To Poke, or Not to Poke

Writing a weekly column requires an unlimited supply of ideas, inspiration, anger, joy, etc.  Somedays it comes easy, other days I feel like I am repeating myself or doing my ol’ reliable and poking the bear.  My supply this week includes: the yearly public survey, the 2022 programming calendar, 2 grants (still waiting on approval), updates on our current reading challenge, the garbage about banned books going on in our country, the building/grounds maintenance that has happened this week, continued work on the budget, the Missouri Evergreen Consortium, something cool from the 1946 days of the library and, well, I guess that is it.  Plenty of material, and yep, there is some poking in that list.  To poke, or not to poke, hmmm, maybe a little of each idea for a nice balance. We are required to do the Missouri Public Library Survey every year; this year’s data was from 2020.  There are 10 numbered questions, but don’t let that fool you, number 1 has 25 sections, 1.01, 1.02, etc.  I spent multiple days on it and was reminded on the awfulness of 2020, a year so awful, new questions and words were added to the survey.  The information is shared online at Check it out, it shows all the libraries in Missouri.

I printed the 2022 calendar out yesterday and started color-coding all the things we are currently doing and what we hope to do differently in the next year.  This is usually one of my favorite parts of the job, but even though we are not restricting program participation, we are still adjusting and trying to figure out what our community wants and needs. 

I recently finished a grant for continuing education (conference attendance) and the Summer Reading Program.  Keep your fingers crossed; if that SRP grant is approved, we will have some exciting news for the upcoming summer. 

I am really enjoying the feedback and reactions to our current reading challenge.  We started with 9 books and had to double that amount to meet the demand.  Books that had never been checked out, yep, been sitting on the shelf, spine never cracked for about 3 years, have gone out 35 times. 

If you are not aware, people have been complaining about the content of books since the beginning of time, this is nothing new.  Here are some oldies, but goodies: Alice in Wonderland (Lewis Carroll) , Harry Potter (J.K. Rowling), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Roald Dahl), Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White), The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (Frank Baum), Winnie The Pooh (A.A. Milne) and The Hunger Games Trilogy (Suzanne Collins).  All of those are available in our library, and you can be guaranteed that there are way more than the 7 I listed.  Yep, something to offend everyone. 

Our garden and pavilion area have been all cleaned up and are ready to look fantastic come spring.  The back wall is getting taking care of and after writing the first paragraph of this bookworm; I was notified of another issue that almost kept me from finishing this bookworm.  I will not cry.  I will not cry. 

I am feeling good about the progress I am making on the budget, I still won’t be able to compete with some of the current wages, but we are getting closer. 

Missouri Evergreen is a public library automation consortium with a shared online catalog based on the open-source Evergreen Software.  A catalog that is not as pretty as our current one, but gives a patron access to over 50 other Missouri libraries and 3 million items. 

Last, but not least, this week the book buggy that Mrs Medicus used is currently sitting outside my office.  The best part of the buggy, beyond the obvious history, is its shape.  One side is angled, I am sure so it would fit in a specific spot, and that leaves me with a lovely library mystery that never has to be solved. 

Upcoming Events: 11/17 Story Time at 10am, 11/20 Story Time at the Ranch House at 9am, Saturday Story Time at 10:30am.  This is the last month for the Adult Reading Challenge, swing by the library for more information.