Trailblazer Fall 2000

The Newsletter of the Clinton-Essex-Franklin Library System
Fall 2000, Volume 2, Issue 3
In This issue:
  Money is the Name of the Game: Trustees Institute
  Parents Get a Headstart with Bookstart
  Good News, Baby Boomers!
  Feature Library: Goff-Nelson Library, Tupper Lake
  Central Library Members Committee Update
  Member Library News
  Ten Things You Can Do on the New CEF Website
  November Children's Activities
  CEF Directors' Association Looks Forward to a New Century of Service
  Seasonal Fiction Choices
  Web Wanderings
  Why Oh Why Ohio?
  Plattsburgh Public Library - CEF Central Library News 
  Bring on the Ballots!
  Stafford Grant Computers: Picture of Carole Osborne at the AuSable Forks Free Library
Money is the Name of the Game At October 21 Trustees Institute 

The 2000 Trustees Institute will be held at the CEF Library System headquarters and the Plattsburgh Public Library on Saturday, October 21 from 9:30 a.m to 2:00 p.m. This year’s program features a panel of experts who will focus on how libraries can strengthen their financial resources to best serve their communities. Since money and fund-raising are such all encompassing and vital topics, the agenda will be a full one. At the end of the day, you will be able to hear the money jingling in your pockets! 

April Bender of Partnerships for Quality will present a three hour session entitled “Grants: How to Write Successful Grant Applications.” April is an experienced grant writer and frequent presenter on this topic, and her presentation will include helpful handouts plus examples of successful applications. 

Janet Decker will discuss how to obtain and manage library endowments. Janet is a former Trustee of the Saranac Lake Free Library. She currently serves on the North Country Three R’s Council board and is a member of the Adirondack Community Trust Board of Directors. Mrs. Decker started an endowment to support the Adirondack History Room at the Saranac Lake Free Library and will speak from experience about how and why to add this important resource to your library’s financial toolbox. Participants are encouraged to bring their long range financial concerns to share with Janet and the other workshop participants. 

Hannah Hanford, Executive Director of the CVPH Foundation, will lead a discussion on fundraising and development efforts for libraries. Hannah will share some of her money making secrets and answer questions such as, How do I put our library on the map in my community? and How can we get people to contribute to our annual fund drive? Bring your fund raising issues and ideas to this interactive workshop. 

Mary Brown, Director of the CEF Library System, will round off our panel of experts with a discussion of elected officials and budget requests. Mary has 25 years’ experience presenting budgets to local governments and reports herself a graduate of the school of hard knocks. A case study approach will address how to ask for, and get, increases in your annual appropriation from your town or village. Review your recent history and bring some stories for Mary and the group to work on.

As always, the Trustees Institute (formerly known as the Presidents’ Council) will be an information packed day with plenty of time to meet with representatives from other libraries. Please RSVP to Penny Cowan at CEF before Wednesday, October 18 so we can reserve a space (and lunch) for you.
Parents Get a Head Start with Book Start

CEF and North Country Library System have been fortunate to receive an LSTA cooperative grant that will allow many of our North Country libraries to work with the Head Start programs in their communities. The program will train Head Start staff and member librarians to lead Book Start workshops, and will teach parents of Head Start children the skills they need to read with their child. 

The Book Start program was developed by Jennifer Birckmayer in cooperation with Cornell University. It consists of a series of six one and one half hour workshops designed to introduce parents to good children’s books and to help them to learn how to use these books to promote a love of reading in their children. Visiting the library is a very important component of the program, as a library visit allows parents to see the library as a friendly and supportive place for them to visit as a family. At the end of the workshop series, each parent participant will have a book that he or she has written themselves to use with their child.

Book Start training sessions will be held on October 13 in Malone, November 8 in Watertown, and November 20 in Plattsburgh. Teams of Head Start personnel and library staff will then determine when and where to offer the workshops for Head Start parents in their communities. To date, we have thirteen libraries participating in the C-E-F System alone! 

Want to get in on the action? There are still a few slots left. Call Kathie LaBombard at 563-5190 ex. 21 to be part of this exciting project! 
Good News, Baby Boomers!

The 1950’s are now available in a brand new remembering kit (this is good news?) The decade that brought babies, the Korean War and TV dinners (and babies) has been immortalized in pictures, music, news, and family stories by Bi-Folkal Productions.

