Library building is partially reopened, plus new Tall Tale contest

It is with great pleasure that we announce that your library building has now partially reopened for the first time since the middle of March, albeit with some limitations.  Here’s what services are currently available:

  • Up to 20 patrons at a time are now welcome to come into the building from Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. to return books, browse, register for a new library card, make copies, send FAXs, pick up tax forms and check out materials like books, DVDs, CDs and periodicals.
  • The first hour of that timeframe every weekday – from 9-10 a.m. – is reserved for seniors and other high-risk people.
  • Eight computers are now available weekdays from 9 a.m.-2 p.m., three by appointment arranged in advance and five for walk-ins.  To make a computer appointment, call the library at 264-2209 or email ruby@pagosalibrary.org to schedule a time. With some possible exceptions, computer usage will be limited to two hours per day. Staff will continue to clean and disinfect the computers between uses.
  • As well, one early literacy computer will be available for youngsters on a walk-in basis Monday-Saturday.
  • Saturday hours are 10 a.m.-2 p.m. for building entry and 10 a.m.-1 p.m. for computer use.
  • Curbside service outside the front door continues Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. for those not comfortable coming into a public building at this time.  Phone the library at 264-2209 when you are in the parking lot so that staff can bring the items out for you.  If you put a hold on something from home, please wait for your usual alert (email, phone call or text) before coming to pick it up.  
  • For safety’s sake, hand sanitizers will be available and there will be frequent cleanings inside the building throughout the day.  Also, we’re asking everyone to 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.
  • We have resumed providing a Notary Public Service for anyone who needs something notarized.  The cost is $5 per notary.  This service is available Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.  
  • You now are able to place holds on items from other libraries.  Libraries are in different stages of courier service and reopening, so items may take longer than usual. 
  • If you do not have a library card but want to use our online resources, you now can self-register.  From our website, click “My Account” in the top right.  It is the usual login page for current patrons, and it now has (in blue) an option to “Register for a new Library Card.”  There’s a short form and then staff will get back in touch with you to give you your login credentials.  If you previously self-registered, you now can pick up your physical card after providing proof of address.
  • We’re also happy to provide tech help over the phone for our online resources. 
  •  Please note we are not accepting meeting room reservations or hosting any large in-person programming at this time.  We hope you will join us for some of our virtual programs outlined in these Library News columns.  We will be resuming small one-on-one classes such as GED, ESL and Tech Time.  Please contact the library for information.

“We are so pleased to be starting the reopening process and providing more   services to our patrons,”  said Meg Wempe, library director.  “We want everyone to enjoy a safe, productive and happy visit when you come to your library.   But we ask you to avoid hanging out inside for too long so that we can serve more people throughout the day and help keep everyone safe.”

We are putting together a short video to share some of the changes in the library  to help you know what to expect when you return. It will be posted on our Facebook page as well as on our website. 

New Tall Tale contest

Calling storytellers of all ages and abilities – your library is hosting a Tall Tale contest.  Do you have an extravagant story to tell?  If so, we want to hear from you.  Submit your entries between Monday, July 13 and Friday, July 17 by 5 p.m.  Winners will be announced on July 20.

Submissions should be original stories but can use already existing characters.  Both written entries and audio recordings will be accepted. Please do not send video entries. 

Prizes will be awarded in the following categories: Pre-Writers, Emerging Writers, Developed Writers-Children, Developed Writers-Teens, Developed Writers-Adults, and Judge’s Choice.   For more information and submission guidelines, please visit the library website at pagosalibrary.org or call us at (970)264-2209. 

Email your tale to ruby@pagosalibrary.org, or deliver a hard copy to the library. All entries should be clearly labeled as entries to the Tall Tale contest and include the author’s name, age, and contact information. You do not need to have a library card to participate. 

Book sale cancelled

Because of the coronavirus, the Friends of the Library have decided to cancel this year’s sale, which had been scheduled for August 4-6.  Questions or concerns that the public may have can be directed to friends@pagosalibrary.org, which is the Friends email address.

