Read a book to someone you love.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Working at the Kellogg-Hubbard

I just finished a book entitled, Museum: Behind the Scenes at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, by Danny Danziger. Danziger took time to interview people who worked at the museum, from cleaners to curators to security officers to trustees, giving each person a chance to tell their story. It's a great book.

Something in the author's preface jumped out at me: "I was struck by the level of commitment from everybody whose life is touched by the Met, whether it's the time and money that the trustees voluntarily give, or the pride and commitment that the employees feel. Perhaps there are employees nursing cynical and harsh feelings toward their places of employment...But in this place, it is as if Oberon had sprinkled fairy dust over the lot of them...."

This is the way I see theKellogg-Hubbard Library. In July alone we saw the July 3rd parade, the annual lawn party, Senator Leahy's visit to the Comics Club, Warner Bros. Pictures special screening of The Dark Knight, and the Onion River Century Ride to benefit the library. It's as if everyone who comes into contact with the Kellogg-Hubbard gets a sprinkling of Oberon's fairy dust - staff, volunteers, patrons and donors. In terms of patron support and staff commitment you'd have to look very far indeed to find a library as loved and as supported. It's an honor to be part of it.
Hilari Farrington,
Library Director

Friday, July 25, 2008

ORS Century Ride July 26, 2008

photo by Rachel Senechal at Barton food stopIt looks like we'll have a great day for the 5th Annual ORS Century Ride tomorrow. Carrie Baker Stahler, Marketing Director at Onion River Sports, and Pinky, Montpelier's own Citizen of the Year, were busy this morning putting the food boxes together for the five food and drink stops along the route for the cyclists. Folks from the Kellogg-Hubbard Library(the beneficiary of the funds raised from this ride), and ORS will be on hand tomorrow morning beginning at 7am, at the Montpelier Rec Field for registration. Registration is $65 which includes tickets to the end-of-the ride BBQ. There are two routes, 100k (62 miles) and 110 miles. Both routes start and end at the Montpelier Rec field. The 62 miler goes to Hardwick, Morrisville, Elmore and back to Montpelier. The 110 miler goes to Hardwick, Barton, Irasburg, Albany, No. Wolcott, Elmore then back to the rec field. The scenery is gorgeous.

We are still looking for some people to work at the BBQ at the rec field, 1-3pm and 3-5pm. If you are interested in helping out please call the library at 223-3338.

New this year is having WDEV broadcasting live during the ride. So if you're not riding or working on the Century Ride you can still hear what's going on by tuning into WDEV, AM 550 or FM 96.1. Tom Beardsly will tell you all about the Century Ride!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Martin, Janet and Gustavo in India

photo by Martin Hahn
We received an email from Martin and Janet telling us of their arrival in India. They are living in Kodaikanal at a boarding school for the next 9 months. Martin will be working in the development office, Janet will be teaching English as a second language and health sciences to 12 year olds. Gustavo will be attend school with classmates from around the world.

Here is an excerpt from their email:

Like everyone else who visits India from the west, it is impossible to not comment on the excruciating poverty. We have seen mostly an agricultural economy: people (mostly women) working the fields by hand; transporting or selling produce. The old, unemployed, and less physically able are left to fend for themselves and it is a stark sight.

But we are thrilled to be here. Gus is learning to play cricket (his new “favorite” sport) with all his new friends. He is fascinated by the monkeys and the wild bison (we’ll tell you more in another letter) and looking forward to starting school. One of his subjects will be Tamil (the local language). All of us are enjoying the scenery, the food, and the chance to live a different life.
photo by Martin Hahn

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Barry M. Meyer, Chair and CEO of Warner Bros. Pictures summed it up: "I think I can safely say that this is the first time Warner Bros. has had a world premier in Montpelier, Vermont." Raucous applause followed from the sold out audience in the second theater as the anticipation continued growing for the nation's first public viewing of The Dark Knight, this summer's blockbuster Batman film. What followed was nearly two and one-half hours of gripping special effects, dialogue, acting and audience engagement that confirmed the other pithy comment made by Meyer, "I guarantee you have never seen anything like this." All this took place to benefit the Kellogg-Hubbard Children's Library in Montpelier.

It began a couple months ago when Warner Bros. approached Senator Leahy to ask if they could do this for him, knowing of his great affection for the library. The Senator is known for taking his original tattered library card from his wallet to make the point that he attributes any success or civic or national contributions, to his early experiences in the Children's Library. It was during those early years when he became a Batman comic fan. Through an interesting story we will not elaborate here, he made his way into earlier flicks and landed a cameo appearance in this one. He has worked through the years to ensure that other youngsters have opportunities to become avid readers and envision a productive future for themselves and others.