Participants can bop and rock around the clock with five LARGE PRINT sing along songs and a video that depicts the decade in news, and family photos. Twelve large format historical photos with questions prompt memories of television, games, hula hoops and Tupperware parties. We were so excited about the 1950’s that we checked in with BiFolkal as we prepared this issue to make sure that our kit is on the way, and we’re assured that it will be shipped in early November. To reserve this kit or any of our other remembering materials (or for a complete list of the remembering kits available for loan), call Barb Deyo at 563-5190 ext. 20. 
Feature Library: Goff-Nelson Library, Tupper Lake

Chalice Dechene (third from left) gives CEFDA members a tour of the Alberta Moody Children's Room

Fall foliage season is the perfect time to visit the Goff-Nelson Memorial Library in Tupper Lake. While attending the October 2 CEFDA meeting, I was able to learn more about the library’s activities from Director Chalice Dechene. The current library building was constructed in 1972 and currently houses more than 36,000 volumes. The library’s travel, cooking, and local history collections are especially strong. 

The library is used by local and seasonal patrons of all ages and it is a community library in every sense. Groups such as Hospice and GRASP meet here on a regular basis. This past summer was enlivened by summer school classes which the library hosted while the school was under construction. Circulation of children’s materials is high year round and is expected to increase since the dedication of the Alberta Moody Childrens’ Room in January 2000.

There are currently five public access computers available at Goff-Nelson. The computer nook was donated in part by funds left to the library by Ruth Kelley. Chalice reports that computer users have gone through three sign up notebooks since March, and there are usually waiting lines for the terminals. I was interested to learn that the lines are usually comprised of local seniors as well as parents and children. Computer classes at all levels will be offered the near future.

The Adirondack History Room is also used frequently by local residents and visiting researchers. Issues of the local Free Press from 1911 to the present are available on microfilm. A new microfilm reader was purchased this year to keep up with demand. 

Fans of the library’s quilt show travel from all over the North Country to attend this biennial event. Artwork by Ray Jackman is on display each summer. A fabulous show by Westport artist Dagmar Fehlau is currently on exhibit, courtesy of the Arts Council for the Northern Adirondacks.

Chalice did give me permission to note that she has been on the library payroll for 40 years, 25 of which she has served as director. She credits her “wonderful staff” for the library’s popularity with locals and visitors. Sue LaBarge and Renee Furnia take care of technical services, while Joyce Thomas and Lynn Kimack and volunteer Nell McGregor staff the circulation desk. Chalice adds that perhaps one of the biggest tributes to the library is the fact that “three different people who volunteered over the years have gone on to school to become professional librarians and I think that’s great!” 

-- Julie Wever
Central Library Members  Committee Update

When you can’t find the answer to a puzzling question posed by a customer, who do you call? No, not Ghostbusters! You dial 1-800-347-5553 and contact your Central Library Information Desk (otherwise known as the Plattsburgh Public Library Information Desk).

The Central Library Members Committee was formed in March to ensure that Plattsburgh Public Library is meeting the needs of the CEFLS member libraries as the “central library”. Survey forms devised by the committee have been circulated to all member libraries and will be reviewed at the upcoming October committee meeting. Information sought via the survey included:
Member library perceptions of the role of a central library
Satisfaction with the level of customer service provided by the central library
Availability of fax capabilities in member libraries for delivery of information
Survey of collection strengths in all member libraries

Please feel free to contact any of the following committee members for more information or to make suggestions as to how the central library can assist you in providing information and service to your library customers: Jeanette Hotchkiss (Chateaugay Memorial Library), Maureen Johns (Co-Chairperson, Black Watch Memorial Library, Ticonderoga), Edie Morelock (Mooers Free Library), Anne Minter O'Donnell (Co-Chairperson, PPL), Lesley Paul (Keene Valley Library Association), Jane Ryan (Secretary, Dodge Library, West Chazy), and Betsy Whitefield (Saranac Lake Free Library). 

-- Anne Minter O’Donnell, Director
Plattsburgh Public Library
In Clinton County
Dodge Library, West Chazy

We were very fortunate to be awarded a Libri Foundation grant for seventy new fiction and non-fiction juvenile books. The Libri Foundation joined with our local L.G. Robinson Trust to provide these books. We are also looking forward to setting up our new Internet public access computer that was obtained through a Stafford grant. This summer, 13 children participated in the NY State Summer reading program with activity sheets, contests, and book reviews. We are hoping to have special guests visit during our story hour again this fall.

--Jane Ryan, Director

Champlain Memorial Library

This past summer was a busy one and we were very fortunate to have the services of a JTPA student. She found out how busy a library can be as we weeded our collection. Our summer reading program was enjoyed by all. Each week was marked by a theme such as “solar systems”, “oceans”, “turtles” and “shells”. Members of the Friends of the Library read books to the children and helped out with related crafts. Each child borrowed five books a week; some found paper bugs hidden in the pages and received a prize. At the end of the program, each participant received a special gift.

