Free ESL classes resume March 1 as new teacher is hired

Your library has hired a new teacher with impressive academic credentials and teaching experience for our free English as a Second Language (ESL) classes.

Chris Hicklin will lead the sessions beginning Tuesday, March 1.  They will take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays with 4-5 p.m. reserved for beginners and 5-7 p.m. for both intermediate and advanced students.

She has taught adults in the Republic of the Marshall Islands and children both there and in New Mexico.  She has a BS in elementary education and reading specialty from Minnesota State University, Mankato; an MA from Adams State University in curriculum and assessment; a certificate from the University of Phoenix in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) and a Colorado teaching certificate in elementary education.

Chris has lived in Pagosa for 17 years.  She enjoys running, skiing, mountain biking and yoga when not at work.

“I’m thrilled that Chris is joining our team and that this vital resource for our community will be resuming next week,” said Meg Wempe, library director.  “Chris has so much valuable experience and she brings a lot of enthusiasm, ideas and expertise to our program.”  

Clases gratis de ESL recomienzan el 1 de marzo

La biblioteca Ruby Sisson se complace en presentarle a su nueva maestra con credenciales académicos impresionantes en la instrucción gratis de inglés como segunda idioma. Chris Hicklin dirigirá las sesiones a partir del martes, 1 de marzo.  Estas sesiones tendrán lugar los martes y jueves de 4 a 5 PM para principiantes y de 5 a 7 PM para participantes de nivel intermedio y avanzado. 

Chris ha provisto instrucción para adultos y niños en la República de las Islas Marshall y para niños en el estado de Nuevo Mexico.  Chris recibió su licenciatura en educación primaria y una especialidad en lectura de Minnesota State University, Mankato; su maestría en currículo y evaluación de Adams State University; un certificado de la universidad de Phoenix en TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages – instrucción en inglés para hablantes de otras idiomas; y un certificado de enseñanza en educación primaria del estado de Colorado.

Chris ha vivido en Pagosa por 17 años.  Le gusta correr, esquiar, andar en bicicleta de montaña y practicar yoga en cuanto no esté trabajando.

“Estoy encantada que Chris será parte de nuestro equipo y que éste recurso tan esencial para nuestra comunidad vuelva a ser disponible la semana que viene,” dijo Meg Wempe, directora de la biblioteca. “Chris nos trae tanta experiencia, habilidad, ideas, y entusiasmo a nuestro  programa.”          

Library closure

Your library will be closed tomorrow, Friday, February 25, for staff education.

Creede Theatre show for preschoolers

Children ages five and under are invited to a special free performance of “Ms. Joy” at your library next Thursday, March 3 from 10-11 a.m. put on by Creede Repertory Theatre, rescheduled by the theatre from February 16.

“Ms. Joy” is about a woman who has a very strict daily routine  — until  one day she receives a visit from an unexpected dog who turns her routine upside down.  The story is told through clowning, puppetry and sound.  It teaches children the power of play, friendship and laughter. 

Teen DIY

Fourth – 12th graders are invited to a free in-person teen DIY session on Wednesday, March 2 from 4-5 p.m. when we’ll make masquerade masks.

Getting Started with Universal class

Universal Class is an online educational service providing a diverse offering of intellectually stimulating courses for people interested in the lifelong pursuit of knowledge for either personal or professional reasons.  To get started, join us for an in-person orientation on Tuesday, March 1 from 1-2 p.m.

Free HIV rapid tests

Simple, finger stickHIV rapid tests are available free from San Juan Basin Public Health at your library next Wednesday, March 2 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.  You’ll also receive a $5 gift card.  Call SJBPH at 970-335-2015 if you have any questions. 

Spanish conversation today

This evening, Thursday, February 24 from 6-7 p.m., we will gather in person at the library to practice speaking and listening skills together.  Note new day and time.  There is no minimum skill level required to attend.   As an alternative, you can learn Spanish and many other languages using the Transparent Language Learning database available at https:pagosalibrary.org/online-resources/

LEGO Club on Saturday

Kids aged six to 12 are invited to bring your imaginations – LEGOs are provided – on Saturday, February 26 from 11 a.m.-noon for the free LEGO Club.  LEGO challenges also are posted on Facebook if you can’t make it to the library.

