Posted on June 17, 2019
We’re excited to announce that Sonoma County Library cardholders are now able to dig into virtually every nook and cranny of U.S. and California history, thanks to an extensive digital resource known as Archives Unbound.
With Archives Unbound, library patrons have free access to 296 collections of historical topics in categories including:
- African American Studies
- Business History
- U.S. History
- County and Regional History
- Cultural Studies
- Environmental Studies
- Law and Legal Studies
- Native American Studies
- Social History
- Women’s Studies
- And much more!
The content spans 12 million pages of primary source materials and is available online 24/7. Archives Unbound is geared towards scholars engaged in serious research and students at the college and university level, but is available to all.
Additionally, users can conduct general searches and view documents including newspapers, manuscripts and monographs. Users can also create an account to save documents of interest.
Check out the new resource here: Archives Unbound.
Posted on June 04, 2019
The month of June celebrates a rainbow of diversity and commemorates LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer/questioning and others) progress through LGBTQ+ Pride Month, GLBT Book Month and more. The Sonoma County Library honors and celebrates the LGBTQ+ community through collections, events, programs and hiring, and recently hosted a table at the Sonoma County Pride festival in Santa Rosa on June 1.
“Sonoma County Library is committed to social equity and free access to information,” said Sonoma County Library Director Ann Hammond. “We are here to serve everyone, inclusive of ethnicity, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, country of origin, age, faith and socio-economic status.”
While at the Sonoma County Pride Festival on June 1, library staff shared information about the Summer Reading Program and supplied handouts on how to sign up for a library card. The library also offered LGBTQ+ book lists for all ages and gave visitors the chance to spin a prize wheel. Education Initiatives Librarian Rachel Icaza was one of the library employees at the table.
“It was perfect to have the library present at this wonderful family-friendly event,” Icaza said. “People were lining up to spin the prize wheel and to hear all about summer fun at the library. It was a great day!”
Sonoma County Library offers a monthly Pride Book Club for Teens, list of LGBTQ+ resources and LGBTQ+ materials available for check out. The library encourages every patron to celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning (and more) lives and experiences by attending a library event, picking up a book (or eBook), listening to an eAudiobook or watching a DVD. Scroll down to learn more.
Sonoma County Library at the Sonoma County Pride festival in Santa Rosa on June 1. From left, Library staff members Kim Dargeou, Rachel Icaza and Terra Emerson.
PRIDE BOOK CLUB FOR TEENS:
Come discuss the latest queer YA books with other teens! This month we will be reading “Queer, There, and Everywhere” by Sarah Prager. Pick up a copy of the book at the Adult Reference Desk at the Rohnert Park-Cotati Regional Library. Note that this book club meets monthly.
Each branch of the Sonoma County Library has a unique display to highlight and recognize the lives and literature that we are celebrating this June!
- LGBTQ+ Resource Guide - This limited resource list provides perspectives on LGBTQI rights, history, experiences, relationships, and culture.
- LGBTQ+ Materials List - The materials on this list offer people of all ages opportunities to dig deeper into the topic of LGBTQI from LGBTQI history and rights to understanding the LGBTQI experience, relationships and culture.
- LGBTQ Connection - Napa & Sonoma: LGBTQ Connection, an initiative fueled by youth and other emerging leadership, fosters a healthier, more vibrantly diverse and inclusive community.
- LGBTQ+ Youth & Young Adult Support Groups (Positive Images)
- LGBTQ+ Adult Support Groups (Positive Images)
- Hotlines (Positive Images)
- The Trevor Project 24/7 Lifeline - (TEENS) The Trevor Project offers the largest safe social networking community for LGBTQ young people under 25, best practice suicide prevention educational trainings, resources for youth and adults, and advocacy initiatives.
Library Materials: Books for Children, Teens, Adults… and TV shows and Movies!
BOOKS FOR CHILDREN
- And Tango Makes Three (Picture book)
- Better Nate than Ever (Chapter book)
- The Flower Girl Wore Celery (Picture book)
- Hurricane Child (Chapter book)
- I Am Jazz (Picture book)
- Julián is a Mermaid (Picture book)
- Prince & Knight (Picture book)
- Red: A Crayon’s Story (Picture book)
- Sparkle Boy (Picture book)
- This Day in June (Picture book)
BOOKS FOR TEENS
- Birthday: A Novel
- Darius the Great is Not Okay
- Gender Queer: A Memoir
- Girl Made of Stars
- I Wish You All the Best
- Let's Talk About Love
- The Love and Lies of Rukhsana Ali
- The Music of What Happens
- Picture Us in the Light
- What If It's Us
BOOKS FOR ADULTS
- Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe
- Less: A Novel
- Little Fish (eBook)
- Real Queer America: LGBT Stories from Red States
- River of Teeth (Audiobook)
- Speak No Evil: A Novel
- Tomorrow will be different: love, loss, and the fight for trans equality
- An Unkindness of Ghosts
- Willa & Hesper
MOVIES AND TV
- The L Word (TV)
- Orange is the New Black (TV)
- Blue is the Warmest Color (movie)
- But I’m a Cheerleader (movie)
- Carol (movie)
- How to Survive a Plague (movie)
- The Imitation Game (movie)
- Love, Simon (movie)
- Milk (movie)
- The Miseducation of Cameron Post (movie)
- Moonlight (movie)
- Pride (movie)
LOOKING FOR SOMETHING THAT YOU’RE NOT SEEING ON THIS LIST?
