Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Telebration! Storytelling at its Best!

Telebration with the Riverwind Storytellers
A night
of adult storytelling
and friendship
The Blum House
414 West Main St.
(adjacent to the Collinsville Library)

this Saturday, November 17th

7:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Bring a friend and enjoy…

Refreshments will be served

Monday, November 12, 2007

Free Computer Classes

Have you taken advantage of your library’s Free Computer Classes yet? Anyone of any age who is interested in learning more about using their computer is invited to attend! They are absolutely free of charge, and you are invited to take as many – as often – as you would like. (Feel free to repeat classes as needed until you are comfortable!)

Don’t have a computer to practice what you’re learning? Not a problem! Your library also offers 15 Adult PCs, 4 Children’s PCs, and numerous wireless laptops all with free Internet access with all of the applications we teach. You can even bring in your Wi-Fi-enabled laptop to work on your own computer! Call the library (344-1112) and ask for the Media Center to find out more about the technology services we provide.

The schedule for the classes can be found on bookmarks located in the library, by accessing the Event Calendar on our website, or by calling the library.

The times are:
Classes on Mondays or Wednesdays: 5:30pm – 7:00pm
Classes on Saturdays: 9:30am – 11:00am
Please note the change of time for Saturday classes!

The “curriculum” starts with our Basics classes. We encourage everyone to start at these courses in order to ensure they have the basic fundamentals needed to succeed with the other courses.

Computing Basics 1
[ The very beginnings to understanding using the keyboard, mouse, and simple Windows concepts.]

Computing Basics 2
[ Expands on Basics 1 to include folder and file management, saving, printing, cut/copy/paste, and Window management. ]

Once you’re comfortable with that material, you are ready to move on to the “applications” we teach.

Using the Internet
[ Learn to use the Google search engine and to “decrypt” Internet addresses so you can figure out website addresses on your own. ]

Email 1 & 2
[ We’ll make sure you understand your Inbox, how emailing works, how to read and reply to messages, and managing your personal address book. ]

Word Processing
[ Learn what you need to know to do basic text, paragraph, and page formatting to type letters, reports, school papers, and other documents. ]

Excel Basics
[ Understand what a spreadsheet is, why you might use one, and figure out the basics of formulas, formatting, and other concepts.]

Card Catalog
[ Access your library from anywhere to find, request, and renew items from the entire Lewis and Clark Library System collection from anywhere there is Internet access! ]

Online Databases
[ Use your Virtual Library to access online references for general research, consumer reporting, stock management, genealogy, and other topics! ]

Friday, October 19, 2007

Your opinions are like gold to us ... Continue to send in those surveys!

We recently sent out a newsletter to hopefully every home in our District and in that newsletter is a survey that we would love for you to return. Your opinions are important but we do not know them unless you give them to us.

If you did not get a newsletter, please stop by the Library and pick one up or call (344-1112) and we will mail you one.

I accumulated all of the online survey results and hope to share some of the answers with you in the coming weeks.

Here are some of the remarks that totally pleased us =)
**Keep up the good work!
**Collinsville Library is one of our city treasures.
**This is one of the best libraries because of the very nice staff!
**The library has kept up with industry innovations and improvements to provide access to practically any book every published. The staff is very knowledgeable and always willing to help trace an obscure reference or out of print book. The range of events and activities offered by the library is quite extensive considering the relatively small community it serves.

**Thanks much for being such a terrific resource and such a stabilizing force in downtown Collinsville!

91% of the people responding to the online survey said that the staff were either "One of the best around" or "Pleasant and helpful".

Here are the Favorite materials in order of their popularity at the Collinsville Library:
Books 94%
DVDs/Videos 58%
Children’s 37%
Magazines 30%
Audiobooks 25%
Quiet Reading Areas 24%
Reference 21%
Music CDs 17%
Genealogy 16%

These are all positives and we thank you for them. But the criticism is equally important and we had our share of that also.

One person writes, "I have a Maryville card but have been a Collinsville resident for 30 years. I am offended by the fact that I cannot use some of the databases."
Answer: Call me (Barbara Rhodes 344-1112 ex 113). Hopefully I can help you with this and other concerns about the difference in the libraries in our area. Sometimes when these comments come in and I do have an answer but no address is given, it is hard to respond.

