Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Sale raises record $7229!


Special Thanks to the Students from MacGregor High School who were a HUGE HELP at the sale.

 Leftovers from the May sale went to :
     U S Army troops in Iraq and Afghanistan 
     African schools – Uganda and other countries 
     Nevis and St Kitts 
     a local art teacher 
     San Francisco Jail 
     St Vincent de Paul 
     Springville and Strathmore ( Tulare County) libraries

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Creative Albany!

Where: Albany Library, 1247 Marin Ave, Albany, CA 94706
Date: March 26, 2011
Time: 10:00am–4:00pm

A captivating community arts day providing a range of ways for youth and families to experience the arts in action!

  • 10-12 – Origami Workshop with Margo Wecksler
  • 12-1 – Tour and Reception for Youth Art Display and Local Artist, Irfan Akbar
  • 1-2 – Welcome from Supervisor Keith Carson and Fratello Marionettes’ Carnival of the Animals
  • 2-2:30 – Albany High Jazz Combo Performance
  • 2:30-3 – Lobby Gallery Tour with Irfan Akbar
  • 2:30-4 – Presentation and Craft workshop with Albany Children’s Book author, Elisa Kleven

Youth visual art will be on display throughout the month of March! Presented by Albany Library / Alameda County Library system, City of Albany, Albany Arts Committee, Friends of the Albany Library and the Alameda County Arts Commission. Special guest:Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson, District 5 will visit at 1:00 pm!

Everyone invited: Families, Free, Kids, Open to All, Seniors, Teens

Website: http://www.aclibrary.org/branches/alb
Phone: 510-526-3720
Email: dhess@aclibrary.org

Price: free


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Banned book Week: September 25 to October 2, 2010.

…efforts at suppression are related to a larger pattern of pressures being brought against education, the press, art and images, films, broadcast media, and the Internet. The problem is not only one of actual censorship. The shadow of fear cast by these pressures leads, we suspect, to an even larger voluntary curtailment of expression by those who seek to avoid controversy or unwelcome scrutiny by government officials.

Such pressure toward conformity is perhaps natural to a time of accelerated change. And yet suppression is never more dangerous than in such a time of social tension. Freedom has given the United States the elasticity to endure strain. Freedom keeps open the path of novel and creative solutions, and enables change to come by choice. [see full statement below.]

ALA | Freedom to Read Statement.

Banned Books Week

Celebrate this important freedom by sitting down with a difficult idea. Then discuss it with a family member or friend. Let us hear how it went by responding to this post.

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Lucky 14

Thanks to the wonderful patrons of Albany Library, recent months have been the busiest in Albany Library history! Circulation stats bypassed unlucky 13 and hit a lucky 14!  The 14% increase in business over the last fiscal year shows that public libraries are more relevant than ever–whether for job searches, email access, free events or an old-fashioned excursion into the pages of a good book.

This increase breaks down to an average of 33,000 circulated items per month with a very high volume of holds placed and filled. The staff stretches itself to keep up with the business, while remaining responsive to individual questions and needs.

Success is due to community involvement. The library invites individual users to shape the service and improve the collection so it reflects what the community wants and needs. Our luckiest number is the 1 person who walks out the door with the material or information (s)he was seeking.

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The Albany waterfront visioning process, which has taken place over the course of the last two years, has been completed by Fern Tiger Associates and made available to the mayor, the City Council and Albany residents. A hefty 97 pages, with an even weightier 840-page appendix detailing how the visioning was done, the final report and recommendations make for intriguing reading. If the idea of downloading and printing all of this information sounds like a chore, you’ll be happy to know that the Albany Library has a copy of the complete package for your reference.

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East Bay welcomes 2 new libraries

During the past few weeks, new, beautiful state-of-the-art  libraries opened in Castro Valley and Lafayette. Both were funded through a California State grant competitive process that included a sizable local match as well as community fundraising. Albany staff helped out at opening day for the Castro Valley Library. The day started with the Great Book Pass – 1800 residents lined up and passed books from the old library to the new. Everyone got a t-shirt (recycled cotton) with the slogan: ” 20 years to go 7/10ths of a mile.” Special features include the high LEED rating for the pro-environmental aspects of the building and the amazing art work commissioned by the Alameda County Art Commission.

Both libraries created a buzz. I was reminded of the time – almost 16 years ago, when the Albany Library opened – how there was a sense of a dream fulfilled – how many people work on this kind of a project – and how the importance of a library is conveyed to the children of a community. On the weekend following the opening, Castro Valley Manager, Carolyn Moskovitz, reflected on the achievement. She noted that everyone was using the library as had been envisioned – people were reading in comfortable chairs, job seekers were using the Internet, everyone was checking out library materials, teens were studying in the homework center and there was that other buzz – of a community library full of people.

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Book Kits for Book Groups

The Alameda County Library now has over 30 book kits that can be requested for book groups. Each book kit consists of 10 copies of a book and a study guide. Some of the titlespeacelikeariveralchemist included: Peace Like a River by Leif Enger and The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.

To find the list of titles, search the catalog at www.aclibrary.org – request a “call number” search and type in “book kit”.  The 30+ possiblities will be listed. The whole kit can be requested by one person.

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Lisa Kokin — “Ex Libro”

cowboy1_400Artist books are unique, handmade, often one-of-a-kind books that are also pieces of art. Local artist Lisa Kokin has gone one step further, making artist books out of … books! Her current show at the Donna Seager Gallery in San Rafael features works made by turning book pages into pulp and then reshaping them into new objects (sometimes putting them back between the original covers).
The show is on display through March 31. Kokin will be giving a talk at the gallery on Sunday, March 8, at 3 PM.

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read1The good news, according to the National Endowment for the Arts, is that for the first time in more than 25 years, adults are reading more literature. Literature is defined as novels, short stories, poems or plays in print or online. What is even more surprising is that 51.7% of adults between the ages of 18 and 24 say that they have read a novel in the past 12 months, the sharpest rise among all adults.  Librarians consider this good news and attribute some of the increase to the proliferation of city-wide reading programs (like Albany Reads) as well as the many social book clubs ( Albany Library has 2 book groups for adults going at this time).

Or maybe we are all going back to enjoying the simple (and inexpensive) pleasure of staying at home with a good book.

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President 2.0

Obama 2008It’s been reported that President Obama won’t have to give up his trusty BlackBerry entirely, as he originally feared.  Beyond that, he seems intent on being the first truly tech-savvy president, building on the interactive methods that helped win him the presidency in the first place. No sooner had he been sworn in than the new White House Website was revealed, complete with blog and interactive features such as a comment page and an email update service. According to the Contact Us page, “President Obama is committed to creating the most open and accessible administration in American history.” Offering Web 2.0 tools to his constituency seems a timely way to work toward that goal.

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