Many adults and kids in the Pikes Peak Library District have voted for their favorite children's book! Thank you. Below, you will find the Children's Book Week booklist with the voting results. Pilkey's Dog Man is the most popular book!
Nationally, Reading is a Superpower is the theme of Children's Book Week this year.
April is Earth Month, and this project introduces the idea of upcycling. Upcycling occurs when you transform something that you no longer use into something useful. In this instance, we’re upcycling our unused summer adventure T-shirts into very useful shopping bags that you can be used again and again! It’s called upcycling because the value of the item is increased. Take and Make kits, for ages 7 and up, will be available at area PPLD libraries beginning Friday, April 30, 2021.
Supplies: (see pdf link below for additional pictures)
- Old summer adventure T-shirt (in kit)
- Scissors (supplied at home)
Please note: Younger children may need help cutting and tying knots.
- Lay the T-shirt flat. Cut off the sleeves at the seam, and then cut out the collar. Cut a second semi-circle or rectangle below the cut-out collar (the shoulders of the T-shirt will become the handles, and this will make them deeper). See red lines in photo for where to cut.
- Next, you will cut strips out of the bottom of the T-shirt. You might want to cut off the bottom hem of the T-shirt to make cutting the strips easier. Hold the back and front of the shirt together so you are cutting both sides at the same time to form an equal number of strips. Strips should be about one-half to one inch in width.
- Now, tie the strips together (front side to back side) using an overhand knot. The overhand knot is the knot you tie first when you are tying shoelaces. Check out a video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SwdJ5op25SM. You might want to double knot for a stronger bag. Tie overhand knots until all the strips are knotted and the bottom of the bag is closed. Ta da! You made a bag!
Optional: Use the handles as they are, or cut apart the shoulder seam and then tie the two ends together using the overhand knot. This is basically a decorative element as the sleeve holes can be used as handles without this step.
Want another project? Check out the directions below for an Ecosystem in a Bottle
Celebrate Asian Pacific Heritage Month in May! See two booklist links below, one for picture books and the other for kids' chapter books:
Take and Makes for this project, for ages 3-5, will be available at area PPLD libraries starting Friday, April 30, 2021.
Mix and match straw "beads" to create a colorful bracelet. For ages 3-5.
Directions and Supplies included in kit:
- Pipe cleaner
- Straw “beads”
- Bend one end of the pipe cleaner, so that the beads do not fall off.
- String beads on pipe cleaner. Note: Leave about 1” of pipe cleaner on both ends so that you can connect the bracelet at the end.
- When your child is finished stringing beads, twist the ends of the pipe cleaner together to close the bracelet and then tuck them inside the beads.
- Enjoy your beaded bracelet!
Beading is a fun activity for children of all ages. As children are placing beads on the pipe cleaner, they are developing their pincer grasp and eye hand coordination. Beading also provides an opportunity to work on patterning, naming colors, and counting!
Patterns are arrangements of things that repeat in logical way (color, size, shape, etc.). Patterns help children learn how to make predictions. As they learn more about patterns, children begin to understand what comes next, how to make logical connections, and how to use reasoning skills. These skills are important in learning to read and in math.
Try out these beading ideas:
- Thread Cheerios onto pipe cleaners.
- Thread egg cartons onto pipe cleaners. (Cut egg carton into 12 pieces and use a hole punch to punch holes on two sides of each piece.)
- Cut shapes out of heavier paper or cardboard. Thread the shapes onto pipe cleaners, ribbon, or a shoe string. Tip: When threading on ribbon or a shoe string, tape one end to a table so the beads don’t slide off.
Have fun making patterns:
- With toys, such as blocks and cars. (Block – Car – Block – Car – Block - Car)
- By doing something. (Jump – Clap – Clap – Jump – Clap – Clap - Jump)
- With stickers. (Animal Sticker – Shape Sticker – Animal Sticker – Shape Sticker)
- With items you find on a nature walk. (Rock – Stick – Leaf - Rock – Stick - Leaf)
What other items can you make patterns with? Vary the patterns, making them harder as your child has more experience doing this.
Nice, Naughty, & Notable
Colorado Springs at 150
In a year marking the 150-year anniversary of the founding of Colorado Springs by William Jackson Palmer, Pikes Peak Library District is pleased to offer our 2021 Pikes Peak Regional History Symposium virtually! This year's program has been divided into four separate virtual events. We are excited to celebrate our city's sesquicentennial with you!
- Saturdays from 10 - 11:30 a.m.
- May 22, June 26, July 24, and Aug. 28
- Part 1: Sat., May 22
Click here for Part 1 full program.
- Kathy Sturdevant: “Instant Civilization”: The Engineer of “Progress” and the Magic Early Years of Colorado Springs
- Steve Plutt: The Lake George Ice & Power Company
- Doreen E. Martinez: Historicizing Indigenous Presence: Footprints, Artifacts, Ways of Being and Knowing
- Click here to watch now!
- Part 2: Sat., June 26
Click here for Part 2 full program.
- Susan Fletcher: Glen Eyrie at 150
- Tom Noel: The Broadmoor Hotel’s Beginnings: From Count James Pourtales to Spencer Penrose
- Eric Swab: Three Trails That Ring Cheyenne Mountain, Three Tales of Infidelity, Bribery, and Provocation
- Click here to watch now!
