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Where the Library Meets the Bookstore

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Posted by jim under Trends, Innovation,Trends, Innovation

This week, The New York Times opened its most recent in a long line of articles on the changing face of the American public library with an amusing anecdote from Arlington Heights, Ill. – one which librarians in Minnesota can no doubt relate to.

The Arlington Heights Memorial Library, like most library systems of its size, utilizes a computer tracking system to gauge the popularity of new titles and to order a number of copies commensurate to demand. After the release of the novel Fifty Shades of Grey, staff found themselves with not ten or even 20 – but 36 copies - of the bestseller circulating in their system. 

Having such a stockpile of one title reminded library staff strongly of that other bibliophile’s haven: the brick-and-mortar bookstore, where it is not at all uncommon to see a stand or kiosk devoted solely to a blockbuster author or one award-winning title. 

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Local Music and Your Local Library: Success Stories

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Posted by jim under Trends, Innovation,Trends, Innovation

Unless you have the rare fortune of living within a stone’s throw of a “living history” site like Colonial Williamsburg, amateur and professional historians alike will tell you that one of your best bets for learning about local history is your local library. Indeed, many public librarians and library Friends view the preservation and dissemination of local history to be one of their facility’s key objectives. But, why stop there?

In an exciting variation on the same theme, a number of library systems in America, including right here in Minnesota, are making innovative strides to both share local music talent (and preserve it for posterity).  

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Changes to MALF Membership Calendar Take Effect Dec. 31 – Act Now!

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Posted by jim under Membership,Membership

Beginning in January, in order to more effectively serve Friends of Libraries, MALF is changing to a membership year equal to the calendar year. (Previously, themembership year for each member began on the date payment was made.) 

As we transition, every individual or group signing up or renewing from now until New Year’s will be given membership for the rest of December, as well as for all of 2013. At the close of the month, all members who are not already renewed will be asked to renew for calendar year 2013. 

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Watch Free Webinar on Advocating Effectively for Libraries in Today’s Political Climate

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Posted by jim under Advocacy, Webinars,Advocacy, Webinars

This October, as part of its annual conference in downtown St. Paul, the Minnesota Library Association brought in congressional strategist and veteran lobbyist Stephanie Vance as keynote speaker. Vance is hailed in Washington and beyond as the “Advocacy Guru” and the “Advocate’s Advocate.” Drawing from her extensive experience on Capitol Hill, Vance laid out how libraries of all types and sizes can reach their fullest potential by mobilizing grassroots support and lobbying effectively on the local and state government levels. 

Many of Vance’s central talking points are available to everyone in condensed form on her website, advocacyguru.com, and in “long form” in her two most recent books: "The Influence Game" and "Government by the People: How to Communicate with Congress."

On Monday, Nov. 19 – in the wake of the election cycle – the ALA Washington Office hosted Vance for “Connecting with the New Congress,” a special webinar dealing specifically with the 2012-2013 political scene and what library advocates can expect during the current lame duck period and once the 113th U.S. Congress meets for the first time in January 2013.

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Minnesota Libraries Win Historical and Cultural Heritage Grants

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Posted by jim under Grants,Grants

Thanksgiving 2012 came just a few days belatedly for 53 libraries, historical societies, heritage groups, and like-minded organizations throughout Minnesota. On Tuesday, Nov. 27, the Minnesota Historical Society gave yet another reason to be thankful, announcing the newest round of recipients of coveted Minnesota Historical and Cultural Heritage grants.

Seven of those 53 are library systems or branches – most of them MALF members.

Three recipients – the Great River Regional Library system, the Blue Earth Community Library in Faribault County, and the Wabasso Public Library in Redwood County – will receive $6,500-$7,000 to install microfilm and microfiche readers in their facilities. The stated goal is to make primary source materials (particularly those chronicling the history of the local area) easily accessible to the public at large....

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United for Libraries Announces “Citizens-Save-Libraries” Campaign Partnership

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Posted by jim under Campaigns, Foundations, Advocacy,Campaigns, Foundations, Advocacy

This summer, MALF hosted “Drafting the Blueprint,” a series of workshops aimed at helping library supporters throughout Minnesota marshal the resources at their disposal to effectively lobby on behalf of their local library.

