Board of Trustees Meeting

Pleasanton Lincoln Library’s Annual Budget Meeting will be held Monday, July 27, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. in the library located at 752 Main St.

Making and sharing memories

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This past weekend was a great time to share memories with classmates and make new ones with family and friends. Early registration for the Pleasanton Alumni multi-year school reunion was held at the library on Friday. We had 160 people visit the library that day and it was wonderful to see them greet each other and visit for a few minutes. Volunteers from the Friends of Kansas Libraries-Pleasanton were available to serve ice cold water, coffee and homemade cookies. Visitors took a few minutes to wander around the library and all seemed pleased with the changes since their visits five years ago. One woman shared, “This is more than a library,” while another commented, “This is so homey and filled with personal touches.”

Our newest employee, Sandy Lash, greeted the visitors like family and many of them were! We gave up trying to keep them all straight, but enjoyed her big smile all day. Those who came in to register traveled from far and wide to get here and our parking lot was filled with an assortment of vehicles. One of the couples arrived in a beautiful mid-50s Dodge truck painted in turquoise and white. We also spotted a gorgeous gold Can-Am motorcycle near our entrance.

In addition to the reunion activities, many photos were taken and shared of families enjoying Fourth of July gatherings and fireworks. We have been doing something similar this summer with our weekly Summer Reading Program. Moms, grandmothers and day care owners have been bringing their children to the library on a regular basis. The kids range in age, with older children assisting with the babies and younger ones. Most of our presenters are local professionals who agreed to talk with the children about their jobs as everyday heroes. They shared tips to help keep kids safe and answered many questions about their jobs. We wouldn’t be surprised if some of the children weren’t inspired to become firemen, policemen or nurses. We thank them all for their time and hope they had fun during their visits.

Our program ends next week with a big Super Hero party at 1 p.m. There won’t be a presenter that day, as Superman and Batman are busy protecting the world. But we’ll have snacks, activities and prizes for kids who attend. It’s been a great summer, with lots of photos taken and memories made. It would be great to know how many of these children will meet again to greet their friends as adults at reunions in the future!

Local heroes keep us safe

officers
“Every hero has a story” continues as this year’s Summer Reading Program theme. We’ve had fun having our local heroes visit to share their stories. Ron Howard told the children about how his service dog, Autumn, allows him the freedom to extend his life beyond the bounds of his home. His diminished vision could keep him homebound. But traveling with Autumn gives him the opportunity to travel throughout our community to do chores and exercise safely.

Singer Alan Cunningham shared stories to teach young children about heroism through the humorous songs he’s written. He encourages kids to think of themselves as heroes when they act kind and help others. His easy-going demeanor made the children comfortable enough to join him in song and stand up and dance.

Our local firemen Rob Dent, Travis Laver and Jeff Wisdom shared information about their work to keep citizens safe when fires occur. They talked about their protective clothing, let the kids try on jackets and helmets. A few of the bigger kids even hoisted a 37-pound tank on their backs for a glimpse into the efforts firemen must endure when fighting fires. A visitor from Kansas City shared that her children had visited Kansas City fire stations and our local tour was more informative and extensive than any of them!

Last week, Jennifer Spence shared stories about her varied nursing career. She admitted the most difficult part of her job wasn’t giving shots, but losing older patients who passed away. Jennifer not only works at our local school, but also at Prescott Country View Nursing Home.

This week, Chief of Police Tanner Ogden and Officer Tristan Snyder visited our library with bicycle safety tips for youngsters. Our “Bike In, Book Out” program encouraged those who attended to ride their bikes to the library and check out at least one book. We offered bright yellow backpacks to help drivers see the children as they ride their bikes around town.

Our presenter next week is Rafael Murillo, a Heartland Electric Cooperative supervisor, who shared safety tips with our young audience. Many children don’t realize the danger electric linemen face in order to restore power after storms, maintenance and accidents. Next time your children complain that they want power back on for video games, remind them someone is working hard to help them, at grave danger to themselves.