Story hour started in early September and will be held every Thursday from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. Lynn Hogle is the storyteller and will do projects with the children. We will be holding tutor training workshops for Literacy Volunteers of America later this fall.

Please come and see our library – we are always interested in suggestions and willing volunteers.

--Sheila Babbie, Director 
In Essex County
Black Watch Memorial Library, Ticonderoga

We have begun our expansion project and are planning to hire a library planner and an architect in the near future. This summer was an especially busy one for us as we had many summer residents using the library on a weekly basis, in addition to our regular patrons. Our summer story hour program for children was well attended.

--Maureen Johns, Director

Elizabethtown Library

The Elizabethtown Library is proud to host author Suzanne Falter-Barns, who will present an inspirational program on Wednesday, October 25 at 7:00 p.m. at the Hale House. During the workshop, Suzanne will offer hands-on exercises that will really make participants stop and think, and get in touch with their own creative resources. Following the program, signed copies of Suzanne’s book How Much Joy Can You Stand? will be available for purchase. 

The Library will once again host naturalist Mike Brennan of the Adirondack Visitors’ Interpretive Center for a special program entitled “Sky Dancer.” On Wednesday, November 8 at 3:30 p.m. at the library, Mr. Brennan will read the book Sky Dancer by Jack Bushnell. His presentation will feature a live red-tail hawk. A question and
answer period will follow the bird-on-hand portion of the program. This presentation is made possible by the Adirondack Park Institute.

For more information about either of these programs, please contact the Elizabethtown Library at 873-2670.

--Susan Hughes, Director

Wilmington E.M. Cooper Memorial Public Library

The Wilmington Library’s summer program was a big success this year. Through a “Developing Community Arts Grant” administered by the Arts Council For the Northern Adirondacks, we were able to offer art lessons once a week for eight weeks to children aged 3-16. 
Thirty-eight children participated in lessons given by two local artists. Using “Society and Art” as a theme, students discussed and researched the connection of art to human society, after which they created their own pieces of art based upon the topic studied.

On September 15, early music expert Oliver Brookes and harpsichordist Clive Henry presented an evening of classical music played on period instruments. It was a delightful evening of music and was well attended.

Oliver Brookes demonstrated the "gemshorn" accompanied by Clive Henery on the "hurdy gurdy" at the Wilmington E.M. Cooper Memorial Library on September 15.

Throughout the summer, we offered free individualized computer lessons for people at all levels of computer expertise. This opportunity was very well received and we hope to offer it again in the future.

On November 9, naturalist Mike Brennan will read the book Sky Dancer. Mike will be accompanied by his live red-tail hawk.

Our Saturday morning story hour is held weekly from 10:30 to 11:30 and includes story reading and an art project for children.

--Meg Stone, Director

Wadhams Free Library

We had a fun summer here in Wadhams. Our special events included story hours such as “Bubblemania 2000”. Steven Kellogg gave a wonderful program, drawing and telling The Island of the Skog for a rapt audience. Other activities included a “Drum and Rhythm” workshop with Susan Rapalee (my sister), storytelling by Fran Yardley, and an Feng Shui workshop with Lorraine Duval.

Fall will also be a busy time at the library. We are continuing our series of “Wednesdays in Wadhams” with a talk on “The Sliding Sport of Skeleton” by slider Juleigh Walker on November 1. Artist Sheri Amsel will be coming to talk with children at the library this fall, and a yoga class and book club are also meeting at the library. Sue Allott is doing a great craft and story time on Thursday afternoons. We are excited to announce that the library will be open on Monday and Wednesday afternoons for “homework time” thanks to volunteer staffers.

--Liz Rapalee, Director 

Paine Memorial Library, Willsboro

Over 2000 attendees passed through the gates at the 18th Annual Old Time Folkcraft Fair which was held Saturday, July 29th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eighty eight vendors displayed fine crafts such as basket-making, stenciling, pottery, painting, quilting, woodworking, spinning and weaving, knitting, stained glass, and photography along with many other traditional and new crafts. Marie Poitras, Fair Coordinator, was very pleased with the day. This is a major fund raiser for the library and we would like to thank all those who made this day happen. It is a huge undertaking that benefits many. A hearty thanks to all!

-- Cheryl Blanchard, Director

In Franklin County

Akwesasne Library

Janice Brown will be leaving the library to take a new job with the Tribal Council. Janice started her new career at the Akwesasne Library in 1997. Janice brought with her many years of experience with an accounting firm which proved to be beneficial to our library. She had some computer experience but enjoyed attending workshops that improved her ability to function in our library environment. Janice did our interlibrary loan, reference, newsletter, and several other duties which kept her very busy. She took every new task with enthusiasm and completed it with finesse. We wish her the best in her new position!