Ask one of our friendly librarians at your favorite branch of the Sonoma County Library. We are here for you!
Posted on May 25, 2019
Discover the glitz, glimmer, comedy and adventure of reading at the Sonoma County Library by joining in on the 2019 Summer Reading Program, launching June 1, 2019. Through August 10, the library will host a range of free activities for children, teens and adults to encourage a love of reading. This year’s program theme is It’s Showtime at Your Library and those who participate can earn free books and virtual raffle tickets for prizes.
New this year, participants can track their reading and participation in the program online at sonomalibrary.beanstack.org and through the Beanstack app. Paper logs will also be available at each branch.
“We’ve put together a robust and entertaining program of activities for every age to ensure that the Library is an exciting summer hub of discovery and learning,” said Kathy DeWeese, Youth Services Administrator at the Sonoma County Library. “Our programing supports this year’s Showtime theme by focusing on a range of performances; from story opera, to poetry readings, screenwriting, movies, magic shows and more.”
To combat the summer slide, the Summer Reading Program has a diverse lineup of educational children’s events, including visits from Eliot Fintushel’s Masks & Mime, Jungle James Animal Adventures, Shuffles Magic Show, Try It Truck and Musical Robot, as well as themed activities such as It’s CraftTime! And Getting Into Character.
Hands-on workshops for tweens include French Knitting and Maker Studio: Zoetrope, while teen activities include Dungeon Master 101, Learn How to Draw Comic Books, an Intro to Screenwriting with former Executive Editor at Lucasfilm and bestselling author J. W. Rinzler, an escape room experience, self-defense, DIY bath bombs and much more.
Studies show that reading over the summer strengthens reading and math skills, by preventing the summer slide:
- Children who don’t read during the summer can lose up to two months of learning by the time they return to school.
- Children who participate in Summer Reading Programs and read a minimum of six books over the summer score higher in reading and math when they return to school.
- Summer learning loss during elementary school accounts for two-thirds of the achievement gap in reading between low-income children and their middle-income peers by ninth grade.
- Children’s enjoyment of reading often increases after taking part in Summer Reading Programs.
- Nine out of 10 teachers spend at least three weeks re-teaching lessons at the start of the school year.
The Library is also offering events for adults, providing something for the whole family.
To learn more about the Summer Reading Program, sign up at sonomalibrary.beanstack.org or visit your local library branch starting on June 1. All Summer Reading Program events are free and open to all. Some activities require pre-registration by visiting sonomalibrary.org/events or a local branch.
Posted on May 21, 2019
Join us to launch our latest StoryWalk at Cloverdale River Park!
Go with the flow at an interactive nature and early literacy outing for families with young children! A StoryWalk is a fun and engaging activity for families that combines the physical benefits of walking outdoors and the educational benefits of reading. Explore the StoryWalk on your own, or come to the launch event on Saturday, June 1, from 10-1pm.
Sonoma County Regional Parks and Sonoma County Libraries have joined forces for a fun-filled storytime outdoors. The launch of the StoryWalk coincides with the Regional Parks' Nuestras Parques program, on Saturday June 1. The library and the parks department will be hosting led StoryWalks every half hour starting at 10AM and ending at noon. Bring a water bottle, and picnic in the park for after the walk, if you like. All ages welcome.
The StoryWalk will be in the Cloverdale River Park through the month of June, for park and story lovers to discover.
NOTE: Parking $7, or free for Regional Parks members
For more information about park events go to Sonoma County Regional Parks Calendar
Posted on April 30, 2019
The newest entry in the Library’s StoryWalk program has been the launch of a StoryWalk sited around the outside of the Sebastopol Library building. The StoryWalk, featuring the book “Call Me Tree” by Maya Christina Gonzalez, is an activity that encourages families to get outside together and explore literacy. This installation, in support of the national Día de los Niños celebration, will be at the Sebastopol Library through mid-May. Stop by and enjoy a lovely bilingual story outside!
