Friday, May 10, 2013
Chambers County Library System - April report
Chambers County Library System –
was once again full of fun activities at the library. To start out with, we held our annual Edible
Books Festival at all the branches. The
winner did a fun interpretation of Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger complete
with homemade rye bread inside a catcher’s mitt. Channel 6 out of Beaumont came out and even
interviewed the County Librarian – you never know what will spark attention
from the local media! Later that same
week the Friends of CCLS held their always popular, Gently Used Book Sale at
Anahuac and Winnie. Several volunteers
helped set up and take down the books as well as manage the cashier’s
table. It’s always great to have extra
hands to help out at the book sales and I know the staff appreciates it.
a successful program at Mont Belvieu on bullying, the presenter John Michael
Hart spoke to a room full of parents, kids and some school administrators at
Anahuac on his personal account with bullying.
John Michael offered information that helped give those in attendance a
chance to learn more about the issue that may be confronting children. The public had many positive comments about
the presentation about what a great job John Michael did for the library. John Michael also did a second program at
Mont Belvieu which was also well received.
member Lesa Boutin held a “Skype” program with author Adriana Trigiani. Book club members were able to see and talk
to Ms. Trigiani about her book and other topics. Using Skype technology in libraries allows
patrons to get up close and personal with authors. Look for more programs like this in the
Chambers County Library in Anahuac and the Juanita Hargraves Memorial Branch in
Winnie currently have positions open for a Children’s Librarian. Each position is 16 hours per week and applicants
are required to have previous children’s programming experience (schools,
libraries, day cares, etc.). It also
doesn’t hurt if applicants can sing, dance, act silly, or create animal
balloons by request! For more
information, please see the library’s website.
In the meantime, we’ve had several staff members step up to continue
Storytime while interviews continue.
Special thanks to Aquilia De la Crux, Toya Peters, and Kim Silcox for
Librarian, Valerie Jensen and Technical Librarian, Kathy Fielding attended the
Texas Library Association’s annual conference in Fort Worth last week. This was the 100th anniversary of the
conference and was one of the most well attended conferences in years. This opportunity provides continuing
education for librarians of all types, including law, medical, school, special,
academic, and public. The conference
provides hundreds of sessions presented by people who specialize in the
different aspects of librarianship and we left inspired as we do each
year. It was refreshing to know that
Chambers County Library System provides some of the latest technologies and
programs for the public.
finally, over 300 people attended the West Chambers Branch in Mont Belvieu at
their Meet Your Library Night program on April 30th. The Friends of CCLS sponsored the event and provided
information on the proposed new library.
A Friends membership drive was held along with a free book drive. Library staff mingled with the crowd
introducing them to services and programs offered at the library. Kudos goes out to staff member Kim Hart and
her wonderful PowerPoint presentation on library services. Several local authors were on hand to sign
and sell books; they each also gave away a signed copy of their book at the end
of the evening. Several sponsors
provided refreshments and door prizes.
Sonic of Mont Belvieu provided gift cards, coupons, and drinks, along
with other local businesses including The Cake Box, Thrif-tee, Eagle Pointe,
and Pizza Hut.
John Michael Hart doing his presentation on bullying
Several elected officials enjoyed their time at the Meet Your Library program at Mont Belvieu
Tuesday, April 02, 2013
Chambers County Library System - March report
Chambers County Library System –
walk-in traffic – 9,619
programs offered – 63
attendance – 1,177
circulation – 13,260
As you can
see, the month of March was a busy, busy month!
provided the library system with another opportunity to show the communities
some of the things we do best. National Read Across America Day was celebrated
at all three libraries with our Cat in the Hat costumes (courtesy of the
Friends of CCLS) used in full force at all the branches. Each site had all sorts of fun, with cakes,
photographs, and of course, Dr. Seuss stories. Our children’s programs continue
to be innovative and successful! West
Chambers Branch Librarian, Missy Parham had the privilege of being the
“official” Cat in the Hat at Barbers Hill ISD.
She spent a day at the schools entertaining the kids with stories and
quirky fun activities. It’s always a
great thing to see the staff involved at the schools. We ended March with Easter parties for the
young set, and there were various activities in the three branches, from egg
hunts to visits by that old rascal himself, the Easter Bunny.
staff members were able to take advantage of the County’s offer of CPR classes.
