This blog has been a wonderful way for us to promote library resources and services, but today, in honor of Thanksgiving, I’d like to turn things around a bit. This year and every year, I’m grateful for the library patrons of all types who make the Provo Library the magical place that it is, including:
We have a few families and individuals who come to EVERYTHING – getting every last drop of use out of the library. They check out books every week, regularly ask for recommendations, meet every visiting author, attend almost every program, and fight to finish every last summer reading challenge. Library users like them are a librarian’s dream, and their familiar faces are always so welcome.
You don’t even have to enter the building to get great use out of our library. Some of our most dedicated patrons exclusively use digital resources like Libby and Lynda. Digital usage has gone up dramatically in recent years, and we’re so happy that people have found new ways to prioritize reading and information in this busy world.
Kids looking for a place to hang out after school, stay-at-home parents who badly need a break from the house, low income patrons seeking a warm place to hang out and read or use the internet, elderly individuals wantinga little extra help learning to use social media to connect with their families - these are some of our most regular visitors. We’re so thankful for the patrons of all types who feel welcome here, making libraries the beautifully democratic places that they are.
By the end of this year, we will have hosted 39 authors, 18 performing groups, and 14 learn-it instructors. Each of these individuals brought a diverse audience through our doors, and as staff we certainly can’t complain about being paid to attend their events!
Whether its businesses, families, motivational speakers, politicians, or oh so many brides and grooms, the people who rent our rooms for private events bring a special energy to the library. They fill the Academy side of the building with music, happy voices, flowers, delicious food smells (which regularly make me jealous), and sometimes even camels or bagpipers. They often introduce the library to people who have never been here before, but who end up coming back.
We have around 25 regular volunteers who help run our teen events, restock the book store, clean books and shelves, organize books for our ballroom book sales, assist with special events, teach computer classes, and so much more. We couldn’t accomplish all that we do without them.
No matter which kind of library patron you are, thank you for your support. As much as we’d like to take credit, as staff, for how awesome the Provo Library is, this is your institution, not ours. Your participation, tax dollars, and love for this building and the information and entertainment it provides are what make it incredible. The people of Provo saved this building from the wrecking ball more than 20 years ago, and they keep it a vibrant, ever-evolving place today. You motivate us to be better, and we’re so grateful for you.
Before there were video games there were Choose Your Own Adventure books.
I remember the thrill I got as a kid coming to the end of a chapter and having to decide, do I go down the shadowy path (turn to page 25), or knock on the heavy oak door (turn to page 56). There was something delightfully delicious about being able to choose how the story would turn out.
I am happy to say that even with modern computer adventure games Choose Your Own Adventure books are still popular. Now readers have a variety of adventure options in both the fiction and informational sections.
This is the classic series that you may have read as a child. Still kind of silly, but guaranteed to be fun.The library has over 30 different titles in this series, including some featuring popular super heroes.
This is a version of the original series for a younger (2nd-3rd grade) reader. It is even more silly, and has fun cartoonish illustrations.
Do you have a kid who loves the I Survived series? This is an informational series that has interactive adventures based on real historic events. The library has more than 50 titles in this series, but they are scattered throughout the informational section. The best way to find them is to type “interactive history adventure” in the search box in the online catalog.
When some kids get trapped in a haunted 80's era video arcade, the Midnight Arcade, they must play their way out of danger, ultimately controlling whether they live . . . or die! This is a new series in the Choose Your Own format. The second in the series comes out in September.
I am so excited that we recently obtained thirteen new books on CD in Spanish for Children! This brings our JSPANBCD collection to 42. The majority of these are picture books, including favorites like:
In addition to the picture books, there are also the first five books about Los Chicos del Vagón de Carga (Box Car Children) and several collections of folk and fairy tales. These are great for Spanish speakers and Spanish learners of all ages. Why not check out some for your next road trip?
Estoy tan feliz que hemos adquirido trece audiolibros nuevos en español para niños. Este lleva nuestra colección JSPANBCD a 42. La mayoría de estos son libros ilustrados incluyendo cuentos favoritos como
Además de los libros ilustrados, también tenemos los primeros cinco libros sobre Los Chicos del Vagón de Carga y varias antologías de cuentos populares y de hadas. Estos son excelentes para hispanohablantes y estudiantes de español de todas las edades. ¿Por qué no sacar algunos para su próximo viaje por coche?
The state of Utah has a fascinating history as the crossroads of many types of people, ideas, and cultures as the nation expanded westward. I recently attended a conference of Utah history enthusiasts, nerds, and researchers sponsored by the Utah Division of State History which discussed this aspect of our past and how it influenced the culture of Utah today. At the conference, they gave out a list of top Utah history book recommendations, selected by Utah history archivists, librarians, historians, and scholars. Wouldn’t you know it- the Provo Library has most of these titles in our Special Collections area!
Here are some of the books from their list that you’ll find at the library, which pertain specifically to early Utah history at the burgeoning of our state. These books don’t shy away from the good, the bad, and the ugly aspects of pre-statehood and give a unique and rich accounting for the shenanigans, struggles, and surprises that came with the territory and travels in the region.
The Mormon pioneers didn’t have an isolated, ideal, conflict free life in the Salt Lake Valley. This book describes the interactions and confrontations between various groups, such as mountain men, railroad builders, Native Americans, and others who occupied the Great Basin region.
Jedediah Smith worked as a trapper for both Ashley and Henry and the Rocky Mountain Fur Company, mapping the West as he went. His journey across the length of Utah, the width of Nevada, and blazing a trail westward through South Pass are only some of the adventures detailed within this biography.
The railroads brought culture, ideas, and people West to Utah, and this included both the wholesome and the less savory. This book examines the part that prostitution and polygamy played in shaping early Utah’s economy, morality, and gender roles as it became more densely populated.
Historian Leonard Arrington is considered to be one of the most prolific and influential writers on LDS and Western history. This classic offers exciting stories and insights into the economic development and religious movements that shaped the Utah and surrounding Great Basin area.
Originally published by the Utah State Historical Society in 1951, this book details the journey West through Utah, in excerpts from journals and reports by early explorers .
If you’ve got a Utah history project, special research interests, or a general curiosity about this or other Utah historical topics, come peruse our Special Collections volumes, many of which are rare, out of print, or hard to find titles. Visit us to learn more about the history of our great state, the people who founded it, and those that were here before Utah was Utah!