What's New: General

Sandhya Menon

Library 21c will host Mountain of Authors, a free annual community program. This event provides an opportunity for the public and local authors to network, listen to notable authors, as well as learn more about the craft of writing and trends in publishing. This year's Mountain of Authors will feature New York Times bestselling author Sandhya Menon as keynote speaker.

It is free to attend, there is no registration, and all are welcome! Click here for a complete schedule for the day.

  • When: Sat., April 27 from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Where: Library 21c, 1175 Chapel Hills Dr.
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Pikes Peak Library District is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 Jean Ciavonne Poetry Contest for Children:

Colin Bevan - "Bahamas"
Mayah Bolenbaugh - "The Essence of Warmth"
Eva Goroski - "Bioluminescent Beach at Night"
Brody Karr - "Papayalulu Paradise"
Sally Peterson - "The Mystical Land"
Jana Yuschalk - "Darkling Dwabidisador"


Bahamas
By Colin Bevan

Fisherman rip tonight’s dinner from the ocean
Bloody hands filet the dead fish
Smells of fresh fish turns my head
Salt fills the air rusting old boats
Charcoal beach fires cook todays catch
Warm water surrounds my feet
Small birds run from the waves
Boats dot the horizon for miles
Paradise, I hope I never leave


The Essence of Warmth
By Mayah Bolenbaugh

Firewood receives the spark
Steam rises from the bread, fresh from the oven
Soft snuggle from a purring kitten
Sip a large mug of cider under a changing tree in the fall
Enter a cabin to kick off winter’s freeze
Submerge in hot springs as the snowflakes dance
Comfort and serenity, as the shower pours through your hair
Earth is nourished by the elements
Now the sand takes in the sun
The day’s last hour bathed in dark orange sunshine on a summer’s day


Bioluminescent Beach at Night
By Eva Goroski

Twilight creeps up the coast
Waiting for the moon to come with a gleam
Shells adorn the beach like jewels
Stars twinkle and glimmer like diamonds
Tide pools shine with a radiant beam
The ocean has an eerie glow
Bioluminescent dinoflagellates show off in a chain of lights


Papayalulu Paradise
By Brody Karr

I dream of a land called Papayalulu
It’s a tasty paradise for me and you-you
It’s hard to get to - this is true-true
First you must make a papaya canoe-noe
Row your canoe-noe to the end of the sea
And soon Papayalulu you will see

As papaya trees sway in the papayamint breeze
You can paddle down to the Papaya Juice River with ease
You can even lean over and take a sip
But better take care - your canoe-noe might tip
Look out! What’s that I hear?
It’s Papaya Juice Falls - better stay clear!

Safe at last upon the shore
What’s that sound I cant ignore?
It’s the singing papaya birds high in the trees
A song so sweet my ears it does please
I think I’ll stay a while in this land
Papayalulu is oh so grand!


The Mystical Land
By Sally Peterson

I know a place, not far away
It glistens and it gleams.
I go there every time I sleep
It’s called the “Land of Dreams.”

So when I sleep I don’t count sheep
Or toss and turn in vain.
I just fly to the “Land of Dreams”
In my one-man twinbed plane.

Each night I fly right out the door
And pass the moon and sun.
I’m going to the “Land of Dreams”
To have some dream like fun.

And when I land on snow white sand
A lovely sight I see.
A wondrous civilization is
Stretched out in front of me.

A mountain looms above you
If you look to the west.
On the east there is a river
And a town where you can rest.

There are bubbles in the air
That are floating in the breeze.
You can smell the scent of honey,
And hear the rustling trees.

Then my views were interrupted
By a woman clad in white.
She was the noble Queen
Of this land of truth and right.

“Welcome” she said. “Welcome
Won’t you come to my estate”
And she pointed to a castle
With a shiny marble gate.

“Of course” I said, “how gracious,
How could I refuse?”
We started towards the castle
And she told me all the news.

