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Maine State Library News



Maine State Library news and related news about libraries throughout the Maine.



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State Library Receives Grant for Digitization of Historic Maine Newspapers

Fri, 12 Aug 2016 13:57:35 EDT

http://www.maine.gov/msl/news/display.shtml?id=701348" /> https://www.maine.gov/msl/images/microfilm_digitization.jpg" />Augusta - The Maine State Library will digitize over 100,000 pages of historical Maine newspapers and make the content available online as part of a two-year, $275,000 grant announced this week by the National Endowment for the Humanities.The project will involve imaging master microfilm copies of Maine newspapers and optimizing the newly-created digital files so that text of the newspapers can be searched. The digitized content will then be uploaded to the web-based Digital Maine repository at www.digitalmaine.com , and the Library of Congress Chronicling America archive at www.chroniclingamerica.loc.gov . "Digitization of these historic newspapers will greatly enhance access to first-hand accounts of Maine history as it unfolded," said Maine State Librarian James Ritter. "Anyone with an internet connection will be able to browse the papers or perform a quick keyword search to look for stories about specific people, places or events from the past." Any Maine newspaper printed prior to 1923 could be included in the project provided that the master microfilm is available for imaging. Newspapers printed between 1923 and 1962 might also be eligible for digitization, if the publisher is willing to provide a waiver of copyright to permit the content to be imaged and shared.The Maine State Library is encouraging institutions and individuals holding master microfilm copies of historical Maine newspapers to contact the library if they are interested in having their collection considered for inclusion under this project. Given the limited number of pages funded through the project, not all eligible papers can be imaged at this time. Priority will be assessed on a number of factors including historical value and geographic coverage. Visit www.maine.gov/msl/newspapers for more details and contact information.Information gathered through this project will update a 1999 Maine State Archives directory of Maine newspaper holdings and provide for an interactive online database to allow users to search newspaper holdings by institution, media format, and availability online.Urgent Need for Additional Newspaper Digitization EffortsA significant share of Maine newspapers won't be imaged through microfilm digitization because quality master film can't be located or may not have ever been created. Newspapers printed in the late 19th Century and the first half of the 20th Century are at particularly high-risk of permanent loss because of the instability of the paper that they were printed on. Even when stored in optimal conditions, the acid in the newsprint will cause the paper to become brittle over time. "Some original copies of Maine newspapers are so fragile that they can't be handled without causing permanent damage," said Adam Fisher, director of Collections Development and Digital Initiatives at the Maine State Library. "There's an urgent need to get quality images of these papers today before the information contained in them is lost to time." Although the Maine State Library does not have permanent staff or dedicated revenues for digitization, the institution has developed a partnership or sponsorship model that led to the digitization of bound original volumes of historical newspapers using high-resolution book scanners located at the library's offices at the Maine State Capitol Complex in Augusta. Earlier this year, the Maine State Library partnered with Friends of Libby Memorial Library in Old Orchard Beach to digitize two local newspapers from the past, the Old Orchard Apple and the Old Orchard Mirror. Contents of those papers can be found online at www.digitalmaine.com/old_orchard. The Maine State Library is now engaged in a similar project with the Oquossoc -based Maine Outdoor Sporting Heritage Museum and the Phillips Historical Society to digitize the Maine Woods newspaper published between 1900 and 1909. Copies of those papers will be available online later this year."The process of imagin[...]



Children's Book Award Winners Announced at Maine Reading Conference

Thu, 07 Apr 2016 13:53:25 EDT

Augusta - Nearly 350 librarians and educators from public and school libraries from around Maine converged on Augusta today for the 27th Annual Reading Round Up conference promoting reading and literature for children and young adults. One of the highlights of the event was an award ceremony honoring books, authors and illustrators representing excellence in the field of children's and young adult literature.

2016 Lupine Award

Four titles received recognition through the 2016 Lupine Award honoring living authors or illustrators who are residents of Maine or who have created a work prominently featuring Maine. The award was first given in 1989 and is sponsored by the Maine Library Association.

Paper Things by Jennifer Richard Jacobson and The Boys Who Challenged Hitler by Phillip Hoose received awards in the Lupine Award juvenile and young adult category. Awards in the picture book category went to Island Birthday, by author Eva Murray and Illustrator Jamie Hogan and Growing Up Pedro by author and illustrator Matt Tavares.

