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Category Archives: Announcements and Press Releases

Snowplow Santa is Back!

Snowplow SantaHo! Ho! Ho! Lincoln Transportation and Utilities is teaming up with Santa Claus on Saturday, December 9, 2023 to bring holiday cheer to the citizens of Lincoln. Join us at these locations:

   11:00 a.m.–noon at Walt Branch Library
   12:30–1:30 p.m. at Gere Branch Library
   2:00–3:00 p.m. at Williams Branch Library

Lincoln Libraries Announces Renewed Partnership with Lincoln Public Schools

Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird with library and education officials today said a renewed partnership between Lincoln City Libraries (LCL) and Lincoln Public Schools (LPS) gives young community members enhanced access to educational resources.

The OneCard program provides all Lincoln Public Schools students automatic access to LCL and LPS materials via their student identification cards. Originally called “ConnectEd,” the identification card program has been offered since 2016. In February, the City Council voted to renew the agreement between the city and school district for five years. OneCard accounts are limited to five items for checkout and will not accrue late fees.

“We know that children who read are better prepared for success in the future, so we’re committed to making it as easy as possible for Lincoln students to check out materials from our libraries,” Mayor Gaylor Baird said.

photo of press conferenceJoining Mayor Gaylor Baird at the news conference at Walt Branch Library, 6701 S. 14th St., were LCL Director Ryan Wieber, LPS Director of Library Services Dr. Chris Haeffner, and Claire Timperley, a 10th grade student at Lincoln Southwest High School.

“Our public libraries have always been more than just repositories of books. They are vibrant centers of knowledge, creativity, and community,” Wieber said. “OneCard ensures that every student has the opportunity to explore this world of possibilities.”

Haeffner said the revitalized partnership continues a valuable connection between students and information resources.

“By building the bridge from school to public library, we are creating connections for our students to become perpetual library users, giving them avenues to reliable information and resources they can depend on to pursue personal passions and nurture life-long learning,” Haeffner said.

Timperley, who serves as a volunteer on the Walt Branch Teen Advisory Board, said the program is important because libraries serve the community in a variety of ways.

“Whether it’s discovering great programs, activities and stories – or simply finding a safe and welcoming space to hang out after school – libraries provide opportunities for students to explore their interests and develop their talents,” Timperley said. “If the Library OneCard program encourages even a few more students to step into their school and public libraries to see for themselves everything that is available to them, it will be a success.”

Libraries Announce 2023 One Book One Lincoln Title

One Book - One LincolnLincoln City Libraries (LCL) today announced Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt as the book selected for the 2023 One Book One Lincoln Community Reading Program. The book is available from LCL in print and large type as well as downloadable audio and ebook formats.

Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt is a poignant tale that touches your heart and engages your imagination. As Lincoln embarks on this literary journey together, we explore the intricate threads of our connections, the beauty that surrounds us, and the boundless potential within. Remarkably Bright Creatures is more than a book—it’s a catalyst for conversations that matter.” Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird

Charming, compulsively readable, and full of wit, Shelby Van Pelt’s debut novel is a beautiful exploration of friendship, reckoning, and hope–a reminder that sometimes taking a hard look at the past can help uncover a future that once felt impossible. Remarkably Bright Creatures is a New York Times Bestseller, Amazon’s #1 book of 2022, and was named “Best Book of Summer” by the Chicago Tribune, The View, Southern Living Magazine and USA Today.

The runners-up for the 2023 program were Demon Copperhead by Barbara Kingsolver and Four Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui Zhang. The book selection process began in February when a 17-member selection committee of community readers narrowed the 125 nominations down to the top three.

“One Book One Lincoln builds community and creates a shared bond when we all read the same book together, and the library is the natural gathering place to make it happen. This year’s selection is a great addition to the long list of titles that have brought Lincoln residents together over a book for 22 years,” said Ryan Wieber, Director of Lincoln City Libraries.

