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Creating Community Connections

June 10, 2015

Date: Friday, June 12, 2015

Time: 9:30 am-12:00 pm

Where: Downers Grove Public Library, Meeting Room A&B

Community engagement is a buzz term right now in the library world for good reason. Now more than ever, libraries must look outside library walls to work with the community in new ways. Join the RLA-CE Committee for a panel discussion about current ideas in community engagement and outreach.

Susan Carlton, Community Engagement Manager at Skokie Public Library, will speak about her library’s successful approach to assessing community needs and implementing that information into library planning.

Barbara Alvarez, Business Liaison Librarian at Barrington Area Library District, will share tips and resources on how to connect with the community and build successful relationships.

Alicia Hammond, Community Engagement Librarian at Forest Park Public Library, will give an overview of new and innovative community engagement ideas in the library world.


Genealogy Without Fear: Taking the Foolishness Out of Family Trees

February 18, 2015

Genealogy research is no April fool’s joke.  Genealogy reference questions can be intimidating, especially for the non-genealogist.  Reference librarian and genealogy specialist Carol Bartlett will walk you through getting patrons started with their genealogical inquiries.  Learn to navigate the most common and useful genealogy tools with confidence to send your patrons on the right road to answers.

  • Wednesday, April 1, 2015
  • 9:30 am-12:00 pm
  • Ela Area Public Library
  • 275 Mohawk Trl
  • Lake Zurich
  • Rooms A and B


Cost: FREE Sponsored by H.W. Wilson, Gale Cengage Learning and TBS

New Program: Graceland Cemetery Tour

September 9, 2014

Graceland Cemetery Tour

Date: Saturday, October 18, 11 am at Graceland Cemetery, 4001 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60613

One of the best sources for a community’s history can be found in the local cemetery, and Chicago is no exception. In fact, it contains some of the most historic in the country, the foremost of which is Graceland Cemetery.

Join Joe Collier, Business Reference Librarian at Mount Prospect Public Library, Jake Coolidge, Cartographer and Designer, and Anne Shaughnessy, Genealogy Librarian at Mount Prospect Public Library on a tour of this historic Chicago landmark. Learn how to utilize your own local cemetery for genealogy research and learn more about the rich history of Chicago and its architects. A new map of Graceland created by Jake and Joe will be provided as an example.


Cost: FREE Sponsored by H.W. Wilson, Gale Cengage Learning and TBS

New Program: Lillstreet Art Center Tour

August 21, 2014

Lillstreet Art Center Tour

Date: September 9, 6:30-7:30 pm at Lillstreet Art Center, 4401 N Ravenswood Ave, Chicago, IL

Interested in creating more arts programming at your library, or learning how to use art to create a culture of creativity at your library? Join RLA-CE  for a tour of Lillstreet Art Center. Learn about Lillstreet’s philosophy, best practices for developing programs for adults and kids, and how they use their physical space to support creativity and community. We’ll also hear about Lillstreet Ignite, a program that teaches businesses how to use art to foster staff collaboration and creativity. After, join us for a post-tour discussion at Mangal Bar & Grille.

Founded in 1975, Lillstreet Art Center is a large community of artists and students working side-by-side in a friendly environment which encourages and inspires artistic growth in the individual. Lillstreet Art Center supports the arts through their education program, artist residencies, gallery exhibitions and retail sales opportunities, studio rentals, and arts-based professional development. Lillstreet is also the home to ArtReach, their sister organization providing arts education to underserved communities in Chicago. Lillstreet Ignite, a program of Lillstreet Art Center, provides local and national businesses and professionals an opportunity to use art as a tool for inquiry. They believe that bringing art and business together fosters collaboration, increases understanding among people, and creates a culture of creativity.


Cost: FREE Sponsored by H.W. Wilson, Gale Cengage Learning and TBS

New Program: Displays on Parade

August 20, 2014

Displays on Parade

Date: September 23, 9:30-12:30 at the Barrington Area Library

Tired of doing the same old book displays? Need inspiration for displays that are fresh, clever, visually appealing, and designed to drive circulation? Join Steven Jablonski of Skokie Public Library for a rundown of rules of thumb to use when thinking up your own thematic displays. Joyce Brantner of Mount Prospect Public Library will show us how to create eye-catching champagne displays on a beer budget. Finally, Leah White of Ela Area Public Library will share tips and tricks indie booksellers use to merchandize their books. You can bring your own favorite display ideas or share them on our Pinterest page.

After the program, participants are invited to tour the newly renovated Barrington Area Library.


Cost: FREE Sponsored by H.W. Wilson, Gale Cengage Learning and TBS

Here comes Library OnCon!

July 12, 2014

Registration begins July 14, 2014, for Library OnCon.  Library OnCon is a brand new networking event for public librarians, taking place virtually through Google Hangouts. This initial meeting takes place on Tuesday, August 26, 2014, at 2 p.m.  Keynote speaker R. David Lankes will broadcast his presentation live via Google Hangouts on Air.  Afterward, participants can join in a live Google Hangout video breakout session with nine other participants, based on categories of interest ranging from Business Librarianship to Community Engagement. The breakout session moderators include: Michael Campagna, Barrington Area Library; Jennifer Drinka, Crystal Lake Public Library; Emily Vinci, Schaumburg Township District Library; Leah White, Ela Area Public Library; and Shannon Distel, Arlington Heights Memorial Library. Conference organizers are Barbara Alvarez and Gwyneth Stupar, Barrington Area Library.

No travel/hotel costs. No transportation. No conflicting schedules. Just ideas, inspiration, and conversation.

Please visit the website, for more information and to register.

Powerpoints from 6/24/14 “Book a Librarian” program.

June 27, 2014

Here are the presentations from the June 24, 2014 program, “Book a Librarian” that was held at the Mount Prospect Public Library.

MGPL Book a Librarian

RLA program powerpoint 6-24


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