February Display Ideas

February is nearly upon us. Time to get out the doilies and hearts. Everyone’s thoughts turn towards love and Valentines. Cover a bulletin board in a variety of sizes of pink and red hearts. Add these words “All You Need is Love, And a Good Book.” See below for 10 more display and activity ideas for February.

Black History Month
Since 1976, every American president has designated February as Black History Month and endorsed a specific theme. The Black History Month 2020 theme, “African Americans and the Vote,” is in honor of the centennial anniversary of the Nineteenth Amendment (1920) granting women’s suffrage and the sesquicentennial of the Fifteenth Amendment (1870) giving black men the right to vote. Check out The Brown Bookshelf’s 28 Days Later campaign, in which a different contemporary black children’s book author or illustrator is featured every day during the month of February.

Library Lovers’ Month
Provide heart cutouts on different colors of paper, and have patrons write what they love most about the library on them. Hang the hearts around the library.

National Bird Feeding Month
Display your books about birds, bird houses, and bird feeders. Have a simple and fun program using this video to make a bird feeder that will attract local birds to your library, your school, or your backyard.

World Read Aloud Day (February 5, 2020)
LitWorld founded World Read Aloud Day in 2010 as an opportunity for people all around the globe to celebrate the joy of reading aloud, and advocate for literacy as a fundamental human right that belongs to everyone. The authors listed on this webpage have volunteered their time to read aloud to classrooms and libraries all over the world.

Valentine’s Day (February 14)
Originating as a Western Christian feast day honoring one or two early saints named Valentinus, Valentine’s Day is recognized as a significant cultural, religious, and commercial celebration of love and affection. Find books with red and pink covers and include some cardstock hearts to make a festive display.

National Gumdrop Day (February 15)
Celebrate with a sweet STEM activity! In your makerspace, provide toothpicks, gumdrops, and mini marshmallows, and encourage patrons to make their own unique creations. (You could place a dish of “clean” gumdrops on the checkout desk for people to snack on.)

Presidents’ Day (February 17, 2020)
Make  a display of books sharing unusual storylines about our nation’s leaders, including works of fiction such as Abraham Lincoln, Pro Wrestler by Steve Sheinkin.

Jeff Kinney’s Birthday (February 19, 1971)
Jeffrey Patrick Kinney is an American author and cartoonist, best known for the children’s book series Diary of a Wimpy Kid. Place a small poster on the shelf near his books to commemorate his special day.

National Tortilla Chip Day (February 24)
Tortilla chips accompanied by some form of a dip is a staple party dish. Usually made of fried yellow corn tortillas, tortilla chips can be served with dips like salsa or guacamole. They can be incorporated in a more elaborate dish with cheese and sour cream such as nachos. Pass out individual bags of tortilla chips to all your patrons today. Place the bags of chips in a display of Mexican cookbooks.

Tell a Fairy Tale Day (February 26, 2020)
Tell a Fairy Tale Day provides the perfect opportunity to read fairy tales to the children in your life and to enjoy your favorite childhood tales yourself. A fairy tale is a short story that typically features fantasy characters and magic. Fairy tales usually take place once upon a time and have a happy ending: evil characters are punished and good characters live happily ever after. Make a display of fairy tale books and invite your patrons to read their favorite passages aloud on the 26th.

Follow me on Pinterest for even more display ideas!

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Deadline to Host a Makerspace — February 3, 2020

The Nebraska Library Commission’s Library Innovation Studios project features makerspace equipment that public libraries have been hosting for 20-week periods.  Thirty-one accredited public libraries in Nebraska have been selected to host one of four makerspace kits.

This grant-funded project was thanks to a 3-year IMLS grant that was to expire June 30, 2020.  IMLS contacted us and asked if the Nebraska Library Commission would be interested in a one-year extension, along with additional grant funds, so that we can work with a couple of additional cycles of public libraries.  Recently, we were notified that our extension was approved.