We began planning a special meeting of The Dark Knight Comics Club and Super Girls Comics Club, which were established by KHL's own Ben T. Matchstick. That happened on the afternoon of July 12. Great exchange between the club members and the Senator.

Corporate sponsors from Vermont and around the country contributed to support this event and other supporters from the area made a generous gift to attend a special reception at the Capitol Plaza Hotel prior to the watching the movie. Let's salute the Capitol Plaza Hotel staff and the Capitol Theatre for a little "above and beyond" effort adding to this successful evening.
Of course the entire Library Staff was involved for several weeks, while still working on their primary mission of patron service.

The Library, Montpelier, central Vermont and the State received a lot of national attention in the press. A number of the folks and VIPs we spoke with were so impressed with the area, that they plan to return for a longer visit.

As for the movie itself? It officially premiers July 18, and you should experience it yourself. Meanwhile, KHL and the Children's Library are here to welcome your many visits. Come!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Kellogg-Hubbard on Parade

I'm not sure how many libraries across the country featured a "Book Cart Precision Drill Team", Storm Troopers and an AT-AT Walker from Star Wars, not to mention a large cardboard Batman in their July 4th parades. But the Kellogg-Hubbard librarians and their friends put on a pretty good show for the community on July 3rd. In fact, people are still stopping us on the street to tell us.
"I didn't know that librarians could be so funny," said one parade-goer.

Don't forget to see if there are any tickets left for The Dark Knight special screening and reception this Saturday, brought to us courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures to honor Senator Leahy. Movie tickets were just about sold out when I last checked. In fact, when I called to order books from our jobber in Tennessee, the person on the line said, "Hey - you've been in the news!" It seems that NPR, AP, and The Washington Post have all been talking about the library in little Montpelier, thanks to Senator Leahy's loyalty to his childhood library.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Books & Such

Ah, Wednesdays..
A patron just brought back The Quiet Girl by Peter Hoeg [the Danish author who published Smilla's Sense of Snow about 15 years ago - a terrific novel, by the way, if you haven't read it, except for the ending, which as I recall kind of falls apart and my isn't this a giant digression] and said "I'm not sure I can recommend this. It's just weird. Really really weird. I'd kinda like you to read it so we can talk about it". Well, sure. What librarian wouldn't want a challenge like that? So I've now read the front cover synopsis and you know what? It sounds weird. Really really weird. This should be fun.

We had Mystery Group Monday evening at Bear Pond - talked about Edwin of the Iron Shoes by Marcia Muller [the first Sharon McCone novel] & A Great Deliverance [the first Lynley/Havers et al novel] by Elizabeth George. Terrific discussion, I thought - strong opinions, enthusiastically expressed. And we decided that, for a novel published in 1977, the Muller is remarkably undated. Maybe that's because there's not a lot of 'you-are-there' description - just crisp dialogue & good characters. The only - glaring - exception is McCone's police lieutenant/ future love interest, who persists in calling her 'papoose'. Really, she should've just smacked him one & been done with it [although they do eventually break up, can't imagine why.] The McCone books are a terrific series. Muller's one of the relatively few authors - Bill Pronzini, Lawrence Block, Margaret Maron & Walter Mosley are some others - whose characters actually change believably over time. And can anyone think of anyone else?

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Summer is a great time to visit Kellogg-Hubbard

I joined Kellogg-Hubbard Library as its new executive director last month and am enjoying getting to know the wonderful staff, board of directors, volunteers and the many patrons who come here daily. I am following Martin Hahn, who served so astutely for three years and is now off on an exciting life and professional adventure for a year overseas. We wish him the very best.
We are fortunate to have the tremendous support of so many folks in our direct service area as well as those who choose to come here from other towns.
My professional background includes organizational management, fund development, marketing, communications, media relations, public relations, customer satisfaction, volunteer management, among other things. I have been involved in the communities of central Vermont in various ways, including the Boy Scouts of America, Rotary Club of Montpelier and Green Mountain United Way, for which I currently serve as president.
When I first heard late last fall that this position might be opening, I immediately contacted Martin and the board to express my interest and began doing some research on libraries and their future. Libraries have always evolved to meet the needs of their patrons and the future of libraries looks even more exciting than their significant past. We are enjoying an increase in patron visits and lending despite the technology explosion.
Please drop by for a visit this summer. Check out our website at for a schedule of activities. I also invite you to consider being a donor to keep the library going and to contact me or one of our staff to discuss leaving a legacy to this wonderful organization which was founded in 1894 and has continually served the area since then.
Best wishes for a memorable Vermont summer!

Daniel L. Pudvah, Executive Director