Thursday, October 8, 2015

Celebrating Arts and Humanities this Month

National Arts & Humanities Month (NAHM) is a coast-to-coast collective recognition of the importance of culture in America, organized by Americans for the Arts and taking place this year in October. For 30 years, NAHM has encouraged all Americans to explore new facets of the arts and humanities in their lives, and to begin a lifelong habit of active participation in the arts.

Without even leaving the Library, this month you can enjoy art exhibits, folk concerts, author talks, book discussions, writing workshops, book launches, craft programs, two weekends of book sales hosted by the Friends of the Library, and a range of activities featuring “Alice in Wonderland.”  Whatever your age, there is plenty to celebrate!

If that is not enough to keep you busy, take advantage of the offerings of our many neighbors and partners.  Ridgefield is blessed with an extraordinarily vibrant arts and culture community, with too many wonderful individuals, groups and institutions to list them all here.

So explore the arts and humanities in October, and if you appreciate what you discover, write a letter to the paper, share your enthusiasm on social media or support your favorites with time or money.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Celebrating Salinger's "The Catcher in the Rye"

September 27 through October 3 is Banned Books Week, and this year the Library is commemorating the occasion by partnering with Ridgefield High School to present a day-long read-aloud of JD Salinger’s “The Catcher in the Rye,” a work that has been challenged consistently since its publication in 1951 on the grounds of language, content and tone. At the same time, the book has consistently found a place on the required reading lists of many high schools, including in Ridgefield. 

In a survey this fall, students at RHS chose this title for a new project called Books Building Bridges.  A joint effort by the Library and the school, this project will engage students and adults in activities to bring together readers across generational lines in exploration of a classic work of literature. In addition to classroom discussion, students will participate with adults in intergenerational book chats, and other enrichment activities for all ages will be held at the Library.

The project kicks off on October 1st with the read-a-thon, organized by RHS library media specialist Kerry Baldwin, which will begin at the school at 9 AM and then move to the public library at 3 PM, where the public is invited to attend to read or just listen. For more information, go to

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Introducing the College Corner

The Ridgefield Library has a new College Corner to help parents and students with college decisions and the application process. We have the latest resources covering college listings, admissions and applications, the college essay, campus visits, test prep including the new SAT and PSAT, scholarships, paying for college, college living, and academic success.

The College Corner is located near the Teen Center on the upper level in the Library. One of the helpful features of the College Corner is that we have reference copies of many of the best college books, creating a comprehensive core collection, which stays in the Library. These “always available” books will be ready for you to refer to in the Library and for photocopying or free scanning to your email or USB drive. Of course, there are plenty of copies of these and many other college books available for checkout.

While visiting the College Corner, also ask about online resources such as LearningExpress Library for test prep and a schedule of upcoming lectures and workshops related to this complex process. You can also learn about our new exam proctoring service.

Let the Ridgefield Library and the new College Corner help you on your road to higher education! 

Contributed by Reference Librarian Christie Mitchell

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

It's a Wrap for Summer Reading

Super readers were frequent visitors at the Ridgefield Library this summer.  In Children’s Services, 1309 children signed up for the Summer Reading Program.  They logged a total of 38,867 books read over the summer with many children exceeding the 50 book goal. 

The Library hosted special events for children and their parents that included a magician, a Frisbee demonstration and musical performers. Children had the chance to code like a superhero.  Others had the chance to create fascinating art projects.  Children shined when they displayed their own talents at the library’s talent show.  Those who read 30 books were thrilled to have their picture taken like a superhero. 

The Library would like to thank those who sponsored the reading program.  We could not provide the wonderful programs and incentives without their support.  The Friends of the Library sponsored our special event programs and prizes. Deborah Anne’s Sweet Shoppe donated ice cream cones and The Toy Chest donated $5 gift certificates.  Their support allows us to offer incentives to our young readers.  We would also like to thank the parents who helped their children log the books, bring them to the library, and who spent hours reading with and listening to their children read.  

Contributed by Gayle Pulley, Head of Children's Services

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Get Outside the Lines @ your Library

September 13-19 is the week when libraries around the country are showcasing how they help their patrons get “outside the lines” – and the walls – of the traditional library building.  In Ridgefield we are using this as an occasion to launch our latest digital collection.  hoopla digital is an online service, available anywhere with your Ridgefield Library card for login, which offers music albums, movies and television shows to stream or download, as well as audiobooks, eBooks and even comics.  It is easy to use and works with both Apple and android apps as well as on most PC browsers.  You can get all the details on our website at

To cap off the week, Friday the 18th is International Read an eBook Day.  All you have to do is download one of the thousands of eBooks available to Ridgefield Library patrons through the OverDrive service. Then post about it on social media with the hashtag #eBookLove, and our library will be automatically entered into a drawing for $2,500 of credit towards additional eBooks for you to enjoy.

September is also Library Card Sign-up Month – what a great time to make sure you can take advantage of everything in the Library – and outside the lines!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Changing Seasons at the Library

The Library will be closed on Sunday and Monday, September 6 and 7, for Labor Day, but we will be open our regular hours 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM on Saturday the 5th for your convenience.

Registration for children’s fall programs is underway through September 20th, with most sessions beginning the last week of September.  Many activities are offered on a drop-in basis, but others do require registration online. We have a number of changes to the line-up this fall, so check out the details on our website or pick up a calendar in Children’s Services.

Sunday hours 1:00 – 5:00 PM resume on September 13th.  We will be celebrating the occasion with the first Ridgefield Folk concert of the season (the young singer/songwriter phenomenon Hayley Reardon) and the Grand Opening of our new Store @ the Ridgefield Library.  Stop by to check out our new line of library-branded items for gift-giving or personal use, from magnetic bookmarks to blank journal books.

September is Library Card Sign-Up Month, and we have some exciting new products and services we will be introducing that add even more value to your card.  Stay tuned for details, and stop by the Circulation Desk soon to make sure every member of your family has an up-to-date card.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Announcing Alice

It has been 150 years since the publication of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” by Lewis Carroll (aka Charles Dodgson), and we can’t resist!  Our staff is smiling like the Chesire Cat as we put together a roster of Alice-related activities this fall for all ages.  We will start with a field trip on October 7th to the Morgan Library and Museum in New York City, where we will tour their special exhibit “Alice: 150 Years of Wonderland, ” guided by exhibit curator Carolyn Vega. The culmination of our adventures will be a presentation on November 22nd by author Gregory Maguire called “Green Witches, White Rabbits and Wild Things,” in which the author will talk about his own novel “Wicked,” his new book “After Alice” and his friend Maurice Sendak.

In between you can enjoy scholarly lectures, a book-to-film comparison, a Mad Hatter tea party, book discussions for children and for adults, and much more, in a series we are calling “Curiouser and Curiouser.”  If you are curious about Alice or the man who created her, please join us for our journey down the rabbit hole, sponsored by the Friends of the Library. Watch our website for full details, coming soon.