-- Carol White, Director

Waverly Reading Center

Ten pre-K to 6th graders participated in our summer reading program which was coordinated by Sharon Maxwell and taught by Theresa Farmer during the last week in August.

The Adult Center furnished bookshelves and the library provided books so that folks at the senior center and the independent housing unit that is attached can now borrow books easily.
With the help of Cindy Murphy, Center Director, the seniors made a wish list of books that they want to read and we will try to fill it each month. So far, most readers have been interested in antique books and large print mysteries.

-- Judy Wever, Director
Ten Things You Can Do on the New CEF Website!

1. Try different Internet search engines.
2. Look at Harry Potter’s website.
3. See the inside of the book-mobile.
4. Make a scarecrow puppet.
5. Print a materials request form.
6. Email any member of the CEF staff.
7. Search for books in libraries around the world.
8. Find homework help.
9. Get a map of the location of any library in our system.
10. Check a calendar of upcoming library events.

Try it out at, starting in mid-October!

--Betsy Brooks
Automation Librarian
November Children's Activities

Despite the fact that the often quoted ditty about November that begins “No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees…” is usually sadly apt, the November/December issue of Copycat 2000 reveals that there is plenty to celebrate in addition to Election Day, Veterans’ Day and Thanksgiving. Don’t forget the birthday of Daniel Boone (November 2) as well as American Education Week and Children’s Book Week (November 12 – 18), the birthday of Mickey Mouse (November 18), National Game and Puzzle Week (November 19-25) and Mark Twain’s birthday (November 30). Watch your van delivery for Children’s Book Week materials and call Kathie LaBombard to discuss program ideas for any of these topics.
CEF Directors’ Association Looks Forward to a New Century of Service

The first CEFDA meeting of 2000 was held at the Goff-Nelson Memorial Library in Tupper Lake on October 2nd. Chalice Dechene, Library Director, and her staff welcomed CEFDA to Tupper Lake with a gracious table of treats and coffee. Chalice offered a quick tour of the library, highlighting the library’s new children’s annex and the additional public access Internet terminals. 

Following a presentation on GRASP (Giving Rural Adults a Study Program) by Cathy Dirolf, Mineville CV-Tech Adult Literacy Coordinator, we discussed the future of CEFDA. Possible program topics and host libraries were identified. The challenge of having library directors actively involved in CEFDA was also discussed. Though the group was small, everyone noted how important it is for directors to gather to exchange ideas, challenges, and solutions to common problems.

Those of you that missed the meeting missed an absolutely gorgeous drive through the Adirondacks! The next CEFDA gathering will be held on March 26, 2001 (location TBA) – we hope to see you in March!

-- Anne Minter O’Donnell, Director
Plattsburgh Public Library
Seasonal Fiction Choices

Do you enjoy reading seasonal fiction? 
Now that the days are shorter and nights are getting longer, our thoughts turn to Halloween and its scary scenarios. These librarian- recommended titles may put you in a ghostly mood –

The Amityville Horror, by Jay Anson
The Green Man, by Kingsley Amis
A Fine and Private Place, by Peter Beagle
Wycliffe and the Scapegoat, by W.J. Burley
In the Deep Woods, by Nicholas Conde
House of Echoes, by Barbara Erskine
Tricks: An 87th Precinct Novel, by Ed McBain

Web Wanderings 

Most of us dread falling back to standard time. Luckily, October and November are enlivened by two holidays that can be enhanced by a thoughtful visit to the web. Here are some of our favorite fall sites. - just type in “Halloween” to find “spooktacular games”, safe trick-or-treating tips, crafts, creative costumes and more. The site also gives over 60 responses
to a basic “Thanksgiving” query. Topics include crafts and table decorations kids can make, teaching children to give thanks, a “cyberspace ride through history”, and family games to play while digesting the holiday meal. - parents and older children are well rewarded for the careful typing required to get to this cool site for the science minded. It includes a “Masters of the Night Bat Quiz” with directions for building a bat house, a webcam site that gets up close and personal with a pair of barn owls, instructions on how to grow a giant pumpkin, and a visit to the NOVA wild wolves (complete with audio clips of wolf howls). 

Visit the New York Public Library’s site “on lion” ( and check out the holiday section for more recommended sites.
Why Oh Why Ohio?