2016 Katahdin Award

Maine author Cathryn Falwell received the 2016 Katahdin Award from the Maine Library Association. Established in 1999, the award recognizes lifetime achievement and an outstanding body of work of children's literature in Maine.

2016 Chickadee Award

The 2016 Chickadee Award went to Elizabeth, Queen of the Seas by author Lynne Cox and illustrator Brian Floca. The award is given to by the Maine Children's Choice Picture Book Project to honor works created in the picture book category for children in kindergarten through fourth grade.

2016 Maine Student Book Award

El Deafo by Cele Bell received the 2016 Maine Student Book Award. The award recognizes works selected by students in grades 4-8 and is sponsored by the Maine Library Association, Maine Association of School Libraries, and Maine Reading Association.

About Reading Round Up



The Reading Round Up conference is an annual event offering learning opportunities for children's and school librarians. The conference is sponsored by the Maine State Library and organized by a statewide committee of librarians dedicated to promoting literacy and love of reading in children and young adults. More information can be found online at: http://www.maine.gov/msl/libs/services/rru .



Special Genealogy Program Offered at State Library on March 26

Mon, 21 Mar 2016 14:23:16 EDT

Have you ever wondered who your ancestors are? Where they came from? Whether they were kings or paupers?

On Saturday, March 26 from 9:30 am to 1:00 pm, representatives from the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) will host a genealogy workshop at the Maine State Library to help guide new and experienced family researchers in discovering answers to mysteries from their past. The program is free and open to the public. No advance registration is required.

This workshop is the first in a series of events organized through a partnership between the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Maine State Library. Subsequent events will be held the last Saturday of each month. For more information about these programs or the work of the DAR, visit: www.dar.org/l or call (207) 512-0249.



Post-holiday Programming at State Library for New Tablet / E-Reader Users

Wed, 30 Dec 2015 14:38:23 EST

Augusta - Not quite sure how to use that new e-reader or tablet device Santa brought you for Christmas? The Maine State Library is hosting a series of events after the holidays to help you get started.

Four classes will be held in January to show patrons how to use their new devices to download free e-book and audiobook content online. Each session is tailored to address one of the four major operating platforms used by tablet and e-reader devices. The class schedule is as follows:

- Kindle e-ink session: Tuesday, January 12 from 10:00 AM -12:00 PM - Kindle Fire session: Wednesday, January 13 from 2:00-4:00 PM - iPad/iOS session: Tuesday January 19 from 10:00-12:00 PM - Android / Nook session: Tuesday, January 26 from 2:00-4:00 PM

Each class is free and open to the public, but preregistration is required due to limited space. Save your seat by calling 207-287-5600.

The Maine InfoNet Library can be found online at: ">http://download.maineinfonet.org"> http://download.maineinfonet.org. Online support with the Maine InfoNet Library can be accessed by clicking the help button at the top of any page on the site.



October 2015 Edition of the Maine State Library Genealogy Newsletter

Mon, 07 Dec 2015 11:11:33 EST

The October 2015 edition of the Maine State Library genealogy newsletter, Genealogy Notes from Emily is http://digitalmaine.com/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1070&context=msl_docs" target="_blank"> available online.

The newsletter is published several times a year by Maine State Library reference librarian and genealogy expert, Emily Schroeder. The October edition highlights new titles of interest in the Maine State Library Genealogy Collection.

The Maine State Library is home to the largest genealogy collection in the state as well as town histories and published vital records for towns in Maine and a good deal of New England, materials on the Maritime Provinces of Canada, and genealogy reference materials.

In 2013, Schroeder launched a Genealogy Club at the Maine State Library. The group meets monthly with the goal of promoting interest in genealogy, celebrating ancestral history and sharing best practice strategies for family research. New members are always welcome.

To learn more about genealogy resources at the Maine State Library, please contact Emily Schroeder at Emily.Schroeder@maine.gov or call 207-287-5600.