We walked into the town
Where the buildings stand so tall.
Everything is vibrant
From the big to really small.

The people there wear brilliant robes
Of many different hues.
There are feathers on their hats
And feathers on their shoes.

Aromas that are new
Are wafting towards my face.
I wonder what the food is like
In this amazing place.

We came to a kiosk
Where a man was selling food.
The food was shaped like balls
Some were red and some were blue.

They tasted sweet and juicy,
And suddenly I knew!
They were little berries,
And in the fields they grew.

A woman selling flowers
Gave me a bouquet.
It smelled just like sweet roses
In my wildflower spray.

The red flowers were the largest.
The blue flowers were large, too.
The yellow flowers were tiny.
My favorites were the blue.

We entered a cute clothes shop
Filled with rows of silk,
They were soft and they were comfy,
And smooth and cool like milk.

I chose a robe with red, blue, and yellow
For they would match my blooms.
I got nice shoes and a fine new hat
With fluffy little plumes.

Next we went to a pet shop
And saw a little dog.
He was not like mine at all, though.
My dog is brown like a log.

But this dog had new colors.
This dog was so bright!
So were all the other dogs.
It was a crazy sight!

I thought the cats were normal
Until I heard them speak.
They spoke such perfect English
I fought the urge to shriek!

A bird screeched in the background
And I turned in surprise.
The bird that was behind me
Had creepy human eyes.

The castle was our last stop
And it was getting late.
I was getting pretty tired
When I walked up to the gate.

The gates were swiftly opened.
We ran to a bench and sat.
It was nice to calmly sit there
And hear the robins chat.

Said the Queen “Oh heaven help us.
The feasts about to start”
We raced inside the castle
And I couldn't calm my heart.

I changed my clothes and entered
The room of the great feast.
There were many fruits and veggies
And for meat they had roast beast.

Many fancy people
Were invited here to dine.
Some were very famous.
All were very fine.

They all told me hello
Then sat and ate and ate.
I listened to their stories
As I cleaned off my plate.

A toast was to be done.
I lifted my cup.
Then “beep” went my alarm clock
And quickly I woke up.


Darkling Dwabidisador
By Jana Yuschalk

To bed I went on that ordinary night,
Not knowing in the morning what I may fight.
I woke up on a pile of hay,
Wondering what would fill my day.
Surprised and frightened, I immediately felt.
Suddenly, I wished I could just melt.
It seemed so sunny without any rain.
Smells of sweat hovered over the plain,
From jumping creatures who seemed insane.
The so-called “Dwabis” had a mane.
No animals were there.
Not even a bear.
I was informed, this was Dwabidisador.
Wow, I really need to study by geography more!
The Dwabi’s legs were awfully long.
They jumped then fell, I am not wrong.
The sound of jumping pounded the ground.
Their favorite hobby was jumping. That I found.
The language they spoke was also Dwabidisador.
At least I don’t need to study my languages much more!
“Dwabi fell down,” they said over and over again.
“English without pronouns,” I thought. Until then,
A young Dwabi who was probably only four,
Came up and said, “Why don’t you enter that door.”
I did as he commanded only to find,
A Dwabi whose name was Filabind.
He bought me a cupcake with sprinkles on top,
The smell was so sweet I thought I would pop!
All that was better than the taste, was the smell.
It looked and smelled like sweet caramel.
The taste was Dwabilicious.
Red velvet without mush.
After I finished my delectable cupcake,
I was sure Dwabidisador wasn't fake.
Then we departed and walked a long ways.
We entered a place called “Dwabi’s Good Maze”.
Since Filabind was my guide, he led me through,
A portal that said, “How do you do?”
Filled with wonder and awe, I heard a loud, “MOO!”
Before I knew it, I was back home on our farm.
Lying in my bed was my noisy alarm,
Trying to wake me up from my-dream?
What it was, it filled me with gleam!