One key takeaway for all participants in each session can be summed up as follows: libraries come in all shapes and sizes and serve a variety of purposes and audiences, but none can be a valuable community resource over the long term without effective advocacy.

“Citizens-Save-Libraries,” a new campaign hosted by United for Libraries (formerly ALTAFF) and funded by the Neal-Schuman Foundation, is proof positive that this most fundamental lesson is as true on the national library scene as it is in Minnesota. Read the details to learn more.

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Donate to MALF Nov. 15 – GiveMN’s Annual “Give to the MAX” Day!

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Posted by jim under Donations,Donations

One of MALF's core objectives is to facilitate communications between and help share resources among the many Friends of Libraries organizations in Minnesota. Central to that mission is the notion of collaboration. In other words - as is the case with so many non-profits, of all types and sizes - the more you put into it, the more you get out!

To this end, there are a number of ways library friends, staff and trustees can engage with MALF. In fact, these are as many as they are varied: Follow and converse with us on social media. Share a fact sheet or library-related happening that might be of interest to the state's library and literary community. Submit a bid for our annual Evy Nordley Best Project Award.

Another excellent way you can contribute to the continued vitality of MALF is by making a financial donation.

While such support is, of course, appreciated year round, there’s no better time to give than Thursday, November 15 – GiveMN’s annual “Give to the MAX” Day. Make preparations to donate now, or read the details below. 

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How to Celebrate United for Libraries' 'Friends of the Libraries Week' All Year Long

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Posted by jim under Awards,Awards

Last week, Friends of the Library organizations across the country held special events in conjunction with Friends of the Libraries Week. From thank you receptions in Alabama and Alaska to book sales in Wisconsin and Wyoming, October 21-27 offered a snapshot of the vibrant support network that bolster America’s 9,000 public libraries and 90,000 school libraries.

The 2012 celebration marked the seventh year that ALTAFF (The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends & Foundations, a division of the American Library Association) has hosted and promoted this growing event. It is the first time, however, that the group has done so under its new name: United for Libraries.

The new organizational name is appropriate. It says something about the group’s intentions and hopes for campaigns such as the Friends of the Libraries Week.  It is intended as much more than a self-contained, seven-day window set aside to give perfunctory thanks to the library staff and volunteers in your local community. It is also an opportunity to share fundraising, advocacy, and programming ideas with Friends groups all across America.

To this end, MALF is pleased to pass on the news that United for Libraries has just opened the nomination window for what it is calling the “National Friends of Libraries Week Award.” Friends groups that coordinated special events or programs at any point October 21-27 are encouraged to share the details with United for Libraries. 

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Traveling Libraries in Minnesota: A Case Study on the Spirit and Potential of Library Friends Organizations

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Posted by jim under History, Innovations

One of this year’s stand-out nominees for the Evy Nordley Award for Best Project (and ultimately one of the two 2012 runner ups) was the Friends of the Houston Public Library. Houston, Minn., is located in the far southeastern tip of the state. At population 990, it is, in the words of library director Liz Gibson-Gasset “smaller than small.”

Recently, the Friends of the Library in Houston spearheaded a multifaceted community initiative to raise funds (plus in-kind donations) towards major renovations. You can read about it in this October article from the MALF blog. In short, the success in Houston shows what good a relatively small but dedicated cadre of library friends, staff and volunteers can do for a small and rural community.

Minnesota boasts a solid track record in this department. As a recent MinnPost article points out, one cogent example is the case of traveling libraries, which have been around since the 1890s. 

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Ramsey County Installs Electric Car-Charging Station at Roseville Library

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Posted by jim under Trends, Innovation

For many library patrons – and, indeed, even for some library systems – e-readers and loanable e-books are still cutting-edge technology. The perception is an understandable one, considering that it was less than a decade ago that Amazon introduced its first generation Kindle.

But “cutting edge” is a very relative term. Even as some systems are slow to adopt and expand their e-book catalogs, the forward-thinking, seven-branch Ramsey County library system is breaking new ground in an entirely different area.

Thursday, Oct. 25, Ramsey County opened its first library electric car-charging station at its Roseville branch, 2180 North Hamline Ave. 

