Ralston Library

Happy National Library Card Sign-Up Month!

The American Library Association started this campaign in 1987 in response to Secretary of Education William Bennett’s statement, “Let’s have a campaign…Every child should obtain a library card and use it.” As hopefully most of you know, librarians take such statements to heart. A telegram was sent to William Bennett saying, “We accept your challenge.” Each year, September is the month that libraries across the nation work together to pronounce how library cards can help children’s education and fight illiteracy in our country. Children who have library cards can become lifelong learners.

A library card gains you access to traveling the world in all the different stories, but this year your library card can get you a chance to win $100. To help spread the word about how important libraries are, snap a picture of you with your library card and post it on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #GetLibraryCarded. You will be automatically entered in a drawing to win a $100 Visa gift card. This promotion ends Sept. 22. Please be sure to tag your local library (hopefully that is Ralston’s Baright Public Library!) when posting your photos. Don’t forget to cover up any personal, identifiable information. Spread the word. Ask your friends and neighbors if they have a library card and recommend Ralston’s Baright Public Library if they don’t have one.

I don’t know about any of you, but I am excited for fall to officially begin. I love making casseroles and big pots of soup to warm up the house. Thursday is our monthly Lunch & Learn program at noon. This month is Soup Up Your Winter. Soup can be nutritious, easy to prepare and inexpensive. Join Cindy Brison, extension educator and registered dietitian, to learn how to prepare many types of soup. One of the reasons I love soup is the amount of leftovers you can have that you can eat the rest of the week or freeze for another day. This program is free and open to the public. Free soup samples and other refreshments will also be available.

We are having a special story time on Friday. Pout-Pout Fish has agreed to visit us for story time on Friday at 10:30 a.m. Join us for stories, songs and fishy fun. Don’t forget your camera! Blub…blub…blub…

Our partnership with NET-PBS Kids continues this month. We received a free screening of the brand new episodes of PBS Kids Dinosaur Train. Viewers will join Buddy, a Tyrannosaurus Rex, and his family through prehistoric jungles, swamps, volcanoes and oceans. Children will unearth basic concepts in life science, natural history and paleontology. Join us Sept. 20 at 10:30 a.m. for this special viewing and snacks.

The Fourth Monday Night Book Club will be meeting Sept. 23 at 6:30 p.m. They will be discussing the book “The Meaning of Names” by Karen Gettert Shoemaker. This story takes place in Stuart, Neb., in 1918. Gerda Vogel, an American of German descent, does her best to keep her family safe after the effects of World War I. You still have time to pick up a copy and read this book before they meet in two weeks.

I would like to end this article with a few book recommendations in honor of 9/11. Every year I try to read at least one book that deals with 9/11. One of my favorites is “All We Have Left” by Wendy Mills. It’s a young adult book with two different teenage girls’ points of view. One is set in 2016, and her brother died in the twin towers. She is on a mission to figure out why he was there in the first place. The other girl decides to wear her hijab for the first time on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001. This was one of my favorite quotes from the book: “‘People do terrible things. People do beautiful things. It’s against the black backdrop of evil that the shining light of good shows the brightest. We can’t just focus on the darkness of the night, or we’ll miss out on the stars,’ I say” (Mills, 2016, p. 354).

I’m going to leave you with a list of other titles I have read and would recommend for different ages: “Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story” by Nora Raleigh Baskin, “Towers Falling” by Jewell Parker Rhodes, “Hope and Other Punch Lines” by Julie Buxbaum, “One Tuesday Morning” by Karen Kingsbury and “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” by Jonathan Safran Foer.

— Justine Ridder is the youth services librarian at Baright Public Library

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