What's New!

A photo of Colorado Springs with the Club Q memorial ribbon and text that reads "we are here for everyone"

The shooting at Club Q on Sat., Nov. 19 was a senseless act of violence against the LGBTQ+ community that claimed the lives of 5 individuals, physically injured 18 others, and impacted many more. Our hearts go out to those lost and injured in the shooting, as well as those of our community who have lost friends and family. Our community, like others across the nation, is hurting following this tragedy.

Our mission is to cultivate spaces for belonging, personal growth, and strong communities, and our values include bringing people together. We understand that diversity, inclusivity, and equity are pillars of a strong and thriving community and we strive to support our entire community. PPLD joins the efforts of all whose interests are focused on building a strong community free of hatred and intolerance.

Below are resources you can access for more information and support.


  • Crisis and LGBTQ+ Resources LibGuide: A list of resources curated by PPLD librarians.


    • Colorado Crisis Services hotline: Call (844)493-8255 or text “TALK” to 38255 to speak with a trained counselor or professional. Counselors are also available at walk-in locations or online to chat between 4 p.m. and 12 a.m. Colorado Crisis Services is the statewide behavioral health crisis response system offering residents mental health, substance use or emotional crisis help, information and referrals. Its mission is to strengthen Colorado’s mental health system by providing Coloradans with greater access to crisis services wherever they are at 24/7/365 regardless of ability to pay. They offer walk-in, text, and call-in services for people in crisis.
    • Colorado State Government Behavioral Health resources: Mental health resources from the Behavioral Health Administration of Colorado.
    • Colorado Springs resource page: Community resources posted by Colorado Springs in support of the community following the shooting at Club Q.
    • Colorado Public Radio: Resources and information on finding help and helping following the Club Q shooting.
    • Colorado 211: A confidential and multilingual service connecting people to vital resources across the state. No matter where you live in Colorado, you can find information about resources in your local community.
    • Diversus Health: Offers a 24/7 walk-in crisis center for crisis services and counseling for all ages, regardless of ability to pay. You can request an appointment online or visit 115 S. Parkside Drive, Colorado Springs, CO 80910.
    • Inside Out Youth Services: Provides support and resources for LGBTQ youth and are coordinating vigils for people to gather.
    • Medicaid support services: Medicaid-insured members have access to behavioral health services or other supports, and we want them to get the care they need during this time. Call (719)598-1540 to contact them directly, or refer to care coordination via the online referral form.
    • Mental health provider resources: A list of mental health providers offering therapy for those impacted. Many are providing sessions free or at a reduced charge.
    • One Colorado: One Colorado is the state’s leading advocacy organization dedicated to advancing equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) Coloradans and their families. They effectively advocate for LGBTQ Coloradans and their families by lobbying the General Assembly, the executive branch, and local governments on issues like safe schools, transgender equality, relationship recognition, and LGBTQ health and human services.
    • The Trevor Project: A resource and suicide prevention lifeline for LGBTQ+ young people. The Trevor Project offers crisis services, peer support, and other services.
    • Peak View Behavioral Health Assessment team: Individualized help for mental health treatment and other services. Visit them online or call (719)444-8484.
  • Colorado is fortunate to have many talented published authors that are willing to share their stories and provide insight into their lives. Every quarter, the Friends are pleased to bring one of those authors to East Library.

    December 17th

    12:30 - 2:30 p.m.

    Join us to hear from celebrated Children's Author

    Dian Curtis Regan

    This family friendly event is sure to dazzle all who attend - from the young to the young-at-heart! Light snacks will be provided.

    Free for all Friends of the Library Members and only $5 for non-members. Children 17 and under are free. Ms. Regan will have a selection of her books for purchase and to autograph; she is kindly donating 100% of the proceeds to the Friends.

    A bridge stretches into the distance. Text reads "We have a story: Homeless in Colorado Springs."

    What does our city look like through the lens of someone experiencing homelessness? Come find out at the "We Have a Story" exhibit.

    We Have a Story

    “We Have a Story: Homeless in Colorado Springs” is a documentary project completed in 2022 by people experiencing homelessness. This project captures the unique experiences of these individuals through photos and stories. The four individuals who participated in the project present their distinctive perspectives of this complex and diverse community, which is not easy to define.

    Participants took pictures over the course of a month in the spring of 2022. They met as a group with a professional photographer to discuss and critique their photographs. Participants also sat with a historian to conduct an oral history interview. At the end of the project, they each selected three images and wrote an accompanying artist story. The photos and narratives will be displayed throughout Pikes Peak Library District.

    The photos, narratives, and oral histories will also be accessible online through Special Collections at Penrose Library, which preserves the stories and records of the Pikes Peak region. “We Have a Story: Homeless in Colorado Springs” contributes to the region’s history by documenting the stories of contemporary residents who are typically overlooked in a community’s historical record.

    Exhibit Schedule:

    • 2022
      • November - Penrose Library
      • December - Manitou Springs Library/Manitou Arts Center
    • 2023
      • January - Cheyenne Mountain Library and Rockrimmon Library
      • February - Library 21c
      • March - East Library
    The cover of the book Military Matters is visible beside the silhouette of two soldiers. Text reads "Military Matters: Book release and panel discussion"

    Join Pikes Peak Library District’s Regional History and Genealogy (RH&G) department as they release the latest book in their Regional History Series: Military Matters: Defense, Development, & Dissent in the Pikes Peak Region.
    There will be a presentation by the RH&G staff members about the multitude of ways the military has shaped, contributed to, and transformed the Pikes Peak region.

    This will be followed by a panel discussion with three retired veterans living in the region:

      William Thomas, Retired Army Chief Warrant Officer
      Terrance D. McWilliams, Retired 7th Infantry Division and Fort Carson Command Sergeant Major
      Christine Martinez, Retired U.S. Army Flight Medical Aidman and Air Force Reserves

    When and Where

    The book release and panel discussion will be on Thu., Nov. 17 from 1 - 2:30 p.m. at Penrose Library. Military Matters: Defense, Development & Dissent in the Pikes Peak Region will be for sale to all attendees at a discount.

    Call for Makers in Residence

    PPLD is looking for two makers for the 2023 Maker in Residence Program.

    What is a maker? A maker can be an artist, a techno-wizard, an inventor, a crafter, and lots more!

    But specifically, we seek makers who…

    • love their craft and possess skills to teach and share
    • are curious about the world around them and enjoy tinkering
    • enjoy collaborating with others

    The Maker in Residence will teach classes to our patrons and envision, develop, and create a large-scale community project. Since 2014, the Maker in Residence program has hosted over 30 creative individuals, who introduced the El Paso County community to a wide range of projects and ideas including the following:

    • bookbinding & papermaking
    • drawing and painting (acrylics, watercolors, oils, alcohol ink)
    • stop motion / animation
    • songwriting and dancing
    • polymer clay
    • origami
    • sewing

    Applications will be taken through Mon, Nov. 21.

    Click here to apply.

    You will also need to complete and attach these two forms to the application linked to above:

    You can learn more about the Maker in Residence program here.


