National Volunteer Week and Earth Day take-home kits

Author Sherry Anderson once said, “Volunteers are not paid – not because they are worthless but because they are priceless.”  Everyone on your library staff agrees.  Our volunteers are everyday heroes who make a lasting impact on the service we provide you and your family at your library. 

That’s why every year during National Volunteer Week Meg Wempe and her team host a thank-you gathering for library volunteers.  But that was before COVID-19.

For the second year, we will have to celebrate in absentia without a volunteer get-together.  Please know that we appreciate our volunteers tremendously and hope to be able to plan something for later in the year, as allowed by health officials. Our fingers are crossed for fall or early winter.  As William James said, “Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.”  We know this sentiment to be true, as our volunteers truly make a difference in our community by supporting the library with their time. Thank you to all of our volunteers!

Earth Day take-home kits

Celebrate Earth Day at your library next Thursday, April 22 by spending time in our garden, checking out some materials about our planet, or adding some plants to your life with our free take-home kits.  Each kit comes with everything you need to get started planting, as well as some conservation facts.  They are available for pickup while supplies last.  

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.

COVID level blue operations

Current operations under COVID level blue:

  • 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.
  • Storytime is now Thursday at 10 a.m.  Tech Times are now from 3-4 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday by appointment.
  • Meeting rooms can now be used by up to five people. 

Other COVID-related operations:

  • 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 them 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.”

Take-and make DIY:  Keepsake box

You’re invited to join us via Facebook tomorrow, Friday, April 16, as Brad will demonstrate how easy it is to create a long-lasting keepsake box made from a vintage book.        Supplies and instructions will be available to pick up at your library beginning tomorrow, and video tutorials will appear from 2-3 p.m. on Facebook and the library’s website at htps://pagosalibrary.org/adult-diy/

New writing challenge

On April 19we 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.

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 April 8-21 theme is about rain bringing all sorts of possibilities. 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 crafts takeaway for kids

Drop by during open hours to pick up free DIY crafts takeaways for youngsters age 10 and older outside the building.         

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.  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 from 3-7 p.m. 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

Thursdays at 10 a.m. 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.

Books on CD

“Transient Desires” by Donna Leon is a Commissioner Guido Brunetti mystery set in Venice.  “The Affair” by Danielle Steel begins when a photo shoot exposes an affair.  “No Way Out” by Fern Michaels is a suspense story that begins when a woman awakens from a coma.  “The Arsonists’ City’ by Hala Alyan features a family spread across the globe who gather in Beirut to save the family home.  “Keep Sharp” by Dr. Sanjay Grupta offers tips to keep your brain healthy and sharp.  “Elizabeth and Margaret” by Andrew Moton is an intimate look at the Queen and her sister.  “Till Murder Do Us Part” by James Patterson contains two real-life crime stories.  “The Rope” by Alex Tresniowski is the true story of murder, heroism and the dawn of the NAACP.  “Win” by Harlan Cohen is a Myron Bolitar thtiller.  ”Infinite” by Brian Freeman is a psychological thriller.

Essays collection

“The Hard Crowd: Essays 2000-2020” by Rachel Kushner is a collection of 19 essays about politics and culture from her writings over the last 20 years.    


The Well-Watered Woman” by Gretchen Saffles uses Scripture and the author’s personal story to offer tools to know Jesus better and live a life that follows him.  “The Energy Paradox” by Dr. Steven R. Gundry describes a plan to help you boost your physical and mental energy.

Mysteries, suspense and thrillers

“Unknown Threat” by Lynn H. Blackburn features a Secret Service agent and FBI special agent who have to learn to trust each other to solve their case.  “Night Fall” by Nancy Mehl focuses on children killed on trains, all in the same way.  “The Beirut Protocol” by Joel C Rosenberg is a Marcus Ryder adventure featuring the clandestine CIA operative.  “Hummingbird Salamander” by Jeff Vandermeer is a thriller about climate change and identity.  “Animal Instinct” by David Rosenfelt features a PI and his German Shepherd partner.  “Mother May I” by Joshilyn Jackson begins with what appears to be a harmless request. 

Other novels

“Piecing It All Together” and “A Patchwork Past” by Leslie Gould are books one and two of the Plain Patterns series set in an Amish community.  “The Day of Ezekiel’s Hope” by Donna VanLiere is set in post-nuclear New York and Jerusalem when a new leader emerges promising hope and salvation.  “Out of the Embers” by Amanda Cabot is book one of the Mesquite Springs series.  “Astrid Sees All” by Natalie Standiford portrays the lives of “It” girls partying in gritty 1980s New York City.  “Other People’s Children” by R.J. Hoffman features three mothers making excruciating choices to protect their families.

Large print

“Meant To Be” by Jude Deveraux follows two young women in Kansas unhappy with the paths laid out for them.  “Double Jeopardy” by Stuart Woods is a Stone Barrington mystery.


“Promising Young Woman” is a tale of revenge by a woman leading a secret double life.  “News of the World” stars Tom Hanks as a drifter delivering a 10-year-old girl back to her home.  “Miss Scarlet & The Duke” is season one of the series featuring Victoria England’s first female detective.  “The Way Back” stars Ben Afflack.  “Our Friend” is based on a true story of a family dealing with terminal cancer.  “How It Feels to be Free” features interviews with trailblazing performers like Diahann Carroll, Lena Horne and Cicely Tyson.

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.  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 contribution, we thank Susan and Terry Arrington.  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

“The object of education is to prepare the young to educate themselves throughout their lives.” – Robert Maynard Hutchins (1899-1977), American educator and philosopher.

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