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Would you like to start your giant pumpkin seed and have it ready for Harvest Festival on October 5? Then, come on in and plant your giant pumpkin seeds. We will be using paper pots and three pumpkin seeds so bring the family in and start your own individual seeds. Please make sure to fill out the contest registration form in order to be entered into the giant pumpkin contest.

  • When: Sat., April 27 from 10 a.m. - noon
  • Where: High Prairie Library, 7035 Old Meridian Rd., Falcon
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This clay series will focus on fundamentals. Learn how to attach pieces, roll a slab, and practice creating sculptures. From pet portraits to Kuwaii-inspired characters, you will be able to make a keepsake or cute gift for a friend.

Registration is separate for each class. If you want to attend all four classes, you will need to register for each one.

All classes will be held in the Sand Creek Library Makerspace.

Pet Portraits
Thu., April 18 from 6:15 - 8:15 p.m.
Click here to register.

Tea Bag Holder
Thu., April 25 from 6:15 - 8:15 p.m.
Click here to register.

Kuwaii Characters
Thu., May 2 from 6:15 - 8:15 p.m.
Click here to register.

Texture
Thu., May 9 from 6:15 - 8:15 p.m.
Click here to register.

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PPLD aims to open its 15th library facility in Calhan by Fall of 2019, following the purchase of existing property at 600 Bank Street. The building provides 2,400 square feet of space that will be converted into a library facility. The Calhan Library will provide access to physical and electronic books, movies, shows, music, databases, and other resources, as well as WiFi, computers and laptops, hotspots, classes, programs, and much more.

PPLD staff is gathering community input to help determine plans for days and hours of service, programs, classes, and other offerings.

Please join us at 7 p.m. on Thu., April 25 at Calhan Town Hall (556 Colorado Ave.) to find out more and to join in a discussion of what Pikes Peak Library District can bring to your community.

Can’t make it? You can fill out our online input form here.

In addition, we will be scheduling a future meeting to allow for more voices to be heard. For more information, please contact Hillary Dodge, Director of the North Region for Pikes Peak Library District, at hdodge@ppld.org or (719) 531-6333, x6330.

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The Teen Art Contest is for teens and by teens. Teens create the art, and teens determine the winners.

The theme for our 2019 Teen Art Contest was "Opposites Attract! "

All of the artwork will be displayed at either Penrose Library, East Library, or Library 21c during the month of April.

Here are this years winners, which you can also view below!

Best In Show
“Poseidon’s Goldfish” by Cole R.

High School - First Place
“Opposites Attract” by Isaiah R.

High School - Second Place
“A Spectrum” by Preston S.

Middle School - First Place
“Steamy” by Teddy K.

Middle School - Second Place
“Concrete Jungle” by Ava K.

Coordinator’s Choice - High School
“Calm Before the Storm” by Lydia M.

Coordinator’s Choice - Middle School
“Strong and Courageous” by Chloe H.

You can view the winners here:

Teen Art Contest 2019 Winners

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Business Resource Fair

PPLD invites you to attend in our 4th Annual Business Resource Fair on Mon., May 13 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Library 21c.

The goal of the Business Resource Fair is to make entrepreneurs and businesses in the Colorado Springs area aware of the many resources available to help grow their businesses.

Attendance is FREE!

Programs will include:
Business 101 - Colorado Springs Business Journal
Cybersecurity Simplified - Firma It Solutions & Services
Understanding Small Business Financing - Becky Fuller | ABC Bank | Colorado Enterprise Fund
How to Do Business with the State - Colorado State Purchasing Office
Government Marketing: It's a Treasure Hunt - Colorado Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC)