The Summer Reading Program will end with a Super Hero party on July 14 at 1 p.m. We’ll have games, snacks and prizes for all attendees. We know the children enjoy reading and watching movies about their favorite super heroes. But we also wanted them to realize real heroes are not those in tights with spider webs streaming from their arms. The real heroes are everywhere around us, putting their lives in danger to help keep us safe!

BIKE IN, BOOK OUT

“My two favourite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything. The perfect day: riding a bike to the library.” ― Peter Golkin

If you’ve never ridden your bike to the library, next Tuesday is the day to do it! Our special Every Hero has a Story Summer Reading Program will be about policemen. Police Chief Tanner Ogden will visit to talk with the kids about bicycle safety, and how policemen can help protect those in the community.

Everyone who rides their bikes to the library that day and checks out at least one book, will receive a backpack with our BIKE IN, BOOK OUT logo. It was created especially for this event and its bright yellow color will make it easier for drivers to see children on their bikes.

If you have multiple children in your care, you might walk (or ride) along with them. When your children arrive, the bicycle rack may be full. But we’ll have cones and caution tape nearby so there will be plenty of room for everyone. Please be careful as you bring your children to the library, obeying all the rules of traffic.

Many children ride their bikes during the summer months, and some are unaware of the rules of riding around town. This is a great time for them to meet a policeman who cares about their safety and will help them learn how to stay safe and have fun.

There are so many negative stories about policemen in the news these days. This will be a good opportunity for children to be reminded not to be afraid of policemen. Here in Pleasanton, they can be counted on to help us in times of need.

Join us Tuesday, June 30 at 1 p.m. for this fun and educational event.

Every Hero has a Story

This year’s Collaborative Summer Reading Program’s theme is “Every Hero has a Story.” While libraries are free to choose how they conduct their programs, many are focusing on Super Heroes this year. Children are attracted to the colorful characters they see on television and in the movies. We’ve purchased a number of books about super heroes. But in addition we’ve added books about Everyday Heroes, like policemen, firefighters, EMTs, doctors and nurses, veterinarians and service dogs.

Our weekly Tuesday afternoon programs will acquaint children with special people in our town who are considered heroes. We began with local service dog Autumn and her owner Ron Howard. Autumn helps Ron live more fully despite being legally blind. You often see them walking in Pleasanton, enjoying the outdoors. During his program, he told children they shouldn’t be afraid of Autumn because of her size. They also learned when he is out walking with her she is on the job and it’s critical she be alert and not distracted in order to help protect him. Autumn is definitely an Everyday Hero for Ron!

Last week singer-songwriter Alan Cunningham visited our library to entertain a large group of children with songs he’d written. He reminded them they could be heroes, too. The audience got in on the action by singing along and throwing their arms in the air having fun. They also enjoyed snacks livered by volunteer Mary Kay Smith.

Yesterday afternoon Volunteer Fireman Travis Laver brought a school bus for a trip to the fire station to talk with children about what firefighters do on the job and offered pointers about fire safety in their homes and at school. As Superintendent of Pleasanton Schools, Travis holds fire drills so children and their teachers are prepared for a variety of emergencies.

Tuesday, June 23, School Nurse Jennifer Spencer will join us at the library to talk with attendees about her job as a medical professional. Each week, we also offer take-home coloring sheets specifically about the Everyday Heroes of the week.

On June 30 will be a bicycle safety program given by a member of our police department. Each child who travels to the library by bicycle and checks out a book will receive a free bright yellow string backpack to take home. Carrying materials in a backpack is the safest way to travel to keep their hands free to steer their bikes.

July 7 we’ll have a visit from Heartland Electric Cooperative employee Rafael Murillo, who will share great information about electrical safety. Electric employees are also heroes, as they help keep our power turned on and protect us from downed lines.

On July 14, we will end our program with a big Super Hero party. There will be games and activities, and children will receive snacks and prizes. What a great way to finish our Heroic Summer Reading Program!