- Part 3: Sat., July 24
Click here for Part 3 full program.
- Leah Davis Witherow: A Story That Must be Told: Trailblazing Entrepreneur “Mama” Susie Perkins
- Eric Metzger: The McAllister House and its Place in 150 years of Colorado Springs History
- Greg Atkins: City Business: Colorado Springs and the Libertarian Party
- Click here to watch now!
- Part 4: Sat., Aug. 28
Click here for Part 4 full program.
- Rick Sturdevant: Air and Space Forces in Colorado Springs: Their Bases and Memorable Characters
- Mark James: Dr. James, Moral Reformer, Scientist, Pikes Peak
- Kathy Sturdevant: The Quaker Trail: Moral Infiltration, Disintegration, and Revival in the Pikes Peak Region
- Click here to watch now!
Artist of the Knight is a virtual program presented by Pikes Peak Library District, highlighting creatives who work in a variety of media in the Pikes Peak Region. Each episode focuses on an individual creative and displays examples of their work, as well as a conversational interview with the intent to explore the artist’s creative process. Watch the video anytime after they premiere! Watch here:
Be sure to follow us on Facebook for updates and more! Some videos and galleries contain nudity as part of visual art pieces, and may only be considered appropriate for ages 18+. Viewer discretion advised.
- Ramon Aguirre, Painter
- Conor Bourgal, Musician
- Ollie Gielas, Painter/Digital Artist
- Brian Elyo, Musician
- Sharon Carvell, Painter/Sculptor
Take and Makes for this project for ages 5-12, will be available at area PPLD libraries beginning Friday, April 23, 2021.
Watch this project at: https://youtu.be/u08_xD4-Ok4?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFctLfDQxsL5SmuE8zkwQFmu
Supplies and Directions:
Gather your supplies.
Provided in your bag: clothespin, coffee filter, pipe cleaner
From home: you will need glue, scissors, washable markers, other coloring materials (optional), water (a spray bottle makes this easier), and something to lay your butterfly on while it dries.
Decorate your coffee filter with colorful designs using washable markers. Once complete, place the coffee filter on a cookie sheet or plastic bag to protect your work surface. Mist the coffee filter with the spray bottle filled with water. Watch the colors blend! Set aside to dry.
Decorate clothespin with markers or other coloring materials. Make any design! Set aside to dry.
Once the coffee filter is dry, fold it in half. Take your scissors, cut the filter into a football shape starting at the crease and cut out to the edge (you may need a grownup’s help with this). Unfold coffee filter. Cut-outs should be on the sides of the filter when lying flat on your work surface. Pinch the top and bottom of the filter to meet in the center. Open the clothespin and place the coffee filter inside.
Curl your pipe cleaner into antennas and put inside the clothespin. Use glue to secure it all. Take your completed butterfly and enjoy it outside, in your room, and share it with your friends!
Discovery Kits are a collection of interactive items that patrons can check out to explore new topics, hobbies, and interests at home. There are Discovery Kits for all ages, from toddlers to adults. Learn more about the different kits here.
They are currently available at:
- Round Looms
- Electronic Playground
- Lego Mindstorms EV3
- Bee Bots
- Survive the Quake Engineering Kit
- Remote Control Gear Bot
- Ultimate Fort Builder
- Cubelets Discovery Set
- Code & Go Robot Mouse Activity Set
- MAGNA-TILES Building Set
Celebrate Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month with PPLD!
Library Crafts: Paper Lei
Take and Make available on Fri., May 7 at all locations.
In celebration of Lei Day and Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, take home everything you need to make your very own paper lei. All materials will be included, along with a brief history of the lei.
Library Crafts: Tea
Take and Make available on Fri., May 7 at Calhan, Cheyenne Mountain, East, Fountain, Library 21c, Monument, Old Colorado City, Penrose, Rockrimmon, and Sand Creek Libraries.
In celebration of Asian Pacific Heritage Month, try three teas at home! We will provide the tea and instructions for brewing.
- Sat., May 15 at 11 a.m.
- Registration required. Click here to register.
Learn the art of Chinese Calligraphy in the comforts of your own home! Let JoJo, a California based instructor, teach you all about this beautiful and ancient writing style. You will learn the brief history of Chinese calligraphy, proper writing techniques, and the opportunity to write a few phrases using Chinese Calligraphy.
Please register to reserve your supply kit. Kits will be available to pick up from the East, Library 21c, and Penrose Libraries beginning on Mon., May 10. When registering, indicate in the notes field at which library you like to pick up your supply kit. One kit per registration. For ages 18+.
Special Virtual Storytime
Thu., May 20 at 10:30 a.m. on PPLDTV Youtube. Videos are not live, so you can always view the videos whenever it’s convenient for you.
Children’s Staff from around the district will invite you to join in a sing-along and then read a children’s book.
Teens Read: #Ownvoices
- Young Adult Booklist
- Picture Books
- Children's Chapter Books
- Adult Booklist
- Kanopy Film List
- Hoopla Film List
- Biography in Context
Regional History & Genealogy Resources:
- Books from the Carnegie Library - Special Collections (Some titles are available for checkout from other library locations)
- Voices from Colorado: perspectives of Asian Pacific Americans by Nestor J. Mercado
- Asian American genealogical sourcebook by Paula K. Byers
- Asians in Colorado: a history of persecution and perseverance in the Centennial State by William Wei
- Chinaman's chance: the Chinese on the Rocky Mountain mining frontier by Liping Zhu
- The road to Chinese exclusion: the Denver riot, 1880 election, and rise of the West by Liping Zhu
- Chin Lin Sou: Chinese-American leader by Janet L. Taggart
Celebrate Jewish American Heritage Month with PPLD!
