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  • Writer's pictureMarina Rose

Best of 2019 and a Happy New Year!

Fireworks display

If you've been reading our blog this year, we want to say thank you! The Library's blog project was new this year, and although we hit a few bumps along the way, we've had a great time exploring new topics and sharing information with our users. To end the year, I'd like to reflect on some of the new programs we brought to the library in 2019 and give you a sneak peek into the exciting things happening in 2020. Without further ado, let's review!

HAM Radio Class:

One of our many volunteers offered to teach an 8-week course on the basics of using a HAM radio. The class ran May through early July and met once a week on Monday nights. It was a small class, but the participants learned a lot!

Four of our great "Human Book" volunteers!

Humans of Canyon County:

Caldwell Library hosted a Human Library in August 2018, but the staff decided to go in a different direction for 2019. Humans of Canyon County was held in Serenity Park in early August and offered several activities, including a book sale, bounce house, craft activities, and the chance to talk to someone who had overcome significant adversity in their life. Some of the volunteers we had included a cancer survivor, a blind mother, and a mother of twins with downs syndrome. There were many more wonderful volunteers - we love this event!

Bad Art

This sounds like a weird program, but I can assure you the participants had a ton of fun! Library staff provided a variety of craft materials and asked the participants to make the ugliest piece of art they could imagine. At the end of the program, we had a contest to see who had the worst art! Every participant was able to vote and the winner took home a neat book bag!

Conversation Club

Starting late this year, we began a Conversation Club at our library. So far, the club has been meeting once a month. We work on activities, share ideas, and enjoy conversation with each other. While the primary languages that are being shared at this program are Spanish and English, other languages are welcome. Starting in January 2020, we will be hosting the Conversation Club once a week – rotating between morning and evening meetings.

Make It!

We started this monthly craft series in October. Each month we teach the basics of a new craft - in October we had knit/crochet, November was cross-stitch, and December was recycled book wreaths. The class is open to anyone 10 and older, and materials are always provided.

The tiny home/mobile makerspace!

Makerspace @ the Library

Every third Wednesday at the library we are showing off our Mobile Makerspace. This tiny house is for the whole community to enjoy! We have a 3D printer, virtual reality headsets, and fun hands-on activities that include circuits, conductors, and more. We also have books and other items that you can check out. Please stop by and visit us or catch us while we make our way around town in 2020!

Messy, but fun!

Bob Ross Paint Night

Our Bob Ross-style Paint Night was probably my favorite program of 2019. My co-worker and I picked Bob Ross' "Frosty Winter Morn" painting and provided materials for 25 people to paint along to Bob Ross' tutorial. It was a fun and messy evening that we'd love to do again!


Caturday was a huge success! We partnered with West Valley Humane Society and they brought in 4 kitties that were available for adoption. We had over 100 people come through during the time they were here. Kids made cat toys and cat castles. West Valley gave information about feral cats, cat care, the spay and neuter promotions they have for feral cats, how to keep cats warm during the winter, and general cat information. We hope to partner with them again for future events.

The teens prevented a zombie outbreak!

Teen After Hours

Twenty-three teens participated in the first Teen After-hours Party at the library. Teens investigated a zombie outbreak by deciphering clues with their teammates and had an hour to solve the puzzle. All are looking forward to a party next year!

MarioKart Tournament

Twenty-four teens participated in the first MarioKart tournament held in March. Four teens made it to the final round, and Oren took home the trophy! The 2nd Annual MarioKart tournament will be held in March 2020.

Super Smash Tournament

Over 70 people attended the first Super Smash Bros. Tournament and 24 tweens were able to compete for the top four spots. With all participants getting to play in 5 rounds, it was a full day of Super Smash! Parents, siblings, friends, and family cheered on the participants all the way to the finish. The 2nd Annual Super Smash tournament will be held in October 2020.

Curious George is ready for bed at the library!

Stuffed Animal Slumber Party

Kids of all ages came to the library with their favorite stuffed critters for a slumber party! Storytime, activities, healthy snacks, and a scavenger hunt preceded kids tucking their furry friend under a blanket and leaving them at the library overnight. All of the animals had a ton of fun playing in the stacks, using the self-check, and sitting in the Director’s chair. The 2nd Annual Stuffed Animal Slumber Party will take place on April 4th, 2020.

Did you miss a program and want us to host again? Let us know!

Finally, let's take a sneak peek into 2020...

Crafting with Beeswax

Local libraries work together to select a book for the entire Treasure Valley to read each spring. These libraries offer programs throughout March to accompany the book. The 2020 Treasure Valley Reads selection is The Honey Bus by Meredith May (get on the waiting list now!). D&B Supply instructor Melinda Jean Stafford will teach a class on making crafts using beeswax on Thursday, March 12th at 6:30 pm - all ages welcome!

Silent Book Club

In 2020, we will offer our first-ever Ultimate Book Nerd Challenge! This year-long program is open to teens and adults (ages 13+) and will run from January 5 to December 19. As part of the year-long program, library staff will host quarterly silent book clubs - participants will have access to hot cocoa, tea, and quiet time for reading! Dates are March 31, June 30, September 29, and December 8. All ages are welcome to join but remember, shhh.

We hope to see you at our 2020 events - check out our calendar for the entire list!

Happy New Year from all of us at Caldwell Public Library!

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