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New Study Provides Insights on Millennials' Reading Habits, Library Usage

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Posted by jim under Studies

The Pew Research Center’s “Internet and American Life Project” this week announced findings from a two-year-long  study into the reading habits, interests and expectations of young people in America. The study focused on readers in the important 16-29 bracket, since interest in this demographic is currently very high in both the publishing and library fields.

The researchers employed a two-pronged methodology. They drew quantitative and qualitative data from a nationally-representative phone survey, administered in November and December 2011 (sample size: 2986), and then collected further qualitative insights during a series of online focus groups in 2012.

The study’s findings have important implications for America’s public libraries. Some of the results may surprise you.

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Minnesota Library Foundation Announces Silent Auction 'Mini-Grant' Winners

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Posted by jim under Conferences, Auctions

Here’s a brain teaser: What do reading club book bags, library teen zones, and the statewide commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the U.S.-Dakota War have in common?

Each is a 2012 beneficiary of the Minnesota Library Foundation’s annual Silent Auction.

Once again, the Minnesota Library Association hosted this popular and growing auction as part of its annual conference. This year’s event, held in the exhibit showroom at the RiverCentre in St. Paul, drew plenty of traffic.

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MALF Announces 2012 Evy Nordley Award Winner

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Posted by jim under Awards

For many Americans, the televised Emmy Awards ceremony is the highlight of their early fall. In Minnesota, however, Library Friends and staff can associate the changing of the seasons with a very different and more lasting kind of awards ceremony: MALF’s annual Evy Nordley Award for Best Project by Friends of Libraries.

The winner was announced 10 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 4, during the Minnesota Library Association (MLA)’s annual conference, held this year at the RiverCentre in Saint Paul. As in years past, top prize included a commemorative plaque and $1,000. The two other finalists received a Certificate of Recognition and $250. Click “Read Full Post” to learn the results!  

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MALF’s “Drafting the Blueprint” Workshop Series Wins MLA ‘Above and Beyond’ Award

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Posted by jim under Conferences, Drafting the Blueprint

In July and August, 117 library friends and staffers congregated in five areas around the state to participate in MALF’s tremendously successful “Drafting the Blueprint” workshop series. You can read an event overview (courtesy of MALF board members Joan Larson, Janet Urbanowicz and Ruth Solie) by clicking here.

Thursday, Oct. 4, the Minnesota Library Association (MLA) recognized MALF’s efforts at its annual conference in St. Paul with its distinguished ‘Above and Beyond’ Award. President Carol Walsh accepted the award in front of all in attendance prior to the day’s keynote by congressional strategist and veteran lobbyist Stephanie Vance.

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Important Changes to the Membership Calendar

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Posted by jim under Membership

Announcement from the MALF Board of Directors.

In the interest of more effectively offering services to Friends of the Libraries, MALF has changed to a membership year equal to the calendar year. (Previously, the membership year for each member began on the date payment was made.) 

Note that, as we transition, every individual or group signing up or renewing after September 1, 2012 will be given membership for the rest of 2012, as well as for all of 2013

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Branch Renovations Report: Big Changes Coming to Hennepin County Libraries

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Posted by jim under News

The Walker Library in Uptown is closing its doors Saturday, September 22 for major remodeling. When it reopens in 2014, it will be with an entirely new layout better suited to filling patron needs. Read further to hear about this and several other exciting building renovation projects taking place (or soon to take place) in Hennepin County, and about how you can support your favorite branch during transitional periods.

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Minitex Announces Appointment of New Director

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Posted by jim under Appointments

Minitex, the Minnesota-based network of Midwestern public and academic library systems, last week announced the name of its new Director. Valerie Horton, currently Executive Director of the Colorado Library Consortium (CLiC), will assume the role in December.

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National Library Advocacy Organization ALTAFF Is Now “United for Libraries”

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Posted by matt under Advocacy Organizations

Earlier this year, the voting member base of ALTAFF – the Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations – elected to change the organization’s formal title to “United for Libraries: the Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations.”

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Minnesotans Strongly Value Libraries, Says State Fair “Bean Counter” Straw Poll

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Posted by jim under Advocacy

Library advocates could point to a wide variety of statistics and metrics to show that Minnesotans use, appreciate and support their local library. But few are as fun or illustrative as a novel straw poll conducted this year at the Minnesota State Fair by Cities Matter (an ongoing project of the League of Minnesota Cities). 