Library Crafts: Felt Flower for Shavuot
Take and Make available on Fri., May 7 at all locations.
In celebration of Jewish American Heritage Month, take home everything you need to make your very own Felt Flower for Shavuot. All materials will be included (you will need a glue gun and scissors), along with a brief history of the significance of Flowers for Shavuot. For ages 18+.
Regional History & Genealogy Resources
- Colorado Springs Jewish History Project Records, 1920-2013 (Archival Collection MSS 0419)
The Colorado Springs Jewish History Project records consist of oral history interviews, photographs, and a documentary film.
Archival Collection MSS 0415) and Mohl Family Photographs (Digital Photograph Collection)
- Leo and Hertha Mohl were long-time residents of Colorado Springs, small business owners, dairy farmers, and world travelers. They were also some of the first European war refugees to live in Colorado Springs.
- Hertha Mohl was born in Vienna, Austria, and worked as a dressmaker until, after almost getting caught passing out anti-Nazi literature, she smuggled herself into England. While living in London, Hertha served in the British Air Raid Precaution Service. Also born in Vienna, Leo Mohl served as secretary of the trade union movement. Leo was taken to concentration camps in Dachau and Buchenwald for his political activities. In 1939, he was released and immigrated to England, where he met Hertha.
- The Mohls immigrated to the United States in 1940, eventually making their way to Colorado Springs. They raised dairy cows on farmland that is now owned by the Air Force Academy, operated a bookstore called The Book Home, and owned a reweaving shop called Master Weavers of America.
- Various Photographs (from PPLD’s Digital Photograph Collection)
Photographs of the Colorado Springs Jewish Community.
- Books from the Carnegie Library - Special Collections
(Some titles are available for checkout from other library locations)
- Exploring Jewish Colorado by Phil Goodstein
- A Colorado Jewish family album, 1859-1992 by Rocky Mountain Jewish Historical Society
- A history of Jewish life in Colorado Springs (DVD – also available for checkout)
- Getting started in Jewish genealogy by Gary Mokotoff
- L'chaim: a guide to Jewish genealogical research by Zoe Henry
- Dr. Charles David Spivak: a Jewish immigrant and the American tuberculosis movement by Jeanne E. Abrams
- Jewish women pioneering the frontier trail: a history in the American West by Jeanne E. Abrams
- A guide to the Jewish Rockies, Colorado, Montana, Wyoming by Amy Shapiro
Jewish American Heritage Month: The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum join in paying tribute to the generations of Jewish Americans who have helped form the fabric of American history, culture and society.
Take and Makes for this project will be available at area PPLD libraries beginning this Friday, April 16, 2021.
The video instructions are available at: https://tinyurl.com/PPLDVirtualSTEM
Supplies and Directions:
Materials included: Cork, two 12 inch bamboo skewers, toothpick, modeling clay, googly eyes
Materials needed: glue, paint or markers (optional)
- Push the pointy end of a skewer into one side of the cork at a 45 degree angle; repeat on the other side just opposite the first skewer.
- Push the toothpick in the center of the bottom of the cork. (*The skewers should be pointing down.)
- Roll two equal-sized balls of clay and press them onto the bottom ends of the skewers.
- Glue the two googly eyes on the cork. You’ll need to allow time for glue to dry. If you want, you can use paint or a marker to add more details to the face.
- Place the tip of the toothpick on your finger and see if it balances. If it leans too much to one side, adjust the angle of the skewers one at a time until the cork stands upright when balanced on the tip of your finger.
Now, have some fun! See if you can gently spin your Balancing Buddy on the tip of your finger. Try walking around the house while keeping the Balancing Buddy in place. Can you balance Balancing Buddy on your elbow? Your knee? What other experiments can you do with your Balancing Buddy?
The science behind the project:
Everything has a center of gravity, which is the point at which its mass is evenly distributed. The clay balls are heavier than the cork, so they bring the center of gravity to the bottom of the toothpick. That’s why the bottom of the toothpick will balance on your fingertip!
Keynote: Lt. Joe Kenda (Ret.)
Check out the 2021 Mountain of Authors keynote address by author and retired homicide detective Lt. Joe Kenda. Joe spoke for approximately 45 minutes, and then opened it up to a question and answer session.
Lt. Joe Kenda, a twenty-three-year veteran of the Colorado Springs Police Department, spent twenty-one years chasing killers as a homicide detective and commander of the major crimes unit. Kenda and his team solved 356 of his 387 homicide cases, getting a 92 percent solve rate—one of the highest in the country. After retiring from law enforcement, he starred in Homicide Hunter: Lt. Joe Kenda, an American true-crime documentary series that ran for nine seasons on the Investigation Discovery network and was aired in sixty-nine countries and territories worldwide. At its peak, Homicide Hunter averaged 1.9 million viewers in the US. See Lt. Kenda on his new crime series, American Detective, available to stream now on discovery+.