    Take and Makes for this project will be available at area PPLD libraries on Oct. 14, 2022.

    Supplies and Directions:

    Materials we provide:

    Paper Templates


    Materials you provide:




    Markers, Crayons, or Colored Pencils


    Color your template. Glue the template to the cardboard. Cut out around your template.

    Cut a small slit in the center of the circle to insert the penny. The slit needs to snugly hold the penny.

    Spin. As it spins, note what you see.

    The Science Behind it: Something in motion stays in motion unless a force acts upon it. In Penny Spinners, the friction between the penny and the surface slows it down and eventually causes it to stop. This project also shows color mixing as the colors combine when the spinner spins.

    Disability Awareness Month 2022

    PPLD is co-sponsoring the 2022 Pathways to Progress Seminar: An Invitation to Inclusivity with speakers from Mariposa Professional Services, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, Rework America Alliance, City of Colorado Springs, and The Independence Center.

    When: Wed., Oct. 5 from 10 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
    Where: Library 21c and Virtual
    Registration required.

    PPLD Programs

    Calvin Can't Fly: An ASL Event
    Join us for this story presented in ASL, voiceover, enhanced text, music, sound effects and animation followed by a fun, interactive ASL lesson!
    When: Sat., Oct. 1 from 1 – 2 p.m.
    Where: Library 21c
    Registration required.

    Sensory Storytime
    Join us for a fun and interactive Storytime that is specially created for children on the autism spectrum or with sensory integration challenges. For children ages 3 - 7
    When: Fri., Oct. 7 from 10:30 – 11 a.m.
    Where: Library 21c - Children’s Room
    Registration required.

    When: Sat., Oct. 8 from 11 – 11:30 a.m.
    Where: East Library - Children's Story Room
    Registration required.

    ASL Storytime & Playgroup
    Join Pikes Peak Library District and The Colorado School For The Deaf and The Blind (CSDB) for a bilingual Storytime and Playgroup! Books will be read in American Sign Language and English. An interpreter will be available for English and ASL translation.
    When: Wed., Oct. 12 from 10:30 a.m. - noon
    Where: East Library - Children's Activity/Story Rooms
    Registration required.

    Trauma-Informed Yoga and Meditation
    Join a certified yoga therapist for a specific low-impact trauma-informed yoga class. This class will lead you through specific postures and practices that will help ease anxiety and tension and cultivate an environment for healing process to begin.
    When: Mon., Oct. 17 from 10:15 – 11: 15 a.m.
    Where: Rockrimmon Library - Meeting Room
    Registration required.

    When: Mon., Oct. 24 from 10:15 – 11:15 a.m.
    Where: Rockrimmon Library - Meeting Room
    Registration required.

    When: Sat., Oct. 29 from 10:30 – 11:30 a.m.
    Where: Cheyenne Mountain Library - Marlene Rook Memorial Community Room
    Registration required.

    When: Mon., Oct. 31 from 10:15 – 11:15 a.m.
    Where: Rockrimmon Library - Meeting Room
    Registration required.

    Once Upon a Sign: ASL Storytime
    Come and join us for a fun Storytime featuring early literacy activities and stories signed in American Sign Language (ASL) by a Deaf role model, and spoken aloud in English!
    When: Tue., Oct. 18 from 9:30 – 10 a.m.
    Where: Library 21c - Children's Room

    When: Tue., Oct. 18 from 10:30 – 11 a.m.
    Where: Library 21c - Children's Room

    Virtual Once Upon a Sign: ASL Storytime
    Come and join us for a fun virtual Storytime featuring early literacy activities and stories signed in American Sign Language (ASL) by a Deaf role model and spoken aloud in English!
    When: Tue., Oct. 25 from 9 - 9:30 a.m.
    Where: Virtual
    Registration required.


    • OverDrive Booklist
    • Disability Resources Subject Guide
      A compilation of national, state, and local resources for individuals with disabilities, their families, and friends. Topics include advocacy, assistive technology, caregiver resources, emergency preparedness, employment & housing, recreation, and more.
    • Colorado Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR)
      DVR provides services which can include vocational guidance and counseling, short- or long-term training, job seeking skills, job development and job coaching, assistive technology, and needed accommodations to participate with DVR and on the job.
    • The Independence Center
    • The Independence Center provides information, resources, and support to help people with disabilities live, learn, work, play, and participate in civic life as equals.

    • Job Accommodation Network (JAN)
      The Job Accommodation Network is the leading source of free, expert, and confidential guidance on job accommodations and disability employment issues.
    • Pikes Peak Workforce Center – Accessibility to Services
      The Pikes Peak Workforce Center connects businesses with work-ready job seekers and employer-driven services. We help residents of El Paso & Teller Counties with career transition, whether they are unemployed, underemployed, or employed.
    • Rocky Mountain ADA Center
    • The Rocky Mountain ADA Center provides information, guidance, and training on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) tailored to meet the needs of individuals and organizations in our region.

    • Special Kids Special Families
      SKSF was founded in 1998 to provide respite and care for children and adults with disabilities. Programs offer community support services to families that are designed to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities throughout their life span.
    Arts Month 2022

    This October, arts and culture takes center stage across the Pikes Peak region as our community celebrates Arts Month! And you’re encouraged to have one new cultural experience with family or friends sometime this month.

    Art is for everyone, and we’re offering opportunities for people of all ages and skill levels! To kick off the month, we will be offering Take and Make kits at participating Library locations that you can pick up and enjoy doing at home (while supplies last).

    There are also several Library programs happening throughout October like workshops and open paint nights. Come celebrate Arts Month with us this October.

    Here are a few options:

    Bad Art Night – For Adults 
    Multiple dates starting Wed., Oct. 5


    All of the fun of making art with none of the pressure! Join us to create the most ridiculous pieces of art you can think of - from painting to collage to sculpture - while enjoying snacks and refreshments. At the end of the night, there will be awards for the most over-the-top bad artwork! All supplies will be provided. Come celebrate Arts Month with us in a judgment-free and glitter-heavy zone!

    Mini Pumpkin Decorating – For Tweens 
    Multiple dates starting Thu., Oct. 6


    Transform a mini pumpkin into a one-of-a-kind masterpiece! We will have everything you need to decorate a pumpkin for fall. For ages 9 - 12. Registration required.

    Pikes Peak Live! – For Teens and Adults 
    Sat., Oct. 22 from 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. at The Hall at PPLD (formerly known as Knights of Columbus Hall)


    Pikes Peak Live! is an all-day event that consists of performing art workshops that will conclude with a talent show by the participants for the public. The day will start with a series of workshops where participants can choose to attend either poetry, music, or comedy workshops. Participants then will come together to present their works (panel style) where they’ll learn some tips and tricks on performing on stage. The day will conclude with a talent showcase where participants can take part and test the water by performing in front of an audience. The showcase is open to public viewing.

    View all Library programs and activities during Arts Month.


    To find out what else is happening around the region, check out the calendar of events at ArtsOctober.com.

    We partner with the Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region throughout the year to encourage residents of El Paso County to engage with their community through arts, culture, and other programs and experiences. PPLD is a proud partner of #ArtsOctober and PeakRadar.com.