Staff has been trying to work themselves
into the monthly classes provided by the Emergency Management department, and
we fervently hope that everyone who wants to take the class will have managed
to do so by the end of the year. Each of our sites has a defibrillator available,
and new rules on these machines, and new standards for CPR techniques make
movie programs are always a hit with free refreshments and movies on the big
screen. The staff loves to show newly
released movies with the kids (and adults) often asking what the next movie
will be. Chambers County Library in
Anahuac tested out a “Grown-up Movie Night” on the 26th with a good
group of attendees. It sparked interest
for other types of movies to be shown including classics and award-winning
films. Of course the kids enjoyed Hotel
Transylvania and Odd Life of Timothy Green. Next month there’s a whole new lineup, so be
sure to check it out!
break also allows the community to spend free vacation time at the
libraries. Programs specifically held
for Spring Breakers were held at a couple of branches with Anahuac’s Angry
Birds program, name art collages, and a movie marathon. Mont Belvieu followed suit with a Shrek teen
movie marathon complete with all types of good snacks.
Winnie gang held a Springtime Gardening program with A. Lynette Parsons. Lynette is a certified Master Gardener and
loves to talk dirt with patrons on all types of topics when it comes to
gardening and flowers. Contact the local
County Extension office at 409-374-2123 with your gardening questions and
they’ll connect you with the local experts in Chambers County.
Librarian Kathy Fielding and I did some outreach at the Chambers County Health
and Wellness Fair by showing county employees what the library offers in terms
of wellness resources. The library has
hundreds of materials that can be used for wellness points for county
employees, and we also have some great updated books and DVDs – not to mention
the wealth of information available from our health and medical online
databases. We also had over 300 pieces
of fruit donated by Food Town to pass out to everyone who attended.
Librarian, Valerie Jensen attended the quarterly Lee College Educational
Opportunity Advisory board meeting at the Workforce Solutions office in
Baytown. Area librarians meet with Lee College instructors and staff to discuss
the educational needs of people in the community. Currently, the Chambers
County Library in Anahuac holds GED prep classes for students who need
assistance in taking the exam. The Lee College EOC has provided scholarships
for area students to pay for the GED test when they are unable to get the funds
to pay themselves.
finally, our newly added databases, Chilton automotive repair and Powerspeak
languages have come on full force. The
past month we have had 17 people spend over 5 hours in training with Powerspeak
training in Spanish, French and German.
The Chilton auto repair database was used heavily as well to assist
people needing simple to advanced car repair information. Our newest databases are accessible from home
with your library card.
up in April, the Friends of CCLS and the staff will be holding a Meet Your
Library Night at the West Chambers Branch in Mont Belvieu inviting the
public, local businesses, schools, and local officials to see the value of what
their library holds in the community.
The event will be held on April 30th from 4pm-7pm. Local authors, refreshments, free books, and
much more will be on hand for fun-filled evening at the library.
out upcoming activity on our website. Check
us out at www.chambers.lib.tx.us or give us a “Like” on
Facebook to see pictures and activities at your local branch.
A tiny patron enjoys story time at Mont Belvieu
After-school worker, Kenya Moore plays the part of the Easter Bunny at Anahuac
Monday, March 04, 2013
Library System – February, 2013
In addition to Valentine’s Day and Black History Month, February
was also Library Lovers’ Month! The staff
took advantage of this special month by promoting the library’s services with unique
and eye-catching displays. Anahuac had a
“Library Valentine Tree” where patrons could write a Valentine to their
library. Mont Belvieu invited patrons to
go on a “Blind Date” with a book, and all 3 branches had Black History
materials on display throughout the month.
Patrons enjoy seeing the different displays, and you never know what
you’ll get with the creativity of the staff.
Our display racks are placed close to the checkout desk so it’s the
equivalent of the candy aisle at the store – someone usually grabs something
On the 7th the staff gathered to hammer out the
details of our upcoming Summer Reading Program.
