Category Archives: Libraries

Adirondack libraries

A recent vacation in the Adirondack mountains of New York found us, as usual, visiting libraries.

Some we only saw from the outside: the lovely stone library in Brandt Lake is no longer used as a library, but offers a picturesque photo opportunity.

Adirondack libraries - Brandt Lake

Lake Placid’s library was located on the main street, and offered a box of “free” stuff on the porch steps.

Adirondack libraries - Lake Placid

Raquette Lake’s library had steps from the water and tucked in a grove of trees.

Adirondack libraries - Raquette Lake

But some libraries we were able to visit inside. One was the Adirondack Museum’s library.  Yes, the museum had closed for the season a month earlier, but thanks to a brilliant tip from a friend, I had previously e-mailed the librarian, Dr. Jerold Pepper, to ask for a tour. Jerry not only showed us his wonderful library full of great books and fabulous manuscripts, highlighting such characters as Winslow Homer and the Roosevelts, but he also gave us a behind the scenes tour of the closed exhibits, including boats, carriages, and sleds. There are some interesting commonalities between Maine and the Adirondacks, including history and art. (Both Rockwell Kent and Winslow Homer spent time in Maine and the Adirondacks). We also enjoyed Jerry’s perspective on life in that region, an area “forever wild.”

We also stopped into The William Chapman White Memorial Room/Adirondack Research Center in the basement of the Saranac Lake Free Library, and chatted with the slightly overwhelmed looking librarian, who was cataloging tuberculosis patient cards. Saranac Lake was known as “the Western Hemisphere’s foremost center for the treatment of pulmonary tuberculosis,” from the 1890s through 1950s.

Adirondack libraries - Saranac Lake

Both libraries gave us a glimpse into the history of the area. Visiting libraries on vacation can be a great opportunity to get a flavor of the community, whether exploring exhibits or meeting people in the community, including visitors who come to our own island library.

Visitor from the Maine State Library

 

Deborah Clark

As the new consultant for the Southern Maine Library District, I have been visiting all the public libraries in Cumberland, York, and southern Oxford Counties. The Art & Soul Festival provided the perfect opportunity for me to tour the Long Island Community Library, meet the staff and trustees, as well as learn a little about island living. I was so impressed by the efforts of those I met  (Library Director Nancy Jordan, trustees Nancy Noble, Patty Temple, and Connie Brayley, and organizer Mary McAleney) and by the strong community support for the library event.

 

I especially liked the “Bling Room” with fun costume jewelry for sale and bought a nice patriotic pin. My husband and I browsed the book sale and art auction offerings and while I was speaking with library staff, my husband was persuaded by student volunteers to buy some raffle tickets. We couldn’t stay for the drawings as we needed to catch our ferry back to Portland and were shocked to hear later that he had won one of the gift baskets! Thanks everyone for the great visit to the island.

 

Deborah A. Clark,

Maine State Library

deborah.clark@maine.gov

10 more days!

10 more days until Art & Soul, our annual fundraiser for the Long Island Community Library. Here areLICL raffle table at parade our intrepid library volunteers selling raffle tickets on July 4th, at the Long Island Fourth of July parade. The winning raffle tickets will buy you a wonderful themed basket, or a personalized cruise on the bay.

Stop by the library and see the kid’s rainy day basket, a blueberry bucket filled with surprises donated by Ivy Hall Gift Shop (Evergreen United Methodist Church outreach), a Maine Lottery Tree, a chocolate basket, a lobster bake basket, an Irish basket, and a mailboat run basket.

AND the FIRST ticket drawn will be treated to an afternoon trip around Casco Bay with Steve and Chris McDuffie on the BLUE NUN.  Room for six, destination to be determined by Captain and winner and weather.

Tickets are 3 for $5.00 (stapled together) or $2.00 per ticket. The tickets are sold at the library, from library volunteers & from Mary McAleney, 207-799-4306, mcaleney@gmail.com

See you in 10 days!

 

 

 

ART & SOUL Festival – July 19

ART & SOUL Festival

to benefit

Long Island Community Library

 

Long Island Library & Learning Center

Saturday, July 19, 2014, 10-2

 At 2pm: Raffle drawings, silent auction results and books $1.00 a bag

Books— Fiction, fact and fantasy

LICL booksale flower sign Food— Scrumptious sweets and savory snacks pastries

Jewelry— Baubles, beads and bling

Costume jewelry Art— Auction of awesome art treasures

Raffle— Bountiful baskets, plenty of prizes

Raffle Tickets sold at the library, library volunteers &

Mary McAleney 207-799-4306 mcaleney@gmail.com

We look forward to seeing you there (and thank you for supporting our library)

 

Cats and books!

Longfellow Books adopt-a-cat Longfellow Books adopt-a-cat BobSomehow cats and books go together. Most librarians I know own cats. Some libraries have resident cats (see Dewey : the small-town library cat who touched the world by Vicki Myron, a copy of which is at the Long Island Community Library). Many bookstores have cats too. Our own Longfellow Books on Monument Square in Portland has teamed up with the Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland to offer a temporary bookstore home to help kitties find a new family to love. First there was Gus, and then Alexia, and most recently Bob – all have been adopted. What a wonderful idea!  

