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August 2017

posted Mar 23, 2018, 5:14 PM by Cutler Memorial Library
September is Library Card Sign-Up Month
SUNDAY! Pre-register: "Magical Kitchen Medicine"
Library Programs & Collection Survey
Being Prepared
Expansion Update
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We want YOU!
to bring your neighbors, cousins, grandkids, besties in to get their library card, because
September is 
Library Card Sign-Up Month!
Whether you're new to parenthood or have kids old enough to join you at the workshop; herbalist Adrienne Allison is tailoring this neighbor-to-neighbor advice and wisdom workhop especially to the benefit of young families. But anyone interested in knowing which common pantry items might as well be in your medicine cabinet will enjoy this FREE session and demonstration:


Adrienne has a deep knowledge of plants and healing that she is willing to share: a strong turn-out at this workshop might lead to a free series!

PLEASE PRE-REGISTER so she'll have some sense of how much demonstration materials to bring. Drop-ins are also encouraged to attend! For any age of independent learner.
               PLEASE TAKE OUR ON-LINE SURVEY:                                      IT'S QUICK!                                                 


The library is working with the town's Emergency Management Coordinator to develop an emergency response plan in the event of a disaster in our community that leads to people using the Haybarn and the Maple Hill School as emergency shelters. At his suggestion, we've added some titles to our collection that may be of interest to people concerned about potentially community-wide catastrophic events (Global Catastrophies, a short introduction; A Farewell to Ice, a report from the Arctic), and I picked up a couple of more with useful "WSHTF" information. We have emergency guides from the Vermont Emergency Managment people, too; stop in if you'd like one.

Our plan involves three areas of focus:
1. Facility improvements to provide access to recovery/health/safety information and non-emergency digital communication immediately after crisis has subsided (back up electricity for heat or alternate heat source, battery back-up for internet & computer). 

2. Trained volunteers for two teams.  Impromptu programming network: pull together a posse of people with programming skills (ie teachers, artists, skilled tradespeople, etc) who agree to have programs for kids, teens, adults and seniors that are "ready to run" either at the library or at one or both of the shelters in the event of the need for shelter that extends more than 48 hours, and an organization structure by which such a network would be implemented. Trained information first responders who have completed at least one online courses to assist people seeking help with insurance, aid applications, services, etc.

3. Emergency back-up supplies to supplement what will be available at the shelters and what might be needed among community members if access to stores is limited for more than 48 hours: menstral pads, diapers, bottled water, "sterno," disposable plates/cups/utensils, cell phone battery banks, underwear, socks; obtain by grants & donations, store in an accessible and dry location in our basement, develop rules for distribution.

WHY ARE WE TELLING YOU ALL THIS? WE'RE HOPING YOU'LL WANT TO HELP, OF COURSE.  Want to join a volunteer team? Got grant skills to help us get the back-up equipment & supplies? Please be in touch:



The town's first application on our behalf was not selected in the spring round of grants awarded by the Vermont Community Development Program, but we're hoping that the changes we made to the application will meet their approval and that we'll be awarded approximately $25,000 to hire an architectural firm to help us design and develop a construction plan for our planned expansion. We'll hear in mid-October whether the revised application was a success!  If you know anyone with clout at the VCDP, please put in a good word for the application. And our thanks again, sincerely, for the town's willingness to apply for these grants on our behalf. Once we've got a design and a firm plan (ie we've worked out the legal and financial logistics), we'll know how much money we'll need to raise to make our expansion plan a reality. Would you like to help the trustees steer this expansion, either logistically or as a fundraiser, grantwriter or donor? Please let us know:

In case you're a latecomer and don't know why we're planning an expansion: we need at least twice as much parking, our children's area needs enlarging, we needed dedicated space for group meetings and quiet space, we could serve our community better with more places for people to sit either at tables, computer stations, or comfy reading chairs. Wheelchair-bound library patrons cannot browse our bookshelves without requiring some accomodation (furniture temporarily moved out of the way and then put back). Our entrance ramp gets snowy and icy, making it treacherous for patrons and volunteer staff alike. Finally, we'd like to explore increasing the number of rental units upstairs to help offset the library's bottom line even further, and we're also hoping to incorporate a small laundry room, outdoor spaces (open, enclosed and screen porches) and solar panels!! As things stand now, we aren't able to offer meeting space to any new groups during hours the library is open and even without groups meeting, sometimes there aren't enough places for everyone who wants to use the library at any given time. And of course our collections are limited in large part by the amount of shelf space our current layout allows. People use libraries differently than they used to; more people come to stay for several hours on their laptop, studying for school, or working on crafts projects while their family members are reading, gaming online, etc. "Maker Spaces" are popping up at libraries all over the world as we move into more dynamic roles from consumers to producers and do-it-yourselfers. Plainfield's library is going to grow into the new century so Plainfield residents have a state-of-the-art resource for adapting to a changing economy, changing education and entertainment platforms and even a changing democracy. We invite you to lend your hand! And to stay tuned until next month... 
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Cutler Memorial Library
151 High Street
PO Box 186
PlainfieldVT 05667

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