It’s still several months away, but in order to get all those programs,
sponsors, orders, and last minute details finalized, our planning process needs
to start at the beginning of the year. We’re
looking forward to another great summer full of fun programs and activities for
all ages. The Friends of Chambers County
Library System are our major underwriter for the Summer Reading Program along
with the County. Any additional funds
needed (and there always is), gets done with grants that the County Librarian
writes to several local entities involved in community giving programs.
The Friends of the Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge donated
money to the library for the purchase of children’s books on ecology,
estuaries, marshes and related topics.
These subject areas of the collection continue to teach the elementary and middle school
students about nature and wildlife as it applies to them locally.
General Meeting of the Friends of the Chambers County Library System was held
on February 23rd this year. The Friends, as an independent group of
library supporters and cardholders, is a vital link for the library system to
the community at large. Over 250 individuals and business owners hold
memberships, and their dues, coupled with fund raisers, make up the bulk of
funds used by the library staff for programming supplies. They have also been
able to provide us with additional equipment and furniture over the years that
could not be purchased otherwise. The meeting was well attended, and our
Executive Board promises to be enthusiastic and dedicated. One of the topics of discussion was the new
West Chambers Branch Library progress.
The Friends met with architects, JT ARC Studios from Houston to discuss
the direction the Friends want to go as they pursue their portion of the funds
needed towards the building project.
As the search
continues for an Assistant County Librarian, we decided to do a temporary
personnel change until we find our lucky candidate. Technical Librarian Kathy Fielding will be
assigned some Assistant County Librarian clerical duties to give the County
Librarian some time to catch up on some projects that have been on the back
burner. To fill in the time Kathy will
be taken from her Technical duties, a temporary part-time employee will pick up
the slack at 20 hours per week. We thank
the court for allowing this brief change so we can continue to keep up the pace
of our busy library!
Until next month!
Enjoying Valentine's Day storytime at Mont Belvieu
Winnie kids AND MOMS enjoying storytime
Kids enjoying books purchased with funds donated by the Friends of the Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge
Monday, February 04, 2013
Monthly report - January 2013
Library System – January, 2013
January 1 is always the library’s favorite day of the
year. It’s the day our new budget kicks
in, and we can take a deep breath knowing we don’t have to squeak by like we do
in the later months of the year. Our vendors start calling in November to
reserve their spot to show off their new titles and products we desperately
want to provide for our patrons. We try
to stay within our budget to provide for the public, but it’s always a
balancing act since there are so many new services libraries can offer.
A couple of those new services we will start offering in
March include, ChiltonLibrary and Powerspeak Languages. Chilton is a familiar name with those who
frequent our auto repair section.
Patrons will be able to log in with their library card and print or view
maintenance, repair, or recall information.
The online Chilton library covers current vehicles all the way back to
1940. Of course those Chilton books will
still be available for checkout!
Powerspeak Languages is our next new database. It’s a wonderful tool to learn a new
language. Powerspeak has been compared
to Rosetta Stone in its success rate and ease of use with video/audio tutorials
and interactive lessons. Languages that
will be available are Spanish, French, German, Mandarin, and English
Online services are increasingly popular with libraries and
Chambers County Library System is proof of that. In December our website saw over 6,000 hits
that took patrons to places like Overdrive for downloadable eBooks and
audiobooks. Free downloadable music,
free newspaper access, Ancestry, resume makers, and hundreds of other informative
databases are heavily used each month.
If you haven’t checked them out lately, go to the library’s website at www.chambers.lib.tx.us
and click on the image slider to explore
The Juanita Hargraves Memorial Library in Winnie held a
Community Book Swap sponsored by some East Chambers ISD teachers. Lisa Ledoux and Kellie Rogers brought books to
swap with patrons who either wanted something new, or decided to donate to the
cause. Quite a few patrons took
advantage of the swap and requested more in the future.
In other programming highlights, Anahuac offered a Spring
gardening class and the Book Club celebrated 5 years with a trip to
Luna’s. Winnie held a teen Superhero
day, and Hobbit Day along with their Community Book Swap. And this year, Mont Belvieu took on the Anime
Winter Ball with teens from Anahuac and Mont Belvieu coming together to talk
anime, manga, draw, play videogames, and enjoy a night at the library sharing
And finally, it’s that time of year where tax forms are in
high demand. This year the IRS is
delivering forms and booklets as they become available. For taxpayers who can file their return
beginning January 30, those forms have been received and are available free of
charge at your local branch. Forms that
can’t be filed beginning January 30 are not yet available. Check back or call to check the status of tax
form and booklet deliveries.
