere's an idea for a teen or adult program that lets crafters create "books" to add to a shelf to serve as hidden storage. This could also be a project for your volunteers or Friends group to create and sell as a fundraiser for your library.

Jessica Nupponen shared Fredricksen Library's post on the ALA Think Tank Facebook group, then linked to the Pinterest pin that links to the illustrated step-by-step instructions at the Sewing Barefoot blog.

Here are the tools needed to make some bookish hidden storage:

  • hardcover books (readily available from your library's book sale or discards)
  • a small crate or box
  • hot glue gun
  • X-ACTO knife
  • scissors

Photo source: Fredricksen Library's Facebook page



Grown-Up Grabs for Busy Parents & Caregivers

ImageConsider creating a Grown-Up Grabs display in your library's children's department, so parents & caregivers get easy access to reading materials while their kiddos look for books.

Here's what the Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library says about their display:

Library staff keep this spot stocked with books you might like to read, but don't have time to look for while you're at the library with the kids.

The tag line on their display's sign says, "Because we know you don't have time to look for books for yourself"

Photo credit: Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library's Facebook page

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