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!