Winter Reading 2021 with Simon & Schuster's Books Like Us
All ages are invited to participate in the 2021 Winter Reading Challenge! Register and log your reading for Beanstack's Fourth Annual Winter Reading Challenge, "Books Like Us," sponsored by Simon & Schuster, on our Beanstack site at longviewlibrary.beanstack.org.
We challenge our patrons to read at least 5 books during the month of January towards a community goal of 5,000 books! In this reading challenge, everyone has the opportunity to win! Finish the challenge to win your choice of a small stuffed bear or a beanie embroidered with the library logo. All finishers will be entered to win one of six grand prizes - personalized book boxes. 
We will be joining thousands of libraries and schools across the nation aiming to reach community reading goals. We have the opportunity to win a virtual author visit or collection of books from the "Books Like Us" collection. Post about your participation in winter reading on social media using the hashtags #WinterRead2021 and #BooksLikeUs.
Together, we can all win.
Photo of RA Long statue outside the library, with RA Long wearing a yellow mask
with Library Director Chris Skaugset
To borrow and adapt the famous words of FDR, “2020 is a year which will go down in infamy.” Of course, the big event was the COVID-19 pandemic, which swept across the world in March, continues even now, and clearly will be affecting our lives in 2021. I have heard many say that in every challenge is an opportunity. Trying to provide library services to the community while being functionally closed to the public was certainly a challenge. However, out of this challenge have arisen some excellent ideas and programs that  not only help us through this crisis, but will enrich the library and community it serves, long into the future.
First came Drive-Thru service. Patrons put materials on hold and then staff gathered, checked out, and bagged them to be picked up during our Drive-Thru hours. We have since moved to putting them on a hold shelf, to be checked out when the patrons arrive. It is not unlike pre-COVID, just located at our back door instead of the public service desk. We created online story times and other digital programming, including a weekly garden show and craft videos where the public could pick up craft kits, scan a code and watch the instructional YouTube video. We created Library Samplers, which allow patrons to fill out a form detailing what type of materials they want, which staff then use to select a personalized group of items, to be picked up in the Drive-Thru. Mobile printing allows patrons to send prints to the library printer and pick those up in Drive-Thru as well.  
These were all fantastic ideas and developments that will continue into the future, even when we open our doors again. You can expect to see hybrid programs that will feature live and recorded information and presentations. Drive-Thru will continue into the future as well, because this service has been so popular. I am sure there will be even more before this crisis has ended. This is just the beginning of a new and improved Longview Library that will continue to serve the community in every way possible. Thanks go to ALL of the library staff who have been creative, flexible and working tirelessly to make this all happen and always with a smile on their faces. I would especially like to thank Becky Standal who has taken the lead on much of what you have seen. I would also like to thank Daniel Tate and Austin Brigden for all they have done. I need to thank the Friends of the Longview Library and the Longview Library Foundation who have helped fund some of these new programs and the costs related to them.
Finally, I would like to thank you all for being patient with us throughout this situation and for the kind words and thanks that you have bestowed upon us. Thank you for your support both now and in the future. Together, we will make the Longview Public Library  serve you better, today and tomorrow. 

Bulb Forcing Kit

To kick off the 2021 Seed Library, we're excited to be introducing a series of Garden Kits, offered seasonally. Our winter kit features bulb forcing, which is less violent than it sounds. Bulb forcing is a process by which you can brighten your home with spring flowers in the middle of winter. Watch the instructional video on our YouTube page and pick up your bulb forcing kit in Library Drive-Thru beginning Monday, January 11.  
stock photo of child drawing in background with crayons in foreground

January Crafts

A January All-Ages Scratch Art packet will be available starting Monday, January 11!
New weekly toddler/preschool craft packets will be available starting Tuesday, January 19! 
Pick up a craft packet with the supplies you need in Library Drive-Thru, and learn how to make the craft on our YouTube page.
I Can Make This Promise book cover

Book Clubs 

Kids Book Club:
I Can Make This Promise by Christine Day
Recommend for kids grades 3-5
Tuesday, January 26 at 3:30 on ZOOM
Evergreen Teen Book Club:
Dance of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson
For middle and high school youth
Thursday, January 28 at 3:30 on ZOOM
A limited number of free copies of the books are available in Library Drive-Thru. Email becky.standal@ci.longview.wa.us for the Zoom invite!
Jakob and Baby Panda ready for Baby Story Time

Friends of the Library

The Friends of the Library will have a meeting via Zoom on Monday, January 11 at 6:30 PM. Old and new members are welcome!
The Friends of the Library volunteer their time and raise money to support library programs like Craft Packets, Book Clubs, Summer Reading, and the Seed Library. The Friends' flagship fundraiser is their used book sale, but they are working on alternative fundraising until they can host a book sale again. If you are interested in attending the January meeting or learning more about the Friends, email Becky at becky.standal@ci.longview.wa.us. 
Membership dues for the Friends will be waived for 2021, but you can make a voluntary donation via their Give Butter here: https://givebutter.com/79igFX 

January Story Times

Body Positive Story Time on Facebook Live Tuesday, January 5 at 6:30 PM and Thursday, January 7 at 10:30 AM, presented by Hello Life and the Longview Public Library. Book cover of
Baby Story Time. Wednesdays 10:30 AM; Facebook LIVE; January 20 - March 10
Preschool Story Time; Thursdays 10:30 AM; Facebook LIVE; January 21 - March 11
Toddler Story Time; Fridays 10:30 AM; Facebook LIVE; January 22 - March 12

Holiday Closures

Library Drive-Thru and Phone Hours will be closed:

Friday, January 1 - Saturday, January 2 for New Year
Monday, January 18 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Our digital branch is always open!
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Santa reads a letter he received during Santa Drive-Thru on December 19, 2020.
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