Fundraiser bumper stickers

Your library’s foundation has launched a small fundraiser with two different bumper stickers that cost $5 each.  Both say, “ I (heart symbol) my library.”  If you want to purchase one to show your support, they are available during curbside hours.

HVAC installation  

Our long-awaited HVAC project has started and should take another month to complete.  We apologize for the noise, particularly in the next week with the continued dismantling/demolition of the old system.  We will have earplugs available at our front door greeter station.

Summer Reading Program

It’s not too late to sign up for the free Summer Reading Program that runs until July 31. Fun activities are open to people of all ages and abilities.

  • You will be given a “choose your own adventure” booklet full of activities and challenges designed to help you explore a world of stories. The activities are fun to do – and  completing them makes you eligible to win weekly prizes purchased from local businesses. The booklets include a map of an imaginary island that needs saving or it will fade away.  As you travel to different places on the map and complete various tasks, you will save the island and be able to win prizes. The island is full of fun and interesting locations such as the Neighborhood Village, Fairytale Forest, Mythic Mountains, Cliffs of Adventure and more.
  • There are adventure booklets for four groups: pre-K, K-5, teen and adult. You can pick them up curbside at the library and view them on our website.  As well, many booklets are being delivered through the school lunch delivery program.
  • Are you ready to begin your journey? To sign up, call us at (970) 264-2209, email us at ruby@pagosalibrary.org or register online at pagosalibrary.org/summer-reading. We just need to know your name, contact information, and what age group to assign you to.
  • In addition to the adventure booklets, a new all-ages challenge will appear each week in this Library News column and be announced on KWUF radio. Anyone who completes the challenge will be entered to win a weekly drawing for various prizes.

Challenge 7:  Blackout poetry

Create a piece of blackout poetry using the Library News column or another article found in The Pagosa Springs SUN newspaper.  A blackout poem is created when you blackout or redact the words in the article that you don’t want, leaving behind the words you want to use in your poem.  Take a picture of your poem and email it to the library at ruby@pagosalibrary.org, drop it off during curbside hours (M-F 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.), post it on the library’s Facebook page, or call in to (970) 264-2209 and tell us your poem. Everyone can participate, and entries will be entered into a weekly prize drawing.  

Dungeons & Dragons via Zoom

Go on an adventure from the comfort of your couch.  Join us via Zoom on Tuesdays from 2-4 pm for our new Dungeons & Dragons group.  This program is open to teens and young adults.  Contact claire@pagosalibrary.org for details on how to join.  

Family storytimes on Facebook

Every Wednesday at 10 a.m. and Saturday at 2:30 p.m., join us for great stories and fun songs on the library’s Facebook page.  Wednesday storytimes are now on Facebook Live, so if you go to Facebook at 10 a.m. you can interact with Josie – and she is eager to have a live audience.  Saturday’s sessions continue to be prerecorded.   If you have a Facebook account, log in to Facebook and search for the Ruby Sisson Memorial Library. If you don’t have a Facebook account, access the page by visiting our website and clicking the Facebook icon (a lowercase f)  in the upper left hand corner of the screen. Or contact us and we can send you a direct link.  These sessions are available to watch for about two weeks after the initial posting.

Storywalk program for kids

Every Thursday, Josie, your early literacy librarian, will post “signs” outside the library that follow the sidewalk up towards the Elementary School detailing a new Summer Reading Storywalk for kids.  The July 9-16 theme is adventure.  Get outdoors and follow the pages of a book to enjoy a fun-filled exploration of new places.  After you finish, pick up materials for a craft or activity at the library during curbside hours (Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-3 p.m.). 

Please complete the census now 

To complete the census online, go to www.my2020census.gov or by phone call 1-844-330-2020 for the English version and 1-844-468-2020 for the Spanish version.  You can visit our website at pagosalibrary.org/census-2020 to view a video that demonstrates how to fill out the census online.  Please phone the library at (970) 264-2209 or email us at ruby@pagosalibrary.org if you have any questions regarding the census. 

Your participation will directly affect hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funding for the next 10 years for local and regional agencies and projects like health clinics, fire departments, schools, social services like Medicaid, even roads and highways.  Archuleta County needs your participation to get our fair share of these federal dollars.