Maine Readers' Choice Award Winner Announced

Fri, 25 Sep 2015 09:48:04 EDT

BANGOR, Maine - The Maine Readers' Choice Award Committee is pleased to announce that author Anthony Doerr's novel, All the Light We Cannot See, has been named the 2015 winner of the Maine Readers' Choice Award. The award was announced today at the Northeastern Maine Library District Fall Council Program.The Maine Readers' Choice Award was officially established in 2013 by the Maine State Library and the Maine Library Association with the aim of increasing awareness and reading of adult literary fiction. The launch also came on the heels of a controversial decision regarding one of the literary world's top prizes for fiction. "In 2012 the Pulitzer Prize committee did not award a Fiction Prize," says Valerie Osborne, committee chair and library consultant for the Northeastern Maine Library District. "Members of the library community, booksellers, publishers, authors and avid readers were outraged with the indecisiveness of this esteemed group of judges. We set out to do it better. It is ironic that this year's winner, as well as last year's winner, both won the Pulitzer Prize for their books." The first year's award went to a virtually unknown author, Wiley Cash, for his debut novel A Land More Kind Than Home.In order to be considered, books must be published in the United States in the previous year, appeal to a wide audience and be judged by the Committee to be notable works of exceptional quality. The committee, which was comprised of 20 librarians, booksellers, literacy advocates, reviewers and writers, selected the following from an initial field of more than 125 works of fiction: Euphoria by Lily King (Atlantic Monthly Press); Redeployment by Phil Klay (Penguin Press); and All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (Scribner) "As a MRCA committee member, I usually puzzle over my picks. This year, All the Light We Cannot See, was an easy choice. Author Anthony Doerr has woven a remarkably engaging tale about the strength and resilience of the human spirit. The experience lingers with you long after the book has been returned to the shelf," said Charlie Campo."In a year of especially wonderful books, the heavy reading was a pleasure. I met a few writers I didn't know and revisited some old favorites. All the Light We Cannot See was just that: filled with light. I loved it," said Maine author, Monica Wood.The final selection for this year's winner was done by the readers of Maine who were encouraged by Maine libraries and booksellers to read the finalists over the summer months. Online voting took place in September to select this year's winner. Book discussions were offered in a number of libraries across the state to promote the three finalists. All the Light You Cannot See is from the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, a stunningly ambitious and beautiful novel about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II. Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighbourhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure's reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum's most valuable and dangerous jewel. In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart[...]



Maine Libraries Benefit From Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation Grants

Fri, 18 Sep 2015 11:15:35 EDT

Several Maine libraries were the recipients of recent grants from the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation. According to a list compiled by the Maine State Library, at least sixteen libraries received funds during the latest round of grant awards from the foundation.

"The Kings continue to be supportive of our public libraries," said Valerie Osborne, a consultant with the Maine State Library. "So many of our public libraries the benefited from their generous gifts over the years."

The types of projects funded include infrastructure upgrades, like a new windows or paving, and renovation projects to improve existing space. One grant went to support the development of a multiuse green space.

Recipients include:
  • King Middle School (Portland, ME) $3,000 to add to their collection;
  • Blue Hill Library (Blue Hill, ME) $30,000 green building initiative;
  • Milo Free Library (Milo, ME) $30,000 window replacement and a heat pump;
  • Case Memorial Library (Kenduskeag, ME) $35,000 building renovations and collection development;
  • Swan's Island Library (Swan's Island, ME) $35,000 to transform the reading room to a conference center;
  • Thomaston Public Library (Thomaston, ME) $2,500 to fund a summer reading and activities program;
  • Orono Public Library (Orono, ME) $25,000 for a multiuse green space behind the library;
  • Caribou Public Library (Caribou, ME) $15,000 for new carpeting;
  • Rumford Public Library (Rumford, ME) $45,000 to restore the reading room ceiling;
  • Harrison Village Library (Harrison, ME) $15,000 new coding system;
  • Cundy's Harbor Library (Cundy's Harbor, ME) $5,000 to pave the driveway and parking area;
  • Hamlin Memorial Library (South Paris, ME) $10,000 for renovations;
  • Lawrence Public Library (Fairfield, ME) $15,000 for roof replacement;
  • Weld Public Library (Weld, ME) #50,000 for interior renovations;
  • Joanne Waxman Library, Maine College of Art (Portland, ME) $2,000 for the development of an emergency preparedness and recovery plan; and
  • Soldiers Memorial Library (Hiram, ME) $10,000 to make the front entrance handicap accessible.


