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Help us celebrate National Library Week at your local library

This is National Library Week across the country, with the theme of “Communities Thrive @ the Library.” Please come in to help us celebrate. We’re offering a “rise and shine” coffee, tea and treats on Wednesday morning from 8:30-10 a.m., fun prizes and giveaways all week long, plus other free events and activities. And, if you bring a friend in to sign up for a library card this week, both of you get a small gift.

Meanwhile, here are a few statistics to help you appreciate the value of your library:

• 59 percent of all adults in the U.S. have public library cards.

• Americans go to school, public and academic libraries nearly three times more often than they go to the movies.

• Reference librarians in the nation’s public and academic libraries answer nearly 5.7 million questions weekly. Standing single file, the line of questioners would span from Long Island, N.Y. to Juneau, Alaska.

• A 2009 poll conducted for the American Library Association found that 96 percent of respondents agreed that public libraries play an important role in giving everyone a chance to succeed, because they provide free access to materials and resources.

To find out exactly what your Sisson Library is worth to you and your family, go the library Web site at http://pagosa.colibraries.org/. In the box on the left side of the Home Page, click on “What is your library worth to you?” Enter the number of books, magazines, videos, DVDs and interlibrary loans you borrow in an average month, plus the number of programs you attend, like Lifelong Learning for adults and story hours for children, and the number of times you reference the Web site’s data bases or ask reference questions.

The software will automatically calculate the personalized value of your free membership for you, and we’ll bet you’ll be pleasantly surprised and delighted at how high the dollar number is.

Bellydance display

The library’s entrance display for April is all about bellydance. Thanks to Rosalind Marshall, our exhibition case contains beautiful bellydance costumes, jewelry, photos, books and DVDs, and some accessories like Zills (finger cymbals) and bindis (jewelled face ornaments). Rosalind has been bellydancing since 2002, and teaching bellydance in Pagosa for three years.

She wanted to show how modern bellydance has developed into many different styles, and how bellydance can be a wonderfully feminine yet strong way for women to express themselves.

Free lecture Saturday

The second of six free Lifelong Learning lectures at the library on Saturdays from 3 to 4:15 p.m. takes place this Saturday, April 17. Passionate gardener and bulb expert Mike Smedley of Durango will explore the 1,000-year intrigue of tulips, a flower that destroyed empires, bankrupted economies and fueled lust with its irresistible beauty. All Lifelong Learning lectures are free to the public. We hope to see you there.

EnviroFlick

In celebration of the 40th anniversary of Earth Day this month, you can view a movie about our planet at the library every Thursday in April from 10-11 a.m. and again from 4-5 p.m.

Kids’ crafts

Kids in kindergarten and the first grade, in traditional school or homeschooled, are invited to a special free crafts program called Craft Fun! this Saturday, April 17, from 1-2 p.m. that has been created by youth services librarian Kristine MacNeill just for them. Children participating will complete a fun craft to take home.

New craft circle for adults

You’re welcome to join the first of our new monthly get-togethers for needlework artists next Friday, April 23. Bring a knitting, crocheting or needlework project to work on. No registration is necessary. Light refreshments are provided. Note that this is not a learn-to-knit class. However, attendees are welcome to trade advice and share their opinions and experiences.

Pre-teens and teens

Two new books for pre-teens: “Tofu Quilt” is a collection of inspiring poems by Ching Yeung Russell, and “Wanting Mor” by Rukhsana Khan is about a young girl growing up amid difficult circumstances in Afghanistan. For teens we have “Burn My Heart” about two boys — one white, one black — who share an uneasy friendship in Kenya in the 1950s, and a fantasy called “Fang,” a Maximum Ride novel by James Patterson.

Large print westerns

We have seven new large print westerns for our many fans of this genre: “Outlaw Marshall” by Ray Hogan, “The Rattlesnake Season: A Josiah Wolfe, Texas Ranger novel” by Larry D. Sweazy, “Rider from Long Pines” by Ralph Cotton, “Sun On The Wall” by Wayne D. Overholser, “Other Men’s Horses” by Elmer Kelton, “Hard Winter: A Western Story” by Johnny D. Boggs, “The Buckskin Hills” by Lauran Paine, plus a Zane Grey classic, “The Lone Star Ranger.”

Fantasy

In “Best Served Cold,” a fantasy by Joe Abercrombie, author of the First Law trilogy, Duke Orso imagines that he can become king by ending the civil wars that have devastated Styria, but he errs by trying to kill his popular female general, mercenary Monza Murcatto.

Quotable quote

“Those who decide to use leisure as a means of mental development, who love good music, good books, good pictures, good plays, good company, good conversation — what are they? They are the happiest people in the world.” — William Lyon Phelps (1865-1943), American author, critic and scholar.

Thanks to our donors

For books and materials this week, we thank Medora Bass, Fran Jenkins, Bama Laizure, Shirley Snider and several anonymous donors.