Outreach, Engagement & Other Splendid Stuff

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June is the most glorious month of the year -- and not just because it's my birth month (although, obvs, it's a factor). It's also when we celebrate Pride across the country, acknowledging the right to be and love whomever we want. This year marks the 50-year anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, when transgender women, drag queens, and people of color battled with police for their right to exist over the course of three nights. The persistent advocacy of the LGBTQIA community led to cultural shifts, including the passage of the Marriage Equality Act in 2015.

This weekend, Saratoga Pride will host a festival at 1 pm Sunday, June 16 at High Rock Park in the Farmers' Market Pavillion in Saratoga Springs. Go with someone you love, then swing by your favorite library, where everyone is welcome. Happy Pride!

Robots, Snails and Pop Balloons, Oh My!

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Kids in Fort Edward are able to borrow snails from the library! Vicki Plude, director of the Fort Edward Free Library, set up a booth at the Canal Street Marketplace 2019 Debut, and taught kids how to code with Finch robots (available to borrow from SALS). The snails are available to be checked out for up to a week (no word on late fees!). Vicki's running a contest for the funniest and most original name for a pet snail.

Mindful Engagement & Communication Training

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The next session in the 21st Century Skills series will focus on Mindful Engagement & Communication. As with previous workshops, there will be two sessions:

  • 9 am to 12 pm Thursday, June 13, 2019, at SUNY Adirondack Wilton Center, 696 State Route 9, Wilton, NY 12866 – room 216
  • 1 pm to 4 pm Thursday, June 20, 2019, SUNY Adirondack, 640 Bay Road, Queensbury, NY 12804 – Adirondack Hall 140

This training will address harassment prevention in the library setting. Participants will be able to discuss, analyze, and apply skills and strategies related to:

  • Self-care skills to increase capacity (including topics such as stress management to support well-being, handling compassion fatigue in one's workday, mindfulness)
  • Supporting effective communication skills and managing challenging situations (including topics such as active and reflective listening skills, mindfulness, engaging others using collaborative problem solving
  • Facilitating behavior change (including management of mindset, establishing expectations, modeling and social learning, action planning)

All library staff are welcome to attend these workshops free of charge, thanks to a generous grant from SUNY Adirondack and underwriting from SALS.

Register for a session here:

Meet All the People

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Calling all information professionals! Network with your colleagues and catch up on the latest news from Capital Region academic, public, school, and special libraries during the June 12 Infomingle, from 3 to 5 pm at the Lucy Scribner Library at Skidmore College. Be ready to share your triumphs (and failings, if you like), meet lots of super smart library folk, and have fun. We'll have time to chat; mingle, a tour of the Scribner special collection, and even an escape room designed by the fabulous Leah LaFera.

All are welcome to join in the festivities!

Afterward, retire to Jacob & Anthony's for an Imbiblio Happy Hour.

Infomingle is a collaboration between the Capital District Library Council, Skidmore College, the Southern Adirondack, Mohawk Valley, and Upper Hudson Library Systems. There is no fee to participate, but for planning purposes, please register.

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Front Porch Forum is now covering both Washington and Warren counties. Libraries can post about upcoming events, ask for volunteers or donations. Adah DeRosier at the Argyle Free Library says its a helpful tool for community engagement and involvement.

Clear Air, Clear Lungs, Can't Lose

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Sure, we know it looks cool, but you're no longer allowed to smoke in or outside of a library. In December 2018, Governor Cuomo signed legislation to prohibit smoking within one hundred feet of the entrances, exits or outdoor areas of any public or association library -- this law goes into effect on June 19. To ensure compliance, libraries are required to:

  • Properly post and maintain signage outside of each door of the building, regardless of whether such door serves as a public entrance or exit, where the 100-foot restricted perimeter begins, or as close to the restricted perimeter as possible. Signage should either clearly denote that smoking is prohibited within one hundred feet or use the international "no smoking" symbol.
  • Inform employees about the new law and designate someone to inform non-employees when they are in violation of the law.

Most Valuable Card in Your Wallet

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Thanks to your library card, taking in culture is easier than ever. A new partnership between SALS and SPAC provides a 20% discount for ten performances when people show their library card! Enjoy the ballet, chamber music, and Japanese drummers. See you at SPAC!

Save the Date

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Opportunities Abound: Grants, Awards & More

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The New York Library Association's Friends of Libraries Section (FLS) Executive Board is proud to announce a brand new scholarship named for its President Emeritus Randall Enos. The scholarship will provide $500 each for two FLS members to attend the NYLA Annual Conference in odd-numbered years.

Applications are now being accepted for 2019. The Enos Scholarship will be given to two members of FLS to attend the NYLA Annual Conference this year. Applicants must be active in a local Friends of the Library group. One scholarship will be awarded to a first-time attendee at the conference and the second award will go to someone who may, or may not, have previously attended.

The deadline to submit an application is 5 p.m. on Saturday, June 15. Please direct questions to

Daniel W. Casey Library Advocacy Award

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Would you like an opportunity to honor an active library supporter, Friend or Friends of the Library? The Daniel W. Casey Library Advocacy Award is sponsored by the Friends of Libraries Section of NYLA. Given annually since 1993 (through the precursor of FLS, the Empire Friends Roundtable), the award honors a volunteer member or group from the library community whose efforts have contributed to the growth of libraries or Friends of the Library organizations.