Vendors will include:
AutoShop Vocational – Gregg Sheldon
Becky Fuller/ANB Bank/Colorado Enterprise Fund
Colorado Department of Personnel and Administration - Division of Finance and Procurement
Colorado Springs Black Chamber of Commerce
Colorado Springs Business Journal
Colorado Springs Chamber and EDC
Colorado Springs City Clerk
Colorado Springs Economic Development
Concilio Hispano de Empresas de Colorado Springs
David Allen Capital - Jonathan Adam Griffin
DocuMart - Rebecca Clark
Eastern Plains Chamber of Commerce
El Paso County Economic Development
Firma IT
GalaxyFest - Lynda Cink
Infinity F & B Staffing Solutions - Anthony Perez
KRDO
Latino Chamber of Commerce of Pueblo
My Insurance Team - Chuck Bader
Onward Opportunity
Peak Startup
Pikes Peak Regional Development Corporation
Pikes Peak Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
Pikes Peak Workforce Center
Precision Insurance Services - Heather McBroom
Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC)
Profile by Sanford –Bri Ament
SCORE - Colorado Springs
Small Business Administration
Small Business Administration - Boots to Business
Southern Colorado Women's Chamber of Commerce
Transamerica – Joseph Lima
Tri-Lakes Chamber of Commerce
Vectra Bank
Watchdog Warrior - Tamyra Wallace

Interested in participating? Contact Terry Zarsky at tzarsky@ppld.org.

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Are you thinking about retiring in the next few years? Are you unsure about how health insurance and Medicare will affect you once you turn 65? Are you helping your parents navigate their Medicare coverage? Join us to learn about Medicare and your health insurance options. Come get unbiased information from AAA Senior Insurance Team to help you successfully navigate your transition to Medicare and retirement.

Registration is required.

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Between April 8 and 22, any 4-year-old can stop by one of 14 Pikes Peak Library District locations for a free copy of Penguinaut! by Marcie Colleen.

Pikes Peak Library District is one of many library systems across the state participating in One Book Colorado. The program gives away over 75,000 copies of the same book to every 4-year-old in the state each year. Books are provided in both English and Spanish.

“Providing these picture books to children in our community helps young families to spend time reading together, which is something we love to encourage,” said Nancy Maday, Director of Children’s Services at Pikes Peak Library District. “We know that reading with parents and caregivers is an important developmental tool for young ones. One Book Colorado helps us add to their permanent bookshelves at home, in addition to the materials they check out from the library.”

According to the One Book Colorado website, 4-year-olds with access to books are more likely to be ready to read when they begin kindergarten. Research shows this is especially valuable for children in families with low incomes, who tend to live in homes with fewer books and have exposure to 30 million fewer words than peers from families of higher incomes.

Each year, children across the state vote for their choice of three possible books. The winning book is distributed across the state in public libraries.

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"Shedding Light" by Clarence Chivers

The Shivers Concert Series presents an Evening of Inspirational Song featuring:

  • Karen Walwyn, Pianist/Composer
  • Brian Major, Baritone
  • Michelle Johnson, Soprano
  • When: Friday, April 12, 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: Broadmoor Community Church, 315 Lake Ave.
  • Tickets: $55; Call (719) 593-8400 or fill out payment form below.

Proceeds benefit the Shivers Fund at Pikes Peak Library District.

Comments: 3

Limited positions available. Please apply by May 1, 2019.
Applicants must be ages 12 - 18 as of June 1.


VOLUNTEER APPLICATION


SUMMER ADVENTURE VOLUNTEER

Summer Adventure Volunteer Position Description

Apply Here

Duties:

  • Register participants for the Summer Adventure and explain details
  • Guide participants in earning Summer Adventure Badges
  • Award prizes and log information
  • Prepare materials for programs
  • Assist with programs
  • Other duties as assigned

Skills:

  • Able to follow directions, assist with crowds, and provide excellent customer service
  • Comfortable with technology

Time Commitment:

  • Training session
  • Volunteer hours as scheduled

READING BUDDIES VOLUNTEER

Reading Buddies Volunteer Position Description

Apply Here

Duties:

  • Help children retain and improve reading skills over the summer
  • Listen to a child read aloud
  • Read with a child
  • Assist children in selecting reading materials and share your enthusiasm for reading

Skills:

  • Ability to communicate with children and adults and follow directions
  • Excellent reading skills

Time Commitment:

  • Attend a training session
  • One shift per week

Additional Considerations

If you require an accommodation to complete your application, please contact Young Adult Services at (719) 531-6333, x6087.