Until next month!
Met Head Start taking a tour in Anahuac!
Local author, Lori Kaiser signing her latest book at Mont Belvieu!
Winnie toddlers enjoying Lego day!
Monday, January 14, 2013
Library System – December, 2012
For the past couple of years we’ve watched trends in library
needs change. The printed book is still
highest in demand, but our numbers for downloadable media have exploded in the
last year. We thank those of you who
take advantage of our free downloadable music, videos,
books, etc. on your Nooks, Kindles, iPads, and other devices. Increasing this collection is definitely an
area we’re going to focus on more heavily in 2013.
The end of the year reports are always the most interesting
to look at because we’ve always had the good fortune of seeing increases across
the board in all areas of service we provide.
One that sticks out for 2012 is programming. We had an 18% increase in the number of
programs offered and 7% increase in the number of people attending those
programs. The quality of programming
offered by the Chambers County Library System is definitely something everyone
should experience! From babies still in
the womb, to teens and adults; we’ve got something for everyone.
Total circulation: 233,812
Program attendance: 13,952
Public computer logons: 28,828
(databases, website and online services):
A few highlights of
County Library System was nominated for Public Library of the Year
in the works for a new West Chambers Branch Library
books were read during our 2 month Summer Reading Program
attended the Texas Library Association annual conference in Houston, Texas
Friends of CCLS held several successful book sales
library implemented wireless printing for the public
The Friends of Chambers County Library System held another
double header book sale at Anahuac and Mont Belvieu. Over $1,000 was raised, and that money will
go towards library services and programs in the upcoming months. All items sell for less than $1, not a bad
profit for a few days work!
The Anahuac branch held “Twas the Night at the Library”
program with over 60 kids and their parents in attendance. Activities included stories, crafts, games, snacks
and a special appearance from Mrs. Claus.
All the libraries held programs for kids and teens for the holidays with
Santa managing to squeeze in a visit during his busy schedule.
Book clubs are in full swing at all 3 libraries. This is the first time in CCLS history that
book clubs have been offered at all 3 branches.
The meetings range from formal to informal discussions about what
everyone likes (or dislikes) about the books.
Often times members bring snacks, and what goes better than a good book,
good discussion, and food! The Chambers County Library in Anahuac will be
starting up their 6th year, which goes to show we’re doing something
Branch Librarian Aquilia De la Cruz presented a Salsa Making
program on December 6th. This
program isn’t something you would traditionally associate with libraries, but
it’s a great example of the wide variety of programs offered at the
Branch Librarian Aquilia De la Cruz, and Library Technicians
Toya Peters and Angie Broussard attended FAFSA training at Lee College. FAFSA is the Free Application for Federal Student
Aid. Staff from each branch brought back
great information to share with the staff to better assist students who might
need help as they begin the tedious process of filing for financial aid. To round out the month, the usual movie
programs, writers’ groups, teen game days, computer classes, and craft clubs
In personnel news, County Librarian Valerie Jensen and
Technical Librarian Kathy Fielding have been conducting interviews in search of
a new Assistant County Librarian.
Applicants are coming from all across the United States, but we haven’t
found that right person yet. Phase one
consists of an online interview and depending on that, we’ll offer an on-site
interview to better acquaint applicants with our Library System. The upcoming week brings us daily interviews
so we’re anticipating good things from our next round of applicants.
Until next month!
Dakota enjoying storytime!
Mrs. Claus visiting the Anahuac branch!
Staff member Kim Hart demonstrating a science experiment at the latest Homeschool program
CCLS is recognized!
Library System – November, 2012
What a busy month! November
kicked off with a big announcement for the library. Chambers
County Library System was one of 20 libraries in the state to be nominated for Public
Library of the Year. Although we
didn’t walk away with the big award, we are extremely thrilled just to be in
the spotlight for the hard work the staff does.
