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.
Posted on April 05, 2019
Celebrate National Poetry Month and the talented young poets of Sonoma County at our TEEN POETRY SLAM!
A poetry slam is a competition in which individuals perform their own personal poetry before an audience, which judges the poems and the artists' performances. A typical poetry slam might include all sorts of different types of poetry, including love poems, critical social commentary, hilarious comic poems and moving personal confessions. This poetry slam, with its focus on teens in our community, hopes to encourage and inspire teens to engage in, perform, and experience the world of poetry--particularly spoken word poetry. It also gives teens a platform to speak their truth and to share their creativity with the larger community.
This Sonoma County-wide event is open to performers between the ages of 13-19, and Sonoma County teens will also serve as the emcees, judges, and scorekeepers.
Prizes will be awarded to the three top-scoring poets.
The Teen Poetry Slam will be held on Saturday, April 13 at the Rohnert Park-Cotati Regional Library. The order of events includes:
- 3:00 pm Open Mic (sign up at the event)
- 3:30 pm Featured Teen Poet Estrella Pacheco
- 4:00 pm Poetry Slam (to compete, email email@example.com)
Our featured poet, Estrella Pacheco, is a 16-year-old poet, actress, and activist from Sebastopol California. She loves art, the human experience, food, and goosebumps, especially when they accompany each other.
All ages are welcome to attend this fun creative event to cheer on our talented teens!
Posted on March 31, 2019
It's #NationalLibraryWeek and we want to share some of our successes with you!
In the past year, we have had:
2,055,021 in-person visits to Sonoma County Library locations.
2,730,049 items circulated.
2,304,587 online visits to http://sonomalibrary.org
113,139 attendance at library events.
Our library, like many across the country, offers UNLIMITED POSSIBILITIES to the people of Sonoma County -- both during National Library Week and year-round.
Join us to celebrate the week of APRIL 7-13. Libraries across the nation are bringing communities together as new technologies continue to change the world around us. No longer just places for books, libraries provide resources that reflect the needs of the communities they serve. If you haven't visited us in a while, what better time to check out all the Sonoma County Library has to offer!
First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the country each April. It is a time to celebrate the contributions of our nation's libraries and librarians and to promote library use and support. All types of libraries - school, public, academic and special - participate.
National Library Workers Day (NLWD) will take place on Tuesday, April 14. It is a day to recognize the valuable contributions made by all library workers. The American Library Association-Allied Professional Association (ALA-APA), the organization for the advancement of library employees, annually sponsors National Library Workers Day. The ALA-APA invites the public to "Submit a Star" by providing a testimonial about a favorite library employee here.
Posted on March 29, 2019
Sonoma County Library is happy to share Money Smart Week!
Money Smart Week is a national initiative through the American Library Association and the Federal Reserve Bank, we’re celebrating by offering financial literacy programming for adults and for youth.
The Library will be offering a number fun and engaging of events for children and teens, to help support their understanding of money and finances:
Money Smart Kids Storytime (with wooden bank activity) (ages 3-6)
Children are invited to come to this special family storytime to learn how to become “money smart” while having fun with stories, activities and a craft.
- Central Thu. Mar. 28, 11:00 am
- Rohnert Park Sat. Mar. 30, 10:30 am
- Healdsburg Tue. Apr. 2, 10:30 am
Money Smart Kids: Sammy’s Big Dream Storytime! (ages 3-6)
In this special storytime kids will learn how to make savings a habit with Sammy the Rabbit. Together we'll read Sammy's Big Dream! and participate in a coloring activity featuring Sammy's tips for saving money.
- Guerneville Tue. Apr. 2, 11:00 am
- Roseland Tue. Apr. 2, 11:30 am
- Sonoma Thu. Apr. 4, 11:30 am
Sammy the Rabbit Singalong and Storytime! (All Ages)
Join us for an interactive reading of Sammy's Big Dream! with the author, a sing along, and coloring activity. Sammy teaches children the importance of forming good money habits at an early age to become self-sufficient. Ask Sammy for his autograph and take your picture with him too!
- Petaluma Sat. Mar. 30, 2pm-4pm
Middle Earth Money Smart
Plan and budget a journey from Hobbiton to the Lonely Mountain as one of the characters from J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, and earn a 3D-printed middle earth coin.