    Susan Orlean

    An inside look at the 2022 All Pikes Peak Reads' Adult Selection
    - Interview by Heidi Buljung and Anthony Carlson

    The adult selection for this year’s All Pikes Peak Reads program is The Library Book written by acclaimed author, Susan Orlean. PPLD Senior Librarian Heidi Buljung recently had the opportunity to chat with Susan about her latest book, the value of libraries to communities, how it felt to be portrayed by Meryl Streep in a movie, and what Susan learned about libraries while writing The Library Book.

    Heidi: The Library Book has been chosen as Pikes Peak Library District's All Pikes Peak Reads' adult selection this year. Every year, the program has a theme, and this year’s theme is “reinvention.” In what ways do you think libraries are places of invention and reinvention for people and patrons who visit them?

    Susan: I think I can answer the question in two ways. To begin with, libraries have always adapted to the moment. For many centuries, they were primarily repositories of books. They were really in the vanguard of seeing other forms of media as being appropriate for being in their collections. So, the library of today is different from the library of 20 years ago, and that was different from the library 20 years before that. It's been a constant and ongoing process of reinvention. I think libraries have been remarkable in that regard. They have really never seen themselves as museums of books, but rather, these living, breathing information centers, and whatever form information comes in, libraries have embraced it. I think that's why they've remained vital.

    I think another way of looking at this, though, is that libraries are also tools of reinvention. And in their earliest iteration, one of the main missions of a library was to educate people, and to give them the tools to reinvent themselves. In a sense, they were sort of an open university, and that has really remained a constant. We see this now with libraries offering GED programs and citizenship courses. There are all these different ways that a library makes itself available for an individual to say, ‘I want to learn about something new,’ or ‘I want to expose myself to a new set of information.’ You know, libraries, at their core, have always been about that transformational property.

    Heidi: On a little personal note, I'm a librarian because my mom took me to the library when I was a kid. Getting to the book, you talked about going on those trips with your mom to the library; those memories were stirred for you when you took your son to visit the Studio City Library. Can you share a little bit about why those childhood visits to the library were so important, and how they helped to shape who you are today?

    Susan: There is a way that they figured in my memory and my emotions as a kid that just defies explanation. There was something magical about going to the library. Even as a little kid, I had the kind of freedom to pick what I wanted and make my own choices. The actual act of going with my mom just felt full of mystery. I can't explain it other than to say that books have some magic and libraries have some transformational quality that, even as a kid, you sense. It made me an avid reader. And there's no doubt in my mind that being an avid reader led to me being a writer. I have no doubt that that's where the seeds were sown.

    I think going to the library and seeing this incredible array of books is quite different from going to a bookstore or going on Amazon and ordering the book you want. And, you know, browsing a library has different qualities. I think it's even different from browsing a bookstore, because you've got old books, you have books that have long since been out of print, and you have obscure oddball books that might not appear in a bookstore. In a library you really dive in and see the extraordinary range of curiosity. I think that really inspired me. That changed the way I looked at the world and made me appreciative of the range of stories and interests that a library presents.

    Heidi: The Library Book has been described as a love letter to libraries. How does that make you feel to hear that?

    Susan: It's absolutely wonderful! When I wrote the book, I had begun with the idea that I wanted to write something about libraries. I just felt like they're such interesting institutions and they've endured. Do you know why? When you think about how much society has changed since the first library was founded, it's so interesting that we still make libraries, and we still care so deeply about them. I just instantly thought, well, this is a subject that I'm really curious about.

    Then the story of the fire, which was a very dramatic story really interested me. I didn't go into it thinking “I'm going to write a tribute and a love letter.” Yet, of course, the whole reason I did the book is because I love libraries. So, it almost came as a wonderful surprise to me to in retrospect to say “Oh, of course. Of course, it's a love letter!” These are remarkable things that we humans have created and preserved, and the way they function is truly good in this world. But I have to say, not to sound too cynical, there's something really amazing about thinking of a place, particularly a public institution, that you feel like it's just good. It's full of goodness. And that made me really happy.

    Heidi: I want to ask about the cynical expression that you have when someone has died, his or her library has burned. And you explain a little bit of that in the book. Can you just explain that, again, for purposes of this interview, why that quote, that expression is so poignant?

    Susan: Well, it operates on many levels. On one level, it suggests that we each contain in our minds and hearts, a sort of library of a lifetime of stories, experiences, images, memories that our minds have sort of organized, like libraries. Everything we know, all the knowledge we have, as well as all of the memories and more personal information we have, disappears when we die. But the poignancy also is that libraries themselves exist almost like a communal soul. Everything that a culture knows, values, thinks, and cares about is contained in a library. And, if an actual physical library burns, you've lost this entire sense of a culture.

    Heidi: Awesome. And we have one final question. So, Jeremiah, who's in internal communications with the Library District, is a big fan of [the movie] Adaptation. He wanted us to ask you specifically how it felt to have Meryl Streep play you in a movie?

    Susan: Well, it's wonderful. I mean, if you're going to have the weird experience of being portrayed in a movie, which is, in itself, a very bizarre life experience… If you're going to have somebody do it, Meryl Streep would be the person you'd want. And you know, it doesn't make it any less weird, but it made me feel that I was having brain surgery by a highly trained surgeon, as opposed to being hit by a truck. And I love the movie. So, you know, my feelings about it are very positive.

    Heidi: This was so much fun! I know PPLD is really excited to feature your book as part of All Pikes Peak Reads this year. Thank you so much for the time today, and we really appreciate the opportunity to connect and talk about your book.

    This article originally appeared in the Fall 2022 edition of District Discovery.

    Fountain-Fort Carson School District 8 joins Colorado Springs School District 11, Harrison School District 2, Academy School District 20, Calhan School District, and District 49 as the sixth and latest school district to join Pikes Peak Library District’s (PPLD) PowerPass program since its initial launch in the fall of 2019.

    PowerPass is a digital library card just for students with the goal of providing access to PPLD’s digital resources, like databases, eBooks, and song and movie downloads to students as a supplement to existing school district resources.

    Learn more at ppld.org/PowerPass.

    Maker in Residence: Modular Origami with Gaby Oshiro

    Origami has been around for over 1000 years. Let’s look at origami under a different light. The art of paper folding was once considered a child’s activity, but now it attracts mathematicians, designers, engineers and artists all over the world. It only requires paper, but the possibilities are endless. In this workshop participants will learn to fold oversized and standard-size modular origami then use the pieces to build a large-scale community installation to be displayed at the PPLD libraries.

    El origami ha existido por mas de mil años. En este workshop me gustaría que el público a vea éste arte bajo una luz diferente. El arte del plegado de papel una vez fue considerado una actividad infantil, pero ahora atrae a matemáticos, diseñadores, ingenieros y artistas de todo el mundo. Solo requiere un pedazo de papel, pero las posibilidades son infinitas. En este taller los participantes aprenderán a plegar el origami modular de gran tamaño y luego utilizarán las piezas para construir una instalación de gran escala.