Please join us for this year's live, in-person panel, "Case File Conversations: Crime and the People that Chronicle It." This hour long presentation will complement the virtual keynote address by Joe Kenda on Sat., May 1, 2021, and recorded local author Book Buzz presentations. The panelists will discuss their respective careers, how they became involved in the field of crime writing/solving/reporting, and their experiences with it in the Colorado Springs community.
Recording coming soon
This year's panelists include:
- 2020 Colorado Book Award finalist (Thriller Category) for Black Pearl and author of police procedural and psychological suspense fiction Donnell Ann Bell
- Retired Colorado Springs Police Officer and compiler of the Homicides of the Colorado Springs Area, 1872 to Present index in Pikes Peak Library District Special Collections, Dwight Haverkorn.
- Hosts of the Colorado Springs Gazette podcast Colorado Cold Case, Olivia Prentzel and Lance Benzel.
Pike Peak Library District's annual Mountain of Authors program, including the Local Author Showcase, has gone virtual! For our virtual event, local authors have created fun and exciting Book Buzzes (short videos) to share their new books with you. Join us to discover new authors and great books for the fall. View all the videos here and see what the buzz is all about!
Videos premiered Sat., May 1 on PPLDTV YouTube.
Want to publish your own book? Learn more about self-publishing opportunities with the Library, such as Biblioboard and the Indie Author Project. This class is an overview about the self-publishing process, including creating an eBook, distribution channels, and marketing.
Video premieres Sat., May 1 on PPLDTV YouTube.
Celebrate Earth Month with PPLD!
Family & Children's Services
Learn about Earth Day and celebrate our green planet with fun activities, fascinating facts, and ideas for going green. For ages 6 and up. This video will be available on PPLDTV YouTube on Tue., April 27.
Visit your favorite Library starting Fri., April 30 to pick up materials for this program while supplies last.
Join Detective Honeycomb as she solves various mysteries in Colorado Springs Parks throughout the city. Learn about the Leave No Trace Principles and how to be good stewards of the land. Watch the video and discuss the "Leave No Trace" principle that is in the link in each program description.
Creative Services: Visible Mending
Do you have well-loved items in your wardrobe that could use a breath of new life? In this video, you'll learn about visible mending, a technique for fixing up damaged clothes with a little extra flair.
For more information on the techniques featured in this video, check out our Clothing Repair LibGuide. We've curated a list of videos and good books on the topic to get you started.
If you're interested in reserving a sewing machine or using any of the other resources available in our makerspaces, click here.
Jump to some of the techniques we covered in this video:
- 2:54 - darning
- 3:36 - patching & sashiko
- 4:36 - embroidery
- 6:00 - machine mending
Take and Makes for origami fun, for ages 9-12, will be available at area PPLD libraries beginning Friday, April 9, 2021.
Take and Makes will supply assorted Origami paper
Optional supplies needed needed from home: Scissors and a pen, pencil, or marker
Star Wars X-wing Starfighter
Watch this project at: https://youtu.be/GyOw1JMO4hI and see pdf below for pictures.
- Fold Paper in half.
- Fold paper in half again to create a small square.
- Fold the square into a triangle.
- Unfold paper completely. Fold sides into each other to create a large triangle. You may want to watch the video for this step.
- Fold bottom corner of top side down to the crease. Repeat on the other side.
- Flip paper over and follow step 5.
- Fold bottom corner of one side up so that it creates a new triangle with a flat side on top. Repeat on other side. Flip paper and repeat.
- Fold the bottom edge to top of new triangle edge. Repeat on 3 other sides. This will complete the wings.
- Fold wing tips down to create guns on the wings.
- Enjoy your finished X-wing fighter!
See directions below for a cool Tortoise project also!
Community Conversations at Pikes Peak Library District is a new series of monthly events that invites the public to discuss current events and issues impacting the Pikes Peak region. We want to promote civil dialogue and greater understanding of different perspectives.
Keep an eye on our calendar to join us for future conversations on timely and relevant topics to the Pikes Peak region. More information to come on locations and times!
Take and Makes for this project, for ages 2-5, are available starting April 2, 2021 at area PPLD libraries.
Brighten up a wintry day with a tissue paper "stained glass" decoration. Hold your finished project up to a window or a light and let the colors shine through! For ages 2-5.
Included in kit:
- 2 pieces wax paper
- 4 strips construction paper (for frame)
- 2 pieces of tissue paper
Supplies you provide:
- Glue stick or tape
- Child-safe scissors, Optional
- Cut or tear the tissue paper into smaller pieces.
- Glue tissue paper to one of the pieces of wax paper until the wax paper is filled, or the design is complete. Don’t worry about the tissue paper being over the edge. It will be trimmed later. NOTE: It is easier to spread the glue on the wax paper and then lay the tissue paper on the glue.
- Take the 4 strips of construction paper and glue them to the edges to create a frame.
- Trim the frame.
- Glue the 2nd piece of wax paper onto the tissue paper and frame.
- Find a window to display your “stained glass"!
Your child can use child-safe scissors to cut the tissue paper. However, when a child tears pieces of paper, they improve hand strength in the small muscles in their hands. These small muscles are important in many fine motor skills – coloring, handwriting, buttoning buttons, building puzzles, and more! Tearing paper also improves hand-eye coordination and the ability of hands to work together. Both skills are needed to write and to use scissors.