- Sebastopol Sat. Mar. 30-Sat. Apr. 6, Drop in all day
Bite of Reality: Financial Awareness for Teens (grades 7-12)
Join us for a fun interactive personal finance simulation! Participants will be assigned an identity—occupation, salary, spouse, children, etc.—and they must then use the details of their identity to make financial ends meet while "purchasing" basic life needs like housing, transportation, groceries and dining. Presented by professionals from Redwood Credit Union.
- Healdsburg Wed. Apr. 10, 4:00 pm
- Rohnert Park Fri. Apr. 26, 4:00 pm
The Library will be also be offering a number educational events for adults:
Frauds, Scams, and Other Types of Elder Abuse
Often, financial exploitation or falling for scams is the starting point for other types of elder abuse. This presentation discusses signs to watch out for with our neighbors and loved ones, as well as common frauds and scams that increasingly target older adults. Presented by Donata Mikulik, Elder Justice Coordinator with the local non-profit Senior Advocacy Services.
- Healdsburg Mon. Apr. 1, 11:00 am
- Rincon Valley Tue. Apr. 2, 11:00 am
- Sonoma Valley Wed. Apr. 3, 11:00 am
- Cloverdale Fri. Apr. 5, 11:00 am
6 Keys to Financial Success
Personal finance doesn’t have to be super sophisticated--learn how to take control of your money through these six keys to financial success with California Society of CPAs. Presenter David Lo will share tips to improve your financial literacy and ability to save. This free program is a great way to put your on the path to financial independence!
- Central Library Wed. Apr. 3, 7:00 pm
Shredding unneeded documents may prevent identity theft, and we can help! Join us at one of our Community Shred Days for fast, free and confidential shredding.
- Rincon Valley Sat. Apr. 6, 10:00 am -1:00 pm
- Rohnert Park Sat. Apr. 6, 10:00 am -1:00 pm
Posted on March 26, 2019
Sonoma County Library is participating in a local author contest that will accept submissions of adult and young adult fiction, to be recognized as the top independently-published eBooks in California. Winners will be chosen by librarians.
Winners in each category will receive $500 as well as:
- Inclusion in Indie California, a digital collection of local authors on BiblioBoard Library
- Honors at the 2020 Public Library Association Conference in Nashville, TN
- Opportunities to promote the winning title at California public libraries
- Inclusion in a full page spread in Library Journal, one of America’s oldest and most renowned trade publications for library news
This contest is a fantastic prospect to elevate the careers of indie-published authors. Winning authors will reach hundreds if not thousands of new readers via the library, and can also leverage being an award-winning indie author for additional marketing opportunities.
Each book that is submitted to the contest must be:
- In the category of adult or young adult fiction
- Written by a California resident
- Available in either PDF or ePUB format
The contest will accept submissions April 1, 2019 through May 31, 2019. Authors can submit here.
Posted on March 20, 2019
El mensaje en español sigue abajo.
The Sonoma County Library is adding Spanish language eBook and eAudiobook titles to our OverDrive platform and its app Libby. OverDrive has a comprehensive catalog for Spanish language books, similar to Odilo. An Español room will be created in OverDrive in early April to house all Spanish language materials in one place for easy access.
Having our Spanish language books on Overdrive (a platform where we have 40,000 registered users) helps us reach more people interested in our Spanish language collections. When this transition is complete in early April, we will discontinue the Odilo platform.
We are working with OverDrive to move the approximately 1,000 titles owned on Odilo to the OverDrive platform by April 20. Holds lists will be transferred when Odilo retires. For information about how to get started with OverDrive and Libby visit the Getting Started with OverDrive page.
March 2019 – We will start buying all new Spanish eBooks and eAudiobooks for Children, Teens and Adults in OverDrive.
April 8 – Launch of the Español room in OverDrive and Libby, check out the new space!
April 10 – Odilo retires and holds on file will be moved to OverDrive and Libby.
*Please complete reading or listening to titles in Odilo by April 9; your checkouts will not automatically transfer to OverDrive.
April 22-23 – All Odilo titles appear in OverDrive.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your local branch or submit your questions online at Contact Us: We Want to Help
La Biblioteca del Condado de Sonoma esta añadiendo libros electrónicos y audio libros en español a nuestra plataforma OverDrive y a su app Libby. OverDrive tiene un catálogo muy completo de libros en español, similar al de Odilo. A principios de abril, se va a crear una sala de español en OverDrive, para tener todos los materiales en idioma español en un solo lugar, donde sea fácil accederlos.