"Many of the libraries that received grants were small town institutions that serve as the cornerstone of their communities," said Maine State Librarian James Ritter. "This funding will help them undertake important projects that will help them remain sustainable in the future."

The Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation conducts two grant reviews each year with deadlines on June 30 and December 31. Applications can be submitted at any time, but will not be considered until after those deadlines. For more information, visit the foundation's website at: www.stkfoundation.org.">http://www.stkfoundation.org">www.stkfoundation.org.



Maine State Library Books-By-Mail Program Now Part of URSUS Catalog System

Mon, 07 Dec 2015 11:23:30 EST

The Maine Books-By-Mail">http://www.maine.gov/msl/outreach/booksbymail/">Books-By-Mail is now part of the URSUS">http://ursus.maine.edu/">URSUS catalog system used by all other patrons of the Maine State Library.



New Catalog for Books-By-Mail Patrons

Beginning, Tuesday, August 18, Books-By-Mail patrons can begin requesting titles in the URSUS">http://ursus.maine.edu/">URSUS catalog system. If you aren't able to find the title you need in URSUS, you can search and request the item through the MaineCat">https://mainecat.maine.edu/">MaineCat catalog.

What does this mean for Books by Mail Patrons?

  • You will retain your library card, and you will continue to receive the same access to MARVEL databases, the Maine State Infonet Download library, and you will continue to be served by our Books-By-Mail staff.


  • You will continue to see the Books-By-Mail collection when you perform online searches. You will now have easier access to titles in the general collection of the Maine State Library, and the collections of other URSUS libraries.


  • You will no longer see the same collections from other libraries in the Minerva system, but you will be able to search those catalogs using MaineCat catalog.




If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us at 1-800-762-7106.

Books-By-Mail is a program of Maine State Library's Outreach Services, funded by the Library Services and Technology Act grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and administered by the Maine State Library.



Information for Libraries Concerning Upcoming Changes in Maine Library and Patron Confidentiality Law

Fri, 19 Jun 2015 15:57:37 EDT

State law protects the privacy of patron records maintained by Maine public libraries, the Maine State Library, the Law and Legislative Reference Library as well as the libraries of the University of Maine System, Maine Community College System and Maine Maritime Academy.

In early 2015, Maine lawmakers amended the Maine Library and Patron Confidentiality Law to enhance and clarify patron privacy protections. Those changes are reflected in Public">http://legislature.maine.gov/bills/getPDF.asp?paper=SP0127&item=3&snum=127">Public Law 2015, Chapter 81 and will become effective this fall - 90 days following the adjournment of the First Regular Session 127th Maine Legislature.

Summary of 2015 Changes in Maine Library and Patron Confidentiality Law

The amended language in Public Law 2015, Chapter 81 does the following:
  • Specifies that personally identifying information about the library patron is confidential
  • Clarifies that confidential patron information may be released to library officers, employees, volunteers and agents of the library for administrative purposes.
  • Allows aggregated and statistical data about library use to be published so long as the confidentiality of a library patron's personally identifying information is not jeopardized.


Frequently Asked Questions about Maine Library and Patron Confidentiality Law

In an effort to assist Maine libraries in understanding changes in law, the Maine State Library has posted background">http://www.state.me.us/msl/libs/confidentiality_law_faqs.shtml">background information and frequently asked questions on its website.



The Maine State Library offers "Let's Talk About It" Book Group

Wed, 21 Oct 2015 12:24:44 EDT

Augusta - The Maine State Library has been selected by the Maine Humanities Council to offer "Let's Talk About It", a free reading and discussion group with copies of books available through the library. This program is provided by the Maine Humanities Council's Maine Center for the Book in cooperation with the Maine State Library.

The series Modern Times in Maine and America, 1890-1930, begins Tuesday, July 7th at 1:00 p.m. at the Maine State Library in Augusta and continues for a total of 5 sessions, through August 4th.

Books to be read and discussed in this series include: The Jungle by Upton Sinclair; Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman; Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis and As The Earth Turns by Gladys Hasty Carroll. A scholar provided by the Maine Humanities Council will facilitate the discussions.