One Book One Lincoln events, including a virtual author visit, are being planned for September and October. LCL has sponsored the annual One Book One Lincoln program since 2002 to encourage reading and dialogue by creating a community-wide reading and discussion experience.

Lincoln City Libraries Announces Library Card Design Contest Winner

Lincoln City Libraries (LCL) today announced Hazel Pinegar as the winner of its Library Card Design Contest. Pinegar is 6 years old and will be a first grade student at Elliott Elementary School, where her mom, Amy, also teaches. Cards featuring the new design are expected to be available in September, during Library Card Sign-up Month.

photo of Hazel and her familyPinegar’s design, entitled “Reading is for Everyone!” features a self-portrait with her signature braids, and a full-color rainbow on a blue sky background. Pinegar said that her “reading is for everyone” message extends to her friends who speak different languages. Pinegar added she hopes to learn Spanish like some of her friends, and she is glad the library has books in Spanish.

Lincoln and Lancaster County artists up to age 11 were invited in May to submit artwork to appear on the LCL library card. More than 200 artists submitted designs. A panel of judges selected the top three finalists, and the winning design was selected by community members via an online vote. This was the first time LCL invited readers to submit art to appear on official library cards.

“The enthusiasm shown by kids in the card design contest is a beautiful example of how children and families recognize the joy found in a library card. We’re happy for Hazel, and thrilled that thousands of others will be able to enjoy her creativity every time they check out a book,” said Ryan Wieber, Lincoln City Libraries Director.

Lincoln City Libraries thanks all the artists who participated in the contest, as well as the community members who voted on the designs. Card design contests for older readers are also being considered, and the current card design will remain available.

“Besides providing a platform for local artists to shine, the contest also fostered a sense of unity and enthusiasm within the community,” said Traci Glass, LCL Assistant Director. “The submissions, featuring a diverse range of styles and concepts, demonstrated the power of art in connecting people and inspiring imaginations.”

Lincoln City Libraries Page to Stage Program Begins August 4

Lied Center for the Performing ArtsMayor Leirion Gaylor Baird encourages residents to participate in a free program that combines reading and performing arts into a unique cultural experience. The Page to Stage program begins August 4 and is a collaboration between Lincoln City Libraries (LCL) and the Lied Center for the Performing Arts.

The program will take place at the Bennett Martin Library, 136 S. 14th St., and will feature special events coordinated with six performances appearing at the Lied Center. Activities will include visits from Lied Center artists and special story time guests, curated reading lists, special ticket giveaways and more.

“This innovative partnership – unique to our city – recognizes the power of literature and performance to enrich our community’s high quality of life,” Mayor Gaylor Baird said. “Do not ‘throw away your shot’ to experience this one-of-a-kind program at our very own Bennett Martin Public Library.”

Specific dates and activities for the 2024 performance season will be determined closer to the performance dates. The event schedule is as follows:

  • August 4, noon – Hamilton: Question and answer session with artists
  • January 2024 – Les Misérables
  • February 2024 – Rainbow Fish
  • March 2024 – Show Way The Musical
  • March 2024 – Momix: Alice
  • June 2024 – To Kill a Mockingbird

“The Page to Stage partnership between the Lied Center for Performing Arts and Lincoln City Libraries will provide new opportunities for the Lincoln community to experience exceptional literature, world-class performances, and access to the arts,” said Matthew Boring, Lied Center for Performing Arts Deputy Director.

Traci Glass, Lincoln City Libraries Assistant Director, said that collaborations with LCL’s neighbors, like the Lied Center, allow the libraries to weave together the threads of literature, knowledge, and creativity.

“This partnership is a testament to our commitment to providing diverse experiences, promoting lifelong learning, and bringing together people from all walks of life. Together, we are building a stronger, more connected community, where the arts and literature flourish hand in hand,” Glass said.

For more information about the Lied Center for Performing Arts, visit