Another person writes, "The Bike rack is great but doesn't work for the newer bikes."
Answer: You're right and I hadn't even considered this. I will look into it and hopefully, have a solution by next Spring. Thanks.

The final comment for this time was, "Portable MP3 players that you can put your mp3s in."
Answer: Took this suggestion and immediately ordered 10 players. The catalogers are working right now to get them in our database and they will be ready for checkout in the next week.

The Collinsville Library Center is your library and we are happy to do what we can to give you what you need. These surveys are helping us plan the future!

Friday, October 05, 2007

Important information to take note of....

Library will be closed on Columbus Day, October 8th,

on the 8th the City will begin removing the sidewalks and curbs along the street in front of the library for the new Streetscape - please be careful while walking and driving in these areas

and finally

the library will open at 1:00pm on Friday, October 12th due to Staff Training.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Board and Staff Awards for 2007

During our Annual Staff Picnic on September 16th, multiple awards were given to Board and Staff members and your vote determined some of them. Years of Service, Director's Choice, Staff member of the Year and People's Choice awards were all given.

The People's Choice awards were determined by the recent online survey answers that many of you sent in and by notes that are in the Suggestion Box throughout the year. Below were your favorite Staff Members for the Year along with the other awards given.

People's Choice Awards:
Leslee Hamilton (Interlibrary Loan/Genealogy Supervisor)
Megan Harris (Main Desk/Children's Library Clerk)
Allison Donnelly (Main Desk Clerk)
Robert Clark (Children's Library Clerk)
Shannon Woodworth (Media Center Clerk)

Director's Choice Awards:
Maureen Schreiber (Children's Librarian - Excellence in Programming)
Craig Monk (Head of Technology - Invaluable)

Years of Service:
Katie Heaton - 10 years on Staff
Mary Ellen Fedder - 5 years on the Board of Trustees
Laura Herr - 5 years on the Board of Trustees
Mary Beth Boyce - 5 years on Staff
Robert Clark - 5 years on Staff

Staff Member of the Year:
Theresa Beck
for her enthusiasm every day and her energy and skill in organization in special projects such as the Harry Potter Sleepover, the Halloween Bonfire, Teen Read Week, and many more.

The Library is proud of the people here that serve you. We are all winners when we have such devoted people working on your behalf.

We congratulate them all and look forward to continue hearing from you on your favorites.
During the staff meeting on December 23rd, a People's Choice Star Staffer will be named for November and December to reign until February.

**You can vote by placing your vote in the Suggestion Box or emailing for your favorite staff member. You can find a list of names of the entire staff on the very bottom of our Library Information and Service Page on our website.

Thank you for being an AWARD WINNING COMMUNITY!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Updated Information

Italianfest is this weekend and I have updated our main webpage to indicate things that you may be interested in.

Just in brief to save you a click -

**Our Library will be closing at 3:30 Saturday, September 22nd so that the staff can walk in the Italianfest parade with Bookabella, the Children's Library mascot (quite an impressive guy...come out and meet him!!!)

**The Library will be hosting an Italian Film on Friday night (doors opening at 6 and movie to begin at 7pm) called Alla luce del sole (Come Into the Light) in the Community Room. Admission is FREE and open to the general public. The film, in Italian with English subtitles, is not suitable for small children.

**The Library's September 2007 through February 2008 newsletter is being printed and will soon be mailed to the homes in our District. You can read it right now online. If you do not receive one at home, please pick one up in the Library at the end of this month.

**New Online Databases have been purchased and are in the process of being added to our website. You can preview them right now online on the main webpage. They include a World Atlas, a pricing database for antiques, Literary database for info on authors, works and criticism, archives of the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Science experiments and topics, tribute to Collinsville war veterans, Illinois farm products, legal forms and more. Don't miss out on these helpful sites!

Have a wonderful weekend and hope to see you at the Italianfest. Stop by the Pan Fountain Booth and talk to the committee members about their plans for refurbishing the Fountain on the front lawn of the Library. The Pan Fountain flyer is available at the Library.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Italian Film at the Library during the Italianfest

The Italian film
Alla luce del sole (Come Into the Light)
will be presented during Collinsville’s Italian Fest
Friday, September 21, 2007
at 7 p.m.
in the Collinsville Library Community Room
408 West Main Street, Collinsville

The award-winning Italian film ALLA LUCE DEL SOLE (Come Into the Light), sponsored by he Collinsville Memorial Public Library and the Italian Film Festival of St. Louis, is the true story of Father Giuseppe Puglisi, a priest in Italy, who was assigned in 1990 to a parish in Brancaccio, Sicily. There he focused his attention on the parish's poor youth who were surrounded by a life of crime. This is a story of his dedication and mission.