Date Book Title Author
July 7 Modern Times Video
July 14 The Jungle Upton Sinclair
July 21HerlandCharlotte Perkins Gilman
July 28BabbittSinclair Lewis
Aug 4As The Earth Turns Gladys Hasty Carroll
Each Tuesday session will meet at 1:00 p.m. at the Maine State Library Studio on the third floor for approximately 90 minutes.

"Exploring ideas and issues through literature has a unique and fun way of creating community," said Nicole Rancourt, director of Let's Talk About It. "We find that there is great interest among adults in getting together to discuss what they've read with others. Having a discussion leader like Lisa Botshon who is both excited about the readings and skilled in facilitating can help to deepen this experience." Lisa is the Coordinator of the Humanities Department and a Professor of English at the University of Maine at Augusta.

Books for the program are available for loan at the Maine State Library. Please call the library at (207) 287-5631 by Wednesday, July 1st to register by phone or email alison.l.maxell@maine.gov. Please provide us with your complete contact information including name, address, telephone and email. After you have registered, come in (as soon as you can!) to pick up your personal book bag containing all four books in the series. Registration limited to 25 so sign up early! For library hours and directions visit the website at: www.maine.gov/msl/about/hrsdirect.shtml

This program is offered to Maine libraries through the Maine Humanities Council in partnership with the Maine State Library.

For more information about the "Let's Talk About It" Book Groups and the work of the Maine Humanities Council, see www.mainehumanities.org or call the office in Portland at (207) 773-5051.



Six Maine Librarians Chosen for Library Leadership Program

Mon, 18 May 2015 13:22:27 EDT

The Maine State Library and Maine Library Association have announced the names of participants in the second Maine Library Leadership Institute. The 2015 class includes Marcela Peres of the Lewiston Public Library, Abby Morrow of the Ellsworth Public Library, Erica Irish of the Belfast Free Library, Michelle Connors of the Walker Memorial Library in Westbrook, Mary Beckett of the Edythe Dyer Community library in Hampden, and Lisa Neal Shaw of the Caribou Public Library.

The Maine Library Leadership Institute is a year-long program that prepares library leaders to bring effective and innovative services to Maine citizens so they can meet the challenges of today and the future.

The kickoff event for the institute is the week-long New England Library Association's "New England Library Leadership Symposium" in August, led by Maureen Sullivan, a past president of the American Library Association and a nationally recognized speaker on leadership.

Each month the cohort will meet to learn about and discuss solutions to challenges facing the library profession. The participants will also be responsible for designing and completing a project that will address Maine library needs. The year will culminate with a presentation of the projects at a state-wide meeting of librarians.



Children's Book Award Winners Announced at Maine Reading Conference

Tue, 14 Apr 2015 10:01:17 EDT

(image) http://www.maine.gov/tools/whatsnew/attach.php?id=641971&an=1">(image) src="http://www.maine.gov/tools/whatsnew/attach.php?id=641971&an=1" alt="photo of children's book award winners" width="340px">

Award winners at 2015 Reading Round Up conference: Matt Tavares, Chris Van Dusen, Alicia Potter, Melissa Sweet, Cynthia Lord



Augusta - Nearly 350 librarians and educators from public and school libraries from around Maine converged on Augusta on April 9 for the 26th Annual Reading Round Up conference promoting reading and literature for children and young adults. One of the highlights of the event was an award ceremony honoring books, authors and illustrators representing excellence in the field of children's and young adult literature.

2015 Lupine Award

Four titles received recognition through the 2015 Lupine Award honoring living authors or illustrators who are residents of Maine or who have created a work prominently featuring Maine. The award was first given in 1989 and is sponsored by the Maine Library Association.

Zane and the Hurricane by Rodman Philbrick and Half a Chance by Cynthia Lord received awards in the Lupine Award juvenile and young adult category. Awards in the picture book category went to The Right Word, by author Jen Bryant and Illustrator Melissa Sweet and Jubilee! by author Alicia Potter and illustrator Matt Tavares.

