Thanksgiving gratitude and more free SJBPH health sessions


    By Carole Howard 
    PREVIEW Columnist, and the library staff

    The staff at your library are thankful all year-round for so many people who make their jobs easier and their service better for you, our patrons. On this Thanksgiving week, we want to publicly acknowledge some of the very special among them:

    We are thankful for the many volunteers who work every day to help us maintain the collection; shelve returned books, CDs and DVDs; and make sure all the books and materials are clean and in their proper place. Because of our small staff, these volunteers are vital to our service to you. 

    We are grateful for the time and dedication of our library board. They also are unpaid volunteers who are committed to making the library an essential hub of our community. 

    We also appreciate the members of our Foundation board, also unpaid volunteers, with the mission to raise funds for information resources, programs, services and facilities. 

    We also want to pay tribute to the Friends of the Library. Their generosity, enthusiasm and creativity result in so many benefits to your library, especially with the proceeds of their summer book sales. 

    Library director Meg Wempe said she has always appreciated the quote from Elizabeth Andrew, “Volunteers do not necessarily have the time, they have the heart.” If you’re interested in becoming a library volunteer or joining the Friends, please contact Meg at (970) 264-2209. You will be warmly welcomed.

    “We truly appreciate everyone who has given time or funding to the library to help us improve our collection, our service and our vision for ‘Mountains of opportunity to inspire ideas, enrich lives and create community,’” she said.

    Free public
    health sessions

    Next Thursday, Dec. 2, representatives from San Juan Basin Public Health (SJBPH) will be at the library from noon to 1 p.m. to discuss WIC Manager, a supplemental nutrition program for pregnant and postpartum women, infants and children up to age 5, and explain the program eligibility and how to enroll. 

    Then, on Thursday, Dec. 16, from noon to 1 p.m., SJBPH experts will return to discuss the dangers of radon gas in your home and distribute free radon test kits.

    Thanksgiving closure

    Your library will be closed Nov. 25-27 in celebration of Thanksgiving.

    Library hours

    Most of our programs are happening in person. Also, our hours have returned to pre-COVID levels — and even more on weekdays:

    • Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, the library is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

    • Tuesdays and Thursdays, the library is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

    • Saturdays, the library is open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

     For those uncomfortable coming into the building, curbside service continues. Phone (970) 264-2209 when you are in the parking lot so staff can bring the items out for you. If you put a hold on something, please wait for your usual alert (email, phone call or text) before coming to pick it up. 

    Family read aloud

    Stop by your library, sit on our comfy chairs or anywhere else around the Turner Reading Room and engage in some quiet activities while listening to a book being read aloud on Tuesday, Nov. 30, from 6:30 to 7 p.m. The book will be selected at the program. 

    Dungeons and Dragons 

    Join us Tuesdays from 4 to 6 p.m. for our ongoing Dungeons and Dragons game free for teens and young adults on Google Meet. Contact to learn how to join. If you don’t have Internet access, contact us anyway — we may be able to accommodate you in the library. 

    In-person gaming

    Enjoy free all-ages video gaming on the Xbox 360 Kinect on Fridays from 2:30 to 3:45 p.m. 

    New writing challenge 

    A new all-ages writing challenge was posted Nov. 22 on the library’s Facebook page. We hope you will challenge your creativity by participating in this free all-ages activity.

    New storywalk for kids

    The theme for our new storywalk Dec. 6-18 is “Over and Under in the Snow.” Get outdoors and take a walk, following the pages of the book and reading the story as you stroll along. Watch for signs outside the library that follow the sidewalk up toward the elementary school. After you finish the walk, pick up materials for a craft or activity at the library. 

    Family storytime 

    Wednesdays from 10 to 11 a.m., join us for free in-person children’s stories, games and plenty of reasons to get up and move. Saturday’s Discovery Times continue on Facebook at 2:30 p.m. with games, art ideas, science experiments, history and more. 

    Tech Time 

    Free in-person slots are available from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and 2 to 4 p.m. Thursdays. Brad will help you resolve issues with your computer, smartphone, tablet and other electronic devices. 