What other works of art can you and your child create with torn paper?
Take and Makes for this homeschool experiment for ages 6-12, will be available at area PPLD libraries starting this Friday, April 2, 2021.
How do seeds transform into plants? What happens when a bean seed begins to grow? Watching a sprout emerge from a dry seed is nothing short of miraculous. You will plant beans inside a plastic bag to watch roots form and leaves emerge right before your very eyes. You will also compare how beans grow in light and dark environments.
Supplies Included in Take and Make Kits:
- 2 plastic zipper storage bags
- 10 uncooked pinto beans (remove from bag)
- 2 paper towels
- Data Sheet for Light Experiment
- Data Sheet for Dark Experiment
- Bean House Template
Supplies from home:
- Water (in bowl or sprayer)
- Scrap paper to label beans with date
- Scotch tape or glue stick
- Pen or Pencil
- Crayons or marker
Safety Tip: Dried beans are chocking hazards for small children. Adults will need to supervise this activity.
For This Experiment:
- Experiment Light: choose a sunny window where the seeds will get plenty of light, but won’t be blasted by intense sun all day.
- Experiment Dark: Find a closed drawer or closet that is dark and not opened very often.
- Fold paper towels so they will fit inside the bags.
- Dampen paper towels with spray bottle (not too wet!) and place inside bags. You will need to add water to paper towels when they dry out over time.
- Put 5 beans into each bag on top of paper towels (leave room between them to grow!) and zip closed.
- Write the date on scrap paper, label either Light or Dark, and tape to each bag.
- Color/decorate the frame of the Bean House Template with markers or crayons. Fold it in half lengthwise and use scissors to cut along the dotted lines (you are cutting out a large square). Tape the Light Bean Bag into the Bean House.
- Tape the Bean House (Light Bean Bag) to a window. Put Dark Bean Bag into a dark place.
Now you are ready to prepare your data sheets. Use the Scientific Method questionnaire on the back of each sheet to make predictions about how each bag of seeds will grow. Use the front sides of the sheets to collect data. You will make drawings and take measurements. Do this every 3- 5 days and see if your hypothesis for each bean bag comes true! Do the seeds grow the same in both bags? Can you think of other variables to try besides light and dark?
It’s time to get creative!
Homeschoolers, grades K - 12, can submit one artwork (drawing, painting, sculpture, needlework, etc.) for this non-juried exhibit.
Submit your art between Mon., Mar. 21 - Tue., Mar. 29, 2022.
Artwork will be dropped off and displayed at the East Library Children’s Department throughout the month of April.
Contact email@example.com for more information.
Take and Makes for this project for ages 5-12, will be available at area PPLD libraries beginning Friday, March 26, 2021.
Watch this project at: https://youtu.be/nNIaTK7sFgA?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFctLfDQxsL5SmuE8zkwQFmu
Supplies and Directions:
- Gather your supplies
- Provided in your bag: a bendy pencil, feathers, and a Mad Lib
- From home: you will need glue (preferably a liquid glue like Elmer's) and a pencil sharpener
- Glue your feathers to the erasure side of the pencil
- Add a little pressure to the feathers around the pencil. This will help keep them in place.
- Wait for the glue to dry
- Use your Truffula Tree pencil to create a silly story using the Mad Lib! Try not to read the story until you've filled out all the blank spaces. You might need help from a grownup with this.
PPLD's Family & Children's Services presents Spring Break programming! Take and Makes for Spring Break activities (for ages 2-12) will be available at area PPLD libraries beginning Friday, March 19, 2021.
- 1 ball
- 1 piece sidewalk chalk
- 1 bottle bubbles and wand
- 1 yo-yo (Age 5+)
PPLD presents Spring Break: Yo-Yo Lessons from an Expert- Luke Renner https://youtu.be/tTN818dpyD8?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFcFDhKGVTI5KnQchNqAEbSR
These activities support physical exercise, gross motor skill development, brain development, and hand/eye coordination.
Ball Activities - Can you roll the ball back & forth with a friend? How about play catch? Can you throw it in the air and catch it? Try to toss it into a container, getting farther away with each throw. Build a contraption to roll your ball down. More ball activities can be found here: https://frugalfun4boys.com/indoor-ball-games-kids/
Bubble Activities - Blow bubbles! Blow big ones and little ones. Blow double and triple bubbles. Try to catch them on your bubble wand. Can you catch them with other things or even on your body? Can you pop them before they land? Turn on some music and have a bubble dance! Here are some ideas for toddlers: https://www.redtedart.com/bubble-activities-for-toddlers/
Chalk Activities - Go outside to draw with your chalk! Create an obstacle course. Play hopscotch. Draw a picture. Have someone trace your body to make a self-portrait. Write encouraging things for people walking by. Instruct passers-by to do silly things. Play Tic-Tac-Toe. Create a target and see if you can hit it with your ball. Here are some more activities: https://www.thebestideasforkids.com/sidewalk-chalk-ideas/
Yo-Yo Activity – For Age 5+ –Take a beginner yo-yo lesson with yo-yo champion Luke Renner. Click here for more information. He will teach you the basics of how to use the yo-yo and a few tricks. Be careful with your yo-yo, it can be dangerous for younger children. You can find the video here too!