Because of this extension, we are adding a couple of additional cycles (Cycles 8 and 9) and are now announcing one more application round to select another eight to nine libraries. That final application deadline for accredited Nebraska public libraries has been set for February 3, 2020.

Everything you need to know to apply is located on the Library Innovation Studios Website at: http://nlc.nebraska.gov/grants/InnovationStudios, including:

  • Information about the equipment available in the four identical Library Innovation Studios that are rotating around the state – click on Equipment/Components.
  • The “Application of Interest & Commitment” due February 3, 2020. This document also lists the time periods available for the final eight to nine libraries to host the Makerspaces.
  • The “Library Participation Benefits and Expectations, with Answers to Questions” link is likely to answer questions you may have about what is all involved in hosting a Library Innovation Studio.
  • All other links and sections offer information about the project that will help bring you an understanding of the project, as well as specify the local commitment, benefits, and expectations.

Learn more about the project and the application/selection process by viewing the recorded NCompass Live webinar Library Innovation Studios: Transforming Rural Communities—Project Update and Application Process Review at: http://nlc.nebraska.gov/scripts/calendar/eventshow.asp?ProgID=17367

The information in this recorded webinar is still accurate other than the final deadline is now February 3, 2020, and we will now also consider applications from any accredited public library in Nebraska, even those in larger communities. Libraries in communities over 25,000 in population—who were excluded in previous cycles—can now also apply.

The Nebraska Library Innovation Studios Transforming Rural Communities project is supported in part by the Nebraska Library Commission, partnering with the University of Nebraska Lincoln Nebraska Innovation Studio, Nebraska Extension, and Regional Library Systems. The project is funded through a National Leadership Grant awarded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS grant #LG-95-17-0046-17).

If you would like to visit a Library Innovation Studio to see what it looks like in person, they are currently at the public libraries in Nebraska City, Grant (Hastings Memorial), Verdigre/Plainview/Laurel, and Nelson/Blue Hill.  (Nebraska City and Grant have full studios, the others only have select equipment at their libraries as they are Mini Studios).

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January Display Ideas

Winter has set in and all I can think about is next year’s Summer Reading Program workshop. I hope this list of 10 displays, programs, and activities will keep you warm.

National Slow Cooking Month
January is National Slow-Cooking Month and to celebrate, Tastefully Simple provides 22 slow-cooker recipes to make life a little easier and a lot more delicious! Display all your slow-cooker recipe books along with a variety of slow cookers. Plan a program where all the participants bring a slow cooker full of their favorite recipe to share.

National Soup Month
January is a pretty chilly month for most of the country, and nothing is better on a cold day than a bowl of hot soup. Here’s a guide to the 50 Soups of America, one for every state. Display your soup cookbooks with soup pots and ladles. Make a list of popular and not-so-popular soups and let your patrons vote for their favorite

Science Fiction Day (January 2)
This date for the celebration was chosen to correspond with the official birth date of famed science fiction writer Isaac Asimov, who is thought to have been born January 2nd, 1920. The holiday focuses on a genre of literature that explores the effect of imaginary change through technological innovations, scientific discoveries, natural events and disasters and evolution on people and their relationships. Usually, works of science fiction (sci-fi) are set in the near or distant future, and unlike fantasy, sci-fi tends to stay away from the supernatural and the magical. Make a book display of science fiction across all formats, including novels, picture books, graphic novels, and audiobooks.

National Trivia Day (January 4)
National Trivia Day is observed across the United States each year on January 4.
The word trivia is plural for the word trivium. Over time, the word “trivia” has come to refer to obscure and arcane bits of dry knowledge as well as nostalgic remembrances of pop culture. Host a Trivial Pursuit or a Quiz Bowl-style competition for your teens. Go to your local bar and have a Pub Quiz night.

National Cuddle Up Day (January 6)
Bring in some pillows, blankets, and sleeping bags and offer your young patrons a chance to “cuddle up with a good book” during their visit to the library or the reading corner.