Tener nuestros libros en español en Overdrive (una plataforma que tiene 40,000 usuarios registrados) nos ayuda a llegar a más gente que esté interesada en nuestras colecciones en ese idioma. Cuando esta transición esté terminada, a principios de abril, vamos a dejar de usar la plataforma Odilo.
Estamos trabajando con OverDrive para mover, para el 20 de abril, aproximadamente 1,000 títulos que tenemos en Odilo a la plataforma de OverDrive. Las listas de reservas se van a transferir cuando Odilo sea retirado. Para mayor información sobre cómo usar OverDrive y Libby visite la página Getting Started with OverDrive.
Marzo 2019 – Vamos a empezar a comprar todos los nuevos libros electrónicos y audio libros en español, para niños, jóvenes y adultos en OverDrive.
8 de abril – Lanzamiento de la sala en español en OverDrive y en Libby, ¡Cheque este nuevo espacio!
10 de abril – Odilo esta retirado y las reservas que estén registrados se cambiarán a OverDrive y Libby.
*Por favor termine de leer o de escuchar los títulos en Odilo antes del 9 de abril; los títulos que haya sacado en préstamo no serán transferidos automáticamente a OverDrive.
22-23 de abril – Todos los títulos en Odilo ahora aparecen en OverDrive.
Si tiene cualquier duda o pregunta, por favor contacte a su sucursal local o mándenos sus preguntas en línea a Contact Us: We Want to Help
Posted on March 15, 2019
Looking for something to do with kids over the weeks of Spring Break? The Sonoma County Library has a variety of activities scheduled for children, tweens and teens during spring school vacation weeks.
Beginning Friday, March 15 through Saturday, March 23, the Library will offer free programs ranging from storytimes and Read to a Dog events to silly Seuss shows, from gaming programs to Zumba for kids, STEM programs, paper airplanes, kids' yoga, crafts, makerspaces, and more!
All events are free.
For All Ages
SILLY SEUSS SHOW (ages 4 & up)
- Windsor Sat. Mar. 16, 10:30 am
- Petaluma Sat. Mar. 16, 1:00 pm
- Cloverdale Mon. Mar. 18, 11:00 am
- Rohnert Park Thu. Mar. 21, 10:30 am
- Sonoma Thu. Mar. 21, 4:00 pm
- Guerneville Sat. Mar. 23, 11:00 am
- Central Sat. Mar. 23, 3:00 pm
- Petaluma Fri. Mar. 22, 2:00 pm
ART TIME (ages 3-7)
- Windsor Sat. Mar. 23, 10:30 am
ART WITH JENDALA (grades 3-6)
- Healdsburg Fri. Mar. 15, 4:00 pm
Family Movie time
- Central How to Train Your Dragon (PG) Fri. Mar. 15, 4:00 pm
BOARD GAMES ARE FOR EVERYBODY
- Sebastopol Tue. Mar. 19, 3:30 pm-5:00 pm
Events For Grades K-6
MAKER STUDIO: LEGO ROBOTICS
- Northwest Fri. Mar. 15, 4:00 pm-5:30 pm
- Rincon Valley Mon. Mar. 18, 6:00 pm-7:30 pm
BAY AREA DISCOVERY MUSEUM’S TRY IT TRUCK (grades K-5)
- Rincon Valley Sat. Mar. 16, 11:00 am-1:00 pm
CREATING COMICS w/ BRIAN KOLM (grades 4-6)
- Rincon Sat. Mar. 16, 2:00 pm-3:30 pm
LEARN HOW TO DO MAGIC TRICKS! (ages 8-12)
- Northwest Mon. Mar. 18, 11:00 am
- Cloverdale Mon. Mar. 18, 4:00 pm
- Rohnert Park Wed. Mar. 20, 4:00 pm
- Petaluma Thu. Mar. 21, 3:00 pm
- Windsor Fri. Mar. 22, 4:00 pm
- Roseland Sat. Mar. 23, 12:00 pm
GET YOUR GAME ON w/ ROLLING VIDEO GAMES! (ages 7 & up)
- Central Fri. Mar. 22, 3:00 pm-5:00 pm
WRITING CLUB FOR KIDS 9 & UP
Windsor Fri. Mar. 15, 4:00 pm
- Healdsburg Mon. Mar. 18, 4:00 pm
- Rincon Valley Thu. Mar. 21, 4:00 pm
- Sebastopol Fri. Mar. 22, 3:30 pm
Zumba for Kids 5 & up
Cloverdale Fri. Mar. 15, 1:30 pm
- Windsor Thu. Mar. 21, 4:00 pm
- Rohnert Park Fri. Mar. 22, 4:00 pm
- Central Sat. Mar. 23, 1:00 pm
Events For Teens
Teen Anime & Manga Club
- Rincon Valley, Tue. Mar. 19, 3:30 pm
TEEN BOOK CLUB
- Cloverdale Library, Tue. Mar. 27, 3:30 pm
Game On! Board Games
- Cloverdale Library, Wed. Mar. 20, 2:30 pm
Magic the Gathering CLUB
- Central Library, Wed. Mar. 20, 4:00 pm
YOUTH CHESS CLUB
- Rincon Valley Library, Wed. Mar. 20, 3:30 pm
