This isn’t the library’s first venture into Rikers: they’ve been distributing books there since 1984, circulating more than 22,000 last year alone, said NYPL president Tony Marx. But this goes further than the book cart ever could.“Everyone is always welcomed at the library. Free books, free use of computers, educational programs,” he said, speaking directly to several of the inmates gathered for the library’s opening Tuesday. “We do not want people locked up. We want everyone — everyone — to have the opportunity to read, to learn, to create, to gain skills and to contribute.” READ MORE
Reading and walking might not seem like two interconnected hobbies, but at Municipal Park they are.  That is because the park annually plays host to a story trail.The trail, which stands next to the paved multi-purpose path that winds through the park, contains an illustrated story.  Each year, third graders from Pataskala Elementary (NJ) create the story as part of an effort backed by the Pataskala Public Library and the city. READ MORE
Crazy looking bees. Flying hearts. Oh, and skulls - lots of skulls.  Those are just a few of the tattoos from those of a literary bent posted on the Multnomah County (OR) Library’s Twitter account for their #books4tats campaign.Steve Roskoski, a library assistant, said he and his fellow librarians (some with their own tattoos) came up with the idea to match readers with books based on their tats. It’s Portland after all. READ MORE
Today’s libraries are changing to fulfill the needs of a digital society.  This is no less true for the nation’s oldest cultural institution, the Library of Congress, a fact verified by the confirmation of Dr. Carla Hayden as the 14th librarian of Congress.Hayden, former president of the American Library Association and director of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland, is the first female and the first African American to lead the Library of Congress.She also is the first professional librarian to be confirmed in more than 60 years, a distinction she bears with pride.  “Of all the titles I have had in my professional career, I am most proud to be called a librarian. And it would be my honor to have the opportunity to be the librarian of the oldest cultural institution in the nation, the Library of Congress,” she told senators during her confirmation hearing. READ MORE
Homemade concert fliers printed from an unguarded copy machine. Custom jean jacket patches for bands Transilvia, You and I, and The Degenerics. A set list from a 1982 Smithereens show stored away with a torn ticket stub. It’s the ephemera of a bygone era, before the internet or social networking, when building a fan base in a local music scene was a band’s best chance at getting broader recognition.The do-it-yourself ethos of the local music scene tells a story of dissent from mainstream culture, says Rutgers University media studies doctoral student Frank Bridges, who played in bands and ran his own record label in the 1980s and 1990s near the New Brunswick, New Jersey, campus. He thinks it’s a story worth preserving. Bridges’s dissertation explores the scene as a pocket of resistance to the decline of vinyl—a scene which he argues was due in part to the proliferation of independent record labels in the area. He’s amassed a fledgling archive of material in his research, but he didn’t have to look far to find a place to preserve it. The Rutgers School of Communication and Information is right next door to the Special Collections and University Archives section of the Archibald Stevens Alexander Library. READ MORE
The Hartford (Conn.) Public Library has a long history with community engagement; it regularly sponsors community dialogues and youth forums. So after learning residents from a disadvantaged neighborhood felt underserved and misrepresented, the library jumped at the chance to strengthen the neighborhood’s bond to the rest of the city. Hartford’s North End consists of a group of neighborhoods with some of the lowest income levels in the United States. To learn more about the community, the library hosted a series of small “kitchen table-style” conversations in the area. Instead of starting the conversations with a list of problems, staff members asked North End residents how they envision their ideal community. READ MORE
At Armstrong Elementary School Eastover, North Carolina, more than 60 percent of the children receive free or reduced price school lunch.  Although poverty is perceived to be a predictor of low academic success, the students at Armstrong, despite high levels of poverty, excel in reading and library use.A major factor is the school librarian, Leslie Koch, whose work garnered her an I Love My Librarian Award in 2015.  The numbers provide strong testimony to the success of her efforts.During the 2014-15 school year, among the 400 students, the library circulated more than 32,500 books, an average of more than 81 books per student over the course of the year, or greater than nine books per month per student, according to her nominator for the award, Ardry Adams.Adams said, “Ms. Koch recognizes the importance of reaching all children, and especially those from impoverished homes. Students who read, excel. Ms. Koch is raising the bar, encouraging each student to rise up, read, and excel in their individual academic endeavors.” READ MORE
The Senate has approved the nomination of Dr. Carla Hayden to serve as the nation’s 14th Librarian of Congress.  Dr. Hayden, American Library Association (ALA) past president and director of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland, is the first female and the first African American to lead the Library of Congress. She also is the first professional librarian to be confirmed in more than 60 years.   READ MORE
by John Windhausen, courtesy of American LibrariesOn June 14, the US Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit upheld the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) net neutrality ruling across the board. The latest ruling is a significant victory for the American Library Association (ALA), libraries, and public access to the open internet. READ MORE
by Chris Smith, courtesy of the Press DemocratIn Santa Rosa (CA) there’s a beauty of a free-to-all library that you might never have noticed, though it’s been around for 125 years.  It’s the sort of library you may not need until you really do, a library of the sort that many may miss dearly should budgetary troubles cause it to go away. READ MORE