The deadline to submit nominations is Monday, July 1, 2019. This year’s award recipient will be announced at the FLS annual membership meeting in Saratoga Springs on Friday, November 15th, at the NYLA Annual Conference.

Nominations must include all relevant information outlined on the application form. Make sure to describe the contributions of the nominee (group or individual) to library service in detail; including positions held, years of service, accomplishments, successful fundraisers, etc.

Please submit the nomination form and all supporting materials (clippings of press releases, promotional materials, etc.) electronically to Marie Bindeman, Coordinator, via email at, or mail three copies to Marie Bindeman, 5498 Hartford Drive, Lockport, NY 14094. Paper copies sent by mail will not be returned.

If you have any questions, contact Marie Bindeman at or call 716-433-0548. Thank you for your interest!

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Library Journal‘s annual award for the Best Small Library in America, made possible by sustaining sponsor Baker & Taylor, was founded in 2005 to encourage and showcase the exemplary work of these libraries. It honors the U.S. public library that most profoundly demonstrates outstanding service to populations of 25,000 or less.

The winning library will receive a $5,000 cash award, and two finalist libraries will be awarded $1,000 each—thanks to Baker & Taylor. All three will be featured in the September 2019 issue of Library Journal and online.

The winner will also be highlighted at the 2019 Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) Conference and will receive a scholarship to attend and the opportunity to speak there.


  • A public library serving a community with a population of 25,000 or less as of the most recent U.S. Census.
  • A branch or mobile outreach initiative that serves a distinct population of 25,000 or less, even if it is part of a larger town, county, or district library system. The prize monies must be used only for the benefit of the population under 25,000.

Nominators are encouraged to reach out for guidance while developing nominations: Contact Meredith Schwartz at


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The Jerry Kline Community Impact Prize, developed in partnership between Library Journal and the Gerald M. Kline Family Foundation, has been created to recognize the public library as a vital community asset. Today’s public libraries must navigate dynamic shifts in content delivery, modes of learning, knowledge building, and social engagement—in order to become community connectors, to grow diversity, and to strengthen the community. The Community Impact Prize is designed to celebrate libraries that have significantly helped their communities thrive.

Prize: One winning library will receive $250,000 in grant monies from the Gerald M. Kline Family Foundation. The winning library will also be profiled in the November issue of Library Journal and online.

Goals: The prize program aims to support outcomes for communities from public libraries that:

  • encourage people to recognize the vital importance of, and the future of libraries in our society
  • assert the library’s value as a center for lifelong learning and community engagement
  • increase social cohesion
  • support diversity inside and outside of the library
  • establish the library’s role as a vital source of innovation and creative place-making within the community.

The winning library will be identified based on the degree of its impact on the community in the following key areas:

  • Engagement – How does the library serve the community’s defined civic goals via a two-way, ongoing dialog?
  • Recognition – What positive outcomes from the library does the community recognize?
  • Inclusion – How does the library serve and connect to its entire community?
  • Leadership development – How does the library ensure its own organizational strength and flexibility?
  • Sustainability goals – How does the library foster a resilient community by leading on sustainable thinking and activities?
  • Inventiveness – How are the library services original, both strategically and tactically?
  • Replicability – What services does the library offer that can be a model to others, reproduced, and potentially scaled?

Application Requirements

  • Nominations will be submitted via an online form.
  • Nominations should include the following:
    • Nominee data: Library name, primary contact and contact mailing address, phone number, email.
    • Library data: population in service area, physical area served, per capita budget, number of patrons served, number of FTE, number of volunteers, days and hours open, existing funding sources.
    • Multiple-author submissions are permitted. For submissions with multiple authors, applicants must be sure to include the names of all of the group members and indicate each author’s role.
    • An overview summary of no more than 2,000 words pertaining to the goals and criteria listed above.
    • Detailed answers to focused answers on each of the criteria driven questions above (via fields in the online submission form).
    • Three letters of support from community partners and/or civic leaders, with at least one from a civic official.
    • Optional: Supporting materials such as photographs/images of the library and surrounding community; press coverage, brief videos (not exceed three minutes), etc.

Eligibility: All U.S. Public Libraries are eligible for the prize whether in a single building in a small town or a multi-branch system serving an entire region.

Application Deadline: The deadline for consideration for the 2019 Community Impact Prize is August 1, 2019.

Please submit nominations via the form found here.

Learn All the Things!

Hooray for Freedom! Part Two: Developing Policies in Support of Ethical Practice

Thursday, Aug. 8th, 3pm

This is an online event.

Building on part one, Hooray for Freedom! Privacy, Confidentiality, and Intellectual Freedom in the Library, this webinar will help you assess your library’s current policies and procedures within a legal context, and help you draft specific policy language. We’ll explore considerations for libraries of all sizes in order to codify the library profession’s values for our institutions.

In this webinar, learners will:

• Increase understanding of the language in, and policy implications for, the 1st and 4th Amendments.

• Learn how to translate legal opinion into policy considerations for libraries.

• Recognize how to avoid policy drafting traps by maintaining focus on mission and purpose.