Wednesday, April 7, 2010

KCLS Insights

Insights  is an email newsletter designed to keep you informed with local and System wide news and information.  I will be sending them to you once per month. 

Community Liaison Contact: Carol Van Baalen

Kent Opening Day 
Kent Library reopened on Saturday, March 6, after a six-month closure. Library patrons have responded positively to the changes in the building. The renovation added AMH (automatic self-checkin), new staff work areas and two new and enlarged meeting rooms. The lobby and the public restrooms were also relocated, providing staff with better visual supervision of these areas. In addition, much of the interior was repainted, new end panels and Self-Checkout Stations were installed and a new Friends Book Sale area was created.
Turtle Island Puget Sound Update from Des Moines
Artist Mark Twain Stevenson at Des Moines Library on March 14, points out features on the map on the turtle’s back.  Stevenson presented a program about the process involved in “Turtle Island Puget Sound” from idea to reality.
A plaque listing the major donors for the sculpture will soon be up in the library lobby.  Those donors are:  Michael & Joan Allen, Bruce & Nadine Byers, Des Moines Arts Commission, Des Moines Rotary Foundation, Friends of the Des Moines Library, Furney’s Nursery, King County, Robert & Esther Rickelton, Jeanne Serrill, Ken & Shannon Smith, Heather Ueckert, Wend-McMichael Family, Simon Yang.  With gratitude as well for the many other contributions, large and small, from Des Moines businesses, residents, and schoolchildren.
Thank you to the Friends of the Des Moines Library for funding the donor plaque.
The Des Moines – Woodmont Library Advisory Board recently welcomed two new members:  Melissa Ponder and Robin Lamoureux.  Melissa is a freelance photographer who lives in Des Moines; Robin is principal at Parkside Elementary.  They take the places of two members whose terms have ended:  Barbara McMichael and Dana Ketcham.  A sincere thank you to both Barbara and Dana, for the time and energy they have given to our libraries.
Upcoming Meetings:  The Friends of the Woodmont Library will meet this Thursday, April 8, at 6:00pm in the Woodmont Library meeting room.

The Census Bureau is staffing Questionnaire Assistance Centers throughout King County to help you with your questions from March 19th-April 19th.  See the list of participating KCLS libraries here.

From the Director’s Report  (To view the complete March report, please look here.)

The Renton Libraries (downtown and Highlands) joined KCLS on March 1. Choice Reads were installed at both libraries in the first week and the downtown Renton Library now has Sunday open hours. Renton Highlands will open on Fridays starting April 9. Notable changes in operations will be apparent on Monday, April 5 after Renton's patron and collections systems are converted to Millennium (on April 4) and new materials will start appearing on shelves. New workstations and wireless service will be added at both libraries. Open houses are scheduled on May 1 and meeting rooms previously used for storage will be re-opened to the community.  To celebrate and honor the rich history of the Renton Libraries, a new KCLS library card has been designed featuring a well-known community icon—a statue of a young boy holding a book. The card is available for any KCLS patron.

Library Legislative Day on March 3 focused on funding for the Washington State Library (WSL). During the visits KCLS representatives encouraged lawmakers to maintain the minimum level of budget funding necessary to keep Federal funding in place for Washington state libraries. A major part of the effort focused on WSL's role in applying for Round Two Broadband stimulus funding which is being led by the Washington State Department of Information Services. KCLS had identified up to $16 million of network improvements in KCLS libraries but was informed by a department administrator that much of the Round Two Broadband stimulus funding is targeted to rural and isolated communities that have minimal internet access. Other initiatives later in the year could channel funding to more heavily populated areas served by KCLS. Photos above picture KCLS staff, Friends, and advisory board members in Olympia.

Great progress is being made on recruiting, training and recognizing and celebrating KCLS volunteers. In April, the highly acclaimed United Way of King County Volunteer website will include newly designed KCLS volunteer logos that link visitors to a variety of volunteer opportunities featured on KCLS’ webpage. Volunteer Services Coordinator Terry Claypool has been meeting with volunteer coordinators across King County and her efforts have resulted in an increase in volunteers for programs and activities at Auburn, Renton and Federal Way libraries. KCLS will recognize program volunteers (NetMasters, Study Zone, Words on Wheels, Talk Time, and Citizenship) on Saturday, April 24 at an event at the Burien Library. Updated volunteer Web pages on, new identification badges, and recognition items will also premier in April.

In addition, as part of its commitment to recognizing volunteers, KCLS will soon be a “Certifying Organization” with the President’s Volunteer Service Award. This program allows any individual, family, or group of volunteers to receive Presidential recognition for volunteer hours earned over a 12-month period or over the course of a lifetime at home or abroad. Depending on the volunteers’ age group and service level, they can receive an official President’s Volunteer Service Award lapel pin, a personalized certificate of achievement, and a congratulatory letter from the President of the United States, or a combination of the three. The President's Council on Service and Civic Participation (the Council) was established in 2003 to recognize the valuable contributions volunteers are making in communities and encourage more people to serve. The Council created the President’s Volunteer Service Award program as a way to thank and honor Americans who, by their demonstrated commitment and example, inspire others to engage in volunteer service. Recognizing and honoring volunteers sets a standard for service, encourages a sustained commitment to civic participation, and inspires others to make service a central part of their lives. KCLS is pleased to be part of this program.

The KCLS Foundation hosted more than 400 guests for the Literary Lions Gala held on March 6 at the Bellevue Library. The event was a “literary feast” featuring an array of fine food and wine, a book-themed silent auction and opportunities to talk with 40 talented Northwest authors. Keynote speaker and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Russo captured the importance of libraries and the value of reading in his life and profession. Several KCLS Board Members attended, as did Renton City Councilmember Greg Taylor.

KCLS Capital Improvement Plan Projects

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Construction of the Federal Way Library is nearing completion. Once construction is completed, staff will begin preparing the interior of the library for the reopening. The expanded and renovated library will reopen to the public with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and open house on Saturday, June 5, 10am. Once the doors open, community members are invited to tour the facility and enjoy refreshments and an afternoon of musical programs and activities.
KCLS had a good turnout at the public meeting for the new Duvall Library, including Mayor Will Ibershof, several City Council Members and Planning Administrators. Mayor Ibershof thanked KCLS for its patience during the site selection process and stated there is universal agreement that the current site creates a great opportunity for the new Library to be a part of the historic downtown area. Several residents expressed concern that the Library's modern design is contrary to the historic nature of downtown Duvall, citing as an example a partially planted roof as opposed to a traditional gabled roof. Ray Johnston of Johnston Architects pointed out that the site requires a sustainable design so the Library will look and function differently than other nearby buildings. KCLS hopes to begin construction in the fall.

The 1,200 foot expansion of the Lake Forest Park Library is well underway. An additional 900 square feet of prime retail space immediately adjacent to the Library is now available and should satisfy the needs of the Lake Forest Park Community for many years to come. Mall owners have begun improvements to the restrooms and escalator leading to the popular Third Place Commons.

Upcoming Dates Events and Projects
The next Planning Committee Meeting takes place on Thursday, April 15,  12pm at Burien Library.
The next Finance Committee Meeting takes place on Tuesday, April 27,  4pm at the Mercer Island Library.
The next KCLS Board of Trustees Meeting takes place on, Tuesday, April 27, 5pm at the Mercer Island Library.