Thursday, January 5, 2017

New for the New Year

Children’s programs that start in February will be open for registration online beginning January 3rd.  We have several new arts and craft offerings, plus some new formats for our popular Lego and robotics classes, so visit www.ridgefieldlibrary.org soon.

Get tech for the holidays? Look for drop-in help sessions with our Library staff to get you going with that new device or gadget.  Ask also about tutorials through Lynda.com on just about every tech topic imaginable.

Addiction will be the theme of our 2017 Learn Through Film series beginning January 18th.  Join us for three evenings and on social media for difficult and great films along with moderated, civil discussion about this national – and local - epidemic.

Save the date for some upcoming special events: Take your Child to the Library Day on February 4th, Dr. Seuss’s Birthday Party on March 4th, our Great Expectations Gala on April 22nd and the Battle of Ridgefield re-enactment on April 29th. Much more to come about these and the many other activities we offer each week.


And, of course, our new Library Director Brenda McKinley begins work on January 3rd.  We are organizing many opportunities for members of the community to meet her, so stay tuned.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Library Book Groups for Everyone

If your New Year’s resolutions include reading more and getting out to meet new people, then why don’t you achieve both of these at once by joining one of the many monthly book discussion groups offered by the Library. 

The Library’s book discussions take place during the day and in the evening.  They focus on a range of genres, so there should be something for everyone.  For those who enjoy mystery and intrigue our Murder by the Book discussion group could be for you.  If you prefer history, biography and current affairs, then The Nonfictioneers should fit the bill.  The Critics’ Circle and the A.M. Book Group both focus primarily on a wide range of classic and contemporary fiction to suit all tastes.  We also have a Poetry Discussion Group led by a retired Columbia University English professor. For those who prefer a more relaxed approach Books and Breakfast provides an opportunity for participants to share what they have been reading over a delicious breakfast. The Library also runs book discussions for members of Founders Hall.


So check the Library’s website at www.ridgefieldlibrary.org for details and put one or more of these discussion groups on your calendar. What better way to stimulate your mind and make new friends in 2017!  

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Keeping Kids Entertained Can Be Easy

The kids are home from school because of vacation or a weather cancellation, and they are getting bored.  Here are a couple of suggestions to keep them entertained, accessible for free with a Ridgefield Library card.

Tumblebooks are eBooks for the very young that let you enjoy the illustrations onscreen as you listen to favorite picture books read aloud.

Bookflix from Scholastic is an online literary resource for children that pairs video storybooks with related non-fiction eBooks. Imagine a film of a Curious George story paired with a non-fiction book about monkeys, plus word games, a profile of the author, suggestions for individual or group activities and links to additional resources.

Hoopla offers downloadable and streaming music, movies and TV shows in addition to eBooks and audiobooks and even comic books. And the Kids Mode setting features content that has been deemed suitable for children up to 12 years of age.

OverDrive offers eBooks and audiobooks from many of the best authors, narrators and publishers in the business, and also has a special “Kids Collection” interface.


Check www.ridgefieldlibrary.org/children for more information and links to get you started (some also have apps for enjoying on a smartphone or other device).

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Laszig Fund and Library Join Forces to Assist Ridgefield Seniors

The Library shares with the founders and administrators of the Paul and Johanna Laszig Fund for the Elderly a commitment to supporting Ridgefield residents aged 62+ in the many needs they experience as they become older.  For many, one of the first and often most troublesome is the development of difficulty with their vision.  For the avid book lover, diminishment of the ability to read traditional books can be devastating.  Large print books and audiobooks can help extend a lifelong love of reading. With the support of a recent grant from the Laszig Fund, the Library is pleased to announce the addition of several dozen new titles for its large print collection.  It has also purchased a number of Playaways, which are an innovative format that combines a player and an audiobook in one small, easy-to-use device.


Playaways purchased include hot new titles such as John Grisham’s latest, “The Whistler,” and the award-winning “The Underground Railroad” by Colson Whitehead. New large print acquisitions include the runaway hit “My Brilliant Friend” by Elena Ferrante, Martin Walker’s latest Bruno, Chief of Police mystery and Liane Moriarty’s bestseller “Truly Madly Guilty.” Ask at the Circulation or Adult Services Desk for help finding these and many more large print books and Playaways.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Holiday Help from the Library

So you have survived Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday.  You have, we hope, shopped local right here in Ridgefield. And you still have names on your gift list.  Here’s how the Library can help. 

The Library Store offers many small, affordable gifts perfect for readers and writers, all proudly bearing a library brand or theme and particularly suitable for stocking stuffers, Secret Santa goodies and teacher gifts. Can’t decide?  We now offer Library Store gift certificates. Get as many as you need at $5.00 each and let your recipients choose their favorite item.

The Friends of the Library maintain a select display of used books for sale on an ongoing basis in a case in the Bossidy Commons next to the elevator. At this time of year, it is stocked with a wonderful array of nearly new holiday and gift books.


Someone on your list who really doesn’t need or want another “thing” in their life? Choose from our Wish List of programs, materials and other library services and give a gift to benefit the whole Ridgefield Library family in their honor instead.  See the whole catalog of items in different price ranges online at www.ridgefieldlibrary.org.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Books Can Help - and Heal

Bibliotherapy is a fancy word for turning to literature to help people, especially children, cope with difficult situations. Words and pictures can help make an intimidating experience like moving to a new town or starting a new school less scary.  They can help a child struggling with the loss of a pet or the illness of a family member feel less overwhelmed.  They reassure youngsters that they are not alone in experiencing these situations and having the feelings they do.  They can help a parent find the language to talk about tough topics.


At the Ridgefield Library, we have many resources to help you find the right books to address the difficult situations that arise in many lives.  Our Children’s Services staff draw on their personal knowledge of our collections as well as reference books prepared by teachers, mental health professionals, doctors and other experts.  They are happy to work with caregivers one-on-one to locate just the right book or to share some of the booklists we have created on bullying, divorce, coping with loss and other topics (many of these are also available on our website).  Our most recent includes recommended reading on kindness, empathy and caring, in response to anxieties fostered by the recent election season.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Planning for the Holidays @ the Library

The Library will be closed on Thursday, November 24th and Friday the 25th for Thanksgiving but will be open regular hours on Wednesday and also on Saturday and Sunday. Don’t forget also to visit Books on the Common for Library Days Friday through Sunday of the holiday weekend.
The annual Holiday Stroll organized by the Downtown Ridgefield merchants association will take place on Friday, December 2nd and Saturday the 3rd, with lots of seasonal fun for the whole family.  Two long-time favorite activities will return to the Library on Friday evening – horse and carriage rides and the Ridgefield Music and Art Center’s RMAC ‘n’ Cheese music and food offerings around the firepit.  On Saturday, we will host Drop-in Storytime at 10:30 AM with a “frozen” theme and music at 1:30 by wind and brass players from the Western Connecticut Youth Orchestra.  Stroll on by!

Registration for preschool storytimes and after school activities to start in January will begin online  December 1st.


Finally, now that it is finally beginning to be wintry, we want to remind everyone that the Library makes weather closing decisions independently of the schools or town agencies.  You can see the details on our website at www.ridgefieldlibrary.org.