October 2023


Costume Exchange

Pick up a costume for Halloween, or donate one for someone else to use!

If you’re not familiar with the library’s costume exchange, here are the guidelines:

1. We will not hold costumes

2. Costumes do not need to be returned after Halloween.

3. We can take costume donations (In good condition) any time.

4. People do not need to bring in a costume in order to take one.

5. You don’t have to have a library card or live in Ely to choose a costume.

Banned Books Week - October 1-7

Celebrating your Freedom to Read ALL month long!

Exercise your right to read! Stop in to check out a book from the library's display, and test your knowledge of Banned/Challenged Books with our trivia game! Participants will be entered into our drawing for a chance to win a gift card!

Cupcake party! Commemorate Banned Books Week for all families on Saturday, October 7 at 2 pm with a cupcake party, followed by a banned book storytime in which the concept of "Freedom to Read" is discussed by reading the picture books: "This book is banned" by Julia Patton and "And Tango makes three" by Justin Robertson and Peter Parnell. These stories are for all ages. We will conclude our party with a fun game/activity. We hope to see you there!

Kid Connect for young children


September 30-November 18


This fun playgroup series is designed for families with young children. Kid Connect is open to parents/caregivers and their young children (5 years and under). Sessions include playful learning opportunities for families, educational circle time, a snack, and meeting other parents of young children. Sign-up is required for this event.

Sign up link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScMUAeJ4zDZKhkuGm0wXYy-UleVOPXP2XHkXU3BRhmLoXY0OA/viewform

Gardening Reflections

Saturday, October 7


Gardeners, this one's for you!

As we take in the last of the harvest from our gardens, let's come together and discuss our successes, failures, happy accidents, and plans for next year. We'll provide coffee, tea, and hot chocolate, and you are welcome to bring preserves, seeds, or extra produce to swap.


Friday, October 13


Ely American Legion
1545 Main St. Ely

You won't want to miss out on the fun! The Friends of the Ely Public Library will be hosting another BINGO fundraiser at the Ely Legion! $1/3 cards, doors open at 6:30pm, and drinks and concessions will be sold to support the Ely Legion.
Bingo dates: November 10, January 12, February 9, March 8, April 12

Friends of the Library Week

October 15-21

Behind every great community is a great library, so take the time to celebrate National Friends of the Library Week and your library! The library would like to thank everyone who has donated their time, talents and/or monetary support. You make a difference in the life of your library! We have a wonderful library and truly appreciate the support from our community! Thank you!

We Shall Be Monsters with Kathy Wilson

Wednesday, October 18


This program looks at Mary Shelly's life to learn more about her and understand why the fascination with "Frankenstein" continues.

The daughter of 18th-century radicals, Mary Shelly was disowned by her family and ostracized by 19th-century society when she ran off with a married man at the age of 16. Despite continued criticism of her morals, her husband’s philandering, and the death of loved ones, she still managed to write one of the most popular novels of all time while still a teenager.

Mini Pumpkin Painting

Saturday, October 21


All ages are welcome to join us for mini pumpkin painting! The library will provide the supplies. Come in clothes you don’t mind getting paint on. While supplies last.

Spooky Walk

Thursday, October 26


Warm up at the library during the Spooky Walk and enjoy a Halloween Book Walk and treats!

Halloween Story Time

Monday, October 30 - 10am - 11 am

Note: Babygarten will not take place this day.

Halloween Story time will replace Toddler Time at 10 am on Monday, October 30. Everyone is invited to wear costumes! We’ll have Halloween stories, a craft and a game. All ages are welcome.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ BOOK CLUBS ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Well Read Book Club

Monday, October 9

6:00 pm

Come join us for the Well Read Book Club! Every month we choose a new topic for participants to read from. This month Book Club participants will read a book about summer.

Having trouble choosing a book? We have a display in the library that you can choose from.

Banned Books Club

Join us to peacefully discuss banned/challenged books! Our next selection will be "All Boys Aren't Blue" by George M. Johnson

When: Thursday, October 26, 2023 at 7 pm.

Where: Ely Public Library OR via Zoom

Join Zoom

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ WEEKLY PROGRAMS FOR ADULTS ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Geri-Fit Exercise Class

Mondays and Wednesdays

8am and 1pm

This is a FREE health and wellness opportunity that will be held on Mondays and Wednesdays at 8am and 1pm. Geri-Fit® classes improve strength, balance and arthritic conditions for people 50 and over. Additional benefits include increasing flexibility, balance and mobility as well as helping prevent osteoporosis. No sign up required.

Tai Chi with Tom

Tuesdays at 8:00 am

Join us in person and through Zoom!

Come gather with Tom for a relaxing morning session of Tai Chi!

Please consult your physician before beginning an exercise program.

Morning Stretch with Paula

Thursdays at 8am

Paula is back with Morning Stretch on Thursday mornings. This group exercise will incorporate elements of yoga in a way that can be accommodated to any mobility level. Please bring your own yoga mat if possible as we have a limited number.

Chatty Crafters

Tuesdays from 5-7 pm

Crafters are invited to bring your own crafts and socialize with other crafters. We'll provide the tea and coffee! Not currently working on a craft project? No problem! We will have colored pencils, coloring sheets, and other crafting supplies available.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ EARLY LITERACY OFFERINGS ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Toddler Time

Mondays at 10:00 am

1595 Dows St., Ely, IA 52227

Toddler Time features stories, rhymes, songs, and interactive activities designed to get babies and toddlers acclimated to loving the library. Big siblings are welcome to join the fun!

