Library IDEA Newsletter
Spring 2012Vol. III No. 4
Monterey Public Library
Welcome to the Spring 2012 edition of the Library IDEA, Monterey Public Library's e-newsletter, which keeps you informed about how the Library has been working to fulfill its mission "To Inspire, Delight, and Educate All".


When we had the great pleasure of Robert Louis Stevenson scholar Dr. Roger Swearingen address an audience of Stevenson aficianados in the Library last November, we found his opening comments inspiring and heartwarming.  He said, "It's always a great pleasure for me to come here to the Monterey Public Library, for a whole bunch of reasons. First of all, it gives me an opportunity to pay tribute to what a great library you have here. The Library is one of the things that makes Monterey "Monterey".  Just a great place to live and work and just be.  If you look around the main floor, and I always try to do that when we come here, you'll see a mirror of this community.  You'll see people of all ages and background - kids on little chairs and gray-haired people like me, and everything in between - all pursuing their dreams - whether they be reading storybooks, the latest news, or reference books for homework, or just surfing the Web.  The whole gamut.  Libraries...they're just the heart of the community."  Thank you,  Dr. Swearingen, for your very inspiring words! 


We are delighted to report that our Baby and Me Rhymetime programs are overflowing with babies!

To accommodate the large number of families attending these programs, and continue an atmosphere that is safe, educational and fun, we are trying out an expanded schedule. The Baby and Me Rhymetime programs will still be on the second and fourth Fridays, but two alternating programs. While the first twenty families in group one are singing, dancing, reading, bouncing and tickling in the Community Room, group two is in the Picture Book area with opportunities for educational play, consulting with librarians, and of course reading and choosing books. At 11:00 a.m. , the groups will trade spaces.


Why is our baby program growing? We suspect that its popularity is due to word-of-mouth advertising. The Llibrary is a point of contact for many military and other families new to the area. Once they find us, they spread the word. During Rhymetime programs, one encounters clusters of families speaking a variety of first languages including Korean, Turkish, Japanese and Spanish. This is an international group of babies all having fun learning classic rhymes and songs and English while gaining pre-language and pre-literacy skills. Parents, too, are learning about children's literature and their important role as the child's first teacher. It's a delight for everyone! Hooray for "The Wheels on the Bus" and "Itsy Bitsy Spider!"


The Baby and Me Rhymetimes are part of the Library's Born to Read program, started with grants from the Rotary and an anonymous organization, is now in need of sponsorship. If you or your organization might be interested in helping to fund this program, please contact Youth Services Manager Karen Brown.


mas hashimotoEducates...

Many people are not aware of the episode in American history when over 100,000 Japanese-Americans, including Monterey citizens, were sent to live behind barbed wire for most of WW II. And some people are not aware of current legislation which could allow something like that to happen again. To create awareness of this, the Monterey Public Library and the Monterey Peninsula Japanese American Citizens League are encouraging everyone to read the classic memoir Farewell to Manzanar by Jeanne Wakatsuki, and to discuss the book and the issues it raises for our democracy. This educational effort called California Reads; Searching for Democracy is made possible with support from Cal Humanities in partnership with the California Center for the Book. The Library has purchased over 80 copies of the book, including a set for use in classrooms. We have also purchased many new DVDs and created a resource list and online subject guide. A storytelling performance, a genealogy workshop, school visits by experts, book discussions, an author visit and a panel of scholars are also part of the project. See the Library's Web site for more information or contact Youth Services Manager Karen Brown.  




The initial stage of the Library's Strategic Planning process, the community survey and conversations with community members, recently completed has reached further into our community than ever before. We heard the need for the Library as an open and shared public space, as a community and cultural center, as a source for lifelong learning and connection - in person and online. We heard concerns about the economy and quality of life in our community. We heard the desire for respectful conversations and greater civic engagement, for families to feel supported and the educational systems to be improved, for inter-connectedness among diverse people of all ages. And we heard loudly and clearly that Library's value as a trusted source and essential connector (of people, resources and ideas) to build a strengthened community.  Read the complete survey results.


The Library Board and staff appreciate the hard work, ideas, and insights of community members who helped guide the planning process, participated in group dialogues and interviews, and completed the planning survey. As always, it is our over-arching goal to provide the best possible library service to ALL members of the community, and we thank you for your support.  

Kim's Corner
National Library Week is just around the corner (April 8 through 14) and with this annual celebration of libraries of all types comes the opportunity to celebrate libraries of all types - and the people who run and support them. 

Author Anne Lamott writes that there are only two prayers - help me, help me, help me - and - thank you, thank you, thank you.  I want to first say thank you to the many, many awesome volunteers, from the Library Board of Trustees, to the Friends of the Monterey Public Library, to the Library Endowment advisors and committee, to the Strategic Planning Community Engagement Coordinating group, to diverse library volunteers, to the people of all ages who give freely and generously of their time, energy, money and efforts to keep California's first library humming along in the 21st century. 

And secondly the dedicated library staff who are here, day in and day out, behind the scenes and at the Library Help Desk, on the Bookmobile, at schools of all types, programming in the Community Room, keeping computers humming, books ordered and shelved, and all the t's crossed and i's dotted. We wouldn't be the Best Library in Monterey County without you! I am also grateful to employees from around the City who support library services in so many ways, and the City Council who support community services, including the Library, with General Fund dollars and budgets.

And last, but not least, I am thankful to all of you - readers, learners and library customers who trust us with your questions, share your family's lives with us, invest your time and support in us, and join us in believing that the Monterey Public Library is essential for supporting literacy, lifelong learning and a successful community for all. 

Happy National Library Week - you have helped us and we thank you!

Kim Bui Burton, Community Services and Library Director
Join Our Mailing List