Posted on April 24, 2019
Do you know a motivated, public-service minded high school student who is looking for a unique summer job? Send them our way!
Sonoma County Library is looking to hire a teen between the ages of 16-19 who reflects the diversity of our community for an exciting paid internship!
Sonoma County Library was selected to participate in the Public Library Association’s Inclusive Internship Initiative (III), which offers a paid, summer-long internship at the library to a high school student between the ages of 16-19 (entering Junior, Senior, or First-Year College). Through III, students from diverse backgrounds are introduced to careers in librarianship.
This summer, our III intern will work with mentor staff in the Sonoma County History & Genealogy Library, a community resource that manages local history and genealogy collections. It is located behind the Central Library in downtown Santa Rosa. The SCH&G Library acquires, organizes and makes available to the public materials that document the unique characteristics and communities of Sonoma County. There is also a required travel component – the selected intern must be available to attend (all-expenses-paid) trainings in Chicago (June) and Washington D.C. (September).
Follow this link to apply, and for full details about this internship. Applications are due by May 7, 2019.
Thank you for helping us to share this opportunity with teens in our community!
Posted on April 16, 2019Celebrate El día de los niños
El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children's Day/Book Day), commonly known as Día, is a celebration every day of children, families, and reading that culminates yearly on April 30. The celebration emphasizes the importance of literacy for children of all linguistic and cultural backgrounds.
Día is a nationally recognized initiative that emphasizes the importance of literacy for all children from all backgrounds. It is a daily commitment to linking children and their families to diverse books, languages and cultures. The common goals of all Día programming are to:
- Celebrate children and connect them to the world of learning through books, stories and libraries.
- Nurture cognitive and literacy development in ways that honor and embrace a child’s home language and culture.
- Introduce families to community resources that provide opportunities for learning through multiple literacies.
- Recognize and respect culture, heritage and language as powerful tools for strengthening families and communities.
The Sonoma County Library is hosting a range of events in honor of Día this year -- there are events in the libraries, and we are also partnering with organizations out in the community to provide entertaining and educating events for children. Come celebrate the diversity of our communites and our children with us!
Events for Children
StoryWalk at the Sebastopol Library
Get outside and read! Stop by the Sebastopol Regional Library, where they are hosting a StoryWalk (featuring Maya Christina Gonzalez's book "Call Me Tree/ Llamame Arbol") in the garden along High Street for families to enjoy together.
- Sebastopol Library Monday, April 22- Saturday, May 4
El día de los niños (Children's Day) Celebration!
Head to the Windsor Town Green for an afternoon of fun for families, including the Children's Museum of Sonoma County, the Town of Windsor Mobile Rec games on the Green, face painting, book giveaways, light refreshments, and community resource information. For all ages! Free!
- Windsor Library Saturday, April 27, 2019, Noon to 2 pm
Explore books, songs, rhymes and play in English and Spanish! Libros, canciones, rimas y actividades en ingles y espanol. For children 0-5. Para edades 0-5
- Rohnert Park-Cotati Library Wednesday, April 24, 6:30 pm
- Rincon Valley Library Thursday, April 25, 10:30 am
- Roseland Community Library Saturday, April 27, 10:15 am
- Cloverdale Library Tuesday, April 30, 11:30 am
- Roseland Community Library Tuesday, April 30, 11:30 am
Posted on April 12, 2019
We're excited to announce the launch of the Adult New Reader collection -- high interest books of popular fiction and nonfiction for adults building reading skills.
Adult New Reader books are housed in the Library's larger branches, and materials are available to all via the library’s online catalog.
The main goal of this new collection is to support the reading of adults building reading skills, including the adult learners and their tutors in our one-on-one Adult Literacy tutoring program. Books in the collection are within Lexile reading levels specifically chosen to help adult new readers.
Browse the ANR collection for something that interests you. It’s a great way for Adult Learners to make smart reading choices that suit them and explore popular stories by best-selling authors. The collection includes titles from the Book Shots series, the Rapid Reads series, and similar fiction series with shorter page counts.
The Adult NEW Reader Collection: A great place to begin…
- Experience great stories at your own pace
- Make smart reading choices that suit you
- Explore popular stories by best-selling authors
Check out the entire collection here: Adult New Reader catalog search.
Posted on April 08, 2019
Beginning April 8, the Sonoma County Library is lending WiFi hotspots to patrons, enabling Sonoma County Library cardholders to have free access to the internet.
A pilot project, the 500 WiFi hotspots will be distributed to every library branch in the county and loaned to patrons on a first-come, first-served basis.