PPLD is collecting the information on the volunteer application for the sole purpose of recruiting volunteers. Please contact Young Adult Services at (719) 531-6333, x6087 if you have any questions or concerns. Please see our confidentially policy for more information.

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PPLD's Repair Café is a neighborhood initiative that promotes repair as an alternative to tossing things out. At a Repair Café you’ll find the tools and materials needed to repair your broken items, as well as knowledgeable volunteers who will show you how to do it. Repair Trainers will offer a diagnosis and suggested remedy for broken items, repairing items when possible and otherwise explaining what parts you may need to obtain to complete the repair.

The Repair Café exists to show how much fun repairing things can be, and how easy it often is. Why don’t you give it a go?

To learn more about the international Repair Café initiative, visit https://repaircafe.org/en/.

Repair Café Dates

Individuals must agree to the Repair Café Guidelines and Disclaimer to participate.

Volunteers offer no guarantee of items being repaired made by them or with their assistance, and are not liable if objects repaired do not work properly at home. Volunteers are not obliged to reassemble disassembled appliances that cannot be repaired.

Disclaimer: Please know you bring your items to be repaired at your own risk. Because repairs are made by unpaid volunteers there may be risks. Neither the facilitators of Repair Cafés nor the repair volunteers are liable for any loss or damage that may result from advice or instructions, for the loss of items handed over for repair, for indirect or consequential loss, or for any other kind of loss resulting from repairs made by Repair Café.

Get Involved!

Do you enjoy sharing your knowledge with others? Can you…

  • Repair tires, chains, or brakes for bikes?
  • Mend, hem, or patch clothing?
  • Test, dismantle, or fix small appliances?
  • Assess, disassemble, or possibly repair electronics?
  • Fix wobbly furniture or other wooden objects?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, help your local community by becoming a Repair Trainer!

To apply, fill out our volunteer application and skill specialty questionnaire and drop them off at East Library attn: Amber Cox, or email both to repaircafe@ppld.org.

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Pikes Peak Library District sparks development, opportunity, and inspiration for everyone across El Paso County. Whether you've got a young one who's learning to read, or you're a lifelong learner looking for a new skill, the library has something for you.

We are excited to share stories of how the Library positively impacts the lives of our patrons.

To tell your story, click here to take our short survey or use the hashtag #shareyourspark on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

INSPIRATION

PPLD sparks inspiration. In this video, hear Price Strobidge's story about how the library helped him become Poet Laureate of the Pikes Peak Region.

OPPORTUNITY

PPLD sparks your opportunity. In this video, hear Allan's story about how the Library helped him improve his English language skills and provide him with GED test preparation. Read more about Allan's personal growth and development through the Library in this article from The Gazette.

DEVELOPMENT

PPLD sparks your development. In this video, learn about how our children's areas are free, safe places that encourage development and growth.

Stay tuned to learn how PPLD can spark your opportunity and your inspiration.

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Shirley Dale, PPLD's current Maker in Residence, has been creating in one way or another since childhood, applying this creativity in many different endeavors and careers. The joy of creating and the belief that everyone has the ability to create art have been constants throughout her life. Shirley has worked with many different mediums as a teacher and artist, always finding exciting, creative possibilities with whatever art materials are at hand. She is currently working with acrylics for monotype prints as finished pieces, and also for use in mixed media collage pieces.

She will be teaching classes throughout Pikes Peak Library District and hosting Meet the Maker in Residence sessions in the CreateSpace at Library 21c.

Monotype Printing without a Press
Monotype prints are one-of-a-kind prints. Learn how to create these unique prints using different types of plates and paints! Experiment with stencils, masking, colors, and pressure. Attendees will gain an understanding of basic printmaking using simple, easy-to-find materials. More importantly, attendees will have lots of fun creating at this class and will leave with beautiful, unique pieces of art.