Dungeons & Dragons
- Sebastopol Library, Thu. Mar. 21, 3:00 pm
Smash Bros Ultimate Tournament
- Cloverdale Library, Sat. Mar. 23, 1:00-5:30 pm
Posted on February 20, 2019
March is Women’s History Month, celebrate at your local Sonoma County Library!
Established in Sonoma County in 1978, President Jimmy Carter issued a presidential proclamation declaring the first week of March National Women’s History Week in 1980 and in 1987 Congress officially declared March Women’s History Month. Women’s History Month celebrates the contributions of women and brings awareness to the historical impact women have made throughout the world.
The Sonoma County Library is offering a number of events throughout the county to celebrate women. These events include:
Posted on February 19, 2019
José-Luis Orozco is an acknowledged expert in children's music and a wonderful interactive performer. We are excited to welcome him to Sonoma County Library! Please tell your friends about this free concert for children, and check out one of his music CDs from the library after the show.
José-Luis Orozco es un experto reconocido en la música infantil y un intérprete interactivo maravilloso. ¡Estamos muy contentos de darle la bienvenida a la Biblioteca del Condado de Sonoma! Por favor, cuéntele a sus amigos sobre este concierto gratis para niños, y saque uno de sus CD de música de la biblioteca después del espectáculo.
Posted on February 15, 2019
Update: We are happy to inform you that the Axis 360 holds were successfully transferred from Axis 360 to Overdrive. Please note that a snapshot of the holds lists was taken on the 25th of February and that is the point from which the lists were rebuilt. This means there may be items on hold for you that you have already had access to. If you have already listened to or read materials you had requested on Axis please cancel your current hold in OverDrive so the next person waiting in line can access the material. Thank you very much for your support and patience during this transfer process.
El mensaje en español sigue abajo.
Dear Library Patron,
We are constantly working to enhance your digital experience, and we are improving our system for how you read, listen to, check out and reserve eBook and eAudiobook titles. The library is moving eBooks and eAudiobooks from the Axis 360 platform to our OverDrive website and Libby app. This change will go into effect on Monday, March 4, 2019.
Why make a change?
After receiving complaints and concerns about Axis 360, we studied both platforms and concluded that OverDrive is simply a better platform for our patrons. It’s faster, easier and offers more titles!
Having eBooks and eAudiobooks in one place makes it easier to find what you want.
We are increasing your checkouts, from six to 8.
We are increaseing your holds to five.
You will be able to listen to MP3s on OverDrive.
Your holds will transfer
If you have holds on Axis 360, they will be moved to OverDrive, we will make an announcement on our website when this process is complete.
Please note: Any wish lists you have in Axis 360 will not move to OverDrive. The same titles will be on Overdrive, so you can add them to your wish list there after the move is complete.
Do I need to do anything?
Please Note: Your current checkouts in Axis 360 will not move to OverDrive. We highly encourage you to finish reading or listening to your current checkouts prior to March 4th.
February 19: No new holds can be placed in Axis 360. Look for new titles and always available eAudiobook titles in OverDrive or Libby!
March 4: Axis 360 no longer available; eBooks and eAudiobooks that are moving to OverDrive will be unavailable for up to 24 hours until the move is complete.
March 5: all eBooks and eAudiobooks formerly on Axis 360 will be available on OverDrive.
