The Syracuse Public Library has received several one-square-foot seed packets, featuring Midwest wildflowers, to give away. Up to three packets are given to each family either at the library or during the native plant sale from 9-11 a.m. Saturday, June 4, at the WACF property on SR 13. The purpose of planting the seeds is not just to be a food resource for local pollinators but to offer a habitat in the soil for the native bees.
The seed sponsors, Tangled Bank Studios and PBS-Nature, have made a movie that shows the amount of activity a bee-friendly area provides in, “My Garden of a Thousand Bees.” Come for a showing at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, June 9. The Syracuse Public Library is facilitating a series of meetings called “In the Garden.” Contact Becky Brower, email@example.com, to receive emails with “In the Garden” notifications for field trips, book discussion topics, walks and trail maintenance. Make a point this summer to meet our local pollinators.
Through the Fairfield Schools Family Literacy Fund, a grant made possible by an anonymous donor, children who live within the Fairfield Community Schools district (Clinton, Benton, and Jackson townships) can receive a free Syracuse Public Library card! Sign up is now active and will run through Aug. 1.
The purpose of this program is to prevent the "summer slide" that a long break from school can cause by providing access to a library. Families within Clinton, Jackson, and Benton townships can come to the Syracuse Public Library with their photo IDs and proof of address (such as a utility bill or other piece of mail) to register for these summer library cards.
To qualify, children must be aged birth to those entering grade 12 in the fall. Children need not attend school to be eligible -- preschoolers and homeschoolers within the three townships are encouraged to come, too. Families with multiple children aged birth to 12 years old will only receive one card; however, children 13-18 are eligible for their own library cards.
The summer library card gives the cardholder access to all library services and materials with the exception of hotspots. This includes access to Overdrive/Libby and Hoopla databases, providing access to e-books, audiobooks, magazines, TV shows, movies, documentary, online classes, music and more.
Summer library cards expire Aug. 31. The Syracuse Public Library does offer nonresident library cards for one year ($75.50) or four months ($25.50) for those interested in maintaining a long-term library card.
For more information, call the library at (574) 457-3022.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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 email@example.com, 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.
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
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)
This week, the Syracuse-Turkey Creek Township Public Library encourages all community members to visit their library in person or online to explore and access services and programs. Syracuse Public Library offers a wide array of programs, classes and resources for all ages.
April 3-9, 2022, is National Library Week, a time to highlight the essential role libraries, librarians and library workers play in transforming lives and strengthening communities. The theme for this year’s National Library Week is “Connect with Your Library,” which promotes the idea that libraries are places to get connected to technology by using broadband, computers and other resources. Libraries also offer opportunities to connect with media, programs, ideas and classes, in addition to books. Most importantly, libraries also connect communities to each other.
Libraries of all types continue to go above and beyond to keep their communities connected by expanding resources and embracing inclusion in their programming, resources and collections. Libraries across the country are making a difference in people’s lives by providing electronic learning resources like online homework help and Wi-Fi access for students and workers who may lack internet access at home. Syracuse Public Library is supporting the community with services such as Homeschool Programs, free Wi-Fi, public computers, hotspot checkouts, a notary, storytimes, arts & crafts programs, and so much more.
This National Library Week, the public can show their appreciation and support for libraries by visiting their library in person or online, following them on social media and using the hashtag #NationalLibraryWeek.
First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association and libraries of all types across the country each April.
For more information, visit the library’s website at www.syracuse.lib.in.us.
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Syracuse-Turkey Creek Township Public Library