There are over 500 libraries in the state, and to be ranked with the
best of them is quite an accomplishment in our book.
County Librarian, Valerie Jensen attended a webinar
entitled, Tech at Warp Speed, which
focuses on the future of technology in libraries. The library prides itself on staying on trend
with the latest technology. By doing
that, as we move forward with technology changes, it makes it much more
acceptable by the public and staff.
Speaking of technology, the library is currently searching
for a new Assistant County Librarian and we are using the latest video/chat
tool, Google Hangout for our interviews since many of our candidates are from
out of state. The search is going well
and we hope to have the position filled by the end of the year.
Staff members Cindy Alegria and Missy Parham completed a
Small Library Management course in Collection Development. This training takes about 2 years to complete
and participants receive intense training in the areas of administration,
management, policy development, collection development, reference services,
youth services and technology training.
November 13th was the quarterly Library Advisory
Board meeting. Board members met and
discussed some policy changes as well as receive a report from the County
Librarian regarding library news.
A couple of grants have been written to the Texas Book
Festival grant committee for items not covered in the library’s approved
budget. One particular grant we hope to
receive is funding towards upgrading our current website. Our website is crucial to our online presence
and patrons who aren’t able to use the library’s resources inside the
building. We are anticipating a more
user friendly and inviting website along with a new children’s page.
The Friends of the Chambers County Library System are also
pursuing grant funds and donations towards their fundraising efforts for the
West Chambers Branch library building campaign.
A mail out to all Mont Belvieu patrons informing citizens of their
efforts is almost completed and donations are starting to trickle in from
library users who have been eager to see an expansion for some time now. Just a reminder that all donations are tax
And finally, in programming news, the Anahuac and Mont
Belvieu branches braved the crowds by taking teens on a movie field trip to see
the final movie in the Twilight saga. All
3 branches had wonderful Toddler Time programs planned for the under 5 age
crowd. And movie nights, writers groups,
book clubs, coupon classes, craft clubs, computer classes, anime clubs, Homeschool
programs and much more were happening during the month of November @ your local
Until next month!
October @ Your Library!
Library System – October, 2012
We’re busting out the walls!
Over 12,000 people visited the Chambers County Library System in
October. Wireless and computer logons
were 2,740 and 12,996 items were circulated.
This was our largest October circulation in over 5 years.
The Holiday seasons have kicked in for CCLS! Halloween appeared in various forms with
programs for the little ones and lock-ins for the older crowd. Anahuac and Mont Belvieu braved all nighters
with over 20 teens at each, and all seemed to have a spirited good time. Winnie held an after-hours program the same
night as a popular school function and still had 20 teens attend. Goes to show that the library is the place to
be! The pre-school programs had
attendance that exceeded expectations with the staff having all hands on
deck. Kids enjoyed spooky stories,
activities and of course Halloween candy and treats. We can’t wait for Christmas!
Speaking of program attendance, the West Side explodes once
again with their children’s program attendance with 359 kids attending 9
programs. One of the main reasons their
numbers have increased is the addition of the newly structured Homeschool Program
led by staff member Kim Hart. Kim has
started 2 separate programs focusing on a Pre-K book club and a 2nd-5th
grade Science Club. Both programs are
offered during the day which is peak Homeschool time. Exxon Mobil has also come on board as a
volunteer with the Science Club to lend a hand with some of the
experiments. It’s a great free service for one of the many
audiences we serve.
Another area to note an increase is our Spanish
services. Anahuac’s Branch Librarian,
Aquilia De la Cruz has been offering basic and advanced computer classes in
Spanish which fill beyond capacity each month.
Her classes include people with zero to intermediate computer skills and
each class the students return to learn more.
Some of the advanced classes focus on the local school district’s Skyward
program so parents can access their child’s progress at school.
The library is the main access point for people with no
Internet access and/or computer skills.
There are still a large percentage of people who do not know how to use
a mouse, have an email address, or have Internet access. That’s where the library steps in to offer
assistance. We provide everything from
basic to advanced classes. Check the
schedule for the days and times.
October also saw an increase in the number of Interlibrary
Loan items requested throughout our Library System. If the library doesn't have a particular
title, we can borrow from outside our system.