    Modular Origami

    In this workshop, participants will learn how to fold large modular origami and then use the pieces to build a large-scale installation.

    Registration is required; please click on link to sign up.

    Studio Hours

    Join Gabrielle Oshiro as she constructs a large-scale modular origami piece to be displayed in Library 21c. Participants may help with a variety of tasks such as folding origami, connecting pieces together into modules, pasting decorative papers, and more. Come learn from one of our community’s incredible makers all while being a part of a large-scale art installation!

    This is a drop-in event; registration is not required.

    • Thu., Oct. 13 from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at Library 21c
    • Fri., Oct. 21 from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at Library 21c
    • Thu., Nov. 3 from 1 - 5 p.m. at Library 21c
    • Mon., Nov. 7 from 1 - 6 p.m. at Library 21c
    • Wed., Nov. 9 from 1 - 6 p.m. at Library 21c
    • Fri., Nov. 11 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at Library 21c

    Artist Biography

    Gaby Oshiro was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and grew up in Treviso, Italy. Gaby got her love for visual arts and music from her parents. After fine arts school in Treviso, Italy, she started her own research through music, painting, and macrophotography and merging it all together in art installations in Italy, South America and the United States. She is always looking for that elusive hidden beauty that can’t be seen with the naked eye.


    Take and Makes for this project, for ages 5-12, will be available at area PPLD libraries, beginning Sept. 9, 2022.


    We provide:
    Coffee Filters

    Washable Markers

    Leaf Template

    Materials you provide:


    Cup of Water


    (See pdf link below for additional pictures of this project.)

    1. Stack your coffee filters. Use the template to trace a leaf on the top one. (If you’d prefer, just draw your own leaf.) Cut the leaves out through all the coffee filters.

    2. Use a washable marker to draw a thick circle in the center of each coffee filter leaf. Do not fill in the center of the circle or color the entire leaf.

    3. Fold the leaf 3 times (in half, in half again, and in half again). You should have a point in the middle of your circle.

    4. Carefully dip the point of the leaf in the cup of water and hold it there until the leaf is saturated. It may need a minute or so. You will probably want a new cup of water for each leaf.

    5. Let the leaves dry on a surface that can get color on it. Once they are dry, carefully unfold them.

    Library Card Sign-Up Month

    What better way is there to instill a sense of pride, responsibility, independence, and ownership in your child than getting them their first library card? September is Library Card Sign-up month and PPLD is encouraging adults to bring their little ones to a PPLD location to get their first library card and begin a relationship that will last a lifetime and bring them hours of adventure, fun, knowledge, and enjoyment.

    From Sept. 1 - 30, PPLD will present each new children’s library cardholder with a button that reads “I got a library card!” and a gift card for a free child’s meal at Raising Cane’s!

    Also, your child will be entered to win a family 4-pack of tickets to either Blue’s Clues (on Fri., Nov. 18) or Disney Junior Live! (Wed., Nov. 30) courtesy of Pikes Peak Center for the Performing Arts. (Only children 12 and younger are eligible. While supplies last. Some restrictions may apply)

    The new card must be in the child’s name, so bring them into any location and get them signed up today!

    If you prefer to apply for a card online, visit tinyurl.com/PPLDLibraryCardApp, then bring your child in to pick up their prizes.

    Give your child a gift that lasts a lifetime… All they need is their Library!

    This STEM project is a favorite from our quarantine days of virtual programming.


    Large jar (24 oz. spaghetti sauce jar or a large mason jar)
    Water - 2 1/2 cups water (or until it reaches 3/4 of the way up the jar)
    Oil - 1/2 cup
    Sprinkle in as much salt as necessary but you'd need about 1/4 cup total
    Food coloring (optional)


    Pour water 3/4 to the top of a mason jar. Stir in optional food coloring.
    Pour oil into jar. Allow water and oil to separate.
    Sprinkle salt into jar. Watch the reaction occur and make observations.
    Watch this project at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v3qhs9SW-RA


    Our APPR title for grades 4-6 is The Truth as Told by Mason Buttle by Leslie Connor.

    Homeschoolers: Register your homeschool group, or children for a live Zoom visit with the author, October 20 at 10 a.m. or 1 p.m. at https://ppld.librarymarket.com/events/month/2022/10. We will send you the link a few days before the program. Registration begins August 15.

    Schools: Please contact Barbara Andros to register at bandros@ppld.org
    If you are not able to make the live session, a recording of the program will be available for 30 days. Contact bandros@ppld.org for more information.

    Book description: Mason Buttle is the biggest, sweatiest kid in his grade, and everyone knows he can barely read or write. Mason’s learning disabilities are compounded by grief. Fifteen months ago, Mason’s best friend, Benny Kilmartin, turned up dead in the Buttle family’s orchard.
    An investigation drags on, and Mason, honest as the day is long, can’t understand why Lieutenant Baird won’t believe the story Mason has told about that day.
    Both Mason and his new friend, tiny Calvin Chumsky, are relentlessly bullied by the other boys in their neighborhood, so they create an underground haven for themselves. When Calvin goes missing, Mason finds himself in trouble again. He’s desperate to figure out what happened to Calvin and, eventually, Benny.
    But will anyone believe him?
    Leslie Connor is the author of several award-winning books for children, including two ALA Schneider Family Book Award winners, Waiting for Normal and The Truth as Told by Mason Buttle, which was also selected as a National Book Award finalist. Her other books include All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook, Crunch, and The Things You Kiss Goodbye. She lives in the Connecticut woods with her family and three rescue dogs. You can visit her online at www.leslieconnor.com.
    Sponsored by The Friends of the Pikes Peak Library District

    A nationally known Latina opera singer will headline the 11th annual “Latina Voices” program, sponsored by Friends of the Pikes Peak Library District at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 24 at Library 21C, 1175 Chapel Hills Drive.

    Cecilia Violette López is the artistic advisor for Opera Idaho and has performed with the Minnesota Opera, Opera Colorado, Opera Tampa, Opera Idaho, Ash Lawn Opera, The Northern Lights Music Festival, Madison Opera, Pacific Symphony, and Virginia Opera, among others.

    López has been named one of “Idaho’s Top 10 Most Influential Women of the Century” by USA Today and has been identified as one of opera’s “25 Rising Stars” by Opera News.

    The daughter of Mexican migrant workers, she now is on the roster of the Metropolitan Opera in New York. She will tell her success story and perform selected works.

    She will be accompanied on piano by Eric Osman, who performs with the Colorado Army National Guard band and teaches piano.

    A second accompanist, Ana Santeliz, has played musical instruments since she was a child.

    She has served in the Illinois National Guard Army Band and transitioned into the Army Band in 2014. In 2015, she moved to Colorado where she was stationed at Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora. In 2017, she discharged from the military and began studying Music Education at Colorado State University – Pueblo. She now works for the Community Partnership for Child Development as the Outreach Coordinator.

    Another presenter will be Keeley Griego, a Colorado Springs native, now living in Pueblo. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Colorado with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Women’s and Ethnic Studies, a minor in anthropology, a certificate in Gender and Sexuality Studies, and a certificate in Global Studies.