Please help ensure that other patrons have the opportunity to participate in this program by only registering for one session.

Meet the Maker in Residence
Visit with Shirley Dale and see her work on a special Colorado-themed printmaking project in CreateSpace at Library 21c.
Wed., March 13 from 1 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Thu., March 21 from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Tue., April 2 from noon - 3 p.m.
Sat., April 13 from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Mon., April 15 from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Comments: 0

Have you heard about auto-renewals? Beginning Mon., Feb. 11, PPLD will save you the step of renewing your checkouts.

The day before items are due, the library’s system will automatically renew them if there are no holds and they haven’t already been renewed twice.

There are some exceptions to the materials that can be automatically renewed, including:

  • Rapid Read, Rapid View
  • eBooks, eAudios
  • Equipment
  • Interlibrary Loans

Patrons will receive an email notice letting them know what, if anything, was renewed as well as the new due date.

Comments: 10

Overdue books? Fear not. Pikes Peak Library District will no longer charge you for being a little bit late on your returns.

The library will officially eliminate overdue fines Fri., Feb. 1, just in time for a county-wide celebration of Library Lover’s Month. Patrons will no longer be financially penalized for books that are late in returning to the library.

“Our mission as an organization is to eliminate barriers to information and resources, not create them,” said Director of Library Services Tim Blevins. “We had a trial run of eliminating overdue fines and didn’t see longer hold times for patrons, but did see a positive impact on borrowing. It makes perfect sense for us to permanently eliminate these fines.”

Fines, Blevins says, are particularly prohibitive for the community’s most vulnerable families. Plus, overdue fines accounted for less than one percent of the library’s overall revenue in 2017.

There will still be fees assessed for lost or damaged materials. Materials are considered lost if they are 21 days overdue.

Additionally, Pikes Peak Library District will roll out automatic renewals later on in Library Lover’s Month. The day before books are due, the library’s system will automatically renew them up to two times, so long as no other patron placed a hold on the material.

There are some exceptions to the materials that can be automatically renewed, like rapid reads, e-materials, and equipment checkouts.

“What we’ve seen here, and in library facilities across the country, is that by taking these steps to increase ease of access to materials, use of library resources and checkouts is positively impacted,” Blevins said. “We’re here to help people access the resources they need to achieve their goals. This is just one more way for us to do a better job of achieving that mission.”

Comments: 3

We want to celebrate your successes! Pikes Peak Library District is looking for stories about how our resources and staff have helped enrich minds, fuel learning and growth, spark imagination and ideas, build community and connections, and/or achieve goals.

To tell your story, click here and take our short survey.

Comments: 9

Struggling with your laptop, tablet, or smartphone?

Bring your device and a staff member can assist you in troubleshooting the device on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month from 2:30 - 4 p.m. at Library 21c.

Comments: 0

For the 27th year in a row, Pikes Peak Library District is being recognized for excellent financial transparency.

The Government Finance Officers Association awarded Pikes Peak Library District the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting this month, the association’s highest award.

“The attainment of this award represents significant accomplishment by a government and its management,” the Government Finance Officers Association said in a press release. “This is the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting.”

Each year, the association judges government organizations through an impartial panel. According to the association’s website, the program was designed to motivate government agencies to “go beyond the minimum requirements of generally accepted accounting principles,” with the goal of encouraging financial transparency by those agencies.

Earning this award illustrates an organization’s commitment to good stewardship of public dollars.

“This award is one of the highest honors a government organization can hope to achieve,” said Pikes Peak Library District Chief Financial Officer Michael Varnet. “To receive an award of this caliber so many years in a row is a testament not only to the finance team, but to the Library District as a whole. The group of people I work with each day truly has dedication to transparency and honorable financial reporting, and I am very proud to be part of such a team.”

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Kathleen Owings

The president of the Pikes Peak Library District Board of Trustees attended her last board meeting after ten years of service to the library.