Dungeons & Dragons   

Join us Tuesday, March 1 from 4-6 p.m. for our ongoing Dungeons & Dragons game free for teens and young adults on Google Meet every other Tuesday.  Contact claire@pagosalibrary.org to learn how to join. 

S.T.E.A.M enrichment kits

Participants in this free enrichment program for youngsters aged five and up receive a kit guiding you through science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (S.T.E.A.M.) projects.  The kits are available all month but registration is required by calling your library at 970-264-2209. 

Family storytimes

Wednesdays from 10-11 a.m. join us for free in-person children’s stories, games and plenty of reasons to get up and move.  The next Discovery Time takes place Saturday, March 5 on Facebook at 2:30 p.m.

Tech Time

Free in-person slots are available from 10 a.m.-noon Tuesdays and 2-4 p.m. Thursdays.   Brad will help you resolve issues with your computer, smartphone, tablet and other electronic devices. 

Adult education

Our free PALS (Pagosa Adult Learning Services) session take place on Thursdays  from 5:30-8 p.m. when Mark helps with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more.

In-person gaming

Enjoy free all-ages video gaming on the X-box 360 Kinect on Fridays from 2:30 – 3:45 p.m.  

Writing challenge

A new all-ages writing challenge will be posted February 28 on the library’s Facebook page.  We hope you will challenge your creativity by participating in this free all-ages activity.

Library hours

Most of our programs are happening in person.  Also, our hours have returned to pre-COVID levels – and even more on weekdays:

  • Monday, Wednesday and Friday open 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays open 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Saturdays open 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

 As well, curbside service continues.  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. 

Activities calendars available

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

Books on CD

“The Paris Detective” by James Patterson and Richard DiLallo contains three cases.  “Rogue Asset” by W.E.B. Griffin begins with the kidnapping of the Secretary of State.  “Ruby-Fruit Jungle” by Rita Mae Brown is a coming-of-age story set in the South.  “The Long War” by David Loyn is an analysis of America and Afghanistan since 9/11.  “The Starless Crown” by James Rollins is an epic sci-fantasy. 


“The Vaccine” by Joe Miller reveals how the two creators of the BioNTech-Pfizer vaccine were able to build on 30 years of research to create the COBID-19 vaccine so quickly.  “Home/Land” by Rebecca Mead is a memoir exploring life in New York City and England.  “The Power of Regret” by Daniel H. Pink draws on research and science to explain why understanding our regrets helps us make a better life for ourselves.            

Mysteries and thrillers

“A History of Wild Places” by Shea Ernshaw is set in a reclusive community called Pastoral.  “Steal” by James Patterson and Howard Roughan is a story of a triple-cross.   “Violin Conspiracy” by Brendon Slocumb begins when the valuable violin of a Black professional musician is stolen.  “City of the Dead” by Jonathan Kellerman is an Alex Delaware thriller.  “Win” by Harlan Coben opens with a family’s long-lost objects bring found at a murder scene.  “Greenwich Park” by Katherine Faulkner centers on the meeting of two women at a prenatal class. 


“No Time To Die” is the James Bond film starring Daniel Craig.  “Grant” is the complete miniseries.  “Ghostbusters Afterlife” is the sequel to “Ghostbusters.”    

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.  Select AspenCat Union Catalog when setting up cloudLibrary for use.  Email or phone us at 970-264-2209 if you need our help setting up this service on your device. 


Many thanks to our anonymous donors for their materials donations.  Please put your materials donations into the dropbox at the library – not at City Market, which is reserved for returns. 

Library foundation

Please consider a tax-deductible donation to the Ruby M. Sisson Memorial Library Foundation to support and enhance your library by raising funds for information resources, programs, services and facilities.  Mail checks to P.O. Box 2045, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147 or call Cindi Galabota at 970-264-2209. 

Quotable Quote

“In my long career I’ve played so many extraordinary women that [I’m] getting mistaken for one.” – Meryl Streep, American actress.  Often described as “the best actress of her generation,” she is particularly known for her versatility and accent adaptability.  She has won three Academy Awards (record 21 nominations) and eight Golden Globes (record 32 nominations).

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