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In Advance of the November Elections, ALA Schedules Webinar on Library Civic Engagement

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Posted by jim under Workshops

Election season is upon us once again. In the run-up to the November elections and in recognition of the local library’s continued - and increasingly diversified - role as a public informational resource, the American Library Association (ALA) is hosting a webinar on how librarians and Library Friends can promote civic engagement. Mark your calendars for 3-4 p.m. Wednesday, September 26. 

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Pre-register by Sept. 21 for October MLA Conference + “Library Friends Day”

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Posted by jim under MLA Conference

By David Katz

Update: The deadline is fast approaching to pre-register for “Minnesota Libraries: A Capitol Idea,” the dynamic annual conference of the Minnesota Library Association (MLA). This year’s event is slated for Wednesday, Oct. 3 - Friday, Oct. 5 at the Saint Paul RiverCentre, 175 West Kellogg Blvd.

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MALF Summer Workshops Stress Strategy and Action

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Posted by matt under Workshops

Today's blog post comes courtesy of Board Members Joan Larson and Janet Urbanowicz.

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Library Friends "Advocacy Guru" Among Keynote Speakers at MLA Conference in Oct.

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Posted by matt

2012 MLA Conference | Register by August 31 for Early Bird Rate

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Posted by jim under Conferences, Webinars and Workshops

MINNESOTA LIBRARIES: A CAPITOL IDEA

Minnesota Library Association Conference October 3-5, 2012

Saint Paul RiverCentre, 175 Kellogg Blvd W, St. Paul MN 55102

Events for Library Friends, Trustees and Advocates

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Minnesota Historical Society Goings on

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Posted by jim under News from Minnesota

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This week's blog post comes courtesy of Pat Coleman, Acquisitions Librarian at the Minnesota Historical Society.

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What’s happening in southeast libraries: Summer Reading Programs

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Posted by jim under News from Minnesota

ids-reading.jpgIt’s almost time to grab your sun hat, sun protection -- and get your summer reading on!

Summer reading programs help kids keep up their skills, draw in reluctant readers through incentives and activities and help establish reading as a lifelong habit. Many library friends groups in Minnesota support summer reading programs.


Mollie Pherson, regional librarian for SELCO (Southeastern Libraries Cooperating) and SELS (Southeast Libraries System) contacted library directors with active friends groups in the SELCO region to gauge summer reading program support.


Here’s the sunny SRP picture in the SELCO region:

The Friends of the Austin Public Library donate money then library staff does the actual purchasing. They give a free book to all children registering for the summer reading program and a second book when they complete the program. All books have labels in them – A gift from the FOL – reinforcing the friends’  interest and involvement.

In 2012 the Friends of the Blooming Prairie Library will contribute $1,633 for eight programs – more than most years because a generous donor gave $500 to host a specific children’s program. The friends usually gives about $1,000 per year.

The Buckham Memorial Library Friends in Faribault support the SRP by purchasing incentives and supporting programming.

The Friends of the Dodge Center Public Library have sponsored the SRP performers in the past, and they also help purchase some summer reading prizes. This isn’t every year, but when things are tight, staff can make the ‘ask.’

The Houston Public Library Friends donate around $1,000 to buy books that tie into the summer reading theme, and they donate around $250 for buying small items to reward kids for reading.

The Friends of the Kasson Public Library put in $300 toward the SRP. Incentive purchases are included in the $300 donation.

The LaCrescent Public Library Friends pay for special speakers and provide money for SRP incentives and supplies. Typically, the friends contribute $500 toward supplies, and the amount varies on the speaker fees.

The Friends of the Lake City Public Library. Their Friends support the SRP by volunteering their time and, when asked, have given financial support.  Waterskiing is another summer pastime. Lake City was the home of Ralph Samuelson, just a teenager when he invented the sport, and the city is known as "the birthplace of waterskiing." Reading while waterskiing, anyone?

