September is library card sign-up month, new Reminisce Club for seniors announced


By Carole Howard  | PREVIEW Columnist, and the library staff

September is library card sign-up month. Although it’s likely that most readers of this “Library News” column already have a card, staff at your library are happy to get you one if you don’t — and help you to get one for your child. 

With a library card, you can check out physical items, download other items and access online resources. These resources include tools to help you learn a new language, repair your lawnmower or car, stream a film, take a class online, find an author or book by new authors similar to those you already like, and much more.

Here’s a little-known fact: There is no minimum or maximum age limit for library cards. Everyone from babies to seniors is welcome. So, parents and guardians are encouraged to come in to sign your child up for a card no matter how old they are. 

Meg Wempe, director, reminds us that your library card provides access to technology, multimedia content and fun educational programming that transforms lives and strengthens communities. 

“A library card provides opportunity for discovery and access to a rich and diverse world. It empowers you and your family to enjoy new stories and experiences,” she said. 

New Reminisce Group for seniors

Those aged 60 years and older are invited to a new Reminisce Group for seniors on Monday, Sept. 25, from 2 to 3:15 p.m. We’ll explore photos, magazines, special items, dates and events to revisit “the old days.” 

Research tell us that reminiscing helps reduce symptoms of depression and boosts self-esteem. This is a new monthly ongoing program.

Save the date for
Elephant and Piggy

All ages are invited to a fun free Elephant and Piggy party on Saturday, Sept. 30, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. We’ll have crafts, games, face painting, selfie stations, a scavenger hunt, two storytimes, dancing and a puppet show. More details will be in next week’s “Library News,” or go online to for the party schedule.

New Shakespeare Read Aloud Club

Next Monday, Sept. 25, from 3:30 to 5 p.m., we’ll host a new free all-ages Shakespeare Read Aloud Club that will meet on the second and fourth Mondays throughout the fall. 

“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” will be the first play enjoyed by the club. All ages are invited to gather to read it aloud together, with different roles chosen and discussed at each session. Participants can play one character or mix it up and be many. The club will use the “No Fear Shakespeare” version with the original text on one page and the modern English translation on the other. You can bring your own copy or borrow one of the library’s copies. 

For more information, contact Jenny at (240) 426-7887.

Virtual author talks 

Our highly popular virtual author talks continue this month with one more opportunity for you to interact with New York Times bestselling authors with an opportunity to ask questions. 

Next Wednesday, Sept. 27, at 6 p.m. will showcase Amor Towles, author of three novels: “The Rules of Civility,” “A Gentleman in Moscow” and “The Lincoln Highway.” His first novel was so successful that he was able to retire from investment banking and write full-time. 

For details and to register, go to

Little Explorers tomorrow

Kids ages 1-5 are invited to explore the outdoors in this new free nature- and science-themed program tomorrow, Friday, Sept. 22, from 10 to 11 a.m. We’ll discuss the changing of the seasons, make leaf crafts and use magnifying glasses.

Board games tomorrow

Tomorrow, Friday, Sept. 22, is our free Board Game Central from 2 to 4 p.m. If you love board games, we invite you to bring your favorite game or explore the library’s collection.

LEGO Club Saturday

Kids aged 6-11 are invited to bring your imaginations on Saturday, Sept. 23, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for the free LEGO Club. Bring your own LEGOs or use ours.

Adult knitting Saturday

Join new and experienced knitters this Saturday, Sept. 23, for our free Knitters Circle from 1 to 3 p.m. It is aimed at anyone over the age of 18 who would like to knit together or get some help if you are stuck on your project. 

Dungeons and Dragons

Tuesday, Sept. 26, from 4 to 5:30 p.m., join our Dungeons and Dragons game free for teens and young adults. Preregistration is required because space is limited. Contact to join.

Family storytimes

Wednesdays from 10 to 11 a.m., join us for a free educational hour of reading, singing and free play to build early literacy skills. 

Writers support group

Thursdays from 9 to 11 a.m., Ruby’s Writers Guild welcomes writers looking for opportunities, support, resources and camaraderie with other writers at this free gathering. 