If you are already an expert check out his website for more cool tricks: http://www.lukerenneryoyomagic.com/tricks.html
The possibilities are endless with these simple supplies. See how creative you can be!
Celebrate Freedom of Information Day Tue., March 16!
Now as always in our history, reading is among our greatest freedoms. The freedom to read and write is almost the only means for making generally available ideas or manners of expression that can initially command only a small audience. The written word is the natural medium for the new idea and the untried voice from which come the original contributions to social growth. It is essential to the extended discussion that serious thought requires, and to the accumulation of knowledge and ideas into organized collections. (Read the full ALA's Freedom to Read Statement.)
The Library Bill of Rights
The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.
- Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
- Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
- Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
- Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
- A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
- Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.
- All people, regardless of origin, age, background, or views, possess a right to privacy and confidentiality in their library use. Libraries should advocate for, educate about, and protect people’s privacy, safeguarding all library use data, including personally identifiable information.
- Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Articles 18 and 19
- IFLA Freedom of Access to Information and Freedom of Expression Advisory Committee
- United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, Goal 16 (IFLA was instrumental in the formation of the goal)
Seed libraries and gardens throughout the district can help your green thumb
Did you know Pikes Peak Library District is home to several gardens and seed libraries? Learn more about them below, and use the seed libraries to start gardens of your own!
The Carnegie Garden is located between two historic buildings of the Penrose Library Campus: the 1905 Carnegie Library and the 1928 Knights of Columbus Hall. Once a parking lot, the Garden is now home to a demonstration garden and a lawn that is perfect for public functions and outdoor gatherings.
Designed by landscape architect Carla Anderson, the Garden opened in 2007.
“The Carnegie had just been renovated, and somebody came to a master gardener meeting and said, ‘Here’s a beautiful building that needs a landscape,’” recalls Anderson. “So I said, ‘Here’s my opportunity to volunteer in the community.’”
Anderson took a look at the space and was interested in the location’s unique microclimate.
“It’s on that southern slope. And it’s surrounded by hard surfaces: walls on three sides and the pavement below, so it gets a lot of heat,” explains Anderson. “For me landscape architecture is all about problem solving, taking a challenge and finding a solution to that.”
Terracing the Garden solved one problem: the slope between the Carnegie Library and the wall below. It also made it easier to view the plants selected for the low water demonstration garden.
“I wanted to make sure we paid homage to our native short-grassed prairie, so there are a lot of grasses that honor that,” says Anderson. “It is a plant select garden, a program by Denver Botanic Gardens and Colorado State University. They select a variety of shrubs, perennials, and grasses and make those selected plants available. Then we report back about what did well, what had problems.”
The Garden has changed quite a bit since it opened 13 years ago, and will continue to do so.
“It’s amazing to me how much it’s grown. It’s very much a Darwinian garden in that we plant things, and what grew and thrived deserved to be there. What didn’t survive got yanked out,” says Anderson. “A garden is a process; it’s not an end product. It’s four-dimensional art. You’ve got the three basic spatial dimensions, and then you have time.”
GREEN TEAM GARDEN
PPLD’s Green Team plans, plants, and harvests vegetable gardens and a pollinator garden at Penrose Library along Pikes Peak Avenue. Fresh spinach, lettuce, radishes, garlic, Swiss chard, herbs, and zucchini from three raised beds are regularly donated to the nearby Catholic Charities’ Marian House. The food is harvested in the morning, and they serve it that same day. Composting is done onsite and comes from the Penrose Library’s employee kitchen. Garden markers were made from recycled ceramic tiles at a library makerspace. The City of Colorado Springs provides mulch for the Garden.
HIGH PRAIRIE LIBRARY GARDEN
In the past, the Garden was maintained by staff of High Prairie Library. Starting in 2020, the Fresh Start Center now plants and harvests the garden. Food from the Garden helps support their mission to “fight hunger, poverty, and joblessness through sustainable agriculture, food distribution, employment programs, nursing support, and case management.”
DR. LOOMIS MEMORIAL IRIS TRIAL GARDENS
The Elmohr Iris Society maintains this garden at East Library. It is the only public, high-altitude trial garden in the world and features new hybrids sent from around the globe.
This seed library encourages a thriving community of gardeners, from beginner to expert, through the process of growing, harvesting, and seed saving/sharing. Seeds can be checked out (three packets per family, per month) or donated to the library. High Prairie Library also provides classes and information to help both newcomers and experienced gardeners develop gardening skills and know-how.
This seed library promotes the development and preservation of landrace heirloom seeds and varieties that are well adapted to high-altitude, arid growing conditions. They also promote a body of local knowledge on how to save and pass on those seeds to future growers. It lends seed and seed-saving skills to growers each year in exchange for new seed from regional gardens.
Every March, Women's History Month is celebrated. Here's is a children's booklist of great books at PPLD. Click on the pdf link below.
A look at Colorado Springs history as the city celebrates a sesquicentennial
Colorado Springs resides on land inhabited for thousands of years by indigenous peoples, including the Ute, Cheyenne, and Arapaho Tribes. Artifacts found at Garden of the Gods, one of Colorado Springs’ most beautiful natural attractions, date back an astonishing 3,500 years.
Military expedition leaders such as Major Stephen H. Long and Lieutenant Zebulon Pike later explored the area in the early 1800s.