2015 Katahdin Award

Maine author and illustrator Chris Van Dusen received the 2015 Katahdin Award from the Maine Library Association. Established in 1999, the award recognizes lifetime achievement and an outstanding body of work of children's literature in Maine.

2015 Chickadee Award

The 2015 Chickadee Award went to Carnivores by author Aaron Reynolds and illustrator Dan Santat. The award is given to by the Maine Children's Choice Picture Book Project to honor works created in the picture book category for children in kindergarten through fourth grade.

2015 Maine Student Book Award

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library, by Chris Grabenstein received the 2015 Maine Student Book Award. The award recognizes works selected by students in grades 4-8 and is sponsored by the Maine Library Association, Maine Association of School Libraries, and Maine Reading Association.

About Reading Round Up

The Reading Round Up conference is an annual event offering learning opportunities for children's and school librarians. The conference is sponsored by the Maine State Library and organized by a statewide committee of librarians dedicated to promoting literacy and love of reading in children and young adults. More information can be found online at: http://www.maine.gov/msl/libs/services/rru .



Finalists for 2015 Maine Readers' Choice Award Announced

Tue, 14 Apr 2015 09:13:13 EDT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 14, 2015 Contact: Valerie Osborne (207) 947-8336The Maine Readers' Choice Award selection committee has announced the three finalists for the 2015 Maine Readers' Choice Award. The committee, which is comprised of 22 librarians, booksellers, literacy advocates, reviewers and writers, has selected the following from an initial field of more than 120 works of fiction: Redeployment by Phil Klay (The Penguin Press); Euphoria by Lily King (Atlantic Monthly Press); and All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (Scribner.) Joshua Bodwell, Executive Director of the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance, had this to say about one of the finalists: ""Oh. My. God. Those words came to mind repeatedly as I read Redeployment, Phil Klay's debut short story collection of thematically linked tales of soldiers at war, soldiers waiting for war, and soldiers attempting to come home from war. The first story in the book-the title story-opens with this three-word punch in the gut: ‘We shot dogs.' If we're lucky, each year we read books that would be exceptional no matter when we read them but which pack an extra wallop because of the time at which we're reading them. Redeployment is this sort of book, a book of our times. If not the best short story collection of 2014, it may be the most important. After being named a 5 Under 35 honoree by the National Book Foundation, Klay won the 2014 National Book Award for Fiction." "I started out listening to this book on my walk one morning, but ended my day with reading it in bed because I needed to know what happened. I needed to know today. Euphoria is a story about three anthropologists and the odd love triangle they have created. It was very sensual, intelligent, and sad. It's a quick read, but truly a very good one," said Holly Williams, Pittsfield Public Library committee member."Among the hundreds of WWII-based fiction and non-fiction works out there, All the Light We Cannot See stands out from the crowd," said Aimee Turner of Portland. "This is an incredibly memorable, moving novel, with characters I've come to care deeply about - children with specific vulnerabilities (and capabilities), and the incredible, but surprisingly believable, sequence of events that bring their lives together. Frankly, I'm looking forward to re-reading it simply to enjoy it again.""Although the novels differ widely in subject and style, each features remarkably strong characters who were shaped by their time and place in history," said Mamie Anthoine Ney, Director of the Auburn Public Library. "These are books that any Maine reading enthusiast should consider adding to their summer reading lists."The selection of the Maine Readers' Choice Award winner is now in the hands of fiction lovers throughout the state of Maine. During the first two weeks of September, readers will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite book at public libraries throughout the state or on the Maine Readers Choice Award website: www.mainereaderschoiceaward.org. Books reviewed by the Maine Readers' Choice Award Committee came from recommendations from librarians, patron recommendations and booksellers throughout the state of Maine. Many of the titles selected have appeared on a wide variety of "best" books lists this year as well. That list was pared down through a blind voting process by members of the Committee.In order to be considered, the books must have been published in the United States in the previous year, appeal to a wide audience and be judged by the Committee to be notable works of exceptional quality. Revised editions, updates of previously published works, series or trilogies are not eligible for consideration. Previous winners include A Land More Kind Than Hom[...]