Debbie Crossley and Betsy Finnegan of the CEF bookmobile road crew, Julie Wever and Director Mary Brown attended the 7th Great American Bookmobile and Outreach Conference in Columbus, Ohio on October 4-6. More than 250 people from 35 states attended this national bookmobile roundup. Our staff returned with lots of ideas for the new vehicle that we
will soon be “specing” and some practical solutions that have already been put to use.

Debbie Crossley reviews her wish list with a bookmobile vendor

Betsy Finnegan was allowed to put our dream vehicle, a kneeling bus, through its paces

Plattsburgh Public Library - CEF Central Library News

The PPL Youth Services Department conducted storytelling at the Press-Republican Home Show in September, resumed their story time programming, and is busily making plans to conduct school visits over the next quarter. Gearing up for another Teen Council meeting is of the utmost importance since the Friends of the Library has offered to provide $3,000 to revamp the Young Adult collection! We are looking forward to the input area teens will provide for development of “their” collection. It seems that a Harry Potter Party is also predicted for the future!

I am quite sure that all CEFLS member libraries are looking forward to the impending installation of their “Gates computers”. The Central Library is pleased to announce that we will be hosting the Gates Foundation “Before Your Computer Arrives” Workshop on October 26, 2000. We look forward to welcoming representatives from CEF member libraries to our facility.

The Friends of the Library conducted a record-breaking book sale over the summer, earning over $1,700. During July and August the Hale Walter Gallery was filled with a stunning display of local photographic talent as the Friends hosted the Second Annual Photography Exhibit. If you have not stopped by lately, you must come visit the Visual Artists Network display currently hanging in the Gallery. This exhibit will be on display until October 28th.

Plattsburgh Public Library has recently experienced a few staffing changes. After giving birth to a bouncing baby boy, Helen O’Connell-Perry (Library Page) decided that she would like to return to school and to spend more time with her infant. Helen had come to be a familiar, smiling face in the Children’s Room and we were sorry to see her go. Soon after Helen’s resignation, we were lucky enough to locate Sherry Silcio to replace her. Sherry has a degree in elementary education and a Masters in Administration and Leadership from SUNY-Plattsburgh, and is quickly becoming a vital part of the PPL team. 

With great sadness, we also accepted the resignation of Lending Services Coordinator Jamie Fish. Jamie was instrumental in “redesigning” Lending Services at PPL. She made many improvements which have resulted in more efficient operation of the department and increased customer satisfaction! We wish her the best of luck in her new position.

Plattsburgh Public Library would also like to extend our thanks to CEFLS and Julie Wever for coordinating the musical program, Voces Intimae. Though our group was small, all attending the program were enthralled with the music presented by Oliver Brookes and Alison Gordon. Kudos to CEFLS for garnering such an opportunity for our area!

--Anne Minter O’Donnell, Director

Some of us use the coin-toss approach to choosing a candidate but now that we have the Internet it’s easier to find information about the candidates and make an “informed decision.” There are several web sites offering different approaches to campaign information.

Of course both major party presidential candidates had their own websites where you could watch, listen to and read about the candidates, their families, their campaign headquarters and pets, as well as download screensavers, posters, bumper stickers, etc. There’s plenty to keep you busy at these sites.

Other approaches that are not so partisan offer access not only to Presidential candidates but candidates for local elections as well. Politics.1 ( offers a much drier, less glossy approach to the elections. There is information on dozens of political parties (including the Light Party, America’s Party, the Grassroots Party and of course the Pot Party). Here you can download campaign buttons, find information about the primaries and updates on specific issues. The League of Women Voters has good information on the issues on their site ( Here you can click on a chart to see how the candidates compare on the issues. It may be reassuring for some to head to the more familiar sites, especially those mounted by the standard news media. There’s excellent political coverage offered by CNN with plenty of information on the Clinton-Lazio race. The Washington Post, not surprisingly has good coverage of the Presidential race ( Useful to us in New York is coverage of our Senate race in the New York Times (, where there is also good coverage of the Presidential race.

Whichever site you chose for information or entertainment about the candidates we can all agree that the most important thing we can do on November 7 is to vote. Study the ballot carefully and remember that every vote counts but only if you pull the lever before you leave the booth.

-- Elizabeth Rogers, Head of Reference & ILL 

There are many election-related sites on the Internet. Here are a few more to check out: for information on the presidential debates, including text of the debates. a great site, home of the Century Foundation Project, a research foundation offering analysis of major issues. homepage of the well-known women’s network. a non-partisan site reporting trends in American opinions; great for tracking various polls.

-- Elizabeth Rogers, Head of Reference & ILL

Carole Osborne, Director of the AuSable Forks Free Library, checks out the computer the library received with Stafford Grant funds