March 5: Transferring of holds from Axis 360 to Overdrive starts. When the transition is complete email notices will be sent to Axis 360 users with current email addresses on their Axis account. Please check before Feb 25 to make sure your email is correct so we can keep you informed. You can also check out library news on our home page for updates.
We will let you know when the move is complete and the holds lists have been recreated. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your local branch or submit your questions online.
Questions can be submitted online for:
Sonoma County Library patrons at Contact Us: We Want to Help
Mendocino County Library patrons at: Ask a Librarian
Lake County Library patrons at: Ask a Question
¿Cómo mejorar su experiencia con los libros electrónicos? Estamos cambiando de Axis 360 a OverDrive
Estimado Usuario de la Biblioteca,
Estamos trabajando constantemente para mejorar su experiencia digital, y estamos actualizando nuestro sistema que se utiliza para leer, escuchar, sacar en préstamo y reservar los títulos de libros y de audiolibros electrónicos. La biblioteca está cambiando sus libros electrónicos y audiolibros de la plataforma Axis 360 a nuestra página OverDrive y a la Libby app. Este cambio entrará en efecto el lunes 4 de marzo de 2019.
¿Por qué hacemos este cambio?
Después de recibir varias quejas y comentarios acerca de Axis 360, analizamos ambas plataformas y llegamos a la conclusión de que OverDrive es simplemente una mejor plataforma para nuestros usuarios. ¡Es más rápida, más fácil y ofrece más títulos!
Al tener los libros y audiolibros electrónicos en un solo lugar se hace más fácil encontrar lo que busca.
Estamos duplicando sus préstamos posibles, de 6 a 12.
Estamos duplicando sus reservas, de cinco a 10.
Usted podrá escuchar MP3s en OverDrive.
Sus reservas se van a transferir
Si usted tiene artículos reservados en Axis 360, se conservarán en OverDrive, le daremos una notificación en nuestra página de internet cuando este proceso sea terminado.
Por favor tome en cuenta que: Cualquier lista de deseos que tenga en Axis 360 no será transferida a OverDrive. Los mismos títulos estarán en OverDrive, asi que los puede añadir a su nueva lista de deseos, después de que el cambio se haya concluido.
¿Tengo que hacer algo?
No. Intente explorar la página OverDrive y bajar la Libby app si es que no las ha usado antes. Aquí está la “Guía para Principiantes” de OverDrive, que incluye las instrucciones específicas para cada tipo de aparato.
Por favor considere que: Sus préstamos actuales en Axis 360 no se cambiarán a OverDrive. Le invitamos a que termine de leer o de escuchar sus préstamos actuales antes del 4 de marzo.
El calendario para el cambio es como sigue:
19 de febrero: No se pueden reservar artículos en Axis 360. ¡Busque los nuevos títulos y los títulos de audiolibros electrónicos que siempre se encuentran disponibles en OverDrive o en Libby!
25 de febrero: Ya no se pueden sacar préstamos en Axis 360. Pero no se preocupe, ¡utilice OverDrive o Libby!
4 de marzo: Axis 360 ya no estará disponible; los libros y audiolibros electrónicos que se pasan a OverDrive no estarán disponibles por un periodo de hasta 24 horas, hasta que el cambio sea terminado.
5 de marzo: todos los libros electrónicos y audiolibros electrónicos que antes se encontraban en Axis 360, estarán disponibles en OverDrive.
5 de marzo: Empieza la transferencia de reservas de Axis 360 a OverDrive. Cuando se termine esta transición, se les enviarán notificaciones por correo electrónico a los usuarios con direcciones de correo electrónico actualizadas en sus cuentas de Axis. Por favor asegúrese antes del 25 de febrero de que su correo electrónico es correcto, para que podamos mantenerlo informado. También puede revisar las noticias de la biblioteca en nuestra página de internet, para mantenerse actualizado.
Le avisaremos cuando este cambio esté terminado y las listas de reservas se hayan recreado. Si tiene preguntas o comentarios, por favor contacte a su sucursal local de la biblioteca o mande sus preguntas en línea.
Las preguntas se pueden mandar en línea a:
Usuarios de la Biblioteca del Condado de Mendocino en: Pregúntele a un Bibliotecario
Usuarios de la Biblioteca del Condado de Lake en: Haga una Pregunta