When you respond to the census, your answers are kept anonymous.  The law ensures that your private information is never published and that your answers cannot be used against you by any government agency or court.


“101 Dalmatians” is the Walt Disney animated film.  “Queen & Slim” is a romantic drama.  “Onward” is a Disney Pixar animated film.

Books on CD

“The Last Odyssey” by James Rollins is a Sigma Force adventure.  “The Glass Hotel” by Emily St. John Mandel is a story of greed and guilt, love and delusion. “Revenge” by James Patterson and Andrew Holmes is a murder mystery featuring an SAS soldier.  “Redhead by the Side of the Road” by Anne Tyler is a story of second chances and misperceptions. 

Mysteries and thrillers

“Death in Her Hands” by Ottessa Moshfegh is a horror suspense tale of an elderly widow whose life is overturned after she finds an ominous note in the woods.  “Ghosts of Harvard” by Francesca Seritella follows a woman investigating her brother’s suicide on campus.  “The Summer House” by James Patterson and Brandan DuBois is set in a house that once was the scene of a nighttime mass murder.  “The Persuasion” by Iris Johansen focuses on forensic sculptor Eve Duncan when her daughter becomes a killer’s target.

Other novels

“Gideon the Ninth” by Tamsun Muir is the first book in the new Locked Tomb science fantasy trilogy.  “28 Summers” by Elin Hilderbrand is a romance story inspired by “Same Time Next Year.”  “Daddy’s Girls” by Danielle Steel follows three daughters living on a California ranch after their father dies.  “Home Before Dark” by Riley Sager is the story of a house with long-buried secrets.  “Dance with Me” by Susan Elizabeth Phillips features two solitary people and is set in Tennessee.  “Eliza Starts a Rumor” by Jane L. Rosen centers on two competing bulletin boards.  “American Demon” by Kim Harrison is the latest in the Hollows urban fantasy series.


“The Art of Her Deal” by Pulitzer Prize winner Mary Jordan is a biography of First Lady Melania Trump.  “Be An Antiracist” by National Book Award winner Ibram X. Kendi is a new look at understanding and uprooting racism and inequality in our society.  “Five Days” by Rhodes Scholar Wes Moore and Erica L. Green reviews the uprising that overtook Baltimore in 2015 when Freddie Gray was arrested and died in police custody.  “White Fragility” by educator Robin Diangelo looks at why it is so hard for white people to talk about racism.

Large print

“Formidable Foes” by Rita Mae and Sneaky Pie Brown is a mystery featuring two felines.  “Hideaway” by Nora Roberts features a woman who is Hollywood royalty.  “On Ocean Boulevard” by Mary Alice Monroe is the latest in the Beach House series.  “Bombshell” by Stuart Woods and Parnell Hall is a Teddy Fay mystery featuring Stone Barrington.  “The Lies That Bind” by Emily Giffin is a mystery featuring an investigative reporter.  “Credible Threat” by J. A. Jance is an Ali Reynolds mystery.  “The Goodbye Man” by Jeffry Deaver is about a hate crime in the wilderness of Washington State.  “A Week at the Shore” by Barbara Delinsky features three sisters coming together 20 years later.           

Downloadable e-books and audiobooks 

While the coronavirus restrictions keep you from browsing inside the library, we suggest a fun digital alternative:  Ever since March when we had to close the building, we have been buying more downloadable e-books and downloadable audio books for patrons of all ages – children, tweens, teens and adults.  

Using cloudLibrary, you can download a book to read or an audio book to listen to.  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, not just 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. 


We are grateful for the generous monetary donation of Lenore Bright in memory of Mamie Lynch.  Your material donations now can be put into the dropbox at the library, effective immediately – but NOT into the dropbox at City Market.  Donations will undergo the same rigorous three-day quarantine process as returns.  

Quotable Quote

“If you are feeling helpless,  help someone else.  If you are feeling alone, don’t ignore another person’s loneliness.  If you are afraid, be brave for someone else.  Things feel more doable if they are not about you.” – Shonda Rhimes, American TV producer, TV and film writer, and author, best known as the creator of “Grey’s Anatomy.”

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