GLOBAL GAMES!

Join us at the library on Monday, June 18th from 7 to 8 pm as we learn all about global games!  We’ll explore the fun side of world cultures as kids are introduced to a variety of toys and games from different countries.  There’s plenty of time for everyone to play and show off what they’ve learned through featured mini-performances of their own.  Global Games helps kids develop skills and build self-esteem while gaining new respect for world cultures.  In case of inclement weather, we’ll meet up at the Houston Community Center.  This event was paid for in part by funds from the Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund thanks to a SELCO legacy grant.   Questions?  Call the library at 896-READ!

Library CLOSED on Memorial Day!

The Houston Public Library will be closed on Monday, May 28th in observance of Memorial Day.  Have a safe and happy holiday, everyone.  We’ll see you during our regular hours of operation on Tuesday!

Winners of our Valentine’s Day Quilt & Baskets Raffle

On Wednesday, February 14th at 7 pm, the Friends of the Library held their 2nd Annual Quilt & Basket Raffle, raising over $1500 to support our upcoming 2018 Summer Reading Program! Our thanks go out to everyone who participated, whether you made a basket or purchased a ticket. We are so lucky to have such wonderful community support.

Here is a list of the individuals who won baskets:
1. Showtime Basket: Bekki Rohweder
2. Peter Rabbit Basket: Kayla Coil
3. All Things Owl Basket: Kari Charboneau
4. Road Trip Basket: Amy Kulas
5. Serve It Up Basket: Sarah Erdmann
6. Candy & Flowers Basket: Twyla Peterson
7. Stone Soup Basket: Kristi Frickson
8. Today I Made A Difference Basket: Steve Kanz
9. Gratitude Basket: Jenna Niena
10. American Girl Doll: Mary Ihrke
11. American Girl Horse: Sandy Erickson
12: Coloring Is Not Just For Kids Basket: Eileen Hegland
13. Backyard Birding Basket: Beth Peterson-Lee
14. Tea Time Basket: Jill Doll
15. Hearth & Home Basket: Ron Evenson
16. Mitford Snowman Basket: Jean Carlson
17. Needlework Basket: Jean Carlson
18. Cat Lovers Basket: Sue Fletcher
19. Winter Survival Basket: Barb Swenson

The winner of the beautiful hand-made quilt is Kate Evenson!

A special thanks goes out to Friend of the Library, Janelle Kelleher, for making and donating the quilt once again this year AND to Thrivent Financial For Lutherans for providing the seed money for this fundraising project through their mini-grant program.

Upcoming Storytimes!

Here are the themes for our next few storytimes!  Join us from 10 to 11 am every Saturday morning as we read books, make a craft, sing a song, do a little science experiment, etc!  Geared towards children 0-8 and their parents!

Saturday, January 27th:  Sniffling Sneezing Storytime

Saturday, February 3rd:  Stinky, Smelly, Slimy Storytime

Saturday, February 10th:  Valentine’s Day Storytime

Questions?  Call the library at 896-READ.

Holiday Hours

Holiday hours for the Houston Public Library are as follows this year:

Saturday, December 23rd:  10 am to noon

Monday, December 25th:  CLOSED

Saturday, December 30th:  10 am to noon

Monday, January 1st:   CLOSED

Weather permitting, all other days will follow our regular schedule.  Questions?  Call the library at 896-READ!  Happy Holidays!

Annual Fall Book Sale!

This Saturday, October 7th, the Friends of the Library will be hosting their annual Fall Book Sale in conjunction with Houston’s city-wide garage sale .  Weather permitting, we’ll be out on the sidewalk in front of the library from 8 am to noon with donated and withdrawn materials for sale.  As usual, it’s a Take-What-You-Want, Pay-What-You-Want event with all proceeds going to support our 2018 Summer Reading Program.  Questions?  Call the library at 896-READ!

The End of 2017 Summer Reading!

They say that all good things come to an end, and it’s true: our 2017 Summer Reading Program, “Build a Better World,” finishes up at 4 pm on Saturday, September 2nd.  Kids need to turn in any completed weekly reading challenges by then to be included in our final drawing of the summer for a $10 Barns & Noble gift certificate.  We’ll also be hosting one last drawing for four free ice cream cones from Sub Zero for all the kids who stop by this week and check out one last book (or two or three!)!  Questions?  Call the library at 896-READ!

Eagle Bluff StarLab Planetarium!

With the solar eclipse coming up in mid-August, we thought it might be a great time for kids in the area to learn a little more about that big mysterious world up above us in the sky!  Join us at 2 pm on Monday, August 7th at the Houston Elementary School gym for an exciting program featuring an inflatable planetarium that showcases 3,000 stars of different colors and sizes, as well as the constellations.  Space is limited to 60 people, so don’t be late!  This special Summer Reading event was paid for through a SELCO Legacy Grant through the Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund.  And thanks to the elementary school for providing a space big enough to hold the planetarium!  Questions?  Call the library at 896-READ!

Kids’ Drawing Class with artist Gary Harbo!

