Thursday, April 20, 2017

Financial Literacy and Money Smart Week

Financial literacy is the combined knowledge and skills that allow you to manage your personal finances effectively and to make personal financial decisions confidently.

Money Smart Week (April 22-29) is a national initiative among the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and other organizations including the American Library Association to provide financial education programs for consumers.

Libraries play an important role in the education of their community and financial literacy is one of several literacies that libraries strive to support. The Ridgefield Library’s role in Money Smart Week will be to host three financial education programs:Women and Money Roundtable - Retiring Successfully on Tuesday, April 25 from 1:00-2:00 PM; Save Money on Electricity on Thursday, April 27 from 12:00-1:00 PM; First Time Homebuyers on Thursday, April 27 from 6:30-7:30 PM

Please register online at or by calling 203-438-2282 x12004.

We also encourage you to browse, either in person or online, our comprehensive collection of personal finance books, magazines, and newspapers. On the Library’s Business & Finance webpage (found by clicking on Research & Reference from the homepage at you may access Value Line and Morningstar online investment resources and find a list of trusted financial websites. 

Contributed by Adult Services Librarian Christie Mitchell

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Libraries Transform during National Library Week

In the words of the American Library Association’s theme for National Library Week 2017 (April 9-15), “Libraries Transform.”  While not as easy to quantify as numbers of items borrowed or attendance at programs, individual transformative experiences are at the heart of what libraries today do. And while many of these interactions take place between staff and patrons, libraries are also places where we can all come together to share with and learn from each other. Here are just a few examples observed recently at the Ridgefield Library.

·         An elderly gentleman living alone breaks into a big grin when he encounters an enthusiastic 4-year-old passing through the Bossidy Commons on his way to storytime.

·         Two young mothers, both new to Ridgefield and to parenthood, linger after Baby & Me to exchange contact information and tips about kid-friendly restaurants, shopping bargains and other resources.

·         An experienced computer user at the Library’s Public Access Computers offers timely advice to a nearby neophyte struggling with formatting a business letter in Word.

·         A line forms at the Circulation Desk after Books & Breakfast, as attendees seek out the books their fellow readers have recommended at this popular monthly sharing of what people have been reading.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Introducing our New Children's Librarian

If you have been in the Lodewick Children’s Library in the last few weeks, you may have noticed a new face at the desk and facilitating some programs.  Shay Glass, our new Children’s Librarian, is originally from Georgia, but moved to Boston to get his masters degrees in library science and children's literature at Simmons College. After several years working at libraries in the mountains of North Carolina and in Portland, Oregon, he is excited to be back in New England and settled in one place. In addition to providing reference assistance and reading recommendations, Shay will be purchasing materials for the juvenile fiction (“chapter book”) collection and bringing his experience and fresh ideas to many of our programs, especially STEAM activities such as Lego Challenge, robotics, Maker Crafts and more. Shay  fills the position formerly held by Mary Beth Rassulo, who is now assistant Director at the Easton Public Library.

“I'm thrilled to be here,” Shay says. ”Some of my favorite things include reading children's books and talking about them, so I'd love hear about all the books you're reading and how you feel about them!” We invite you to stop by soon and welcome him to Ridgefield.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

New Microfilm Scanner Now Available

Good news for historians and genealogists! The Ridgefield Library has acquired a new ST ViewScan III microfilm scanner to provide improved access to the Ridgefield Press from 1875 to 2003 as well as other microform content needed for research and genealogy. The high-resolution camera allows users to see details more clearly and to digitally zoom in and out. Microfilm content will be scanned into a digital format of your choice such as PDF, JPEG, TIFF or PNG.  You can crop an article, section, or entire page and then enhance and adjust the content further for the best possible quality. 

The resulting files can be emailed quickly and easily or printed in the Library, saved to a USB flash drive, or distributed to Google Drive, Dropbox, or FamilySearch.  

Thanks to the Rotary Club of Ridgefield for a challenge grant to get us started on raising the full purchase price of this much-needed upgrade. Additional donations of any amount are now being accepted and can be made through the Library Wish List on our website at

To learn more about this wonderful new resource, join us on Saturday, April 8 at 10:00 AM or 3:00 PM for a demonstration or contact the Adult Services Desk for an individual appointment.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Save these Spring Dates

Old Man Winter is giving up the ghost very reluctantly this year, but we are confident that Spring is on the way, and we have been planning some outdoor activities to take advantage of the coming warm weather. Make a note of these dates and stay tuned for more details as the snow melts!

April 29. Battle of Ridgefield 240th anniversary commemoration and battle re-enactment.  Stop by the Library to learn more about the history of the battle and the era, including performances by period musicians.

May 5-6. Spring Stroll. Enjoy chalk art and other activities up and down Main Street, including a family concert on the lawn by Ray and Jay, the Friends of the Library children’s book sale, and previews of coming attractions.

May 14. We’ll see you at the Run Like a Mother 5K Race with information about our Noreen L. Papa: Mothers Live your Life programs and resources focused on health and wellness for women and others, funded by race sponsorships.

May 29.  Watch for our contingent in the annual Memorial Day Parade. We haven’t picked our theme yet, but it is sure to be festive!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Finding your Next Read

Our librarians are always looking for ways to enhance our readers’ advisory services.  The Ridgefield Library online catalog now draws from NoveList, a trusted source of expert recommendations for help in finding that next good read.   

Click on the entry for any title to find read-alikes with an explanation of why the match has been chosen.  Find suggestions for other authors based on your reading interests.  Want to know the order of books in a favorite series?  Click on the entry for any series’ title, and all the books will be displayed in the proper order.   Do you like James Patterson novels because of their fast-paced quality or Paula McClain’s character-driven writing style?  You’ll find lists of other authors who capture these elements in their books.  This enhanced catalog content is available for children’s, teen, and adult fiction and non-fiction, as well as for audiobooks.

To explore the full content of NoveList, visit the Readers’ Resources page on our website. Here you’ll find book suggestions for all interests and all ages along with lists of award winners and discussion guides.

Finally, don’t hesitate to ask our staff for reading recommendations.  It’s what we love to do.

Contributed by Head of Adult Services Dorothy Pawlowski

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Sharing Across Generations

The Library is one of the few locations in town where residents of all ages come together in the same space, and we have created several programs to encourage positive intergenerational exchange.

On March 11th, our Teen Advisory Group will be on hand from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM to help adults and senior citizens with their technology needs.  Just bring in the gadgets that drive you crazy such as cell phones, laptops and digital cameras and let our teens unlock their secret power! 

Several times a year, we host Reading Is a Family Affair, in which elementary school children and their parents read a selected title together, then come to the Library as a family to talk about it over a pizza dinner, courtesy of the Friends of the Library.

2017 is the 4th year of our Books Building Bridges intergenerational literature program with Ridgefield High School.  A book is selected from the English curriculum, adults and students both read it, then come together for discussions led by some of the students.  The different generational perspectives make for very interesting conversation! In November we will be reading “Pride and Prejudice” together as part of an extended commemoration of the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death.