T-shirt design contest underway now for artists of all ages

We’d love your help in designing a t-shirt for this year’s Summer Reading Program.  The theme will be “Tails and Tales,” which ought to stimulate a lot of creative, fun ideas in artistic heads.  This is an all-ages contest.  All designs must be original.

The winning t-shirt will be worn by staff during the summer, given to the winning designer, and a limited number will be made available for purchase. For details and a blank t-shirt template, please pick up a flyer at the library or go online to our website.  Deadline for submissions is March 8.

Library closure

Your library will be closed Monday, February 15 in honor of Presidents Day.

Activities calendars available

To be sure you don’t miss any of the free activities available to you and your family at your library, we encourage you to pick up a copy of the events calendar each month.  There are two versions – youth and adults.

Free literacy program for babies

An exciting free Colorado-based literacy program that helps families and caregivers build their babies’ vocabulary is now underway in Archuleta County, thanks to a partnership involving your library, AmeriCorps and the San Juan BOCES.

You need to sign up for this special program, called LENA, in order to be enrolled in the workshops that will provide you with personalized information and ideas to help your child.  Please contact Michelle Salmeron-Ramierez at 970-585-4293 or nichelle@unitedway-swco.org.  The program is available in English and Spanish. It was created for babies from new-born to age three, and will help you use talking to build your child’s brain.

Library operations update

Here is the current status under COVID Level Orange:

  • 30 patrons may be in the building at a time.
  • Open Thursdays from 1 p.m.- 7 p.m. with 1-2 p.m. reserved for seniors and higher risk populations. 
  • Other hours: Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays: 10 a.m.-3 p.m. with 9 a.m.-10 a.m. for seniors and higher risk populations. Saturdays: 10 a.m-2 p.m.  Sundays: closed.
  • Accepting meeting room reservations only for individuals or members of the same household, with library programs having first dibs on the rooms. 
  • Hand sanitizers are available and there will be frequent cleanings inside the building throughout the day.  Please practice social distancing and wear facial coverings while you are in the building.  If you don’t have a mask, we are happy to give one to you.
  • Ten computers are available. Staff will clean and disinfect the computers between uses.
  • One early literacy computer is available for youngsters Monday-Saturday.
  • Curbside service continues Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. except for Thursdays when it’s from 9 a.m.-7 p.m., and on Saturday from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.  Phone 264-2209 when you are in the parking lot so staff can bring the items out for you.  If you put a hold on something, please wait for your usual alert (email, phone call or text) before coming to pick it up. 
  • You can place holds on items from other libraries.  They are in different stages of open, so items may take longer than usual. 
  • We’re happy to provide tech help in person or over the phone for our online resources.

Special note

“We want people to always feel welcome in the library, and to experience a very friendly vibe when they visit,” said Meg Wempe, library director.  “But we need to remind everyone that, similar to other public indoor spaces in Colorado, we must follow the executive order that requires people aged 11 or older to wear a covering over their noses and mouths when entering or moving within any public indoor space. If you are unable or unwilling to wear a mask, we are pleased to assist you outside the building through our curbside service.”

Legal clinic tomorrow

The free legal clinic each month is happening by appointment tomorrow, Friday, February 12 from 2 – 3 p.m. The volunteer attorney can phone you directly, or you can come into the library and meet via Zoom. To sign up for these calls, send an email titled “Sign-up for Free Legal Clinic,” with your first name and phone number to ruby@pagosalibrary.org, or phone or stop by the library. The volunteer attorney’s time is limited so it’s first-come first-served.

LEGO challenge Saturday

Join us on February 13 and 27 at 10 a.m. for a free all-ages LEGO challenge via an image posted on Facebook and the library website.  Use your own pieces to create something that will fit the challenge. If you don’t have LEGOS, we have a few grab bags available at the library.

New all-ages writing challenge

On February 8we posted a new writing challenge on the library’s Facebook page.  We hope you will challenge your creativity by participating.  This is a free all-ages activity.

Spotlight on board books next week

Board books are fun and unique.  They are created to be sturdy, attractive learning tools – and often they are both a toy and a book.  Learn more by watching a video or joining the all-ages  Board Book Reading Challenge next Thursday, February 18 at 4 p.m. on the library’s Facebook page.

Storywalk for kids

Weather permitting, every other Thursday Josie posts signs outside the library that follow the sidewalk up towards the Elementary School detailing a new free Storywalk for kids.  The current theme is celebrating Valentine’s Day and love of all kinds. After you finish the walk, pick up materials for a craft or activity at the library. 

Knitting takeaways

Pick up free knitting takeaways at the library entrance during open hours to take for your in-home enjoyment.  We’ll have patterns craft ideas, instructions and some limited supplies available.