Monday, July 17th at 2 pm at the Houston Community Center,  the library will be hosting a one-hour drawing class for kids with artist Gary Harbo.  In keeping with our 2017 Summer Reading theme of “Build a Better World,” Gary will be teaching kids how to draw machines that have been invented to make the world a better place for us all.  As Gary puts it, “to build a better world in the physical sense requires machines that are designed to do powerful jobs, such as bulldozers to build roads, semi-trucks to haul products to market, tractors to plant and harvest crops, airplanes and trains to move people, as well as cranes to build schools, city buildings, and skyscrapers.”  Recommended for kids going into 2nd grade and up! This program was made possible thanks to fund from the Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund through a SELCO Legacy Grant.  Questions?  Call the library at 896-READ!

2017 SUMMER READING EVENTS!

Learn about music, art, magic, astronomy, volunteer projects, and more during the Houston Public Library’s special Summer Reading events this summer, as we “Build A Better World” together! All events take place in the library or outside in the library’s greenspace, unless otherwise indicated.  In case of inclement weather, some outside events will take place over at the Houston Community Center. Give us a call at 896-READ when in doubt.  And one last thing: please bring an item for the Houston Community Food Shelf if you attend one of our free events.  Let’s make our own community a better place while we’re having fun!

Monday, June 19th from 7 to 8 pmLITTLE FREE LIBRARY LAUNCH PARTY!  Thanks to a SELCO grant from the Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund, we’re installing five Little Free Libraries right here in the city of Houston. Come help us celebrate with the artists who decorated them —  and a little cake, balloon-making with Kevin Lindh, and some chalk art on the side.  Take a book or make the world a better place by bringing and leaving a book!

Monday, June 26th from 7 to 8 pm: EVERETT SMITHSON BAND!  This one hour musical celebration will feature Zydeco, Blues, Hillbilly Hoedowns, and more. In addition, Everett believes in the importance of keeping the blues alive— and will do so by teaching up to 50 kids how to play the harmonica at the end of his performance in a special 30 minute class! Kids get to keep the harmonica, too!

Monday, July 3rd from 7 to 8 pm:  RECYCLED ART!  Let’s see how you can turn a bag full of recyclable objects into art! In the spirit of encouraging kids to make the world a better place by reducing, reusing, and recycling, we’ll be giving each participant a bag of mystery ingredients with which to create a work of art and just 30 minutes in which to do it.  Join in on the fun!

Monday, July 10th from 7 to 8 pm:   BOOK ART WITH PAM O’HARA!Come and learn some clever ways of making books using simple supplies! Pam will have everything assembled for you to make your own books using a little origami, some folding and gluing, and some sewing. We’ll use pretty paper, office supplies, stickers, and canceled stamps.  You’ll go home with about 5 completed small book projects  — and the inspiration and skills it takes to make many more.  Recommended for kids going into 2nd grade and up!

Monday, July 17th from 2 to 3 pm: DRAWING CLASS WITH GARY HARBO at the Community Center!  To build a better world in a physical sense requires machines that are designed to do powerful jobs, such as bulldozers to build roads, semi-trucks to haul products to market, tractors to plant and harvest crops, airplanes and trains to move people, as well as cranes to build schools, city buildings, and skyscrapers. In this one hour art lesson, Gary will teach students how to draw machines that have been invented to make a better world for all of us.  Recommended for kids going into 2nd grade and up!

Monday, July 24th from 7 to 8 pm: MAGIC SHOW WITH GREG THE GREAT!  Let’s explore the amazing world of magic together as Greg the Great levitates, causes members of the audience to float, cuts his assistant in half, and makes animals appear, disappear, reappear, and even transform! This family-friendly show features Greg’s blend of comedy and magic with lots of audience interaction.

Monday, August 7th from 2 to 3 pm: STARLAB PLANETARIUM at the elementary school gym!Ever wonder about that mysterious big world up above us in the sky? Join us for an exciting STARLAB program, featuring an inflatable planetarium that showcase 3,000 stars of different colors and sizes, as well as the constellations. Space is limited to 60 people so don’t be late!

Monday, August 14th from 7 to 8 pm:  PEACE CORPS VOLUNTEER SLIDESHOW!  What’s it like to live and work as a Peace Corp volunteer in a very different part of the world? Find out as former Peace Corps Volunteers share slideshows and stories about their life-changing years of service.

Monday, August 21st from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm:  CELESTIAL EVENT/SOLAR ECLIPSE PARTY!  On August 21st, the shadow of the moon will sweep across the sun and the USA in a spectacle that hasn’t occurred in 99 years!  In celebration of the solar eclipse, we’ll be hosting a “viewing party” complete with 200 pairs of official viewing glasses, thanks to Eclipse Education Kits provided by  STAR_Net’s NASA@ My Library Initiative. Come join us in the library greenspace, weather permitting! Bring your own blanket, pillow, or chair to make your viewing experience more comfortable!

Saturday, August 26th from 10 to 11 am:  STORYTIME WITH THE APOLLO MUSIC FESTIVAL We host storytime at the library every Saturday morning from 10-11 am all year round, but we only have professional musicians and their instruments as our guests once a year — when the Apollo Music Festival is in town!  Stop by for an informal and fun way to introduce your kids to the world of classical music.  You’ll be glad you did!

This year’s Summer Reading Program is sponsored by the Friends of the Houston Public Library, a grant from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, HARC, SELCO Legacy grants, the Apollo Music Festival, Sub-Zero Pizza and Ice Cream, memorials in honor of Teresa & Banjo Erickson and Illa Sweet, and a generous donation from Jayne & Jim Gilmer.