2016-04-08 / In the Know

Scarborough Public Library celebrates Library Week

By Ginny Ketch Special to the Leader

The week of April 10-16 is National Library Week, a time to celebrate the essential services libraries provide to the communities they serve and to recognize the professional staff that make those services possible.

This year’s theme is Libraries Transform– a concept practiced by the Scarborough Public Library each and every day.

Since 1899, our library has been a transformational resource for local businesses and residents of all ages through its collection, online databases, programming, reference librarians, public computers, and community partnerships.

If you haven’t visited the library in recent years or explored its website, use National Library Week as an opportunity to learn all that’s available to you as a resident of Scarborough, or as an employee of a Scarborough business. (yes – employees working in our town qualify for a free library card).

The library’s collection includes more than 77,000 items to check out, and millions more are available through its online Minerva catalog.

Reserve an item and receive a phone call, email, or text message from a member of the library staff when it’s available to pick up. It really is that easy.

In support of anywhere, anytime learning, the library has invested in a new online tool, Lynda.com. This database offers thousands of high-quality videos taught by top-notch instructors. Explore Photography; 3D Animation; Video Production; Web Design and more. An individual monthly membership to Lynda.com would cost $24.99; you have free access using your library card. And if you’re curious about what was happening in our town decades ago, the library digitized its collection of local newspapers dating back to the ’70s – all available at www.scarboroughlibrary.org.

Beyond lending and online services, the library serves as a valuable community center – a trusted and welcoming “common space” for all. For young families, the library offers weekly early literacy story times. And its recent designation to the Family Place Libraries network has expanded the library’s programming to include Parent and Child Workshops that encourage together time and play-based learning. Monday through Friday,

You’ll find students at the library after school – often in record numbers. On one afternoon, 12 students were in the meeting room for the library’s teen book club, eight more were participating in a Minecraft pilot program in the conference room, and over 30 were spread throughout the library working on homework, reading, or gathered with friends.

For our adult community, the library offers weekly and monthly programs that include a morning and evening book group, the Scarborough Writers Workshop, French Conversation Group, Let’s Talk America, Library Knitting Group and the popular Monday Movie Matinee.

Recent special events covered literary topics, travel, global warming, and health issues.

And beginning in late April and into May, the library will present a three-part series for our older adult population on financial and Medicare fraud and advanced health care planning.

Last year, more than 469 programs were attended by 11,292 people – and every event was free to attend.

These services are just the beginning of what you’ll find at your library – and it is your library. Visit the next time you pass it by – 48 Gorham Road is the address. And start exploring the library’s website.

Check the Events page for great events planned for National Library Week. Sign up for the library’s free eNewsletter, FootNotes Plus. Follow the library on Facebook. The opportunity to transform your life can start today at Scarborough Public Library.

Ginny Ketch is a member of the board of trustees for Scarborough Public Library.

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