Kathleen Owings will retire from the board as of Dec. 31, 2018. Owings first joined the board on Jan. 1, 2009, and was board president from 2012-2014 and in 2018.

Her fellow board members, library employees, and library leaders alike reminisced fondly on Owings’ contributions to the Library District and the community during her final board meeting on Dec. 11, 2018.

“While we are saddened to see Kathleen go, we feel very fortunate to have benefited from her leadership over the last ten years,” said PPLD Chief Librarian and CEO John Spears. “Her direction over the last decade has carried the library forward in such a positive way. Kathleen has put us on a path that will help us best serve all of our patrons across El Paso County for years to come.”

Owings is a Principal and Financial Advisor with Westbilt Financial Group. She is also a current and past member of several boards throughout the Pikes Peak Region, including the Children’s Literacy Center, Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Springs Leadership Institute, and the local chapter of the West Point Alumni Association.

The new president of the PPLD Board of Trustees, Wayne Vanderschuere, will take over the role on Jan. 1, 2019. Terms on the board are five years, and board leadership changes annually.

Comments: 4
Line Dancing

Learn basic line dance steps with Patti. Each week we will review steps taught in previous classes in addition to learning new steps.

  • When: Wednesdays from 2 -3 p.m.; Jan. 9 - Feb. 20, 2019
  • Where: Library 21c, 1175 Chapel Hills Dr.
Comments: 6
Linda Riley

PPLD Maker in Residence for January/February 2019, Linda Riley learned to knit when she was a young girl, taught by her granny when growing up the Chicago suburbs. She continually grew her skills and eventually began creating her own unique patterns. Her original designs have been published in both print and online outlets. Her project portfolio ranges from simple items such as hats and scarfs all the way to full size afghans and cable knit sweaters. Mittens are her favorite item to knit!

Visit PPLD's Maker/Artist in Residence page for more information about this program.

Comments: 2

Alyssa Rail is one of two Pikes Peak Library District interns through the Inclusive Internship Initiative, a program run by the Public Library Association (PLA) whose goal it is to introduce high school juniors and seniors of diverse backgrounds to librarianship. This year, the internships were funded by donations to the Pikes Peak Library District Foundations. For Alyssa, this was an opportunity to spend more time in one of her favorite places and have an impact on her community.

“I love how the library has always been a second home to me. It's welcoming and even if you're just picking up a hold and leaving, you still can enjoy your time there. I love that I could stay for hours and always find something to do.

"Getting to host my LGBT roundtable in August was the best thing I think I've ever done with my life. Getting to help my community like that was awesome. I've loved being able to teach people about the library, and getting to connect with teenagers from all across the country was incredible (PLA). I learned a lot about myself this summer, and I believe I'm a better person because of it!”

During her internship, Alyssa discovered just how important libraries are to everyone.

“Libraries are integral to a community. They're a place of learning and safety. From basic computer questions to books to the resources for those in need, there really isn't anywhere else like the library. (Plus, the first time I saw the yellow sign saying "safe space" I almost cried. Being the queer teenager I am, I really appreciate it.)”

How can you impact the lives of people like Alyssa?

Give: Make a donation! Big or small - every contribution helps our community.
Share: Share your library experiences with friends and family. Post your story on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, send an email, or share the link above any way you like!
Participate: You can be a part of Pikes Peak Library District and our community by participating in library programs and events!

Comments: 0

Ana Bojorquez was beginning to think she would never earn a high school diploma, no matter what she did. She bought preparation books, enrolled in classes and more, but nothing panned out.

“I’ve been trying to get my diploma for years, ever since I was forced to leave high school,” Bojorquez said. “I was trying everything to do it on my own.”

But then Bojorquez noticed an advertisement for a free program through Pikes Peak Library District that helps participants earn accredited high school diplomas online.

“The fact that it was free, that it was online, those were a big deal for me,” she said. “The GED class schedules just didn’t work for me.”

