Between May 3 and July 28, 2022, OverDrive will perform server upgrades to enhance the performance and security of the systems used to access available digital collections.
The company will complete these upgrades between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m. Eastern Time on Tuesdays and Thursdays only during the period noted above. OverDrive service should only be impacted once for approximately 60 minutes or less.
In a press release, OverDrive notes, "We expect the impact to your users to be minimal. They will still be able to sign in to your digital collection and browse or read titles, but may encounter errors when attempting to borrow, place a hold or return titles during your maintenance period."
Spaces are filling up fast for the clay class with Elizabeth Wamsley at 5 p.m. Tuesday, May 3. If you haven't registered already, definitely do so before all slots are gone either in person at the library or by reaching out to Becky Brower at email@example.com or (574) 457-3022.
Elizabeth will make three pieces for everyone to sgraffito; these pieces will then be combined to form hanging chimes. Upon delivery post-firing, class participants will receive materials and directions to hang the parts.
This class is free; however, you must agree to make a $5 refundable deposit or that your card will be charged $5 if you cannot be at the class or notify the library by April 26. If you participated in the September clay class at SPL, you will need to pay $15 to attend.
This program is made possible through a grant provided by the Indiana Arts Commission.
Volunteers unite! The Syracuse Public Library will hold an orientation for those interested in helping us maintain a section of the 12-mile Syracuse-Wawasee Trail.
At 4:30 p.m. on Earth Day, Friday, April 22, make your way to Lakeside Park, 1013 N. Long Drive. Erlene Yentes, director of the Syracuse-Wawasee Trail, will show the cleanup tools used and demonstrate procedures to maintain the trail.
Meet other volunteers at Orientation Day and enjoy light refreshments. Becky Brower, adult services library with SPL, will also share information about the free wildflower seed giveaway, which arrives in May.
The Syracuse trail system is enjoyed by all ages, and several groups help maintain different sections of the trail. The Syracuse Public Library is happy to join their numbers.
Both SPL and Syracuse-Wawasee Trails are nonprofits that qualify for volunteer hours. Contact Brower in person, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or (574)457-3022 for more information or to be added to the mailing list.
If the weather is poor, this event will move to the Syracuse Public Library's meeting room.
New YA materials have arrived at the Syracuse Public Library, including several new-to-us graphic novel and manga series! Check out our catalog to find more titles. Have book recommendations? Tell us what you'd like!
SciFi & Fantasy
Graphic Novels & Manga
The publishing industry has been hard at work bringing out new books, and SPL has many of the hottest titles available! Below are the fiction, nonfiction, large print, and audiobook titles for April. A few will be released later in the month.
Biography and Memoirs
We've had a massive influx of new children's books at the Syracuse Public Library. Below is just a small selection of the titles now available, with more waiting to be cataloged. Be sure to check them out during your next visit.
By Sarah Wright
We live in a digital world; in fact, our daily lives often can't be separated from it. Want to apply for a job? Most companies now encourage potential employees to fill out applications online. Some may only have online applications available. If you lack access to the internet via a computer or a smartphone, your employment options can be limited. This doesn't touch the tip of the iceberg in terms of the necessities that have moved online.
The Syracuse Public Library strives to reduce the digital gap in our community by providing access to several tech resources. We believe no one should be limited in their life goals because of their finances, lack of device ownership, or level of tech literacy.
Computers, Printing, Wi-Fi, Hotspots, Galore!
SPL offers public computers upstairs and downstairs. These can be signed into using your library card. Not a patron? We offer guest passes so anyone can use the computers to complete their necessary tasks, whether printing out tax forms or mailing labels, completing a test, or simply skimming the news. In the children's department, we also have laptops at the circulation desk that can be checked out for in-library use.
Don't have a printer? Use SPL for your printing or copying needs. Color copies are 25 cents a page, while black-and-white copies are 10 cents. You can also scan documents for free, sending them directly to your email or a flash drive. We can fax documents, too. Faxes are $2 to send (no matter how many pages) and 25 cents per page when receiving them.
Our Wi-Fi is free. Come inside with your own devices, and enjoy surfing the web from our cozy chairs. You can also sit outside and still access it, even from a car. For internet on the go, check out our mobile hotspots. These have been popular additions to the Syracuse Public Library, especially for students, travelers, and really anyone without internet at home. Hotspots can only be checked out by Syracuse-Turkey Creek Township residents and must be returned inside of the library (do not put them in the drop boxes because they are sensitive to temperature extremes).
Even More Materials
We also have great digital resources that connect our patrons with even more materials, including e-books, audiobooks, comics, magazines, movies, TV shows, educational courses, and music. The best part? It's all free!
Libby offers e-books (which can be sent to secondary devices like a Kindle), audiobooks, magazines, and read-along books. Sign up using your library card number. It also has a browser version, which is accessible at https://idl.overdrive.com. Patrons can check out 10 items at a time.
Hoopla carries much the same with the additions of comics, movies, music, television, and courses. Its BingePasses give access to CuriosityStream, Hoopla Magazines and The Great Courses Video Library Collection -- all while only counting toward one borrow. Users are allowed six borrows per month. Be on the lookout for Bonus Borrows, which allows you to check out select titles without counting toward your monthly limit! The next Bonus Borrows month is May 2022.
Find more helpful resources on our link page!
If you're at a loss, just ask! Our staff is super helpful and eager to tackle your techie questions, both on our public computers or on your personal devices.