ESL class times

Free in-person evening classes take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and there is a change in the way the time is divided: 4 to 5 p.m. is reserved for beginners, 5 to 6 p.m. for intermediate and 6 to 7 p.m. for advanced students. Please help us spread the word about these classes to others in our community who would be interested, and contact us by phone or email if you have any questions. 

Tech Time 

Free in-person slots are available from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and 2 to 4 p.m. Thursdays. Judy helps you with basic questions relating to computers, smartphones and tablets and also provides assistance in accessing any of the library’s online resources. No appointment needed for these drop-in sessions, but it is important that you bring your device’s charger with you. Note there will be no Tech Time today, Thursday, Sept. 21. 

PALS/GED adult

Join Mark or Sally for free PALS sessions Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30 to 8 p.m. to help with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more. 

New nonfiction large print purchase plan

Your library’s many fans of large-print nonfiction books will be pleased to know that Wempe, our library director, has signed up for a standing-order plan with our large print vendor to receive two of these coveted books every month. As well, staff will continue to supplement these titles with additional ones that we think would be of interest to our patrons. 

These two purchasing steps should even out the sometimes erratic availability of nonfiction large print caused by varying publication dates, and ensure we avoid the situation in the past where some months we haven’t received any large print nonfiction books at all.

Activities calendars

Pick up monthly events calendars at the library so you don’t miss any of the free activities available to you and your family.

Downloadable books 

CloudLibrary has a wide variety of downloadable e-books and audiobooks for all ages. To access this free digital collection, download the cloudLibrary app, answer a few simple questions, select AspenCat Union Catalog for the name of your library, then enter your library card number and four-digit PIN. Library staff are happy to help you set up your device if you need assistance.

Books on CD

“Prophet” by Sin Blache and Helen MacDonald is a sci-fi romance set in a universe one step from our own. “Shadow Dance” by Christine Feehan is a Shadow Riders murder mystery. “Tides of Fire” by James Rollins is a Sigma Force adventure. 

Large print

“The Best Strangers in the World: Stories from a Life Spent Listening” by NPR “All Things Considered” public radio host Ari Shapiro features people he has met as he traveled around the world. “The Bootheel” by Kevin Wolf is a western. “The Fires of Hell” by William W. and J.A. Johnstone is book five in the Jackals western series. 

Mysteries, thrillers
and suspense

“Cobalt Blue” by Matthew Reilly features a young woman who may be America’s only hope in the face of a massive attack. “Obsessed” by James Patterson and James O. Born is a Michael Bennett psychological thriller. “The Hike” by Lucy Clarke follows four women in a wilderness hike in Norway. “Silver Lady” by Mary Jo Putney is a romance set amid a plot involving French agents and Cornish smugglers. “The Longmire Defense” by Craig Johnson features Sheriff Walt Longmire working a cold case. “Die Around Sundown” by Mark Pryor is a mystery set in Paris during World War II. 

Other novels

“Coleman Hill” by Kim Coleman Foote follows two young women fleeing racism and poverty in the post-Civil War south. “The Spectacular” by Fiona Davis is set amid the glamour and glitz of Radio City Music Hall. “Talulah’s Back in Town” by Brenda Novak tells of a runaway bride who returns home to settle her great-aunt’s estate. 


“Yellowjackets” is season one. “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” is the latest Spider-Man movie. “Yogi Berra: It Ain’t Over” is a documentary about the life of this sports legend. 

Thanks to our donors

We are grateful to Susan and Terry Arrington, Rob Pew and Julia Whelihan for their generous monetary donations, and to Medora Bass for her materials donation.

When we are open, material donations are accepted for the Friends of the Library at the front desk — not down the outside returns slot at the library or the drop box at City Market, please. 

The Friends take fiction published in 2013 or newer and nonfiction from 2018 or newer. Limited workroom space means we can only accept one or two small boxes at a time. 

Quotable quote 

“None of us is ever 100 percent ready for everything we do. Hopefully people with disabilities will see me and feel they can pick up and move on rather than feeling sorry for themselves.” — Hari Budha Magar, Napalese mountaineer who climbed out of depression and to the top of Mount Everest in 2023 on prosthetics after losing both legs above the knee in an IED explosion in 2010 in Afghanistan while serving in the British Army. 


For more information on library books, services and programs — and to reserve books, e-books, books on CD and DVDs from the comfort of your home — please visit our website at