Knowledge, inspiration, enrichment @ your library

You’ve heard before that the library is more than books. Yet still when asked “What does the library mean to you,” the majority of you will say books or a collection of books.

Few will mention the library as a source of knowledge, inspiration and enrichment or see the big picture –a collage of interconnected technologies, programs and other resources.

Take storytime for example. Every Tuesday morning, our Children’s Librarian and volunteers share stories, songs, finger plays and puppets to foster literacy and a love of reading for our littlest patrons. Thanks to a generous grant from the Berks County Community Foundation, they will be able to supplement this experience with fun apps and videos on a new iPad while equipping parents with tools they can use to continue the mission at home.

Each month our school-aged patrons come to practice their reading skills, those same skills that we are fostering through our storytimes, on trained therapy dogs through our “Read to Bean & Friends” program. This experience allows them to unplug and connect on a different level with a four-legged friend, and it is proven to build self-esteem, self-confidence and greater participation in other activities as well. Friends can register to “Read with Bean & Friends” again at 6:30 p.m. March 11.

Learning to read the words on the page is only a stepping-stone on the literacy path. Mifflin Community Library, in cooperation with the editors of the Macaroni Kid Reading-Pottstown newsletter, now offers a Tween & Teen Book Club where kids can take their reading to the next level and come together to engage in thoughtful discussion of the material. This month youth ages 10+ are welcome to read Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein, and register to join in the discussion at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 4.

March also brings Teen Tech Week (March 9-15), and teens should register for a special DIY @ your library celebration at 5 p.m. Thursday, March 6. In the spirit of DIY, we’ll create our own wisecrack fortune eggs complete with egg-ceptional puns.

Mifflin Community Library strives to offer reading enrichment experiences for all ages and continues to engage the community in campaigns such as “One Book, One Community.” The 2014 OBOC selection, The Worst Hard Time by Timothy Egan, has engaged dozens of readers throughout the Governor Mifflin community, and all are invited to connect on February 25 at 6 PM at the library for a special program. Albright History Professor, Gerald Ronning, will present “The Dirty Thirties: Surviving the Dust Bowl,” discussing some of the causes and consequences of the Dust Bowl and the ways that Franklin Roosevelt enlisted this disaster to support his broader goals for a “New Deal for the Forgotten Man.” Please call to register for this program, which will be followed by a book discussion with our Afternoon Book Group.

Supporting an informed community is a key function of your public library. By providing civic-minded programs for our patrons, Mifflin Community Library helps to maintain positive progress in our community.

At 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 22, the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania, through a grant from the Department of Transportation, will present a Primer on Pipelines here at the Mifflin Community Library. Dr. Roberta Winters, coordinator of the League’s statewide studies on natural gas extraction from Marcellus Shale and pipelines, will focus on “An Ounce of Prevention.” Register for this program to learn about the basic components of the infrastructure, your roles in assuring pipeline safety, the agencies responsible for its oversight and siting, and resources to help with planning for pipelines in your neighborhood.

In March, the library will host a three-week Job Hunter Series to arm our patrons for finding their way into or back into the workforce. On March 4, the series will start with a session on the Internet Job Search, and then on March 11 and 18, Megan Adukaitis, Director of Career Development at Alvernia University, will share her expertise on Killer Resumes & Cover Letters and Interviewing Tips & Tricks, respectively. Please register now for one or all Job Hunter sessions.

This is only a sampling of the big picture of what the library really offers. There’s lots more.Through our Lego Club, we use building blocks to encourage the reasoning and problem solving so vital in a literate society. Check out our online events calendar for more possibilities. You might be intrigued to bring your kids to our “Juggle, Spin & Flow” program on March 1st or sign yourself up for our Kitchen & Salad Gardens program on March 13 with the Penn State Master Gardeners. The best idea yet is to come into the library, talk with the staff, pick up a new skill, and, yes please, check out a book or three.

If you come to Mifflin Community Library, we guarantee you’ll be informed, inspired and enriched.