Monday, January 30, 2017

Paccadolmi Honors Awarded

The 2016 Paccadolmi Awards were given out on December 4th during a special holiday gathering of Library supporters and friends. The awards are named in honor of Phyllis Paccadolmi, Miss P to the generations of Ridgefielders she knew during more than 5 decades with the Ridgefield Library. This year’s honorees are Ellen Burns and Darwin Ellis, owners of Books on the Common, and Theresa Miller and Julie Yaun.

Ellen and Darwin support our many author talks with book sales, promotion, and a true love of contemporary books and authors.  They have donated an untold number of gift certificates and Grand Prize Shopping Sprees for our Summer Reading Programs for all ages and have been active participants in several community-wide reading initiatives.  Since 2005 they have hosted Library Days at Books on the Common during Thanksgiving weekend, engaging local shoppers and library users in a campaign to earn donations from the store for the Ridgefield Library. 

For the 3 years since our first Great Expectations gala, Julie and Theresa have been the backbone of this major fundraising effort, gracefully yet firmly organizing a multitude of logistics, from table lay-out to valet parking. Thanks to Theresa and Julie and their committee, these events are uniquely entertaining, smooth running and financially successful.  

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Introducing our New Library Director

Hello! I am Brenda McKinley, the new Library Director at the Ridgefield Library. I am honored to be entrusted with this position and thank Chris Nolan for her wonderful legacy. I come to Ridgefield from nearby Newtown, where I live with my husband and our four children. Most recently I served as the Cyrenius H. Booth Library Director in Newtown.

I have been a Librarian for over twenty years and passionately believe in the resources, support, and strength a library brings to the community it serves. The strong ties the Library enjoys with the Ridgefield community are testament that this belief is widely shared and is a big reason why I’m thrilled to be starting this new role.

I look forward to working with the stellar staff as we continue to provide excellent library service for our patrons and our town. It might take me a bit of time to learn all the new names, but I hope to meet you soon.

Please bring your little ones for “Take Your Child to the Library Day” on Saturday, February 4th at 10:30 AM. I’ll be guest reader at Drop-In Storytime and we’ll enjoy some cookies and conversation. I hope to see you then!

Contributed by Library Director Brenda McKinley

Monday, January 23, 2017

Keeping Those New Year's Resolutions

2017 New Year’s Resolution #1: Get everyone in your family their own Ridgefield Library card and use it to take advantage of so many resources at the Library (details available at

·         Try JobNow for online help with resume writing, interviewing, and job search; career assessments; and live online coaching and feedback.

·         Sharpen your work and personal productivity skills with hands-on classes such as LinkedIn 101 and Introduction to 3D Printing. Try online video tutorials for dozens of additional business and computer applications.

·         Learn or brush-up one of 72 languages with Mango online language learning programs for use on a computer or on the go.

·         Seeking to be a better parent? Our Parenting the Selfie Generation: Instilling Resilience series offers lectures and discussions on topics from teen social media behavior to breaking free of the overparenting trap.

·         Been thinking of finally turning that great idea into an actual business? Check out our SkillsBox workshops, including the upcoming 5-part Simple Steps for Starting a Small Business series beginning in February.

·         Take a deep breath and relax with Yoga workshops, adult coloring, musical performances and more activities to promote a calmer approach to life.

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 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 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.