    Griego graduated from Leadership Pikes Peak’s Leadership Now! program for young professionals in 2018, served on the steering committee for Leadership Pikes Peak’s 2019 Women’s Community Leadership Initiative class, and was hired to manage both programs in 2020. Griego was selected as part of the Colorado Springs Business Journal’s Rising Stars Class of 2021 and is currently serving for a second year on the Women’s Foundation of Colorado’s first Women and Girls of Color Fund Advisory Council. She is now the Digital and Community Educator for Inside Out Youth Services.

    The program’s emcee will be Amy Sanchez-Martinez. A graduate of Mitchell High School and UCCS, she became a teacher at Mitchell, where she taught world history, U.S. history, constitutional and criminal law, and student government. After earning her Masters of Science in Organization Leadership with graduate honors from Regis University, she also served as social studies department chair for six years before becoming a master teacher for the System for Teacher and Student Advancement. She also served as dean of students and taught a student leadership class at Mitchell while studying for her principal’s licensure. As assistant principal at Mitchell, she oversaw instruction and professional development. Amy is currently campus director at Sand Creek High School, serving staff, students, and her community.

    The event is free and open to the public. Doors open at 9:30 with refreshments. For more information, 719-531-6333, ext. 1461.


    by Jeanne Davant

    Veronica Bélanger hosts meetings of the Mompreneur Network every second and fourth Monday morning at East Library. While the members of the business development group are hearing presentations, pitching their businesses, and referring client opportunities, their children romp and read in the Children’s area, attended to by a childcare provider. Bélanger also uses the MacLaren Hall at The Hall at PPLD (formerly known as Knights of Columbus Hall) adjacent to Penrose Library to introduce prospective members to the network.

    The Mompreneur Network is just one of dozens of small businesses, nonprofits, garden clubs, theater groups, and other community organizations that utilize Pikes Peak Library District’s (PPLD) facilities for meetings, classes, study groups, and events of all kinds. Nearly 70 spaces across the District are available for groups to reserve and use at no cost. Most libraries have at least one meeting or study space; Penrose Library, East Library, and Library 21c all have large and multiple spaces. Through a partnership between PPLD and the El Paso County Clerk and Recorder’s Office, some locations are also voter service and polling centers for upcoming primary and general elections.

    Hosting groups like the Mompreneur Network, or discussion group Socrates Café, and tutoring services Love to Learn is one way PPLD fulfills its mission of cultivating spaces for belonging, personal growth, and strong communities. From young children to retirees, the Library District encourages people to gather and to learn. (Find out more and reserve a meeting space!)

    On a recent Friday evening, Bélanger arrived early at The Hall at PPLD (formerly known as Knights of Columbus Hall) to prepare for an introductory meeting. There to help her were Dustin Booth and Nawal Shahril of the Library District’s Creative Services team, who set up an audio-visual system for the meeting.

    “MacLaren Hall is used for a variety of events including club meetings, concerts, theater performances, and dances as well as business presentations and classes,” Booth says. “It can accommodate 195 people; tables and chairs, a PA system, stage, projector, laptop, and screen are available for groups to use. The hall’s mezzanine, which serves as a coworking and networking space, has a capacity of 17 people, and the lower-level classroom can host presentations or meetings for groups up to 21 people.”

    Bélanger, a former salesperson and social media consultant, founded the Mompreneur Network after years of feeling like she was penalized for being a mom.

    “Being a parent and an entrepreneur combine to form a lifestyle and shouldn’t be treated as separate,” she tells the women who have come to learn about Mompreneur. “What if having a family doesn’t have anything to do with how professional you are?”

    She started out having meetings in her home but approached the Library District after the network’s growth required more space.

    “Having this space has made a big difference for us,” says Nancy Moore, Mompreneur Network’s president. “Everyone has really grown, and some have started new businesses.”

    Lively Debate

    Most Tuesday afternoons, Joe and Elizabeth Davis travel from their Flying Horse home to Monument Library to take part in lively but respectful discussions of thought-provoking subjects that range from philosophy and religion to politics, morality, and other timely topics at the Socrates Café.

    “We’ve been attending the Socrates Café for about 12 years,” Joe says.

    The Davises retired to Colorado Springs after serving with the International Health Office of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Joe had been a member of the library board in their previous hometown in Tennessee. After they retired, they were looking for a place where they could continue to pursue their interest in international topics and where they would be welcomed.

    “The Library was one of the things that led us to move here,” he says. “We were impressed with the services offered and the range of personnel. We found staff to be very helpful.”

    Shortly after they arrived, they visited Monument Library — the closest facility to them — and discovered a welcoming environment and a particularly interesting group.

    They met some of their best friends through the Socrates Café, which attracts about 20 participants each session. Moderated by Hans Post Uilerweer, the group recently discussed topics including border security, immigration, and emigration; Russia and Ukraine; post-modernism; and gender and identity.

    The Library making space available for these conversations “is an extraordinary service,” Joe says. “It’s part of the openness of the community as a whole that is well exhibited by the Library, and I suspect most people go away from these discussions having profited from them, having learned something, and seeing something in a different light.”

    Helping Kids Learn

    Stroll through the second floor of Library 21c on Monday evenings, and you are likely to see students ranging from kindergartners to adults working one-on-one with tutors to reach their academic and personal goals. Love to Learn, a nonprofit network of tutoring professionals, families, and kids, moved to East Library in 2020 after outgrowing its previous facilities at a church, and a year later moved to Library 21c. The summer session runs until two weeks before school starts and picks up again after the semester begins.

    “Probably 80 percent of our kids are in special education,” founder Linette Weise says. “It is a free community program; no one is turned away. It’s open to the whole community, and that is what PPLD is all about.”

    “The Library’s facilities, including accommodations ranging from cubicles, desks, and tables to the large Ent conference room, are ideal for the program,” says Cathy Bessenbacher, who helps Weise run the program. The children and their tutors can work individually for the bulk of the hour-and-a-half sessions and then come together in the conference room at the end for group activities.

    Being at the Library has several benefits for the kids, parents, and the program. Students can use their library cards to check out books they need. Parents often stay and use the Library’s facilities as well, and many return with their families for other Library events.

    Bessenbacher says the Library supports the program in many ways, such as providing copy services for her sign-in lists and making Love to Learn’s brochures available to patrons.

    “It’s bright and open, and the people are very friendly,” she says. “They really want to help us. So, it’s a win-win for both of us.”

    This story was originally featured in the fall issue of District Discovery, PPLD’s quarterly magazine.


    To our Library cardholders and patrons:

    As President of Pikes Peak Library District’s Board of Trustees, I wanted to inform you of a decision that was collectively made by the Library’s governing body during a special meeting yesterday.

    PPLD’s Board has withdrawn its intent to participate in the November 2022 general election. We heard from the community, listened to feedback, and decided now is not the time to ask voters for additional funding. But, we must continue such discussions if we want to do what’s right for our growing community and the Library District into the future.