Admission is FREE and open to the general public.

The film, in Italian with English subtitles, is not suitable for small children.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Mississippi Valley Library's "Return of Investment" to our Community

Return on Investment (abbreviated ROI) is a measure of a company's ability (Mississippi Valley Library District) to use its assets to generate additional value for shareholders (You - our Community).

The Mississippi Valley Library's return on investment to our Community for our Fiscal Year 2006/2007 ending on June 30, 2007 was



Adult Books
133,406 @ $25.00
Value based on a rounded average of the list and retail prices of a significant sampling of books in this category.

Young Adult Books
4,673 @ $17.00
Value based on a rounded average of the list and retail prices of a significant sampling of books in this category.

Kids' Books
54,608 @ $8.00
Value based on a rounded average of the list and retail prices of a significant sampling of books in this category.

76,250 @ $15.00
Value based on rounded average of common list prices on DVDs.

Music CDs
3,358 @ $15.00
Common list prices for CDs are $14.99 - $24.99. Full albums can also be bought from iTunes and other online retailers, most commonly for $9.99. Value based on a rounded average of these prices.

Books on Tapes/CDs
12,510 @ $40.00
Value based on a rounded average of the list and retail prices of a significant sampling of books in this category.

Electronic Books
1,414 @ $15.00
Value based on a rounded average of the prices of a significant sampling of books as available on

Electronic Audiobooks
368 @ $11.00
Value based on the average subscription rates for

7,057 @ $5.00
Value based on a rounded average of the list prices of a significant sampling of commercial magazines.

Online Databases
20,838 @ $15.00
Value based on subscription rate for online service

Adult Programs
6,372 @ $37.50
Value based on a rounded average of the participation costs of programs in area communities.

Youth Programs
4,576 @ $37.50
Value based on a rounded average of the participation costs of programs in area communities.

Internet Access
16,020 @ $4.00
Value based on hourly pricing structure for area Internet caf├ęs.

The North Suburban Library System came up with the average dollar numbers by going to retail stores, booksellers, video stores, and park districts in the community to gather real world prices for books, materials, and programs.

The circulation numbers indicating how many books, dvds, music cds, etc. that were used in the past year came from the Mississippi Valley's 2006-2007 Annual Report Statistics that concluded on June 30, 2007.

To determine your individual or family's 'return of investment' by using the Library go to website and follow the 'library user's savings per visit'.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Online Survey to help us with our planning

Your opinions are important to us!

Click on the clipboard and take our short survey. You can also reach this survey by going to our Website at .

As a 'thank you' please print the final page that comes up after you have answered the questions, bring it to the Library and we will give you a small appreciation gift.

Fountain Update from the Library Board meeting

The Board of Trustees at their July 16th meeting heard from an interested group of citizens about the possible renovation of the Pan Fountain. A discussion was held about the past problems and possible fixes that could happen if the interest from the community to help with those renovations was there.

The Board also read all of the emails, phone messages and other forms of communication that we have received in the last month and discussed all of the community's concerns. The range of responses were from retaining a water feature to filling it in for a flower garden but most agreed that they wanted to retain the Pan Statue created for the Library by Carl Christian Mose of St. Louis, MO.

The Board has agreed to an Exploratory Committee of community volunteers and Board members to look more closely into possible solutions that would then lead to realistic estimates for the renovation of the Pan Fountain with the water feature. This will be researched and results brought back to the Board for further consideration.

A fund for the Fountain has been set up with the Collinsville Library Foundation. All donations are tax deductible and can be brought in or mailed to the Collinsville Library Center, 408 West Main St, Collinsville, IL 62234.

If you are interested in being on the Exploratory Committee or participate as a volunteer, you can call the Library with your name and phone number and someone will contact you.

Thanks to all who were interested enough to respond and for any help or suggestions to come in the future.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Friends of the Library Book Sale next week

The Friends of the Library sustain the extras that the Collinsville Library offers to its members and the community.