Raising Readers Program Makes Book Donation to Maine Libraries

Thu, 09 Apr 2015 12:47:13 EDT

Augusta - In celebration of 15 years of fostering early childhood literacy in Maine, the Raising Readers program will donate a significant collection of new children's books to small and rural libraries throughout Maine. This announcement was made today at the Reading Roundup conference of school and children's librarians in Augusta.

The donation will provide between 15 and 20 new board and picture books to 120 Maine libraries in greatest need of new children's book collections.

"Many small and rural libraries have been getting by in recent years with minimal resources for new books, especially children's books" said Cassandra Grantham, Director of Raising Readers. "This donation recognizes the important role of those institutions in communities and enhances our shared goal of bringing books into the homes of Maine children."

Since 2000, Raising Readers has worked to support early literacy by providing high-quality, developmentally appropriate hardcover books to every Maine child aged birth to five through partnerships with hospitals, medical practices and healthcare providers where the books are distributed at births and well-child visits. During that time, the program has reached 228,000 individual children and distributed more than 2.2 million books. Raising Readers is a collaboration between MaineHealth and EMHS and the nearly 360 hospitals and medical practices that give books to their patients. It has been generously funded by the Libra Foundation since its inception.

"Raising Readers has had an enormous impact in promoting family reading in Maine over the last 15 years," said James Ritter, Maine State Librarian. "Maine libraries are grateful for their efforts."

Over the last nine years, the program has also provided all Maine public libraries with an annual anthology of stories by Maine authors and illustrators.

"This partnership represents yet another way that Raising Readers and Maine libraries are able to work together to promote a love of books and reading for Maine children. Early literacy is a critical factor in the future success of children in Maine," said Grantham.

For more information about the Raising Readers program, visit www.raisingreaders.org.



Maine Libraries Host Early Literacy Events in April

Thu, 02 Apr 2015 10:38:56 EDT

Augusta- Three well-known early literacy experts are in Maine this week for the 7th Annual Barbara Bush Literacy Conference in Waterville and plan to travel the state over the next 10 days to host library events geared to young children and their caregivers.



Nancy Stewart

Award-winning children's singer/songwriter Nancy Stewart will be performing concerts at public libraries as a way of using music to promote early literacy. She is in Maine to serve as the keynote speaker at the Barbara Bush Literacy conference and has seven public events scheduled from April 3 to April 10 in libraries in Central and Southern Maine.



    Library Events Featuring Nancy Stewart

  • Falmouth Memorial Library - April 3 at 10:30 AM program for children 0-5
  • Thomas Memorial Library (Cape Elizabeth) - April 4 at 10:30 AM program for children 0-5
  • Auburn Public Library - April 7 at 2:00 PM program for children 0-5
  • Walker Memorial Library (Westbrook) April 7 at 6:00 PM program for children 0-5
  • Portland Public Library - April 8 at 10:30 AM program for infants 0-24 months
  • Winslow Public Library - April 8 at 3:30 PM program for children 0-5
  • Norway Public Library - April 10 at 10:30 AM program for children 0-5

Dr. James Thomas

Dr. James L. Thomas has a series of library events scheduled featuring special story times for young children ages 0-2 and their parents and caregivers. Dr. Thomas' specialty is in early literacy for the very young, and he travels both in the United States and internationally to present workshops on this subject for library staff, child care providers and parents.



    Library Events Featuring Dr. James Thomas

  • Thomas Memorial Library (Cape Elizabeth) - April 2 at 9:30 AM program for toddlers 18 months-3 years
  • Winslow Public Library - April 4 at 10:30 AM program for infants 0-23 months
  • Auburn Public Library - April 6 at 10:30 AM program for 2 year old children


Monica Dullard

A third visitor, Monica Dullard, a children's librarian and Margery C. Ramsay Scholarship recipient from Victoria, Australia, will also take part in library story time sessions in early April. Monica is traveling throughout the United States and United Kingdom to meet with library staff and early childhood professionals to document and share best practices in early literacy activities. Upon returning to Australia, Monica will produce a web-based resource for librarians in her region, covering the key elements of an effective story time.



    Library Events Featuring Monica Dullard

  • York Public Library - April 3 at 10:30 AM program for children 2-5
  • Winslow Public Library - April 4 at 10:30 AM program for infants 0-23 months
  • Springvale Public Library - April 6 at 10:00 AM program for children 3-6