A poem for spring

spring on Long Island 10In the heart of Westbrook College (University of New England), a quintessential New England college campus, lies a treasure: The Maine Women Writers Collection.

Founded in 1959 by Grace Dow and Dorothy Healy to honor, preserve, and make available the writings of Maine women who have achieved literary recognition, the Collection has over 8,000 volumes on more than 500 Maine women. The Collection also includes correspondence, photographs, personal papers, manuscripts, typescripts, artifacts, and audio recordings that provide insight into the lives and writing of both well-known and obscure authors.

(from the MWWC website: http://www.une.edu/mwwc/collection/index.cfm)

When I worked at Westbrook College’s Abplanalp Library the poet May Sarton had recently died, and her entire library, along with sound recordings and photographs came to the college library. I was able to sort through all her library, many of which had a bookmark or something similar tucked away in each book, linking May to the author.

For more on May Sarton’s collection at the Maine Women Writers Collection see:http://www.une.edu/mwwc/research/featuredwriters/sartonm.cfm

In memory of May Sarton, as well as celebrating the first day of spring on Thursday (although we’re still in the midst of cold and snow), I offer to you this poem by May Sarton:

Always it happens when we are not there–

The tree leaps up alive into the air,

Small open parasols of Chinese green

Wave on each twig. But who has ever seen

The latch sprung, the bud as it burst?

Spring always manages to get there first.
Lovers of wind, who will have been aware

Of a faint stirring in the empty air,

Look up one day through a dissolving screen

To find no star, but this multiplied green,

Shadow on shadow, singing sweet and clear.

Listen, lovers of wind, the leaves are here!

Quilt exhibits in libraries

There seems to be a plethora of quilts being exhibited in libraries this month. What a wonderful way to brighten up winter in Maine! I stumbled on the first one at the Falmouth Public Library – such beautiful quilts, including one made with old handkerchiefs. These quilts were made by the Cobblestone Quilters, a group of over 85 members who are interested in quilting, fabric art, and sewing.  Cobblestone quilters are active in the community donating quilts to Maine veterans, Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital, the neonatal unit at Maine Medical Center, and Meals on Wheels.  They make raffle quilts to support Habitat for Humanity, Multiple Sclerosis Society, and the Boys and Girls Club. Over 25 quilts by Cobblestone Quilters are on display during the month of February.  These quilts represent a variety of quilting styles, techniques, and fabric choices.

Then I read about an exhibit being held at the Portland Public Library downtown branch:

http://www.portlandlibrary.com/events/words-art-quilts-maine/

This is a traveling exhibit: Members of Art Quilts Maine, a statewide guild chapter dedicated to the exploration of contemporary quilt art, respond to an annual challenge with diverse and colorful results. This year’s challenge, issued in October 2013, is titled, “By These Words . . .” Quilts were to be inspired by Words—poetry, quote, idiom, saying. Eight members met the challenge, and the collection went on view in July at Maine Quilts 2013. Since then they have been on exhibit in Farmington and Skowhegan, and will travel to Waterville when they leave Portland.

Finally, I just came across this exhibit, held at the Wells Public Library, of quilts by Ernest Nason, a local artist who worked as a carpenter for many years. When an injury took him off his feet for a while, he decided to take up quilting.

I leave you with a picture of one of our island quilts, exhibited this summer at the Long Island Historical Society space:Quilt at the Long Island Historical Society

Seed libraries

Here on Long Island we’re still in the midst of winter with cold temperatures and lovely snowfalls. It’s a winter wonderland. But it seems like the sun is getting stronger and the days longer, so we can start dreaming of spring. With that comes the idea of planting seeds. In the library world there is a new movement to add “seed libraries” to the concept of the library being a place where all sorts of things are available, beyond the traditional books and media.

community garden harvest
At a seed library, patrons can check out seeds for free. They then grow the fruits and vegetables, harvest the new seeds, and “return” those seeds so the library can lend them out to others.

What a great idea! If anyone is interested in taking this on, I’m sure our library director would love to talk with you.

Spring is coming!

Cookies, cookies, cookies

Happy New Year! It’s been a wintry year so far, with bitter cold, snow, wind, and even some rain. Perfect time to do some serious cookie baking, and eating. In order to celebrate the fine art of this culinary pleasure, we’ve installed a new exhibit in the library
to inspire you.  This exhibit of cookie cutters, collected by Nancy Noble throughout the years, has been installed in the glass case between the library and the small meeting room. These include not only Christmas cookie cutters, but also other holidays, from Presidents Day to Thanksgiving, as well as animals, teapots, fish, boats, and even Mickey Mouse. Come visit the exhibit, if you can, and pick out your favorites! A few cookie recipe books are also displayed (so, yes, there is a book connection)cookie exhibit at LICL

 

A Garden of Books – Bloomed!

Our book sale was a great success, thanks to the community who came out on a hot sticky day to buy books! Gratifying to see that the printed word is still an attraction, in this day and age of the digital world we live in. Those lucky enough to buy $20 worth of books received a beautiful bouquet from our gardening librarian’s garden. And those smart enough to come after 2 p.m. walked away with a bag of books for a buck, the best deal around. Most of the unsold books were sent off to Goodwill, but we saved a sampling, which will appear at our regular book sale. So, if you missed out on Saturday, stop by and see what we have saved for you.LICL booksale flowers