Library news & updates
Last Tuesday was Library Legislative Day. I joined librarians from all over the state in Boston for a day of presentations, legislative briefings, and meetings with senators and representatives. We sent a powerful concerted message that we would like State Aid to Public Libraries (where our grant money comes from) and Library Technology & Resource Sharing (money that supports CWMARS) to be funded at or above the amount requested by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

We also made it explicitly clear that State Aid to Regional Libraries (funding for the Massachusetts Library System among other things) needs to be restored or else inter-library delivery is going to start suffering. Right now, this line item sits at $10,282,140, whereas it was $17,623,954 in 2002. Libraries are moving a lot more items between each other in 2020 than they were in 2002, but that can't continue with our budget for doing so down 41%. If library networks are the are the backbone of state-wide sharing, the delivery network comprises its muscles. Placing a hold on an item in Springfield isn't very useful if it has no way of getting here.

We heard back from a very enthusiastic and optimistic library caucus that they get the message and are going to bat for us. Ways and Means has been generous in approving our funding requests in the last few years, but the governor's office not so much. We're keeping our fingers crossed that this year we will see some progress.

I also got to make some headway on the audiobook I'm currently on--Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari--while riding the train to Boston. This is a title, among many others, for which I have enabled a new cost-per-circ lending license in Overdrive/Libby. These new licenses work just like the videos in Kanopy: the library gets charged a small fee per use and as many people (in Douglas) can check them out at a time as want them. I am working on enabling as many of these licenses as possible to increase the breadth of our digital offerings as well as the amount of titles available at any given time.

I think I've written enough here for this to be a respectable letter from the Director. If not, I hope you scrolled past it to check out all the stuff going on at the Library below:

Thanks for Reading,

Justin Snook
Homeschool Curriculum Talk-Share-Swap

Saturday, March 30
10:00am - 12:00pm

Let's compare curricula! On Saturday morning, local area home educators are invited to the library for a morning devoted to connecting the curricu-curious to current users.

The primary goal here is for everyone to talk about opinions and experiences, compare notes, and walk away with a broader and more confident base of knowledge. But if you have material you are finished with and would like to give away or swap for something new, bring it!

We will definitely have people on hand who are familiar with Tapesty of Grace, Brave Writer, Saxon Math, Right-Start Math, Logic of English, All About Spelling, IEW, Cover Story, Times Tales, and A Year of Playing Skillfully.

Also up for discussion will be community resources and events and how to homeschool through high school in an environment that seems to favor resources for younger children.

Kids are welcome, so don't let that deter you. For questions, please contact lori.colbert@charter.net (event co-organizer) or jsnook@cwmars.org (library director).
Monarch butterflies are considered the king of the butterflies--hence the name. They are known for the incredible mass migration that used to bring millions of them to California and Mexico each winter. North American monarchs are the only butterflies that make such a massive journey--up to 3,000 miles! The insects must begin this journey each fall ahead of cold weather, which will kill them if they tarry too long.

Historically, there have been about 300 million monarchs overwintering in Mexico and California, but those numbers have dropped over ten-fold in Mexico. In California, only 20,000 were counted in 2018. The decrease in monarchs is largely correlated to the mass disappearance of milkweed: their sole source of food as caterpillars. Habitat loss and pesticide use imminently threatens the milkweed population, and therefore the butterflies.
Help save the monarch butterfly! Free milkweed seeds at the Library!

Thanks to an incredibly generous donation by Jim Saviano, the Library has hundreds of milkweed seed packages to distribute. Each package contains detailed planting instructions.

Please consider picking up some seeds to plant. You'll get to enjoy butterflies in your garden, and--if enough people participate--we can bolster a local, self-sustaining milkweed population in Douglas to support Monarchs that will return again next Spring!

In addition to milkweed for them to lay their eggs on and eat as caterpillars, the butterflies need native, nectar-rich plants to thrive. If you want to plan your gardens accordingly, click here for more information.

Let's make Douglas the Monarch capital of New England!
Meal Planning 101

Tuesday, April 30
6:30-7:30pm

Come learn how to make meal planning easy, simple, and a regular part of your routine.

Sarah Harrison Roy, a nutritionist and author of the blog running will be providing her guide to meal planning, grocery shopping lists, and suggestions and tips on how to stay organized with busy families.

There will be dishes to sample and the recipes for you to take home.

You will leave this workshop with simple and inexpensive meals planned for the next 4 weeks. REALLY!

Please register by calling 508-476-2695 or emailing jsnook@cwmars.org .
Upcoming Book Clubs

The Young Readers Club
March 14 @ 6pm.
The Explorer, by Katherine Rundell.

The Book Bunch
March 28 @ 6pm.
The Adventures of a Girl Called Bicycle by Christina Uss.

Greatest Book Club Ever
April 4 @ 6:30pm.
Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple.

The Intrepid Readers
April 9 @ 6:30pm.
Moloka'i by Alan Brennert

Senior Center Book Club
April 17 @ 6:30pm.
Life of Pi by Yann Martel.

Edible Wild Mushrooms
on the Horizon:

Ryan Bouchard and Emily Schmidt of The Mushroom Hunting Foundation will be giving a presentation about how to safely forage and enjoy wild mushrooms local to the area on June 11 from 6 to 7:30pm.

Weekly Programs:

Music and Movement - Tuesdays 1pm
Knitting in the Loft - Tuesdays 6pm
Yoga at the Library - Thursday 7pm


Most Popular Items Right Now:

-Becoming, by Michelle Obama
-Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
-Educated by Tara Westover
-Nine Perfect Strangers by Laine Moriarty
-The Chef by James Patterson
Brought to you by the Friends of the Simon Fairfield Public Library.