“By ‘loaning the internet,’ our library system is helping our patrons have access to information and resources that are not always available to all, because of geographical or income constraints,” said Vicki Terbovich, the Sonoma County Library’s Information Technology Manager and the driving force behind the program.
Dubbed “SonomaFi,” the WiFi hotspot lending program is a pilot. The initial lending period will be 14 days per device, and they will be available at all library branches, but cannot be placed on hold.
“We believe our patrons will use these devices to help them write term papers, submit job applications, research their family history, or just surf the internet and stream a movie,” Terbovich said.
Each SonomaFi device will allow the borrower to connect multiple devices, including smartphones, computers and tablets, so an entire household can use one SonomaFi hotspot at once.
The SonomaFi devices operate on a Verizon cellular signal, which has wide coverage throughout Sonoma County, but may not reach more remote areas.
Watch a SonomaFi "How To" video.
For more information on SonomaFi, stop in at any of the library’s 14 branches. The SonomaFi program is paid for from Measure Y sales tax funds, the community’s investment in free public libraries.
Posted on April 07, 2019
About your free public library system
Comprised of 12 branches, two rural stations and multiple special collections, the county library system has its roots in 19th Century visionaries who realized that access to information was key to a free and civil society.
The first known local public library appeared in Petaluma in 1858, organized by the Odd Fellows fraternal organization. Other communities followed suit, and libraries came into existence throughout the county.
As local and regional libraries grew, prospered (and sometimes didn’t) libraries and community leaders began to talk about the value of consolidation. The first Joint Powers Agreement to form a regional library system was signed in 1975. A revised Joint Powers Agreement among the County of Sonoma and all nine cities was signed in 2014.
The library system struggled throughout the beginning of the 21st Century, as the need for service outran the cost of providing it. In 2016, a county-wide effort resulted in the passage of Measure Y, a one-eighth of a cent sales tax that brought local library funding up to comparable levels to that of similar library systems.
With the extra funds from Measure Y, the Sonoma County Library was able to accelerate what had been a steady, but modest process of modernization. Our annual budget is now approximately $30.5 million, most of which is spent on staff and materials.
In 2018, we loaned 2,868,701 items to county residents, and 344,282 different users visited our library system websites, to download e-books, stream movies, look up and reserve books, and more.
Two years after Measure Y passed, the library has increased its materials budget by two-thirds, more than doubled programming funds, and hired administrative and support staff focused on growth and service. New staff include three new managers and dozens of support, collections, delivery and branch personnel.
In 2018, the library added 35 percent more hours to its weekly schedule. We are now open Mondays, we stay open until 9 p.m. twice a week, and we increased Saturday hours.
Measure Y funds are being used in direct service to the half-million residents of Sonoma County in many ways: We provide tens of millions of dollars of value in the free use of books, DVDs, CDs, e-books, audio books and other physical assets. We are a leader – in some communities the only provider – of early childhood learning and school readiness, always in close partnership with local school districts.
Libraries are more than books, films and databases. Sonoma County Library patrons can check out a backpack with all the passes and guides needed to explore county parks; they can check out a toolbox with the tips and supplies needed to weatherize their homes; our patrons can visit the library and have a free consultation with a lawyer, get help with their taxes, learn a new dance, hear a story or learn a craft.
We are funding overdue studies into future services, setting funds aside in reserve, purchasing a mobile library van to visit underserved communities, investing in our branches and upgrading our technology.
We provide free online access to software training, world language learning, independent film collections, magazine and newspaper subscriptions (even the New York Times), all free with a library card!
During National Library Week, we will address an emerging social justice issue by offering free WiFi hotspots. Library patrons who don’t have access to the information superhighway – because of geography or household income – will be able to “borrow the internet” at no cost and apply for jobs, augment their schoolwork, and enjoy the same digital resources as everyone else.
Our libraries are powerful forces for social equity. In the past two years, our Library Commission has adopted comprehensive statements supporting inclusivity and the undocumented. We live those values every day in our branches, where we also offer Spanish language materials, support and a welcoming attitude.
Our branches help lead the system into new territory as well. We recently piloted a program that provides free menstrual supplies to our patrons who are in need. We reach out to and support our unsheltered patrons. All are welcome in our libraries, regardless of ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, or faith.
In early March, after almost two years without a permanent Library Director, Ann Hammond began work as our permanent Director. Ms. Hammond was chosen after a nationwide search, and we are thrilled to welcome her to Sonoma County. In a newspaper article announcing her hire, Hammond said libraries are: “the last democratic institution welcoming to all … free and open to everyone.”
We are gradually updating each branch of the library and putting extra funding and energy into a branch for the Roseland community. Roseland has been underserved for many years, and the library is leading the way in providing a community hub and free access to the tools of civic involvement.