The process is painless and fast, it usually takes a week for an item to
come in and we simply give patrons a call to come pick up their book. The only exception is we can’t order items
published within the last 6 months. In
cases like that, patrons can put in a request for the item to be purchased and
added to the system. As long as funds
allow and it fits into our collection development policy, we purchase within a
couple of weeks. We do keep up with
bestselling authors, new DVDs, magazines, and much more!
On a personnel note, we’re now on the search for an
Assistant County Librarian. The County
Librarian has her plate pretty full and we’re hoping to find just the right
person to fill the spot. Requirements
for this position include 5 years public library experience and a Master’s
degree in Library and Information Science.
Several applications have started to come in and the interview process
is already in the works.
Finally, the Friends of the Chambers County Library System
had a presence at the Barber’s Hill Fall Fest on the 20th. They held a Gently Used Book Sale, and also
talked up the upcoming bond election in May for the new West Chambers Branch
facility. It was a busy day, many people
purchased books but we still had a lot to box up. It’s always great that the library gets
exposure in any way possible, and these community functions are ideal.
Until next month!
Monday, October 01, 2012
September @ The Library
Library System – September, 2012
September seems to have been a blur at the library. With so much going on it seems like our
“slow” months have officially disappeared.
September kicked off fall
programming at all the libraries with Toddler Time, and Teen Advisory Boards
back in full swing. Here’s a snapshot
of just a few things we did last month.
In September the library had quite a presence around the
county. The Anahuac branch had an educational
booth at Gatorfest passing out library publications, bookmarks and tons of
promotional materials for the hundreds of people who stopped by. It’s always great to see the people
recognize and compliment us on a job well done!
Branch Librarian Aquilia De la Cruz also represented the library at the
Anahuac Elementary Open House event on the 24th. The Juanita Hargraves Memorial Branch in
Winnie has a weekly “mobile library” at the Arboretum of Winnie. Each
week the staff rotates bringing books and magazines, and a couple times a month
they also treat the residents with a story or two. The West Chambers Branch in Mont Belvieu continues
their outreach at the middle school promoting teen services at the
library. Hitting the classrooms is a
huge factor in the success of our programs and it pays off! Overall, the staff held 15 outreach programs
to 1,699 people in September.
Kim Hart with the Mont Belvieu branch started her Homeschool
programs last month and was received with over 100 kids and their parents
attending. Kim’s idea to divide the
Homeschool program into 2 units was a success, focusing on a book club and
science club to better target the needs of the Homeschool demographic. In October she plans on having a curriculum
swap so parents can exchange curriculum materials. Also at Mont Belvieu, staff member Lori Knapp
held her first book club meeting with 14 patrons in attendance. Each of the libraries now offer book club
meetings and it’s obvious with Anahuac about to start on year 5 of their book
club, the other branches are eager to get started.
Lesa Boutin with the Anahuac branch held a “Grown-up” movie
night featuring the British program, Downton Abbey. The hugely popular television series was
brought to life with beautiful china teacups and lace doilies decorating the
room. Those in attendance also learned
the British National Anthem; it was quite the adventure and a good time was had
County Librarian Valerie Jensen attended the Lee College
Educational Opportunity Center meeting where local librarians and faculty meet
to discuss how to better serve the educational needs of the people in our
community. Currently, GED and ESL
classes are held in Anahuac. We’re
working on some additional services early next year to assist with Financial
Aid and GED testing. Earlier in the
month, Valerie also instructed a staff training class for newly hired staff as
well as those who wanted a refresher course.
Each year the library tries to have as many training opportunities as
possible so we can better serve our patrons.
Until next month!
Larry Hansing with Dignity Memorial teaches seniors how to avoid scams and fraudulent situations
Staff member, Lesa Boutin at the Library's educational booth at the Texas Gatorfest
Monday, September 10, 2012
August @ the Library
Library System – August, 2012
The Library staff didn’t have too much of a break after
Summer Reading this year. Even without
our usual story hours and computer classes, we managed to work in a good amount
of activity, and with the schools starting up, our changeover from summer
visitors to students was almost unnoticed.