Author’s visit a success

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Saturday’s visit by author Lorraine Robinson drew a crowd that filled the children’s area of the library. Those who arrived early were anxious to purchase her book and lined up to get her signature. After a brief introduction, Robinson began her presentation about how the book came to be written. Starting with the groundwork her mother began, Robinson continued researching the case that became her recently published book, “Deadly Affair: A Linn County Scandal.” The book, based on a true story, does not attempt to lay blame for the 1923 murder of of a La Cygne shopkeeper’s wife. Instead, it tells the story using the information Robinson found in area newspapers and court documents.

While this might sound mundane, Robinson enlivens the information by imagining the daily lives of the characters. This allows the story to transition over the years the trials occur. In addition, she creates one character who adds depth to the book and leaves the reader to wonder “what if …”

Those who attended the presentation were fascinated by the story and had many questions. They were anxious to read the book and many were purchased. The library owns a copy with a waiting list of those interested in reading it. Parker Library plans a Book Club reading of the book which should generate much discussion. La Cygne Library will have Robinson return to Linn County for a second presentation toward the end of June.

This was Robinson’s first author presentation and she invited friends and family to attend for support. It seems there are local descendants of the families involved in the historic court case of this infamous crime still living in this area. Readers, we will let you be the judge of how, and if, the case was resolved.

Deadly Affair: A Linn County Scandal

This event might be ripped from today’s headlines in any big-city newspaper. But this story was drawn from a crime that occurred over 90 years ago in the small town of La Cygne, in Linn County, Kansas.

Elleanor Scott, wife of a grocery and meat market owner, was shot to death in her kitchen late one summer evening in 1923, after she and her husband returned home from an outing. Her husband, Ellison Scott, was charged with the murder after an investigation led to no suspects other than him. He maintained that a rail rider had been seen in town the same day of his wife’s murder, and he felt this stranger must have killed his wife while robbing their home. While authorities investigated Ellison’s claims, much evidence was found of illicite [sp] affairs, and behaviors that centered around Ellison having been the culprit in his wife’s murder. This is a true story considered the crime of the century in Kansas at that time.

Author Lorraine Robinson will be presenting her book and offering insight to the story she published in late 2014. Robinson is a native Kansan, born in Moran in 1951. She lived with her family on a farm near Blue Mound until she was seven years old. Her family moved to Stafford, Kansas and eventually to Hutchinson, Kansas, where she graduated from high school. Shortly after, she moved to Topeka and worked for AT&T, where she was employed until 1987. She married in 1979 and had a son in 1981. In 1991 she and her husband travelled to Romania to adopt a daughter who was then 6 weeks old. She spent the next several years raising her children. She has been a portrait artist and illustrator since high school, and enjoys this talent. Deadly Affair is her first book. She enjoys reading and tried to write this story the way she would like to read it. Robinson said, “It’s a story that needed to be told.”

Relive this scandal through the words of Lorraine Robinson when she visits Pleasanton Lincoln Library on Saturday, May 30 at 1 p.m. All are invited!

Text excerpted from publisher Mira Digital Press.

Keep on growing

This is a busy time of year, with many special activities that occur at the end of the school year. Things slow down a little at the library, but we brace ourselves for the return of school-age children. As they begin to drift back to the library out of a love of books or boredom, we’ll be ready. We’re always surprised at how much they’ve grown, many are almost as tall as their moms! We’ve grown as well, with lots of new books to read, and movies to entertain them during the hottest days of summer.

The grant we received late last year from the Southeast Kansas Library System has been expended to purchase a quantity of books and movies that are on display just outside the teen area of the library. They are Manga books and movies and since arriving, they’ve been popular among our young visitors. We had a Manga Club that met regularly last year, and are hoping to revive that group now that classes are nearly over. If your children are interested in meeting to watch movies, let us know and we’ll schedule regular viewing times.

Our book collection for younger children has grown as well, with a concentration on books related to this year’s Summer Reading Program, “Every Hero has a Story.” While many of the books are full of stories about Super Heroes, we’ve sprinkled in books about Everyday Heroes as well. We have books about the people, and animals, who take care of us on a daily basis. The firemen, policemen, doctors and nurses, electric linemen, veterinarians, and service animals who make our lives safer.