    ESL classes

    Free in-person evening classes now take place Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4 to 8 p.m. Beginning students attend from 4 to 5 p.m., intermediate students from 5to 6 p.m. and advanced students from 7 to 8 p.m. Please help us spread the word about these classes to others in our community who would be interested, and contact us by phone or email if you have any questions. 

    Las clases de ESL

    Las clases nocturnas gratuitas en persona ahora se llevan a cabo los martes y jueves de 4 a 8 p.m. Los estudiantes principiantes asisten de 4 a 5 p.m., estudiantes intermedios de 5-6 p.m. y estudiantes avanzados de 7-8 p.m. Por favor, ayúdenos a correr la voz sobre estas clases a otras personas en nuestra comunidad que estén interesadas, y contáctenos por teléfono o correo electrónico si tiene alguna pregunta. 

    Adult education 

    Our free PALS (Pagosa Adult Learning Services) sessions resume next Thursday, Dec. 2, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. (note the new time), when Mark helps with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more. 

    Activities calendars

    To be sure you don’t miss any of the free library activities available to you and your family, we encourage you to pick up a copy of the events calendar each month. There are three versions — children, teens and adults.

    Mysteries, suspense
    and thrillers

    “The Family” by Naomi Krupitsky is a sweeping saga about two best friends since birth and the effects on their lives, home, church and schools as they grow up because of their affiliation with the mob. “Better Off Dead” by Lee and Andrew Child is a Jack Reacher thriller. “The Last Mona Lisa” by Jonathan Santlofer is a tale of art theft, forgery and murder. “Vortex” by Catherine Coulter is an FBI agents Sherlock and Savich mystery.

    Other novels

    “The Magician” by Colm Tobibin is a story based on the life of Nobel Prize-winning novelist Thomas Mann. “Still Life” by Sarah Winman features a man and a woman who come together in the rubble of war-torn Italy. “Monster in the Middle” by Tiphanie Yanique is a romance that moves across decades and continents. “The Ballad of Laurel Springs” by Janet Beard follows multiple generations of women in eastern Tennessee. “The Lincoln Highway” by Amor Towles follows the lives of three teens released from a juvenile work farm.


    “Street Gang: How We Got to Sesame Street” is a documentary about the mission-driven artists, writers and educators who created one of the most influential TV programs in history. “The Crown” is the complete fourth season focusing on Princess Diana. “Resident Alien” is season one. “Old Henry” is a drama about a farmer who takes in a mysterious man with a satchel full of cash. “Respect” is the life story of music icon Aretha Franklin.

    Books on CD

    “Better Off Dead” by Lee and Andrew Child is a Jack Reacher mystery. “Guild Boss” by Jayne Ann Krentz writing as Jayne Castle is a mystery in the Colony World of Harmony series. “Out of the Rain” by V.C. Andrews is a follow-up to “The Umbrella Lady.” “The Extinction Trials” by A.G. Riddle begins after a mysterious global event.

    Large print

    “Smoke” by Joe Ide is book five in the Isaiah Quintabe IQ mystery series. “Down the Hatch” by M.C. Beaton with R.W. Green is book 32 of the Agatha Raisin mystery series. “Claws for Alarm” by Rita Mae and Sneaky Pie Brown is a Mrs. Murphy mystery. “Forgiving Paris” by Christian inspirational writer Karen Kingsbury is another story in the Baxter family series.

    Downloadable e-books and audiobooks 

    We have a wide variety of downloadable e-books and audio books for all ages — children, tweens, teens and adults — in cloudLibrary. The items in cloudLibrary are purchased separately from physical items, so the books available are different — and it continues to use the consortium’s contributions as well as those that we bought. Select AspenCat Union Catalog when setting up cloudLibrary for use. Email or phone us at (970) 264-2209 if you need our help setting up this service on your device. 


    Many thanks to our anonymous donors for their materials donations. Please put your materials donations into the drop box at the library — not at City Market, which is reserved for returns. 

    Quotable quote

    “A thousand words will not leave so deep an impression as one deed.” — Henrik Ibsen (1828-1906), Norwegian playwright and theater director.


    For more information on library books, services and programs — and to reserve books, e-books, CDs and DVDs from the comfort of your home — please visit our website at