    As a Library Trustee since 2019, I’m fully aware of PPLD’s need to address its funding challenges and find sustainable solutions as we look ahead to future years. El Paso County has more than doubled in population size since the last voter-approved mill levy increase in 1986. If we want to keep pace with the sprawling growth and ever-changing community needs, we’ll need to continue exploring and assessing options that may involve going to the voters at another time.

    Library Trustees and staff heard from more than 1,000 community members during the public input period of the Library’s strategic planning process last month, and we greatly appreciate everyone’s valuable input and engagement. There were many common themes across El Paso County, as well as amongst Library patrons, community leaders, and staff. Two of them were expanding service hours at existing Library locations and adding new PPLD facilities in areas that lack easy access – and those would only be possible with additional funding for the Library District.

    As a public institution that’s here for everyone, PPLD currently provides world-class resources, services, and spaces to nearly 700,000 residents across 2,070 square miles. For the Library to continue offering what the community needs and wants, now and into the future, we must consider opportunities for sustainable funding.
    Thank you for being cardholders and patrons of our great library system.


    Dr. Ned Stoll
    President, Board of Trustees
    Pikes Peak Library District

    July 20, 2022

    Library Board approves resolution indicating intent to participate in general election

    During their public meeting on July 20, Pikes Peak Library District’s Board of Trustees took their first steps to place an initiative on the ballot for November 8, 2022. They approved a resolution indicating its intent to participate in the general election to ask voters to approve additional funding for Library services, resources, and spaces.

    The last time voters approved a tax increase for PPLD was 36 years ago. Since then, the population of El Paso County has nearly doubled, with 400,000 more residents than in 1986 – and what our Library needs to offer to serve those in the Pikes Peak region has changed immensely. This ranges from our Library’s physical and digital collections to access to technology, community spaces, and programs for the youngest learners in our community.

    In general, additional funding would allow the Library District to keep pace with providing world-class spaces, services, and resources across El Paso County. Currently PPLD has 16 facilities, three mobile library services, and a large online hub of resources available to more than 700,000 residents across 2,070 square miles. With additional funds, the Library District could better meet the needs and demands of our growing community via our Library resources, services, and spaces. We want to be able to provide what residents need now and into the future – and fulfill our mission of cultivating spaces for belonging, personal growth, and strong communities.

    Here’s a snapshot of how the Library could use additional funding to help residents build better lives and strengthen the foundation of the Pikes Peak region:

    • Support early childhood literacy and development via Library services, programs, and resources
    • Expand community spaces available for use by nonprofits, businesses, and other community groups
    • Expand the Library’s physical and digital collections, including books, magazines, movies, music, research databases, online resource centers, and other things like board and yard games, outdoor and sporting equipment, and gardening and other tools
    • Improve access to technology for families and individuals across El Paso County like K-12 students, adult learners, jobseekers, and residents in more rural communities
    • Expand Library service hours and locations across the county so people can more easily access what they need when and where it’s convenient for them

    Public libraries play an important role in every community by welcoming all, fostering connections, enriching lives, and helping people reach their full potential at every step of life. We are grateful to you – our Library cardholders and patrons – for your support of our libraries.

    History Symposium 2023

    Download the Symposium's program sheet

    Art, Artists, & Entertainers

    Experience interesting research and knowledge about our local history at the 20th Annual Pikes Peak Regional History Symposium. This year’s theme is Art, Artists, & Entertainers. Artists and their creativity are at the heart of a region’s culture. The Pikes Peak region, with plentiful natural beauty, serves as a rich wellspring of inspiration. Presenters, selected from proposals submitted by academics, researchers, and the general public, will explore the artists and entertainers that have left a rich legacy in the Pikes Peak region.

    Film Festival

    Sat., May 20 | 11 a.m. - noon

    Penrose Library  
    Click here to register 

    Three short films, "Boardman Robinson: The Teacher", "Henry A. Clausen: The Danish American Wonder”, and "Not Quite Hollywood: The Alexander Film Company’s 'Anatomy of a Psycho'" tell three stories about local artists and their impact on the Pikes Peak Region.

    • Boardman Robinson, The Teacher  
      by Jim Sawatzki

      This chapter from the documentary, Rarefied Air: Historic Artists of the Pikes Peak Region looks at the life of Boardman Robinson, cofounder and first instructor at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center. Through interviews with artists, family, historians, and former students of Boardman Robinson, the film brings to life Robinson’s journey from New York to Colorado Springs. The documentary spans his friendship with Elizabeth Hare and Julie Penrose, his rise to become “the thread between the Broadmoor Academy and the new Fine Arts Center school,” and finally to his years in financial destitution. His artwork, much of which can still be seen in Colorado Springs today, is featured throughout the film.

      About the Filmmaker

      Jim Sawatzki is a Telly-Award-winning and Emmy-nominated producer/director. He has been documenting Front Range Colorado history since 1992. His work has been featured on regional PBS affiliates, local cable channels and nationally shown on A&E's Biography channel. A graduate of Michigan State University, Jim offers video and slide presentations to schools, libraries, and organizations.  

    • Henry A. Clausen: “The Danish American Wonder"  
      by Joanna Gonzalez

      This documentary takes you through the colorful life of Henry A. Clausen through stories shared by his children. He was an influential and intellectual bohemian man that contradicted the stereotype of other professional wrestlers. A true entertainer and man of many talents in the Pikes Peak region, his athletic physique inspired and allowed many artists to bring their artistic visions to life and his appreciation for art & literature brought people together in the community. Later, his bookstore would serve not only as a place to acquire rare and used books but also as a gathering place for local writers, artists, and musicians to have deep philosophical discussions and debates.

      About the Filmmaker

      Joanna M. Gonzalez is a full-time student and works for the Veterans Writing Community as a videographer. She served for six years in the United States Air Force as dental technician and is currently pursuing a degree in Human Physiology and Nutrition at the UCCS (University of Colorado Colorado Springs). She was selected to present her videography work at CSURF (Colorado Springs Undergraduate Research Forum.) She is driven to help others tell their stories and gain experience in historical videography.  

    • Not Quite Hollywood: The Alexander Film Company’s “Anatomy of a Psycho”  
      by John Jarrell

      This short documentary looks at the history of local success, Alexander Film Company, through the lens of its biggest flop: Anatomy of a Psycho, the only feature film ever produced by the studio. Although Alexander Films had decades of experience in commercial productions, and its technical know-how and studio space translated well to a feature-length film, Anatomy’s direction and script (with credit given to the infamous Ed Wood) ended any chance that the studio would compete with Hollywood, even if we ended up with a local cult classic.

      About the Filmmaker

      John Jarrell is the Regional History & Genealogy Program Coordinator at Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD). He earned a M.A. in American History with a focus on political and social history. John moved to Colorado Springs in 2013 when he began working as a math interventionist in Harrison School District 2. John has worked at PPLD since 2017 and is involved in various forms of community organizing throughout his residence in the city  

    In-person Symposium

    Sat., June 10 | 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.

