Monday, July 5, 2010

Insights Newsletter

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

“Make a Splash: Read” kicked off with a big splash at our cluster libraries. At Woodmont, over 100 children and their parents attended Linda Severt’s “Bubble Magic” program on June 22, and at Kent 185 attended the Dragon Theatre Puppet Show which was funded by the Friends of the Kent Library. But the record attendance was at Des Moines, where over 250 attended Linda Severt’s “Bubble Magic” program, the largest attendance ever at a Des Moines summer program.
Nearly 2000 children have signed up for the summer reading program in our three libraries since the program began on June 14. In addition, many teens are participating in the Read 3, Get One Free program and participating in programs such as a Game On tournament (a smashing success!) at Des Moines, and Mehndi Madness / Henna at Woodmont, sponsored by the Des Moines and Woodmont Friends respectively.

ESL classes recently ended for the summer at Des Moines and Woodmont. Students celebrated their last class with food from their native countries.
On Friday, July 16, Kent Library will host a free Citizenship Information Fair, featuring information about becoming a U.S. Citizen, advice from a lawyer, sample test questions in multiple languages, practice interviews, application forms, and study materials. Families are welcome!
Kent Librarians, along with staff from the Covington Library, sponsored an information booth at the Kent International Festival on Saturday, June 26. The festival, which was held at Kent Town Square Plaza directly across the street from the library, featured musical performances, ethnic dance, authentic dishes, and a student art display.
Upcoming Meetings: July 14, 7:00pm – Des Moines/Woodmont Library Advisory Board meets at the Woodmont Library.


The InfoToGo topic for July is “Playaway.” Playaways are pre-recorded digital audio books – no downloading or equipment needed. Features: Lightweight, compact, portable; Each Playaway contains an entire audio book, regardless of length; Automatic bookmarking remembers where you stopped listening; Playback speed control; Universal headphone jack works with most headphones. For more information on the current month’s InfoToGo card, click here.

Library2Go! vans have finally arrived. Four bookmobiles and one Digital Discovery Zone vehicle will be on the road in August. KCLS contacted 550 licensed daycares to determine interest in Library2Go! service. More than 100 child care sites signed up and another 100 community centers have been added to Library2Go! routes. Library2Go! will significantly expand KCLS’ presence in the community, providing a valuable service to those who might not otherwise be able to access their community library. An “On the Road” celebration of the new vans will be held at Renton Library, Friday, July 23 at 10am.

Summer Reading Program already has 31,721 children signed up for the Preschool-Middle School program! Dates to remember: July 14 is the first date to collect prizes, halfway or final. August 31 is the final day for Summer Reading Program; children need to finish by this date in order to enter the computer and preschool prize drawings; September 10 is the drawing for laptop computers and preschool prizes. September 14 is the last day to claim prizes. Read 3 Get 1 Free-Summer Edition for teens is also in full swing.

KCLS is slated to receive three awards at the American Library Association meeting in Washington, DC this month, including its ninth John Cotton Dana Award for “Look to Your Library… Especially Now” and an award from the Library Leadership and Management Association (LLAMA) for the publication “Delivering on a Promise to Voters: The First Five Years of KCLS’ Capital Improvement Plan.” KCLS will also receive an award from the Urban Libraries Council which will be announced publicly on June 28.
KCLS recently learned that it received Honorable Mention for Library Journal’s Library of the Year award. This year’s winner is Columbus Metropolitan Library in Columbus, Ohio.

KCLS Foundation held its annual Board retreat earlier this month with a focus on the Take Time to Read program. The Board enthusiastically supports the concept and will assist in raising funds for the three-year initiative. The Foundation is halfway to its $80,000 fundraising goal to purchase books for the new Library2Go! vehicles. Local foundations, Friends of the Library groups and scores of individuals have generously supported this project. One new donor mailed a letter along with her check noting that she does not usually respond to direct mail campaigns but is so taken with the program that she had to contribute. She was especially pleased that Library2Go! will provide additional services to seniors who cannot travel to libraries. KCLS Foundation will have a complete list of donors by the end of the year.

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

Circulation increased 12% in May, the largest increase since September 2008 which, up until that time, had been the highest single jump in the last decade. With the Renton Libraries removed from the mix, circulation remained 9% over May 2009. Circulation at the Renton Highlands branch is up 56% over last year and the Foster Library had a 42% increase, more than making up for the closure of the Tukwila Library at the end of February. Other significant jumps in circulation appear to correlate with new libraries that have opened in the past few months. eBook downloads increased 48% for the month and are up 44% for the year, likely the result of radio advertising on several local stations. Door counts also increased 12 percent in May, indicating significant patron activity across the System.

GOVERNMENT RELATIONSThe City of Renton is conducting interviews for the new Renton Library Advisory Board. A small group of people who attended an initial recruitment meeting has agreed to take up the effort to establish a first-ever Renton Friends group with other interested residents. There has been a lot of activity involving the Renton Libraries this month. Renton Highlands was closed for a week for interior renovations, including new paint, carpet and furniture. New furniture has been installed at the downtown Library and additional furniture is on order after staff requested more tables and chairs to accommodate an overflow of patrons.

KCLS Capital Improvement Plan Projects
Just a sampling of what’s happening with a few of the projects. View all at or sign up here to receive automatic updates on the KCLS Capital Improvement Project!
The Newport Way Library renovation and expansion is underway. Demolition is nearly complete and construction will begin soon. Building and site plans for the new Duvall Library have been approved by City officials. The construction permit application will be submitted by the end of June and bidding is anticipated to open in July.
More than 150 people attended the Kenmore Library groundbreaking on June 8. The crowd enjoyed refreshments provided by Friends of the Kenmore Library and was entertained by the First Romanian Pentecostal Church Jazz Ensemble. Board member Jessica Bonebright and County Councilmember Bob Ferguson were on hand to make remarks.
The Federal Way Library reopened on June 5 with more than 700 people in attendance. Federal Way Mayor Linda Kochmar, State Representative Mark Miloscia and King County Council member Pete Von Reichbauer were among the dignitaries to address the crowd. Crowd reaction to the renovated and expanded Library was overwhelmingly positive. KCLS was notified by the City of Federal Way that a pedestrian island will be installed in front of the Federal Way 320th Library. The barrier will make it impossible to turn left into or left out of the Library parking lot. KCLS will likely initiate a community process to assess the impact of these access limitations and identify other possible sites for the new Library.

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