Calling all teens

If you enjoy reading books, learning new skills and helping your community, we hope sixth-12th graders will sign up to volunteer at your library.  You’ll write book reviews, make artwork for the teen area, help plan new programs, judge our pumpkin decorating contest, prepare crafts for kids’ programs and help keep the library organized.  Please stop by the library or apply online.

After-school program

In response to COVID, we have revamped our free after-school program into STEAM enrichment kits, STEAM standing for science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics, for ages five and up.  Registration is required at 970-264-2209.  Pick up your kit and then bring your completed projects back to the library to be displayed in the last week of the month.

DIY craft takeaway for kids

Drop by your library for free DIY crafts takeaways for youngsters age 10 and older during open hours.  Pick up a packet outside the library.      

Tech Time

Make a 15- to 30-minute appointment for one of three free in-person slots available noon-1 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Brad will help one person (or one couple) at a time resolve issues with your computer, smartphone, tablet and other electronic devices.  Starting February 22, Monday will be added to the schedule.


Free in-person classes take place Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5-7 p.m. by appointment.  Please register so we can keep it to a small group in our limited open spaces.  No walk-ins, please. 

Dungeons & Dragons

Join us Wednesdays from 4-6 p.m. for Dungeons & Dragons free for teens and young adults on Google Meet.  Contact claire@pagosalibrary.org to learn how to join. If you don’t have internet access, contact us anyway – we may be able to accommodate you in the library. 

Children’s programs on Facebook

Wednesdays at 10 a.m. and Saturdays at 2:30 p.m., join us on the library’s Facebook page for free children’s programs.  Wednesday storytimes are on Facebook Live, so you can interact with Josie.  Saturday’s Discovery Times with games, art ideas, science experiments, history and more are prerecorded.  

Adult education

Our free PALS (Pagosa Adult Learning Services) sessions take place in person where Mark helps with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more.  Contact the library and Mark will work with you to schedule a date and time to meet.

Local author

The publisher of local author Carole Howard’s new book “On Deadline: Managing Media Relations/sixth edition” has donated a copy to your library.  Called “a tangible blueprint for tomorrow’s communication leaders” by one reviewer, the book covers planning and implementing a media relations program, building relationships with reporters, arranging news conferences and media events, integrating media relations into marketing communication strategy, spokesperson training, crisis management, global media relations, ethics and legal issues, measuring results and becoming a counselor to management.

Books on CD

“Perestroika in Paris”  by Jane Smiley features three extraordinary animals and a young boy.  “All the Colors of Night” by Jayne Ann Krentz is the second installment of the Fogg Lake mystery series.  “The Captive” by Fiona King Foster is an adventure crime story.  “Daylight” by David Baldacci features an FBI agent searching for her sister abducted at age six.  “NYPD Red 6” by James Patterson and Marshall Karp features the elite NYPD Red crime-fighting force.

Other novels

“H2N2” by Albert W. Northrop features seven influential men trying to reform the criminal justice system in Maryland.

Large print

“Firestick” by William W. and JA. Johnston is a western. “Someone to Watch Over Me” by Ace Atkins is a  Robert B. Parker Spencer mystery.  “Before She Disappeared” by Lisa Gradner features a woman who searched for missing people,


“Humor, Seriously” by Jennifer Aaker and Naomi Bagdonas, teachers at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, documents how humor can be a valuable secret weapon in business and life.          

Downloadable e-books and audiobooks 

We have a wide variety of downloadable e-books and audio books for all ages – children, tweens, teens and adults – in cloudLibrary.  The items in cloudLibrary are purchased separately from physical items, so the books available are different – and it continues to use the consortium’s contributions as well as those that we bought.  That is why you need to select AspenCat Union Catalog when setting up cloudLibrary for use.  Please email or phone us at 970-264-2209 if you need our help setting up this service on your device. 


For their materials donations, we thank our anonymous donors.  Please put your material donations into the dropbox at the library – not at City Market, which is reserved for returns.  Donations undergo the same rigorous three-day quarantine process as returns. 

Library foundation

Please consider a tax-deductible donation to the Ruby M. Sisson Memorial Library Foundation to help support the services and programs provided by your Ruby Sisson Library.  Mail checks to P.O. Box 2045, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147 or call Cindi Galabota at 970-264-2209.  Thank you!

 Quotable Quote

“My advice to women who worry about aging is to nurture gratitude for your life.  Remember that true beauty comes from within, from the positive qualities of your heart and mind.  And most of all, be kind.  Kindness is beautiful.  Out of that will come happiness.” – Tina Turner, singer, songwriter, dancer and actress, known as the Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

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