    East Library | *Doors open at 9:30 a.m.  
    Click here to register


    • 9:30 a.m. | Doors open
    • 10 a.m. | Welcome and introduction
    • 10 - 11:15 a.m. | Presentations (3) Each presentation is scheduled for 20 minutes
    • 11:15 - 11:45 a.m. | Coffee Break Coffee and refreshments provided
    • 11:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. | Presentations (2) Each presentation is scheduled for 20 minutes 12:30 - 1 p.m. | Questions and Answers  
    • Loo’s Artists: The Talent Behind the Designs of Current, Inc. and Looart  
      by Hillary Mannion  

      The Loo Collection at the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum documents the Loo family of Colorado Springs and the growth and success of Looart Press and Current, Inc. over the span of nearly seven decades. Through original art, ephemera, photographs, oral histories, and correspondences from this important collection, this presentation will share stories of the artists behind the success of Current, Inc. and Looart.

      About the Presenter

      Hillary Mannion is the Archivist at the Starsmore Center for Local History, the archives, and special collections department of the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum. She graduated with a B.A. in History from the State University of New York at Fredonia and an M.A. in Museum Studies with a concentration in American Studies from George Washington University. Hillary has worked within a diverse set of archival and object collections throughout her career. This includes work at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, the White House Historical Association, Colorado College’s Southwest Collection, and the Bob Moog Foundation.  

    • Mid-Century Tensions in the Art of Larry Heller  
      by Rhonda Goodman-Gaghan

      The art of Larry Heller (1905 - 1983) exemplifies the American West of the mid-twentieth century. Through an examination of his landscapes, portraits of women, and World War II posters, this essay illustrates how Heller was influenced by his studies on artistic movements such as the Hudson River School, the Rocky Mountain School, and Modernism, as well as by his association with the Broadmoor Art Academy and his work with the Alexander Film Company. The paper argues that Heller’s art conveys a tension between an idealized past and the rocky reality of the middle decades of the 1900s.

      About the Presenter

      Rhonda Goodman-Gaghan is the Assistant Director and Curator at the UCCS Heller Center for Arts & Humanities. She holds a Master’s in Early American Culture from the Winterthur Program, a Master’s in History from Villanova University, and a Bachelor’s from Williams College. Her current research highlights Pueblo Revival Architecture, the Indigenous People of Colorado Springs, and local, state, and regional history.  

    • Peter, James, John, Rose, and Dorothy: The Palmer Families' Transatlantic Artistic Friendships  
      by Susan Fletcher

      William, Queen, Elsie, Dorothy, and Marjory Palmer cultivated relationships with writers and painters in Colorado and Europe. These friendships had a profound impact upon the cultural life of the Pikes Peak region. The presentation will examine these friendships through the lens of four works of art that have ties to the region: Rose Kingsley’s book, South by West; John Singer Sargent’s portrait, Miss Elsie Palmer; Peter Harrison’s painting, The Garden of the Gods; and watercolorist Dorothy Comyns Carr’s diary from her visit to Glen Eyrie in 1902.

      About the Presenter

      Susan Fletcher is a local historian and award-winning writer. She serves as the Director of History and Archives for The Navigators and Glen Eyrie. She is also the founder and CEO of History Joy Consulting, an archives and museum consulting firm. Fletcher earned her M.A. in History from Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis. She is the author of Exploring Childhood and Play Through 50 Historic Treasures, one of Booklist Magazine's top ten sports books of 2020. It was also a winner in the 2020 Colorado Authors League Awards of Excellence. She is also the author of Light and Life: First Presbyterian Church at 150, and the co-author of The Glen Eyrie Story and Dawson Trotman in His Own Words.  

    • Reframing Colorado Springs:  
      The Pikes Peak Lavender Film Festival and the Memory of Amendment 2  
      by John Jarrell

      The Pikes Peak Lavender Film Festival was an LGBT film festival hosted from 2000 - 2011. Film Festival Director Alma Cremonesi’s vision was to supplant Amendment 2’s influence on outside perspectives of Colorado Springs. The presentation will cover LGBTQ+ activism in Colorado Springs from the 1980s, Amendment 2, its aftermath in the 1990s, and finally, the rise and fall of the film festival beginning in 2000.  

      About the Presenter  
      John Jarrell is the Regional History & Genealogy Program Coordinator at Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD). He earned an M.A. in American History with a focus on political and social history. John moved to Colorado Springs in 2013 when he began working as a math interventionist in Harrison School District 2. He has worked at PPLD since 2017 and is involved in various forms of community organization throughout his residence in the city.

    • Ernestine Parsons: More Than the Artist You Didn’t Know You Knew  
      by Doris McCraw

      Ernestine Parsons is best known to most as a teacher of history at Colorado Springs High School, later known as Palmer High School. What people may not remember is her work on behalf of women’s rights and her work with the arts community and as an artist.

      About the Presenter

      Doris McCraw has always been intrigued by the stories of others. From an early age she was always an eager listener. She started performing for audiences at the age of two and a half and has continued since that time. Her passion for history and historic characters began when she was writing her one-woman show, based on the history of her family and the region where she grew up. After the premiere of that show, Doris began telling the stories of Colorado, the Pikes Peak region, and Colorado Springs.

    Virtual Symposium

    Mon., June 12 | 7 p.m.  
    Zoom link will be provided after registration

    Click here to register

    • The Colorado Springs Civic Players: When Broadway Met Our Town  
      by Katherine Scott Sturdevant and Rick W. Sturdevant

      In the mid-twentieth century, Colorado Springs hosted a remarkable, colorfully-theatrical population who, with the Fine Arts Center and other venues, developed a respectable representation of Broadway at the base of Pikes Peak. This presentation will share the earliest colorful origins of this city’s Broadway roots and glory days, as well as the rich, social history that its historical collection represents.

      About the Presenter

      Katherine Scott Sturdevant is Senior Professor of History at Pikes Peak State College, where she has taught and served in many roles for more than 30 years. Rick W. Sturdevant, PhD, joined the U.S. Air Force History & Museums Program in 1984 and has been Space Force Training and Readiness Command (STARCOM) Director of History since November 2021. Both have participated in the Pikes Peak Library District Symposia and contributed to most of the resulting Regional History Series publications since their inception.

    • The Flapper became the Life of the Party: The Jazz Age in Colorado Springs  
      by Chris Nicholl

      “Dancing in the high school building will not be tolerated in the future, according to an order posted in the building yesterday morning by Prof. William S. Roe. Students have been in the habit of using the cafeteria, spending their idle hours mastering new steps," it is said.” From its earliest days, Colorado Springs’ society enjoyed dances and dancing but suddenly new, troublesome, steps were being introduced in the High School. Whether Professor Roe knew it or not, his order announced that the Jazz Age had come to Colorado Springs.

      About the Presenter

      Chris Nicholl holds an M.A. in history. She was a Senior Library Associate in the Special Collections Department of Pikes Peak Library District and served as a co-organizer of the Pikes Peak Regional History Symposium since its founding in 2003.