The Friends of the Northfield Public Library provide annual support for SRP programming and purchase incentives: Coupons for local businesses. Staff purchase $50 in $1 coupons to reward kids for reading and meeting their weekly reading goals. Some of the businesses match what the friends buy so all the money stays in Northfield – keeping it local. The Friends of the Northfield Public Library purchase t-shirts for the summer teen helpers. Library staff say they could not do the SRP they do without the support of the friends.

The Friends of the Rochester Public Library fund incentives for the SRP.

Spring Grove Public Library Friends purchase incentives for participants and pay for all costs of the SRP, except employee time.

Although SRPs are deeply supported in the SELCO area, Pherson doesn’t point to any one reason why.

“This may have to do with shrinking budgets in the standalone libraries,” she said. “SELCO only reimburses for paper products, such as bookmarks, reading logs and posters. To give out incentives, books or other prizes, libraries have to include the SRP into the budget or look for community and library partners. I love seeing our FOL groups in the SE support summer reading!” 

Learn more about summer reading programs – grants, themes, benefits and research -- here.

Does your friends group support summer reading programs? Let us know and we’ll feature your work in a MALF blog post.

 

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Carol Walsh
MALF president

Lunch for libraries approaches

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Posted by jim under ALTAFF

The Minnesota Library Foundation will hold its fifth annual Lunch for Libraries from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 pm. Wednesday, June 13 at Kagin Commons on the Macalester Campus in St. Paul.

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National Library Legislative Day Update

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Posted by admin under Member Activity
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More than 300 library supporters from across the country descended on Washington, DC April 24 for 2012 National Library Legislative Day. A strong delegation – representing southeast, central, northwest and the metro areas --helped make the NLLD a success for Minnesota libraries.
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MALF President to Attend National Library Legislative Day

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Posted by jim under MALF Board Activity

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MALF President Carol Walsh will be among Minnesota participants --Michael Scott, Mollie Pherson, Marlene Moulton Janssen, Kathy Fredette, and Barbara Misselt – for National Library Legislative Day in Washington, D.C., April 23-24.
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Save the Date for MALF's Statewide Workshops

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Posted by jim under Conferences, Webinars and Workshops

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The Minnesota Association of Library Friends is pleased to present "Drafting the Blueprint: Strengthening Relationships Between Library Friends and the Community" a workshop series designed to help all in the library community (friends, advocates, staff and supporters) develop the tools they need to better support the library.

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The ins and outs of hosting public forums at your library

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Posted by jim under Conferences, Webinars and Workshops

Learn to convene and moderate community discussions in four free monthly online workshops presented through ProgrammingLibrarian.org with support from the ALA Cultural Communities Fund.

 

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Advocacy: seven questions with Peter Pearson

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Posted by jim under Ideas from around the U.S.A.,Advocacy

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Peter Pearson is president of The Friends of the St. Paul Public Library.

Through extensive advocacy efforts, friends advocates were able to restore

$376,000 to the libarary's 2012 budget. Read about it here.

 

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Minnesota Public Libraries Return on Investment Report Sessions

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Posted by admin under Conferences, Webinars and Workshops

A statewide survey that reveals Minnesota’s support for public libraries

ublic-libraries.jpgThursday, February 23, 2012
St. Cloud Public Library
1300 West St. Germain Street St. Cloud, MN 56301
10 a.m. to Noon
OR
Friday, February 24, 2012
Ramsey County Library — Roseville
2180 North Hamline Avenue Roseville, MN 55113
10 a.m. to Noon
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A Letter from MALF President: Library Day at the Capitol

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Posted by jim under News from Minnesota

Hello, Library Friends,

Save the date: Tuesday, February 28, 2012.
Cost: Free for all Library Friends Members

carol-walsh-blog.jpgEach year the Minnesota Library Association – MLA -- and Minnesota Educational Media Association – MEMO -- the organization of school librarians, co-sponsor Library Legislative Day at the Capitol.

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The Friends Of The Ely Library receives $100 Thousand Gift

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Posted by jim under ALTAFF

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The Friends of the Ely Library received a windfall in November 2011 in the form of a $100,000 gift from the Edward B. and Esther Nelson Estate.

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Help Ensure Access To Effective School Library Programs. Sign The Petition.

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Posted by jim under ALTAFF

Now's the chance to do your part in the legislative process. 

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