Thursday, August 28, 2014

Teen Advances Environmental Education @ the Library

Thanks to Ridgefield teen Samantha Holmes, the Library has recently enhanced its resources for children in the area of nature and the environment.  Headed off this fall to Duke University, Samantha was the recipient of a Keep America Beautiful grant from the Wrigley Foundation, which she dedicated to purchasing educational materials and recycling supplies for schools and libraries.  With the funds she donated to the Ridgefield Library, we were able to purchase 37 books and DVDs for children and teens, which are currently on display in the Lodewick Children’s Library. A hand-out listing the titles for future reference is available in print and on the Library’s website.

Among the books Samantha researched and recommended are “Children of the Earth: Remember” by Schim Schimmel, “Compost Stew: An Z to Z Recipe for the Earth” by Mary McKenna Siddals, “Composting: Nature’s Recyclers” by Robin Koontz and “Where Does the Garbage Go” by Paul Showers.  Geared to young people in elementary and middle school, other titles deal with nature-based crafts, climate change and global warming, recycling techniques and America’s national parks.

A message from Samantha in the front of each book says “We hope you find this book inspiring” – apt words from a young woman who is herself an inspiration.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Finding Fine Arts @ the Ridgefield Library

On the newly re-configured upper level of the Library, there are several rooms in the Morris Memorial wing that are dedicated to particular segments of our adult book collection.  One of these is the Sara and Rudy Ruggles, Jr. Reading Room, which houses books on art, photography, music, theater, dance, film, television and radio.  Specially designed extra-deep shelving accommodates the large portion of oversized books that are typical in these subject areas, and waist-high countertops provide a convenient place to browse through a bulky coffeetable format volume.  A study table and several wingback chairs complement the traditional elegance of this restored section of the original 1903 building.

Among the volumes to be found in the Ruggles Reading Room are the newest acquisitions made possible by a generous gift arranged some years ago by a donor in memory of Theodore Barnes, Jr.  Each year, our librarians are invited to select several dozen books from the latest catalog of the Yale University Press, known for its exceptional offerings in many scholarly areas, including the fine arts. Recent selections include “Vermeer and Music” by Marjorie E. Wieseman; “Van Gogh at Work” by Marije Vellekoop; and “The impressionist Line from Degas to Toulouse-Lautrec” edited by Jay A. Clarke.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Graphically Speaking @ The Ridgefield Library

Do you enjoy a good mystery? Maybe your favorite thing to read is a biography. Do you like to go on a hero's journey sort of tale? The new Graphic Novel collection at the Ridgefield Library has all of these genres and more. Titles range from Roz Chast's new memoir “Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?” to a new biography of Andre the Giant, to Brian Azzarello’s “100 Bullets” a crime thriller, to many superhero tales. Graphic novels are a format, not a genre, thus the Library has mysteries, thrillers, fantasy tales, and non-fiction all featuring sequential art. If you are interested in learning about the origins of “The Guardians of the Galaxy”, Ridgefield Library has a graphic novel you can read. Do you watch “The Walking Dead”? You might want to check out Robert Kirkman’s stunningly bleak print version of the zombie apocalypse. Would you like to read an award-winning historical tale of the Chinese Boxer Rebellion? Stop in for Gene Luen Yang’s “Boxers & Saints”, a National Book Award finalist. The Graphic Novel collection is located directly across from the Reference Desk on the upper level of the Library; stop by and check it out.

Contributed by Teen Services Librarian Geri Diorio

Friday, August 8, 2014

Digital Magazines Now Availalble

The Ridgefield library is pleased to announce the availability of Zinio, a new online resource.  Now Library cardholders can read complete full color, interactive digital magazines on computers or on a range of mobile devices.

Getting started with Zinio is easy.  Just go to our website to browse our Zinio for Libraries collection and follow the instructions for setting up your Zinio account with a username and password. Select from 46 magazines covering a wide range of interests including Newsweek, O the Oprah Magazine, Eating Well, The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.   Current issues are released simultaneously with print versions and available for instant browser streaming and app-driven offline viewing.  Check out as many issues as you want and keep them in your account as long as you wish with no need to worry about due dates.  Recent back issues are also available for most titles.

Zinio’s stunning interface recreates a magazine page for page, including full color pictures, intuitive navigation, and key word searches for articles.  Some titles such as National Geographic also offer enhanced elements such as audio and video that bring the content to life.   

The Library’s Adult Services Staff is happy to provide assistance in getting started with this convenient new way to access your favorite magazines.

Contributed by Head of Adult Services Dorothy Pawlowski

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Nonfiction Summer Fun

What is the Who Was... series?  It’s a series put out by Penguin Publishers that has our youth coming to the Lodewick Children’s Library and combing our Biography section looking for titles they haven’t read yet.  Of our 82 copies of Who Was… titles, 41 were checked out on the day this article was written.  We have two young patrons with a rivalry going to see who can go home with a new title first! Our readers are not the only ones who have discovered this series. The website,, had a contest to see who would be the topic of the 100th book, due out in 2015. There were over 67,000 votes tallied. And the winner is… Steve Irwin! Fans may want to come in and discover the series’ new line of books on events in history: What Was… titles. New titles now have their own display shelf in our New Nonfiction area.

The genre of easy chapter book fiction has some wonderful new series too! These are for our readers taking the giant leap from easy readers to chapter books.  Some of the new series are Captain Awesome, Heidi Heckelbeck, Violet Mackerel, and Doreen Cronin’s The Chicken Squad.

All hot series for some fun summer reading!

Contributed by Kathy Cherniavsky, Acting Head of Children's Services

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Book Sale Shelf Is Back

Thanks to the Friends of the Library, our stock of ongoing books for sale is back, located next to the elevator in the Bossidy Commons. Offerings for all ages are selected by the Friends from used book donations, and all proceeds go directly to support the Library.  Prices are modest, and you can pay at the Circulation Desk.  Stop here for goodies to take along on vacation or to the beach!

For a larger selection of summer reading, don’t miss the Friends mini-sale on Saturday the 19th during Summerfest.  Look for these dedicated volunteers and their wares on the wall along Main Street in front of the Library.

Used book donations for the big fall sale are currently being accepted at the Library during open hours.  Collection carts for donated items are located at the Circulation Desk and also in the Lower Level Lobby outside the Friends sorting room.  Please check the donation guidelines on the Friends section of the Library webpage before loading up your car.

Did you know that the Friends also run a very active online sales operation at - a great destination for special book purchases in between the semi-annual onsite sales?

Thanks, Friends!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

July Is Swinging @ the Library

There’s a lot going on at the Ridgefield Library.  Not only is our Summer Reading Program in full swing - we are also collaborating with several groups on special events to make the summer even more fun.

Friday, July 11 will see the first Songs at Six presentation by the Ridgefield Music and Arts Center on the Library front lawn.  RMAC musicians have performed these informal concerts at various locations in town in past years, and this summer they have elected to celebrate the new Library by bringing their talents to 472 Main Street.

The Chamber of Commerce’s Summerfest is coming up on July 18 and 19, with a fun theme this year of Ridgefield Rewinds to ’64.  The Library will be participating with 50th birthday celebrations for Maurice Sendak’s Wild Thing, an I Spy-style treasure hunt in the Lodewick Children’s Library, a mini book sale and more.

“Where’s Waldo in Ridgefield?” continues until the end of the month.  The Library is pleased to be one of the 25 locations around town where seekers can find Waldo and mark their passports to qualify for prizes.  Thanks to Books on the Common for bringing this fun family activity to Ridgefield for a third year!