By Becky Brower
The question of who selects the books that the Syracuse Public Library purchases is not hard. It is everyone. That is everyone who uses the library. The library responds to requests for titles and tracks the authors who get regular and frequent checkouts. Books are ordered and processed monthly. As part of the Libby Indiana Digital consortium we purchase books that we think interest our patrons or ones that they request. As a result, there is a wide selection of titles for readers to choose from.
An example of the way the Syracuse Public Library selects materials can be found with the 2012 novel, Fifty Shades of Grey. Keep in mind that there are somewhere between 600,000 and a million books published in the U.S. each year. Immediately, after the book’s debut, we got requests, purchased a copy, and people who had not been in the library before got a library card just to read the book. The book wore out several times, and at one point, there were enough holds that we had two copies.
Had any of us at the library been able to predict that Fifty Shades of Grey -- a book full of misspellings, grammatical errors, incomplete sentences, and a weird story line -- would become a best-selling book, they could have quit their job and moved to New York, where they would make millions of dollars.
Books on the library shelves are selected with a system that is responsive to community needs and a broad social standard. Believe it or not, but most of the books that are offered are not read cover-to-cover by the library staff.
Becky Brower, SPL's adult services librarian, is a lifelong learning specialist for adults. Please share any program ideas with her that you would be interested in attending, and she will try to make them happen.
By Katie Moran
When I was a kid, we would walk down to the local Carnegie library once a week. We would wander the stacks of books and wheel a wagon full of them back home. We would take part in Summer Reading Program every summer (which consisted of tracking books and programs in the library's basement). I have some very fond memories of doing so.
Looking back, however, I think about how a library now would have helped our family that much more.
Now the libraries do programs throughout the year, and not just during the summer. My mom taught us through elementary school, and we would have loved a homeschool program at the local library. We didn’t come from much money and relied on the resources around us. The fact that our library now provides free Internet access is amazing for families who need it.
The library has changed since I was a child, and even more so in the past couple of years with the pandemic and changing world. The needs of our community changes with time and the library works hard to meet those needs. Part of that change is recognizing not everyone can come to our library, especially during our open hours.
Four years ago, I learned there were several of our patrons who couldn’t make it into our library for a variety of reasons. I spoke with Kim, our director, and she agreed that starting a homebound program was needed for our library. The number of patrons using this program has varied throughout the years, but we’ve been able to deliver books, audiobooks, movies, etc. to patrons consistently. They must live within Turkey Creek Township, have a specific reason they can’t come to the library, and be willing to be flexible with the person making the deliveries. We have a system in place where patrons can either choose their own materials or have one of us at the library choose the materials for them. There are deliveries every two weeks to their homes to give them materials.
Everyone in this township is paying taxes toward this library so it makes sense to provide service to everyone we feasibly can.
That ties into my other outreach idea. This idea came about after the pandemic when we were still occasionally being asked about curbside pickup but also hearing comments about our open hours. People in the community were busy, working, out of town, etc. during our open hours. A director of a library in southern Indiana gave a talk on pickup lockers. I fell in love with the idea for our community, and, thankfully, our director did as well. Once again, I was able to ask about the program, and she gave the green light.
After almost a year of back orders and other delays, the curbside pickup lockers were installed. These can be used by any of our patrons regardless of if they are sick, busy, etc. Anyone can call asking for a book from our library (or if they’ve had a hold from another library come in), and we will place it in a locker for them. We say which locker is yours and the combination on the lock is always the last four digits of the library card. This is another way in which the library has changed/added its services to, hopefully, better serve our community.
Katie is the Syracuse-Turkey Creek Township Public Library's assistant director. She catalogs and helps choose adult new materials, all while being the go-to person for help with all technology problems at the library (patrons and library workers, alike).
During National Library Week, the American Library Association released its State of America's Libraries Special Report: Pandemic Year Two. This report highlighted the continual effect of the pandemic on libraries as well increase efforts to censor materials. Included in the Special Report is the popular Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2021.
The American Library Association tracked 729 challenges to library, school, and university materials and services in 2021. Of the 1,597 individual books that were challenged or banned in 2021, here are the top 10 most challenged:
No. 1: 'Gender Queer' by Maia Kobabe
REASONS: Banned, challenged, and restricted for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was considered to have sexually explicit images. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 2: 'Lawn Boy' by Jonathan Evison
REASONS: Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was considered to be sexually explicit. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 3: 'All Boys Aren't Blue' by George M. Johnson
REASONS: Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content, profanity, and because it was considered to be sexually explicit. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 4: 'Out of Darkness' by Ashley Hope Perez
REASONS: Banned, challenged, and restricted for depictions of abuse and because it was considered to be sexually explicit. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 5: 'The Hate U Give' by Angie Thomas
REASONS: Banned and challenged for profanity, violence, and it was thought to promote an antipolice message and indoctrination of a social agenda. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 6: 'The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian' by Sherman Alexie
REASONS: Banned and challenged for profanity, sexual references, and use of a derogatory term. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 7: 'Me and Earl and the Dying Girl' by Jesse Andrews
REASONS: Banned and challenged because it was considered sexually explicit and degrading to women. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 8: 'The Bluest Eye' by Toni Morrison
REASONS: Banned and challenged because it depicts child sexual abuse and was considered sexually explicit. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 9: 'This Book is Gay' by Juno Dawson
REASONS: Banned, challenged, relocated, and restricted for providing sexual education and LGBTQIA+ content. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
No. 10: 'Beyond Magenta' by Susan Kuklin
REASONS: Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was considered to be sexually explicit. (Click here to find it on Evergreen)
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