A gold rush that began in 1858 and peaked in ’59 brought prospectors through the area, but they did not settle here. “The Pikes Peak or Bust Gold Rush is a deceiving name,” explains Matt Mayberry, director of the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum. “The gold wasn't here. It took 30 more years until the discovery of gold in Cripple Creek.”
“People coming across the country could see Pikes Peak early on and had heard about it for years,” elaborates Pikes Peak Community College Professor of History Katherine Sturdevant. “So they came here and then had to veer north. The ‘59ers were heading to the Central City-Blackhawk area, but the mountain was sort of a beacon for gold seekers.”
Colorado City (now called Old Colorado City) was founded in 1859 as a supply hub for miners heading to the gold field.
However, the city we call Colorado Springs officially began 150 years ago. At 8 a.m. on July 31, 1871, the first stake for a new town was driven at what became the southeast corner of Pikes Peak and Cascade Avenues.
GENERAL AND “QUEEN” PALMER
The founding of the town sprang from the vision of Civil War veteran General William Jackson Palmer. He was traveling between Pueblo and Denver in 1869 when he wrote in a letter, "At Colorado City, the Garden of the Gods, we stopped to breakfast. Near here are the finest soda springs and the most enticing scenery. I am sure there will be a famous summer resort here soon."
Palmer also saw an opportunity for a southward railroad route out of Denver, which was about to be connected to the Kansas Pacific Railway from the east.
“Railroads were his first love,” says Mayberry. “And you can't have railroads as a business venture in the West without having communities to serve. Colorado Springs is part of that formula.”
Soon thereafter, Palmer formed the Rio Grande Railway Company and the Colorado Springs Company. Construction on the railway began in January 1871, the first stake was driven in July, and in October the railway reached the new town.
“Colorado Springs was a product of the utopianism of the Eastern, upper-middle and upper classes,” says Sturdevant, “but it was also a business man's plan.”
“He didn't want this to be a boomtown. He wanted it to be a resort,” adds Mayberry. “Colorado Springs was to be the finest place in the west to build a home.”
Such a place would need parks, and Palmer included a city park (now known as Acacia Park) in the original town plot. He later gifted additional land that became Monument Valley Park and Palmer Park.
His wife, Mary Lincoln “Queen” Mellen Palmer, also played an important role in the town’s early days. “She is deserving of a lot of credit,” says Mayberry. “Especially establishing the school system and creating a sense of place in Colorado Springs.”
Queen Palmer taught at the first free school in town, which she opened on Nov. 13, 1871.
SPENCER AND JULIE PENROSE
“As Palmer is beginning to step off the stage,” says Mayberry, “Spencer Penrose steps on and takes our history into a different phase. He's more of a capitalist than Palmer was. Even though Palmer was an industrialist, he didn't have the same kind of drive for wealth that Penrose did.”
After making a fortune from gold and copper mines in Cripple Creek and Utah, Spencer married Julie Villiers Lewis McMillan in 1906.
Penrose had already built The Broadmoor, Pikes Peak Highway, and Cheyenne Mountain Zoo when the El Pomar Foundation was formed in 1936. The Foundation has since distributed over $500 million in grants. “That boils down to the efforts of Julie Penrose making sure that some of that wealth was available for the good of the community,” explains Mayberry.
WINFIELD SCOTT STRATTON
Winfield Scott Stratton also made a fortune in mining, hitting gold in Cripple Creek on the Fourth of July 1891 after spending 20 years as a carpenter. “He's chasing a dream all his life, and then he finally gets it. It's a story of having a wolf by the tail. You can't let go, but you can't keep holding on either,” says Mayberry. “He's plagued by wealth toward the end of his life,” with people constantly demanding money from him.
He donated land for Colorado Springs City Hall and the Mining Exchange building and paid to construct the El Paso County Courthouse (now home to the Pioneer Museum).
He also bought the town’s trolley system and spent $2 million to help Colorado Springs develop one of the top street railway systems in the country. (The streetcar system was replaced in 1931 by the Colorado Springs Bus Company.)
Stratton left a majority of his fortune to build the Myron Stratton Home, a free home for people who are "without means of support, and who are physically unable by reason of old age, youth, sickness, or infirmity to earn a livelihood." The home continues to help people to this day.
“Art is foundational to Colorado Springs,” says Mayberry. “The scenic beauty of the region attracted photographers and artists like William Henry Jackson and Thomas Moran. And there was economic potential to being an artist in Colorado Springs. You could capture the scenery, and then had audiences to commission that work.”
In 1919, Broadmoor Art Academy opened in the former home of Spencer and Julie Penrose, and soon helped Colorado Springs became nationally known as a center for the arts. In 1936, the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center (FAC) opened at the same location. Alice Bemis Taylor donated art to the FAC collection, which also included works by Van Gogh, Rembrandt, and Picasso.
“We had an influx of people, which you could call an artist colony or literary colony,” says Sturtevant. “They were also friends with Julie Penrose, and she supported this artistic activity.”
“Colorado Springs was a place with many forward-thinking women who would make it a center for the women's suffrage movement,” says Sturdevant.
Suffragist Caroline Spencer founded the Women's Club of Colorado Springs and the Civic League. Alongside Alice Paul, she picketed the White House in 1917 and was incarcerated for seven months as a result.