Static Electricity Day (January 9)
This is a day to honor this unexpected, mostly unpleasant, and sometimes hair rising phenomenon. Static electricity occurs due to an accumulation of positive electric charges on an object’s surface. Display your science experiment books and set up these 5 easy static electricity experiments.

Winnie the Pooh Day (January 18)
Celebrate the birth of author A.A. Milne on this day in 1882 with 35 Winnie the Pooh Quotes for Every Facet of Life. Display your Winnie the Pooh books and DVDs.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day (January 20, 2020)
Commemorate the life of the civil rights leader by sharing Freedom’s Ring, an animation of King’s “I Have a Dream” speech. Display books from all areas of your collection about the Civil Rights Movement and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Library Shelfie Day (January 22)
Today’s a great day to celebrate our love of books. Take a photo of your library shelves, holds cart, or anywhere else you’ve got books stacked up, and share it on social media.

Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day (January 27)
Host a collection drive of leftover bubble wrap. Challenge your teens and tweens to use it to design a safe landing pad for an egg dropped from 5–10 feet in the air.

Follow me on Pinterest for even more display ideas!

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Holiday Closing

The Central Plains Library System will close at noon on Wednesday, November 29th and will be closed on Thursday and Friday for the Thanksgiving Holiday.

Happy Turkey Day!

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Tomorrow’s Workshop Cancelled

The workshop that was scheduled for TOMORROW (November 26) in Hastings has been cancelled. This is due to the incoming Winter Storm Warning that is scheduled to hit our area starting tomorrow morning and continuing throughout the day with an expected total accumulation of 6-10″ of snow.

Please contact the CPLS Office with any questions.


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Cricut 2.0 Make & Take Workshop (Hastings)

Due to the overwhelming popularity of our Cricut 2.0 Make & Take Workshop, we have decided to add a 3rd location! 

Join us for an exciting event where we will learn all the newest techniques and use the latest tools that Cricut has to offer.  We will be making at least 5 projects so you will leave with plenty of hands on experience and gifts to give away (or keep for yourself).

When:       Tuesday, November 26th
Time:         9:30am—3:30pm
Where:     Hastings Public Library
                     314 N. Denver
                    Hastings, NE  68901

Cost:          $10 per person (includes lunch)

Credits:    5 CEU’s

Since this workshop is so popular, we must limit registration to the first 15 people.   For more details regarding this workshop, please see the attached flyer.  To get registered for this event, please click here.


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Cricut 2.0 Make & Take Workshop (Atkinson)

Due to the overwhelming popularity of our Cricut 2.0 Make & Take Workshop, we have decided to add an additional location!


Join us for an exciting event where we will learn all the newest techniques and use the latest tools that Cricut has to offer.  We will be making at least 5 projects so you will leave with plenty of hands on experience and gifts to give away (or keep for yourself).

When:       Friday, November 22nd
Time:         10am—4pm
Where:     Atkinson Public Library
                    210 West State Street
                    Atkinson, NE  68713

Cost:         $10 per person (includes lunch)

Credits:    5 CEU’s

Since this workshop is so popular, we must limit registration to the first 15 people.  For more details regarding this workshop, please see the attached flyer.  To get registered for this event, please click here.


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2019 Teens’ Top Ten Titles

The final list of titles for the Teens’ Top Ten were announced.

They are:

1. #MurderTrending by Gretchen McNeil.
2. Wildcard by Marie Lu.
3. The Cruel Prince by Holly Black.
4. Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman.
5. Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi.
6. The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang.
7. American Panda by Gloria Chao.
8. Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu.
9. Speak: The Graphic Novel by Laurie Halse Anderson and Emily Carroll.
10. The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo.