We had a couple of big programs that took place last
month. First up was our Homeschool
Orientation program. We continue to see
increases in this particular group of library users. We had 19 adults and 39 kids attend and all
were either new to the homeschool scene or have been homeschooling for
years. Several staff members walked
guests through the many services, both on site and online, that the library
system offers to all its patrons, while other staff members entertained the
kids with crafts, movies and other activities.
Lunch was generously provided by the Friends of CCLS.
The Chambers County Library in Anahuac held a “Back to
School Bash” the last week of August for kids of all ages. The program was well attended by 38 kids and
8 adults. The library was bustling with
activities, movies, crafts and even some parents who joined in for the
fun. Special thanks go to Tanya Wead and
Stacey Braxton for providing supplies for the program.
Other programs that took place in August included, Extreme
Couponing, Computer classes, Movie nights, Genealogy groups, Writers’ Groups,
On the 14th, the Library Advisory Board met and
approved the updates to several policies.
The Board is appointed by Commissioners’ Court and serves as a liaison
between the library and its citizens.
Their input is always great to hear and we are lucky to have such a
great group of Board members to promote the library and its mission.
Earlier in the month the County Librarian led a cataloging
training class for several of our staff members who have the job of entering
new paperback materials into the library’s database. With
each branch receiving 20-30 new paperbacks monthly, the need for some entry
level staff training on this topic was a must.
Cataloging is a very tedious process and the majority of it takes place
in Tech Services, but in order to meet the demands of our patrons we’re hoping
this training will cut down on the wait time for the public.
In personnel news, the Juanita Hargraves Memorial Branch in
Winnie has a new face in the children’s department. Angie Broussard joined the team as the new
Children’s Librarian. She has
demonstrated her ability above and beyond and we’re thrilled to have her on
board. Winnie also gained a new Library
Page with Dawn Davis. She’s a graduate
of East Chambers and attends Lamar University while working part-time at the
And finally, the “summer helper” program is sponsored over
and above the library system budget; it is an extra gift from the
Commissioners’ Court and Judge Sylvia.
The salaries provided to these young people help them greatly in our
area, where jobs are scarce, and it is a bonus of $14,670.00 to the library
Homeschool parents listen close to the great information provided by the staff!
Cecy De la Cruz shoots her bow & arrow during the Back to School Bash!
July @ the Library!
Library System – July, 2012
Another successful Summer Reading Program ended with a week
of party events in mid-July. This year’s
program was a huge success with 28,870 books read in June and July as part of
the Texas Reading Club, held at the three Chambers County libraries. The annual program, which is open to children
from the ages of pre-k through 5th grade ended in mid-July, with 1,100
children registering. A total of 3,455
adults, teens, and children attended 40 programs held during this time. Over 200 adults and teens enrolled in their
own reading events, and read a total of 2,157 books.
The Friends of CCLS also took advantage of the summer crowds
by holding a 3-day Gently Used Book Sale at Anahuac and Mont Belvieu. It was a huge success, and funds raised will
be used to purchase additional programming supplies and equipment for the
libraries. The Friends also met during a
special called meeting on the 11th to discuss ongoing plans for the
Mont Belvieu library fundraising campaign.
Good things are in the works for the West Chambers Branch!
At the beginning of the month, former classroom teacher
turned professional chef Lori Hinze held a Cooking Program at each of the
libraries. Her “Book Cook” program
incorporates skills such as literacy, math, and nutrition into her
presentation. Kids became chefs for the
day while learning some cooking techniques they could use at home. We had an overwhelming response and many
requests to have her back. I have a
feeling we’ll be seeing Lori in the Fall!
The Anahuac staff continued on with more programs even after
summer was finished. Branch Librarian
Aquilia De la Cruz and Teen Librarian LaShebia Haskin combined their talents to
present a “Walk on Water” program where the “tween” age kids created sandals
made from recycled 2-liter bottles. The
results were amazing and the kids had a blast.