This year they have given money to support the Summer Reading Program with 645 children enrolled and the Harry Potter sleepover on July 20th with 100 children spending the night in the Library. Our Community Room kitchen has also been the beneficiary of their attention also. Recently, a new refrigerator and dishwasher have been installed as well as a whole new paint job on the walls and all new items in its cabinets.

This energetic group of people have worked behind the scenes for years. Next week July 12, 13, and 14th they will holding their largest fundraiser of the year with thousands upon thousands of books and other audio visual items -

The Friends of the Library Annual Book Sale
in the
Florence Burkholder Community Room
Collinsville Memorial Library Center
408 West Main Street
Preview Night
Thursday, July 12th
6:00pm - 9:00pm
$5.00 per person entry
"No Admission" Days
Friday, July 13th
9:00am - 8:00pm
Saturday, July 14th
9:00am - 1:00pm
$1.00 per bag of books

Friday, June 29, 2007

Library Fountain in peril

Since 1940 the Pan Fountain in front of the Collinsville Library donated by the children of the schools in Collinsville has been a quiet retreat. The children from the schools collected money and had the fountain installed in the memory of Charles H. Dorris, Superintendent of Schools from 1900-1937 .

For the last three years the fountain has remained dormant due to mechanical problems with the system and the costs of its repair. The Board of Trustees has looked into numerous fixes and alternatives to continue the fountain but to no definite end. The Board is now looking to the public for answers.

Possible amounts of the repairs can range from $20,000 to $75,000 and the yearly maintenance costs of $3,500 to $5,000 are the main issues in the continued operation of the fountain. Pat McChristian, President of the Board of Trustees on the direction of the Board is making an appeal to the public to determine the fate of the fountain. Possibilities from total rehabilitation of the fountain to changing it into a flower garden have been discussed.

It is now in the hands of the Collinsville community. The Board is asking for your opinions on what to do with the fountain. If the answer is that you would like to see the fountain maintained, a solution on where the money can come from to fix it and then to maintain it year after year will remain in question.

It is not an easy question to answer and the Board is determined to have an answer by August. So please consider this an appeal for your input either in an opinion or in a pledge of a financial contribution to decide the fate of the Pan Fountain.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

2006 Real Estate Taxes

Last night I received my mail and opened my 2006 Real Estate Taxes.

On my tax statement I noticed that the Mississippi Valley Library rate went up .0051 over the 2005 taxes adding probably another $5 to $15 dollars on average to your taxes this year. I am in Madison County so I am assuming that St. Clair homes are similar.

I would like to take this opportunity to explain why this happened and how it will be corrected.

In November 2006 new territory was added to the Mississippi Valley Library District. In trying to determine what the increase would mean to the new tax amounts I estimated what the value would be of the new areas by using previous County amounts. Knowing that our General tax could not exceed .15 and our Building tax could not exceed .02 and finally, the Working Cash tax could not exceed .05, I worked to include the other necessary amounts that would bring us to the .2518 of 2005. I got rather close but overestimated.

There is nothing that can be done at this point other than to pay the amount that is being requested, but I do have a solution that will appear on your 2007 Real Estate Taxes. Since I will be working at that point with established numbers, I can be sure of what the rate will be. So on your 2007 Real Estate Taxes you will see the Mississippi Valley Library rate of no more than .2467 . A drop of .0051 from the 2005 rate; Absorbing the amount that you will pay extra this year.

I can only apologize for any inconvenience this may cause any of our constituents.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Harry Potter at the Library

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Presale at the Library

Regular $34.99 book
selling for $25.00

Your copy must be
ordered and paid for in advance
by July 1, 2007
at the Main Desk
of the
Collinsville Library Center.

You will be able to pick the book up
July 21, 2007at
Midnight until 1:00am

or anytime after that time during regular library hours.

Proceeds of Sale to benefit Children’s Programming.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Pro Financial Advisors find libraries a great bargain

More than Books - The Many Ways Your Library Can Save You Money

"If you have not visited your local library in awhile, you might want to make a trip there to check out all the activities and services they offer these days. The library now offers a whole lot more than just books and it’s a perfect place to save yourself a bundle of money each year. Here are a number of ways that your local library can save you money:"

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

MISSION READ: To the Library and Beyond

In cooperation with the Library Summer Reading Programs in the area, Dr. Sandra Magnus, NASA astronaut, has confirmed the date of her visits to the libraries this Spring!