You can find a list with annotations here:

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November Display Ideas

The weather today is making me think of November. Cold weather and mustaches. Odd combination…I know. The cold weather is obvious and it will soon be No-Shave November. Print pictures of Victorian-era men with their top hats and mustaches on regular letter-sized paper. Then make a sign with a big mustache in the middle of it with the words, “Excuse Me, but I [picture of mustache here] you to check out these books. Arrange the printouts, the sign and an assortment of random books on the shelf. Make some mustaches out of construction paper and put them on the people (and/or animals) on the covers of the books on that display. The books don’t really need to have anything in common, other than the fake mustaches that you apply. Here are ten more display and program ideas for the eleventh month of the year…November.

American Indian Heritage Month
There are many special programs and educational presentations put on for American Indian Heritage Day each year. And school children often spend time learning about Native American history and traditions on or leading up to this special day. Prepare a display for all ages that includes materials by and about Native Americans and Indigenous peoples. Leave it up for the whole month.

National Adoption Month
National Adoption Month is an initiative of the Children’s Bureau with a goal to increase national awareness and bring attention to the need for permanent families for children and youth in the U.S. foster care system. Every family looks different. These 25 Children’s Books About Adoption to read aloud can help your young patrons expand what it looks like to be in a family. Display these books and read and talk about one of them during a storytime this month.

National Diabetes Month
In November, National Diabetes Month focuses attention on the growing cost of diabetes on American’s health. From the physical, emotional and social effects to financial and damaging health, diabetes impacts more than 30 million people in the United States. Also known as American Diabetes Month, the month focuses on making healthy changes and reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes. Display books about diabetes and healthy cooking. Host a panel of medical professionals to raise awareness. Go to https://www.diabetes.org/ for more information.

National Novel Writing Month
Encourage your young writers to take a shot at writing a novel this month. National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is a fun, empowering approach to creative writing. The challenge: draft an entire novel in just one month. Set aside some “open writing time” in your program room during November to entice those with an unwritten novel inside them to let it out.

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (November 7, 1908)
Create a display of Western films and books in honor of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, reportedly killed on this day in 1908.

Tongue Twister Day (November 8)
Challenge patrons to repeat one of these 20 Popular Tongue Twisters. Give a prize to everyone who tries. Video the attempts and post them on your Facebook page. Display books that include tongue twisters and jokes.

Veterans Day (November 11)
Veterans Day is a federal holiday in the United States observed annually on November 11, for honoring military veterans, that is, persons who have served in the United States Armed Forces. Honor our armed forces with a display of remarkable military films.

National Button Day (November 16)
Create a maker station with an assortment of colored buttons for patrons, young and old, to explore on their own or use to make one of these 20 Adorable Button Crafts for Kids.

Mickey Mouse Day (November 18)
Mickey Mouse was first introduced to the world on this day in the 1928 short film Steamboat Willie. Today Mickey Mouse is one of the most recognized characters for people of all ages around the world. Display all types of materials about Mickey, Minnie and the whole gang.

National Games and Puzzle Week (November 24-30, 2019)
While everyone is gathering for Thanksgiving, it’s time for National Game and Puzzle Week. Challenge patrons to a tournament and create fun memories! Grab the cards, board games and puzzles and have fun. Schedule multi-generational activities over the holiday break that include board games and puzzles. Feature a different puzzle style each day this week with a passive program handout. Make a display of games and puzzles that can be checked out of your library.

For even more display ideas, follow me on Pinterest!

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Cricut 2.0 Make & Take Workshop

The one event you’ve been waiting ALL year for…..

Our Cricut 2.0


Join us for an exciting day where we will learn all the newest techniques and use the latest tools that Cricut has to offer.  We will be making at least 5 projects so you will leave with plenty of hands-on experience and gifts to give away (or keep for yourself!)

When:         Tuesday, December 3rd

Time:          10am—4pm

Kearney Public Library
2020 First Avenue
Kearney, NE  68847

Cost:           $10 per person (includes lunch)

Credits:     5 CEU’s

To get your ticket for this limited seating event, please click here.  For more information about this workshop, please see this flyer.

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