It is our Everyday Heroes in our community that will be visiting during our Summer Reading Program. You may register your children for these programs beginning Wednesday, May 20. The programs will begin June 2 at 1 p.m. In the library. Children of all ages are welcome to participate as presenters share their stories of the good work they do for us. Flyers will be sent home with your students and parents who visit the Linn County Health Department can receive more information as well.

Our collection of books and movies is not the only area of growth in the library. The xeriscape garden in front of the library is coming along well, with the addition of the first raised bed. It will be filled with perennials which will be labeled so your knowledge of plants can grow as well. We continue to add edging blocks and gravel, and have a second raised bed in the works. Lynnae Sullins has graciously offered to request donations of perennials from members of the new Garden Group. We’re pleased to host their meetings at the library the last Tuesday evening of each month. Their numbers are growing as quickly as their gardens! If you’re interested in participating in the group, please contact Vanetta Sabine, 352-6352.

So, join us this summer to learn something new … growth is a good thing!

Mothers, do let your children grow up to be readers

Being able to read is such an important aspect of life. It’s proven that children who are good readers will do better in school and, consequently, in life as well. It’s not just about books, but signs, instructions, job applications, correspondence, labels and much more. Reading skills can help children with their vocabulary, learning to get along with others, teaching them about other lands and peoples, and help them imagine other worlds. It can be an escape, a way to learn how to do something interesting like a skill or a craft, and it helps to pass the long days of winter and the steamy days of summer.

Mother’s Day is just around the corner and we hope this column will not only serve to honor all mothers, but to remind them of the importance of teaching their children to read. Our volunteer, Lia Duckwall, had assembled a collection of books for mothers that will help them select books about having babies, books to read to babies and books to read to younger children.

If moms are interested in working with their young children sharpen their reading skills while at the library, we can help them get started using TumbleBooks on the State Library of Kansas website. Children can listen to books being read to them and read along as the pages turn.

Our Summer Reading Program is not far away, and it’s a great opportunity to encourage children to read. Please consider signing up your children to get them involved in reading over the summer. It will help them avoid the summer slide. That occurs when the skills they’ve learned during the school year are more likely forgotten. We make reading during the summer fun, with activities, programs and prizes. Please watch for more information coming soon in this column, and on the library’s Facebook page, Pleasanton Lincoln Library.

Last, but not least, a very Happy Mother’s Day to moms everywhere!

Friends of Kansas Libraries-Pleasanton awarded grant

The statewide board of Friends of Kansas Libraries recently held their annual awards and grants meeting. The recipient of a $500 Challenge Grant was our local Friends of the Library here in Pleasanton. The grant was one of four awarded to libraries that included Moundridge Friends of the Library, Friends of the Bonner Library, Friends of the Garnett Library and our own library. To be eligible for these grants, the recipients must be an officially established organization of library supporters, sanctioned by the library’s governing board.

The intent of grants awarded is to help the organization:
• build support in the community for the library
• encourage gifts, endowments, bequests and memorials to the library
• enhance the image, materials, services and facilities of the library by undertaking specific projects specific projects on its behalf
• maintain itself as as association of individuals, civic organization, business or other groups interested in the library
• create public awareness of the activities of the Friends of the Library and encourage participation in the organization

Applicants must be members of Friends of Kansas Libraries and not have received the award more than once every 3 years. In 2013, member Theresa Miller won the Individual Award for her efforts with the renovation of Pleasanton Lincoln Library’s new location at 752 Main, the Spring Bling event to raise funds for the library and her help with the interior décor of the library.

The Challenge Grant Award will be sent to the Friends to help fund the upgrades to the front entrance of the library. As reported in an earlier column, the area will become a xeriscape landscape. Donations have been received from local patrons and help with early changes have come from residents as well. Today, children from Pleasanton Junior High gathered to help with garden-related tasks. Watch for photos of the progress on the library’s Facebook page in the coming weeks. Target date to complete the project is the weekend of Pleasanton High School’s Multiyear Reunion, July 3-4.

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