Bojorquez was brought to the United States from El Salvador as a very small child, and adopted. Her adoptive mother, for reasons unknown, changed Bojorquez’s age on a lot of her documents and in the school system.
“They weren’t a very good family, so I ended up back in the foster system,” Bojorquez said.

After being placed in foster care and re-enrolled into the school system, the school district made a startling discovery.

“The school saw my birth certificate, and they said, ‘Why are you in the 9th grade when you are 17 years old?’”
The district took her out of high school, even though she begged to stay. Bojorquez was enrolled in a GED class at a community college instead.

At the same time, her social workers knew that her eighteenth birthday was approaching; Bojorquez would no longer be eligible for support from the foster care system and needed a job to survive.

“They did provide me with transitional housing at the time, but I had no food, so I had to work. I just did not have time to finish high school.”

After experiencing success as a realtor’s assistant, the thought of a high school diploma faded from her mind until she met her future husband who was determined to support her in achieving her dreams. He finally convinced her to focus on studying full-time for a diploma.

“For a long time, I said no when he told me to leave my job,” Bojorquez said. “I was so used to taking care of myself. Finally I gave into it, and I quit my job. Within a week of me finally deciding to leave my job, he got fired.”

The couple relocated from California to Colorado Springs in search of work, had children, and once again her hopes for a diploma were dashed.

That’s when she saw the advertisement on PPLD’s website for Career Online High School. For Bojorquez, who does custodial work for her church and volunteers at the school her two boys attend, an online program without a huge financial burden was an enticing option.

She applied in March of 2017 and received her scholarship soon after. She then began to work tirelessly toward the goal she had for more than a decade. Less than two years later, Bojorquez celebrated a huge educational milestone. She completed the Career Online High School program and was the proud recipient of an accredited high school diploma at a graduation celebrated on Oct. 10 at East Library in Colorado Springs.

“I am very grateful to the Pikes Peak Library District. I wouldn’t have graduated high school, something I’ve wanted to do for years now, without the library’s help.”

How can you impact the lives of people like Ana?

Give: Make a donation! Big or small - every contribution helps our community. Make your gift today.

Share: Share your library experiences with friends and family. Post your story on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, send an email, or share the links above any way you like!

Participate: You can be a part of Pikes Peak Library District and our community by participating in library programs and events!

Comments: 0
Andi Sperry

Andi Sperry has been a Cheyenne Mountain Library patron for so long that it has become one of her favorite places to spend time with her husband. In her own words, Sperry tells us the library’s impact on her life.

“I participated in the 2018 Winter Adult Reading Program because I love reading and enjoyed the incentives; chocolate, popcorn, and a beautiful coffee mug commemorating the event. My husband and I have also taken several classes for card making, guitar lessons, pasta making, herb and succulent gardening. We enjoy doing these programs because it’s fun to spend quality time together while creating something beautiful!

"Besides the wonderful programs, resources, and patron experiences we’ve received, the library has inspired me to pursue a career in Library Science!”

Sperry hopes to have the same impact on others that the library has had on her. She truly believes that libraries are what help communities grow.

“It is important to support libraries because they are the glue that holds our community together. They offer an evolving environment that celebrates diversity and learning through programs designed for all ages and abilities. Libraries provide resources that may otherwise be inaccessible to patrons and they inspire people, like me, to pursue their lifelong dreams.”

How can you impact the lives of people like Andi and have a hand in the next generation of librarians?

Give: Make a donation! Big or small - every contribution helps our community. There are various ways you can make your gift.

  • Donate Now – click here to make your contribution today!
  • #GivingTuesday – schedule your gift for November 27, #GivingTuesday, click on the link and hit save to put it on your calendar.
  • Colorado Gives Day – Click on the link to schedule your gift for Colorado Gives Day, Tuesday, December 4.

Share: Share your library experiences with friends and family. Post your story on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, send an email, or share the links above any way you like!

Participate: You can be a part of Pikes Peak Library District and our community by participating in library programs and events!

Comments: 1

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