From the Stacks
By Carol Ann Robb, PPL Reference Librarian

Contrary to what it looks like in the photos from last week’s Book Tasting, I truly enjoyed myself that evening. Not only was I surprised by the turnout—I had no idea what to expect—but as I looked over the scene, I found my heart “strangely warmed” watching book lovers share their favorites with other like-minded people and I thought, “I’m going to miss this.”

Programming is the part of my job that doesn’t come naturally to me. I can order and recommend books until the cows come home and could almost do it in my sleep if necessary. But coming up with an idea and then implementing it? Now that takes some work.

My early foray into programming spoiled me—I arranged for Gene DeGruson to tell ghost stories set in Southeast Kansas. Even with very little publicity—and no meeting room since this predated the addition—it was standing room only as Gene held the crowd spellbound. I naively assumed that every program would go so smoothly (they don’t!)

First I need an idea, one that’s both feasible and affordable (which isn’t always as easy as it sounds). And I have learned that if I think a topic sounds interesting, others probably will too. Since we’re a library, I naturally gravitate towards authors and have had the pleasure of hosting Tom Averill, Max McCoy, Laura Moriarty, and Nancy Pickard over the years.

Other programs at the top of my list include the demonstration of 4-State Search & Rescue dogs (quite possibly my all-time favorite because, well, it included dogs), the program on the Spook Light, Pi Day pie contest, readings by homegrown poets, music by JT & Don, last fall’s presentation on Vance Randolph, and the 2017 solar eclipse gathering. And, of course, Coffee & Carols (expect one more in about three and a half months). I have a few more ideas up my sleeve—doesn’t music on our updated courtyard sound fun?—so watch this space.

Programs might not be the first thing you associate with libraries but it’s just one more way of learning something new and bringing people together. Plus, sometimes there are dogs.