Take and make DIY: Mini Zen garden

You’re invited to join us via Facebook tomorrow, Friday, March 19, as Brad will demonstrate how easy it is to create a Zen garden that can be displayed in your home or office.

Inspired by traditional Japanese Zen gardens, these DIY gardens are made from sand, rocks and other simple materials.  Zen gardens are said to promote tranquility and provide a space for meditative rest – two especially valuable benefits during COVID times.

Supplies and instructions will be available to pick up at your library tomorrow.  Video tutorials will appear from 2-3 p.m. on Facebook and the library’s website at htps://pagosalibrary.org/adult-diy/

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.

Expanded hours and other changes

Your library has expanded the hours we are open to serve you under COVID level blue conditions:

  • Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., with 9-10 a.m. reserved for seniors and high-risk populations.
  • Tuesday and Thursday open 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. for all.
  • With these new hours, there is a slight change to which staff are working on which days, which affects the times and days for some programs.  Storytime has been moved from Wednesday to Thursday at 10 a.m.  Tech Times are now from 3-4 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday by appointment.
  • One more change:  Meeting rooms can now be used by up to five people. 

COVID-related operations that stay the same include:

  • Hand sanitizers are available and there will be frequent cleanings inside the building throughout the day.  Please practice social distancing and wear masks 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.
  • 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. 
  • 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 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.”

New all-ages writing challenge

On March 22we will  post a new writing challenge on the library’s Facebook page.  We hope you will challenge your creativity by participating in this free all-ages activity.

Online Spanish conversation

Next Monday, March 22 from 4-5 p.m. our online Spanish conversation group will gather on Google Meet to practice their skills together.  Access the meeting using the Google Meet app and use the code, XRV-CSRE-KAV to join. Or, you may join on a computer by visiting the website meet.google.com/XRV-CSRE-KAV. Contact Brad at the library if you have questions about using Google Meet.

LEGO contest

Submissions must be turned in between March 22-26 for.this month’s free spring-themed all-ages LEGO contest.  Winners will be announced on March 27 at 12:15 p.m. with prizes for different age groups.  Entries must be built ahead of time and they must be of your own creation, not a LEGO kit or from another source.  Details and instructions are outlined on the youth calendar available at your library.

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 March 11-24 theme is sharing warmth. 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.

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 from 3-4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday (note day and time changes). Brad will help one person (or one couple) at a time resolve issues with your computer, smartphone, tablet and other electronic devices. 


Free in-person classes take place Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3 -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

Thursdays at 10 a.m. (note new day) and Saturdays at 2:30 p.m., join us on the library’s Facebook page for free children’s programs.  Thursday 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 on Fridays between noon and 3 p.m. where Mark helps with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more.  Contact the library to schedule your appointment.

Mysteries, suspense and thrillers

“The Wife Upstairs” by Rachel Hawkins features a broke dog walker looking to marry a rich man whose wife had died.  “Before the Ruins” by Victoria Gosling follows four teen friends spending the nigh in an empty manor house.  “The Voter File” by David Pepper is a political thriller.  “One Small Sacrifice” by Hilary Davidson features NYPD Det. Sheryn Sterling.  “To Tell You The Truth” by Gilly MacMillan focuses on a bestselling writer.   “Let Me Lie” by Clare Mackintosh is a psychological thriller.  “Still Life” is written by Val McDermid, the U.K.’s “Queen of Crime.”  “Blood Orange” by Harriet Tyce is a psychological suspense story.  “The Power Couple” by Alex Berenson is a globe-trotting espionage novel.  “The Survivors” by Jane Harper exposes long-held secrets after a body is discovered. 


“40 Days with God” by Kent Hickey shows you how to steal a few moments each day for a journey through the Bible.   “Liftoff” by Eric Berger documents Elon Musk’s Spacex from a startup to a leading-edge rocket company.  “All Men Must Die” by Carolyne Larrington explores the world of “Game of Thrones.”  “The Unseasonable Virtue of Fly Fishing” by Mark Kurlansky combines history, sport and a memoir to describe the joys of fly fishing.

Other novels

“The Noel Letters” by Richard Paul Evans follows a trail of letters leading to a Christmas revelation.  “Fifty Words for Rain” by Asha Lemmie is a coming-of-age novel set in post-World War II Japan.  “The Fortunate Ones” by Ed Tarkington features two private school friends, one rich and one poor.  “The Arrest” by Jonathan Lethem is a post-collapse novel about two siblings.  “The Future is Yours” by Dan Frey features a computer that lets you see your life a year from now.  “Dark Horses” by Susan Mihalic features a teen’s struggle to reclaim her life from an abusive father.  “The Invisible Woman” by Erika Robuck isbased on a true story of an Allied spy in World War II.  “The Russian Cage” by Charlaine Harris is the third book in the Gunnie Rose fantasy series.  “The Nature of Fragile Things” by Susan Meissner follows three woman after the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.  ”Infinite Country” by Patricia Engel features a family of Columbian immigrants.

Downloadable e-books and audiobooks 

Perfect for COVID times, 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 generous monetary donations, we thank the Town of Pagosa Springs as well as Susan and Terry Arrington.  For materials donations, we thank our anonymous donors.  Please put your materials 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. 

Quotable Quote

“To achieve great things you need a plan and not quite enough time.” – Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990), American composer, conductor and pianist.

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