Dr. Magnus was born in Belleville and graduated from Belleville West. She received her bachelor degree in physics and a master degree in electrical engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla and a doctorate from the School of Material Science and Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

On Saturday, April 7, 2007 she will be at the Hayner Public Library in Alton at 10:00am, the Collinsville Library at 1:00pm, and O'Fallon Library at 3:00pm to share her experiences of being in space and working on the International Space Station.

A true hometown girl with a 'World of Experience' - Come listen to the fascinating world of a real astronaut!

Friday, March 09, 2007

New online databases

3 new online databases are displayed on the Main Page of our website.

Check them out!

Gale Reference Library with over 300 reference sources from subject areas of Art through Social Studies. Ratings giving you information on HMOs, Insurance Companies and Stocks.

Encyclopedia Britannica returning with an updated version of a complete new look and reference set for your use.

To see more databases that are available for your research on various topics go to

Monday, March 05, 2007

March events at the library

Upcoming programs in March that may interest you.

Fiber GuildThursday, March 8th starting at 5:30pm in the Blum House, 414 West Main, adjacent to the Collinsville Public Library Center.
Beginners through advanced people with the interests of knitting, crocheting, spinning, weaving, basket weaving, etc. can share their interests and get help with projects.

St. Patrick’s Day CelebrationSunday, March 18th starting at 1:30pm in the Community Room of the Collinsville Library Center.
Music begins at 1:30 Join bagpiper, Marty Petrie and musician, Vickie Busekrus for a sing-along time to help celebrate the wearing of the green and our favorite local leprechaun Ken Carroll.

Value Line for Beginners
Wednesday, March 28th starting at 6:30pm in the Community Room of the Collinsville Library Center.
Value Line, a noted instrument for understanding and following the stock market, will be explained by local user David Gries. Time will include an introduction of the publication and a question and answer session.

Food for FinesFrom St. Patrick’s Day March 17th through Easter April 8th
Bringing in a nonperishable food item will subtract $1.00 off of fines on your library card. This excludes fines for lost items or processing charges. If you do not have fines, please consider bringing in food for the area's needy.

See our calendar of events on our website for more events.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

No Public Computers on Tuesday and Wednesday at the Collinsville Library

Due to the moving of all of the public access computers into the new Media Center at the Collinsville Library Center, our main computers will not be available on Tuesday, January 30th and Wednesday, January 31st of next week. They will be back up on the Lower Level on Thursday and fully operational for your use.

However, our wireless access will still be available for you throughout the whole week if you bring your own wireless laptops to the Library.

We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Collinsville Historical Museum reopens

After being closed for relocation since October, the Collinsville Historical Museum will be moving into its new home at 406 West Main Street, Collinsville, Illinois next door to the Collinsville Memorial Public Library Center.

The public is invited to experience the new building and the new display of artifacts at the Museum’s
Grand Reopening
Sunday, January 14, 2007 from 1:00pm to 4:00pm.

The Collinsville Historical Museum, which had its humble beginnings in 1967 when Mr. Irving Dilliard acquired the Collins trunk of memorabilia and housed it in the Collinsville Library at 408 West Main Street, received a grant in 2004 from the Illinois State Museum in conjunction with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to construct a building all of its own. The grant was for a building and the monies totaled $488,200. Land that was donated by the Board of Trustees of the Collinsville Library completed the project.
Over the years the Historical Museum’s collection has grown to well over 10,000 items ranging from military memorabilia to architectural detailing to personal mementoes. It is an impressive accumulation of historic importance of the Collinsville area. Under its new Director Cary Harvengt who is following in the footsteps of Arvil Wrigley and Floyd Sperino longtime volunteer curators the Historical Museum has a ‘new dawn’ to serve the community. Ms. Harvengt’s first impressions of the historical significance and range of the Collinsville artifacts when she was introduced to the Museum in August were " am surprised at the number of real "treasures" the collection contains, and am enthused to help develop new exhibits that will showcase Collinsville's unique history in this new setting--a setting worthy of this collection's value to the community."
Since the Museum project got underway in early 2006 more expenses have necessitated an ongoing fund. Money is still being accepted to complete the building costs and to ensure the operational future of the museum. Donations are accepted at the Museum daily and are tax deductible.