    • Original Jewelers of Colorado Springs 1895 - 1910: Their Titles and What They Offered  
      by Lyndsey Rieple

      During the Pikes Peak Gold Rush, Colorado Springs flourished and grew dramatically. This presentation details the original jewelers of the area and what they were selling. Rieple will address questions like: Did they make the jewelry? Did they use gold from the Rush? Were they reselling goods manufactured in Rhode Island and New York?

      About the Presenter

      Lyndsey went full-time with her jewelry business in August of 2021 after nine years of working for other jewelry retailers while pursuing her business on the side. In her original work as an illustrator, drawer, and mural artist, she replicated a Works Progress Administration (WPA) mural for the Denton County Courthouse Museum. She also worked in the archives at Alfred, NY, as well as the Bayless-Selby House in Denton, Texas. She particularly values context which comes through story, community, and history.


    AS Palmer Lake Concert Series Social Graphic

    Pikes Peak Library District is proud to present the 2023 Palmer Lake Library Concert Series! Concerts will be on Fridays in the month of August from 6 – 7 p.m., starting with Aug. 11.
    This season's concert series will be held outdoors at the Palmer Lake Village Green & Gazebo, adjacent to Palmer Lake Library. Bring your lawn chairs or blankets and enjoy the music of this summer concert series.

    Traci Marques - PPWC

    by Traci Marques

    Like many places across the country, the Pikes Peak region is experiencing a labor shortage. Employers have job openings but either don’t receive many applications or there are skill mismatches between applicants and available positions. Colorado’s unemployment rate recently dropped to 4.1 percent – the lowest since February 2020 – and there are about 13,000 jobs to fill in both El Paso and Teller counties. That means the work of the Pikes Peak Workforce Center (PPWFC) to connect vital businesses with work-ready job seekers is more important now than ever.

    At PPWFC one of our core values is collaboration. We understand the value of partnering with other entities to enhance the quality and depth of our services for job seekers and employers. In today’s world of workforce challenges, it truly takes a village to ensure we’re aligning the skills in our workforce with the needs of local businesses.

    One of our most valued relationships is with the Adult Education team of Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD). PPWFC is a one-stop shop that helps job seekers or individuals looking to make a career transition to access a variety of resources and opportunities like job training or workshops. Like other community partners, PPLD is a mandatory partner under our federal grant, Workforce Innovation & Opportunity Act (WIOA). WIOA ensures a collaborative approach to workforce programs, knowing that there is no wrong door to access workforce services. PPLD’s Adult Education team often enhances our work by providing résumé building and other programs to job seekers who aren’t quite ready to come directly to PPWFC for services. It’s instrumental in ensuring job seekers who walk through our doors are set up for success.

    An industry hit particularly hard during the pandemic is the service and restaurant industry. We’re still seeing such businesses experience challenges finding qualified staff, and that’s one reason why we have proudly partnered with PPLD for food industry training courses. This five-week program is led by a professionally trained chef who helps participants secure a ServSafe Food Handlers certificate and find work in the culinary field as a prep or line cook. The most recent class graduated 12 students with the competencies to step right into back-of-the-house restaurant jobs. PPLD’s next round of classes begin Mon., Oct. 10, with applications accepted from Aug. 22 - Sept. 25.

    We’re also proud of another partnership with PPLD and School District 11 Schools on our Talent Accelerator Grant to improve digital literacy, which can often be a tremendous hurdle for individuals trying to navigate online job searches and interview processes. This was a pilot program for all three entities. Through this grant, we worked with PPLD to provide three evening courses to help individuals improve basic skills with computers and email, as well as internet and career searches; D11 provided computer lab space, plus referrals from PPLD. Participants not only gained new digital tools but also registered for Connecting Colorado, a state database to help match employers with ready-to-work job seekers.

    PPWFC is committed to building strong community partnerships to solve our complex workforce challenges. We can do this by leveraging the subject-matter expertise and proficiencies of organizations across the region. Our relationship with PPLD is just one example of how strategic partnerships maximize our ability to ensure that local workforce aligns with the needs of our business community.

    If you or someone you know is in the market for a job or looking to make a career change, start by contacting the Pikes Peak Workforce Center or visiting your local library. We also welcome businesses to reach out if they’re looking to obtain, retain or reskill their staff. PPWFC can connect you to available resources and opportunities and help everyone take the next step in their career.

    Traci Marques is the Executive Director/CEO of the Pikes Peak Workforce Center, the American Job Center serving El Paso and Teller counties. Learn more about the Center’s services for job seekers and employers at ppwfc.org.

    For immediate release – The Friends of the Pikes Peak Library District will inaugurate a new series of programs, Meet the Author, at 1 pm Saturday, Sept. 17 at the East Library, 5550 N. Union Blvd.

    Green, a Colorado Springs outdoorsman, writer and photographer, has written nearly 50 books on rock climbing, hiking and scenic byways all over the West, and particularly in Colorado, since 1977. His newest book is “Hiking Colorado’s Hidden Gems,” from Falcon Press.

    His talk about fall color drives will include recommendations on the best regional routes to consider for leaf-peeping this autumn, and discuss some of the landmarks and historic features along the way.

    Green is a former Golden Quill Award winner, an annual honor bestowed by the Friends. After his talk, he will have copies of his books for sale and will autograph them.

    Admission is FREE for Friends members, or $5 at the door for non-members. To join Friends in advance of the event, visit this link: https://ppld.org/friends/join

    Please RSVP for this event so that we may accommodate all who wish to attend and supply free refreshments for everyone. Do so by e-mailing diehlbev@hotmail.com or by texting or calling (719) 573-4894.

    For more information, call 719-531-6333, x1461.

    Draw Your Community

    We're celebrating our communities through art! During the month of August, patrons participated in PPLD’s Draw Your Community program and submitted a drawing depicting what they love the most about their community/neighborhood.

    Several PPLD locations are now displaying their community's drawings throughout the month of September. Artists have been invited to the gallery open houses to talk about their work with the public and to meet other artists.

    Join us to celebrate and appreciate the works of local artists from our communities. Each reception will include a meet and greet with artists and light refreshments. No registration required.

    An online gallery is also available to browse.



    Care & Share Food Bank

    Need extra food for you and your family? We partner with Care & Share Food Bank to bring their “grocer on wheels” to Library patrons weathering life’s storms. Their Mobile Market ensures people have access to fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as pantry staples, right in their neighborhoods. All food is free of charge and open to the public.





    Ten years ago, the Waldo Canyon Fire burned through one neighborhood and forced the evacuation of thousands of people. Less than a year later the Black Forest Fire destroyed hundreds of homes north of Colorado Springs. Each fire ended two lives and disrupted countless others. At the time, both fires became the most destructive in Colorado History. The proximity of the fires, both geographically and chronologically, compelled our community to look at wildfires differently.

    Visit Special Collections, located at Penrose Library, to see the new exhibit Wildfire, which presents the story of the Waldo Canyon Fire and the Black Forest Fire. Knowledgeable Regional History and Genealogy team members can also help you explore historic resources including our archival records, photographs, and secondary sources. PPLD collects and preserves these historic materials for the benefit of the community.

    Whether you lived through these events or are a newcomer to the region, you will learn something about our community with a visit to see this exhibit. Special Collections is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.