Gretchen McRae is another notable Colorado Springs resident who worked for equality. A Black woman and civil rights activist, McRae wrote and edited publications such as her pamphlet Dedicated to the Lowliest Man and A Free Republic, a national magazine in the late 1930s.
In her own way, Fannie Mae Duncan was also an activist.
“Gretchen is trying in a bold-faced way to be an activist about equality, using the printed word primarily,” says Sturdevant. “Whereas Fannie Mae is trying to run a business.”
That business was the Cotton Club, where a sign famously read, “Everybody Welcome.” At a time when some places still refused to serve Blacks or required they use a separate entrance, customers of all skin colors came to Duncan’s club to enjoy music by such luminaries as Etta James, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, and Duke Ellington.
Camp Carson opened just south of Colorado Springs in 1942, soon after the start of World War II. In addition to housing and training soldiers, it also held prisoners of war. At one point, Camp Carson held about 9,000 POWs, mostly Italian and German, many of whom were put to work in the nearby agricultural and logging industries. It was renamed Fort Carson in 1954, and has been home to several divisions over the years. Many soldiers have also trained at the nearby Piñon Canyon Maneuver Site.
Also in 1942, an Army Air Base opened near Fort Carson to train soldiers for photographic reconnaissance missions. Its airfield was named Peterson Field.
Ent Air Force Base opened at the site currently occupied by the Olympic Training Center in 1952. When Ent closed in 1975, nearby Peterson Field was designated Peterson Air Force Base.
In 1954, famous aviator Charles Lindbergh was named to an advisory commission to determine the future site of the Air Force Academy. Colorado Springs was on the short list, so Lindbergh went to Peterson Field and “asked to rent an airplane,” recounts Rick Sturdevant, Kathy’s husband and Air Force deputy command historian. “Lindbergh was asked, ‘Well, do you have a pilot's license?’ And he had a pilot's license signed by one of the Wright Brothers. After the guy recovered, he rented the plane to Lindbergh, who flew up and down the Front Range to see what the air currents would be like and if it would be feasible and safe for people to learn how to fly and do a lot of practicing right here along the Front Range.” Colorado Springs went on to become home to Air Force Academy cadets in 1958.
North American Aerospace Defense Command, also known as NORAD, was initially headquartered at Ent Air Force Base in 1957, then was housed in the Chidlaw Building, before moving into a bunker excavated into Cheyenne Mountain. This Space Defense Center and the Combat Operations Center became fully operational in 1967.
In 1985, Falcon Air Force Station (now Schriever Air Force Base) opened and housed the 2nd Space Wing and continues to support space operations, including Department of Defense satellites.
The military presence in and around Colorado Springs has contributed more than the obvious economic impact. “An underappreciated aspect is what it does to changing the diversity of the community and bringing in more diverse residents,” says Mayberry.
“Colorado Springs, because of our rather vague founding vision of being a great place to live, we've been required to constantly reinvent ourselves,” says Mayberry. “It’s fascinating to see how we've tried to make ourselves relevant to respond to changes in the economy to look for the next best thing.
“One hundred and fifty years. You don't celebrate that every day. What we need to do, as (Mayor John Suthers) says, is be good ancestors for whoever's coming after us. So, for the 200th anniversary, when somebody is looking back at what we did, they see we've created value and we set the community up to be successful. I don't want (the Sesquicentennial) to just to be about the past. I think it's about evaluating and assessing where we want to go in the future. And then challenging us to make those decisions and go.”
In honor of Colorado Springs’ upcoming sesquicentennial anniversary, the Colorado Springs Pioneer Museum is exploring our community’s history and through 150 objects.
PPLD Regional History Series
The story of Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak region is far too interesting and complex to fit into a lone magazine article. Luckily, Pikes Peak Library District has published a series of books examining our rich history. Titles include:
Take and Makes for this project will be available starting this Friday, March 12, 2021.
Watch this project at: https://youtu.be/8avBll-4qnc?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFctLfDQxsL5SmuE8zkwQFmu
Materials included in kit: circle template, cardboard, piece of string about 36”
Materials needed from home: crayons, colored pencils or markers, scissors, glue stick, sharp pen or pencil (to poke holes)
- Take template of color wheel or print out a copy below.
- Color in the sections red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple. For an accurate color wheel, red should be opposite green, yellow opposite purple, and blue opposite orange.
- Cut out your circle template.
- Glue your circle to the piece of cardboard and cut it out again.
- Carefully poke two holes in the center of the color wheel, side by side.
- Thread your string through both holes, then tie the ends in a knot.
- Hold each end of the string. The cardboard circle should be about midway between the ends. Wind the string by spinning the wheel in a motion similar to a twirling a jump rope.
- Gently pull the string tight to get the wheel spinning. If you continue moving your hands in an in and out motion, the circle should continue to spin.
As the wheel spins, what do you notice about the colors? The colors disappear!
As the wheel is spinning fast, your eyes blend the colors together and the color wheel looks white.
White light, like sunlight, is made of all the colors in the rainbow. When light hits a colored object, most of it is absorbed and only one color is reflected. A red object, for example, absorbs almost the full spectrum of light, reflecting red only. When the color wheel was spinning fast enough, the colors changed faster than your eyes could see the individual colors and send the signals to your brain, so the reflections of all of the colors blended together and you saw white light!