And a big thank you to everyone involved in helping the
library get a permanent vehicle. We haul
over 1,000 items each month between the 3 libraries and it does quite a bit of
wear and tear on our personal vehicles when you’re hauling such items as book
sale books, equipment, furniture, sno-cone machines, DVDs, buckets of mail,
etc. The County Librarian makes weekly
trips to the branches and we never have less than 5 big boxes to deliver. It’s also used for outreach programs when our
children and teen staff go to the local schools and day cares.
A budget hearing was held at the end of July for the
library. Each year we make notes on
items or services we would like to add for the citizens of the county. This year we’re asking for language and test
prep databases, lease printers, additional programming money, and a couple of
items we feel is warranted to continue the level of service our patrons have
grown used to. We find out in a couple of months what we get, so we anxiously
await until then.
End of Summer Reading Party at Anahuac
Lori Hinze with Cook, Learn, Grown during her Book Cook program
Ronald McDonald visits the library!
Hannah-Kate enjoying her "new" recycled shoes!
Members of the Writers' Interest Group at Mont Belvieu
June at the Library
Total circulation for the month of June…drum roll please! 34,087 items
A total of 18,384 people came in our doors and a record-breaking
2,447 kids, teens, & adults attended programs
Public computer logons:
Yep, we’re pretty busy! We
circulated more than 1/3 of our entire collection in one month. All we can say is, Wow.
The first day of summer reading was met with little kids beating
on the front doors ready to get started.
Fresh out of school, the kids and teens look forward to reading for
pleasure and fun for little incentives along the way. The planning that goes on all year long pays
off this time of year and the staff should be commended for their extra efforts
for providing the citizens of Chambers County with outstanding library service!
Many of our programs are held off-site simply because we don’t
have the room. One of the downsides to
that is not having the library readily available to grab books on the go. This year the West Chambers Branch continues
to reach capacity at the Cove Community Building with over 200 kids at their
programs, Juanita Hargraves in Winnie can’t possibly fit 100+ kiddos in their
story hour room, and Chambers County Library in Anahuac has no choice but to
offer summer programs at the Legion Hall since their 30 capacity room just
doesn’t hold up. These space issues are
currently being addressed and we hope in the near future we can move back “home”
to our libraries during the summer months.
With 2 weeks left to go, we’re getting ready for the annual Summer
Reading Program parties where kids get to celebrate all their hard work by
accepting their reading certificates and seeing our all time favorite
performer, Jeffrey Gardner perform his latest comedy show. Jeffrey has over 15 years of experience as a
children’s entertainer, and toured nationally as a cast member of “The Ronald
McDonald Show” and “Bob The Builder LIVE!.”
You don’t want to miss him!
In other news, Technical Services
continues to crank out new items that get delivered to the branches each
week. We stay on top of the latest
books, magazines, DVDs and more so you don’t have to spend your hard-earned
money! The library offers library service
to each county taxpayer for only $16.99 a year.
For less than the cost of 1 hardback book you can have access to as many
as you want for free, as long as you get them back to us on time!
And a reminder about a couple of our
newest services, Freegal music and Newsbank.
Freegal is free downloadable music similar to iTunes, which allows patrons
to download 3 songs a week. Songs are
yours to keep forever and each Sunday evening your account resets to allow you
3 more Monday morning. This service was
previously available only in the library but we’ve opened it up to home access
as well. Newsbank is also a fantastic
source for free online newspaper access.
Papers such as the Houston Chronicle, Baytown Sun, and the Beaumont
Enterprise are all available from home.
Historical papers are also part of this subscription and include papers
as far back as 1690.
And finally, something that
we’ve been working on since February is our new Interlibrary Loan service. Nothing changes for the public, but due to
State budget cuts the State Library was forced to shut down the local
Interlibrary Loan office in Houston.
This forced public libraries who wanted to continue to offer the service
the ability to join a new program called Navigator, which is part of OCLC WorldCat
(Online Computer Library Center). We
will now do our loans directly with other libraries as well as lend out to
other Navigator member libraries. We’re
not too sure what to expect in requests from libraries outside our system, but
we’ll be ready when it happens. Until
Carlton Carrington with Chambers County Sheriff's Department and his K-9 partner, Arco
Kaivan Armstrong from Mont Belvieu and the bike he won at the Dignity safety program
Teen Krystal Sherrill from Winnie with her coupons for reading!