Preschool Story Time

Thursdays at 10:00 am

1595 Dows St., Ely, IA 52227

Designed for kiddos aged 3-5 but open to all, Preschool Story Time is a half hour of books, songs, and activities followed by a craft.

No Story Time on October 12.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ LIBRARY RESOURCES ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Dolly Parton Imagination Library

Get FREE BOOKS for your child! Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library mails free high-quality, age-appropriate books to children from birth to age five! The Ely, Iowa, Friends of the Public Library partnership with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library ensures all children in our community, with a mailing zip code of 52227, can have a great selection of books at home.

Sign up for this new partnership in-person at the library or online here: https://imaginationlibrary.com/usa/affiliate/IAELY/

Ely Food Pantry

The food pantry that we started for the derecho is continuing to serve the community through a partnership with HACAP. Items are available in the lobby for anyone who needs them. Neighbors Helping Neighbors!

We are accepting the following items:

  • Unexpired, non-perishable food items
  • No-heat meals
  • Peanut butter
  • Fruit in squeeze pouches
  • Diapers, wipes, formula
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Toiletries, paper towels, and cleaning supplies
  • Water

We are no longer accepting shoes and clothing.

1 on 1 Computer Help

Do you need help with a phone, tablet, kindle, or computer? Make an appointment with the Ely Public Library! We help with all sorts of issues: learning how to use technology, help sending emails, filling out forms, scanning and faxing, and more!

Phone: 319-848-7616

Email: rachel@elyiowa.com

Bridges E-Book and E-Magazine Collection

Check out magazines, audio-books, e-Books, and movies right from your smart phone, tablet, or computer using your Ely Public Library card!


You can access the collection by:

  1. Going directly to the Bridges website
  2. Clicking "Sign-In"
  3. Selecting "Ely Public Library" as your library
  4. Enter your Ely Public Library card number


You can access the collection by:

  1. Downloading the Libby App
  2. Open the app and follow the prompts!
  3. You will search for "Ely Public Library," enter your library card number, and click "sign in."

This service is available for residents of Ely and rural Linn County.

Stop in or give us a call for assistance.


Going on a trip? Know you will be without internet for a few days? We have hot spots available! Hot spots can be checked out for a week at a time, with an option for renewal depending on supply and demand.

DIY Depot

We have new crafts to pick up in the DIY Depot this month. Pick one up and lure your children away from their screens!

Help Now

HelpNow - Your library card is your ticket to learning. Get your Ely Public Library card and use HelpNow for free access to online tutoring, homework help, practice tests, writing reviews, study tools, and more!


LearnNow - Test anxiety is real! But it doesn't have to be. With your Ely Public Library card you can access practice tests, preparation guides, and study materials. Simply visit www.ely.lib.ia.us and access LearnNow.


JobNow - Did you know that with your library card you can get FREE job coaching? Visit www.ely.lib.ia.us to find JobNow for professional assistance with all stages of job hunting including online applications, resumes, interviews, and more!


VetNow (VetNow/JobNow) - Are you a veteran, or do you know a veteran, who is transitioning from military to civilian life? Visit www.ely.lib.ia.us to find VetNow to connect with a live veteran navigator and get free assistance from a veteran with your VA benefits. You can also get help with job hunting, resumes, interviews, and building your academic skills.


Digital Movies, Music and More – Instantly Available – 24/7 – Free with your Library Card!

We are excited to announce Hoopla Digital: a new digital media service provided to you through which you may access and enjoy nearly half a million titles, from six different formats: Movies, TV, Music Albums, eAudiobooks , eBooks, and Comics/Graphic Novels. All in one location, from your computer, tablet or Smartphone!

This service is available for residents of Ely and Rural Linn County.

Stop in or give us a call for assistance.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ OTHER THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Library Board Meeting

The Library Board of Trustees will hold their meeting on Wednesday, October 4 at 7:00 pm at the Ely Public Library. All are welcome to attend. Those wishing to attend virtually can use this zoom link:

Join Zoom Meeting


Meeting ID: 826 1273 5222

Passcode: 502545

Friends of the Ely Public Library Membership

Friends will meet on Wednesday, October 11 at 7:30 pm

1595 Dows St., Ely, IA 52227

We are looking for some good friends to help us plan some fun upcoming programs! We meet on the 2nd Wednesday of the month at 7:30pm. Join us and learn how you can be involved in helping the library!

1000 Books Before Kindergarten

Take a minute to learn more about the library’s 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Program. Here’s why every child in preschool and younger should join!

1. Children who are read to at an early age become more successful in school.

2. Children’s brains develop most rapidly before the age of 4.

3. Reading together helps develop bonds with parents and caregivers.

4. Listening to stories helps children’s brains grow.

Incentives you’ll receive:

1. A reusable book bag

2. Stickers and reading logs for every 100 books read

3. A prize at the ½ way point of the program

4. Recognition at the library

5. A free board book and book plate in a library book when completed

How to sign up:

1. Go to the library and tell them you’d like to sign up. They’ll give you the details. It’s that easy! You don’t have to live in Ely to participate.

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