Friday, March 27, 2015

Technology Highlight – Library Document Station

Over the coming months, we will be updating our readers on some of the new technologies that are now available at the Ridgefield Library. One of the newest and most useful is our Library Document Station.  This multi-function system utilizes a touch-screen monitor connected to a flat-bed scanner.  It allows our patrons to scan/copy/fax documents or pictures to various destinations.  Scanning destinations include:

E-mail – Scan and send documents to your email.
USB – Scan directly to a USB flash drive.
Fax – Scan and fax direct.  Faxes are $1/page.
B/W Printer – Scan and print to our print management system.  This function acts like a regular copy machine.  B/W prints are $0.20/page.
Color Printer – Scan and print to our print management system.  This function allows color copying which is not available on our regular copy machines.  Color prints are $0.50/page.  Google Drive – Log into your Google Drive account and scan documents direct.

Unlike with regular copiers you may place a document in any position and the scanner will auto-align so it scans in straight.  After scanning each page you are given options for cropping, rotating and other fine tuning.

Please come in and visit our Adult Services Desk for assistance!

Contributed by Network Administrator Anthony Cacciola

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Take a Trip to Ireland without Leaving the Ridgefield Library

Wish you could travel to the Emerald Isle for St. Patrick’s Day but not able to get away?  A trip to the Ridgefield Library can be the next best thing.

Irish writers are renowned for their storytelling, and we have a wide selection of novels, memoirs and poetry, from the contemporary coziness of Maeve Binchy to the innovation of James Joyce. Many of these classics and popular favorites are also available as audiobooks with entrancing narrators like Donal Donnelly, Marcella Riordan and the late, great Frank McCourt reading his own memoirs.

If you find yourself inspired by those lilting brogues, you can learn to speak like a leprechaun yourself with Mango Languages, the Library’s online language learning program, found on our website.  Try out their special short course called “St. Patrick’s Day Irish” which gives an introduction to the names of people, places, food and drink.

Those of Irish heritage can explore their family history with Ancestry Library Edition or Heritage Quest, useful tools for genealogy research. You can browse our music CDs for favorites from the Celtic repertoire. And, of course, you can admire the lush pictures in scores of travel books or serve up delectable Irish soda bread from recipes found in our cookbook section.

Céad míle fáilte to the Ridgefield Library!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Genealogy Research Using Ancestry Library Edition

Ever wonder about your family tree? Are you the family historian trying to sort through great aunts and uncles, cousins, neighborhoods, and World War II service tales?

Ancestry Library Edition delivers billions of records in census data, vital records, directories, photos, etc. It includes records from North America, United Kingdom, Europe, and Australia, with more countries added on a regular basis. With the addition of the 1940 census records, World War II draft registration cards, naturalization records, passports, and passenger lists you don’t need a huge amount of information to begin a fascinating journey tracing your family’s roots.  Ancestry is the world’s largest genealogy research tool and it is available on the public computers in the Ridgefield Library.

We are offering two programs this month on using Ancestry: one for students in grades 8-12 on Wednesday, March 18 from 3:30-5:00 PM led by Gayle Pulley, Head of Children’s Services, and the other for adults on Thursday, March 24 from 1:00-2:30 PM led by Adult Services Librarian Mary Lee. Both groups will meet in the Library’s Donofrio Technology Center. Please register on our website’s Events Calendar. Get started researching your family history!

Contributed by Adult Services Librarian Mary Lee

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Children’s Book Award Winners @ the Ridgefield Library

Readers, young and old! It’s our favorite time of year again, when the American Library Association announces the winners of its legendary annual awards: the John Newbery Medal for the best in children’s fiction, and the Randolph Caldecott Medal for the best in children’s picture books. This year’s winners are Kwame Alexander’s “The Crossover” for the Newbery, a chapter book that fuses the rhythm of poetry and basketball, and Dan Santat’s “The Adventures of Beekle” for the Caldecott, a story about a little creature who longs to be someone’s imaginary friend.

You can check out these, and many more award winners, in our special Juvenile Award Winner collection in the Lodewick Family Children’s Library. This collection contains the Newbery and Caldecott winners from every year, dating back to 1922! The two sections are organized in reverse chronological order, so you can see the progression of titles over the course of nearly a century. You’ll recognize some wonderful bedtime favorites, such as “Where the Wild Things Are” by Maurice Sendak, among the Caldecotts. Reread some great stories, like Robert O’Brien’s “Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH,” in the Newberys. Take a look on ALA’s website ( for a full list of these timeless classics. 

Contributed by Ann Victor, Children's Collection Management Specialist

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Library Open Hours to Change March 1st

We have been gratified by the overwhelmingly positive response we have received to our new building and the expanded services we are able to offer in it.  But, as with any new venture, there are sometimes adjustments to be made to find the best mode of operation.  We have listened carefully to the comments of our patrons and are now going to institute a major change in response to public demand, effective Sunday, March 1st.

Our hours will be changing to allow more open time in the evening.  This has been a constant request from students preparing for exams, commuters unable to get back to town before our current 7:00 PM closing and patrons wishing to combine other library business with a trip to an evening program. We looked at our data on visits throughout the day and found that usage before 10:00 AM was very light, compared to the demand for more evening hours.  Our new weekday hours will be Monday through Thursday 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM and Friday 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM.  Saturday hours will remain 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Sundays 1:00 to 5:00 PM (during the school year only).

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Online Antiques Evaluation

If you want to know the value of your antiques or find out how the antiques market is faring, the Ridgefield Library has price guides and a continually updated online resource called P4A Antiques Reference to help you do just that.

P4A Antiques Reference can be found on our webpage on the Home & Garden section of the Research & Reference pages.  It is a searchable database of past auction prices from 1999 to present for antiques, collectibles, and fine art. Auction sales history information includes data from coast-to-coast auction sales on a regular basis of more than thirty major auction houses and on an opportunity basis for several dozen other reputable auction venues. Every record has full color images.  Keyword, origin, classification or date searching is available.  There are reference notes with biographical and historical information. The site contains a Resource Center listing other useful web sites, books, newsletters and appraiser resources plus a list of the recent and forthcoming auctions.

Don’t hesitate to ask at the Adult Service Desk for a personal introduction to this great resource.

Contributed by Adult Services Librarian Victoria Carlquist

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Take Your Child to the Library Saturday

Join in the 4th annual Take Your Child to the Library Day on Saturday, February 7th at the Ridgefield Library.  Families across the country will take time to visit their local library and celebrate all that it has to offer.  Nadine Lipman, a Connecticut children’s librarian, developed the event to raise awareness of the library’s importance in the life of a child.  The Ridgefield Library invites children and their families to participate in a variety of fun events on Saturday.  Drop-In Storytime begins at 10:30 AM for children ages 3 and older in the Lodewick Children’s Library.  The Just So Stories Puppet Performance will take place at 11:30 AM for children ages 4 and older in the Main Program Room located on the lower level of the library.  Children in kindergarten through 5th grade are invited to Kids Tech Time in the Lodewick Children’s Library from 4 to 5:30 PM as part of our coding celebration.  Remember, every day is a great day to take your child to the library.  A routine library visit becomes a habit that will develop into a child’s life-long love of learning.  You can check out the library website to learn more about our programs and events that will inform your family and enrich your life.

Contributed by Gayle Pulley, Head of Children's Services