August 25, 2014

Closed for Labor Day Weekend

Remember to stock up on library materials this week as the library will be closed August 30 through
September 1 in observance of the Labor Day holiday. No items will be due but the online catalog including databases and downloadable audios and ebooks will be available 24/7 as usual. We'll re-open at 10 am on Tuesday, September 2.  Happy Labor Day!

August 22, 2014

Be An Angel Day

Today, Friday, August 22nd is Be An Angel Day.  It's all about doing simple acts of kindness for others.  Offering care and support to those in need, by lending a helping hand.  The idea of putting others before yourself and making the world a better place and brightening someone else's day.

Neill Public Library has interesting reads connected to Be An Angel Day.  Try One Simple Act: Discovering the Power of Generosity by Debbie Macomber or Heroes Among Us: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Choices by John Quinones or if you prefer fiction try RaeAnne Thayne's - Hope's Crossing series (available in e-book format) or the children's book Fly Free by Roseanne Thong.

Whatever you do, Be An Angel Today and you will not only help someone else, but you will be helping yourself too! Scientific studies show that random acts of kindness help to reduce stress levels and lower blood pressure and heart rate.  They also balance the cortisol levels increasing energy and inner joy, allowing us to live happier and healthier lives.  So go out and make someone's day today, and Be An Angel! 

August 19, 2014

August 22-23: National Lentil Festival

It’s August – the month when little and big folks head to school and when most folks on the Palouse head to
our fair city to join in the National Lentil Festival celebration!  There’s always much to enjoy regardless of one’s age. You can savor samples at the legendary lentil cook-off and then shed some of those calories by participating in the Tase T Lentil 5K Run. Is there a young child in your life?   Take them to Reaney Park to have fun in the Lentil Land Kids’ Area. Young and old alike can line the streets of Pullman to watch the National Lentil Festival Parade.  And when the parade is over? Make plans to head to Neill Public Library to find some great lentil cookbooks and find out about the history of our amazing local area.  If you haven’t enjoyed the beautiful DVD entitled O Palouse!, use your library card to check it out soon.  This month and every month, stop by and see us often!
Children's Librarian

August 13, 2014

International Lefthanders Day!

This international celebration is just right (I mean, left) for yours truly. Yes, I am a true south paw who has learned to adjust to a primarily right-handed world. There are a few exceptions to the right-handed-ness of things – drive-up bank windows being one. Alas, most of the world assumes and operates from a right-handed perspective.

As a child I had to learn to be adaptive.  Sixty years ago, being left handed was frequently discouraged and seen as “odd.”  My first experiences with such came early on when my first and second grade teachers would not allow me to use my left hand for writing, coloring or cutting.  As a result, I have the worst penmanship in the world and on the plus side, I became pretty ambidextrous. That’s a fancy way of saying I’m pretty messed up when it comes to choosing which hand to use for what!  For example, I use right handed scissors for cutting, but play baseball with my left hand as dominant.  I brush my teeth and hold a fork with my left hand but use my right hand when mixing things in a bowl. Topsy turvy, I am!

Yet, I am not alone! I join the left-handed ranks of several US presidents including Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Barack Obama.  Julius Caesar, Henry Ford, Queen Victoria of England and Helen Keller were south paws too. It’s pretty fine company to find myself in!  And I can’t forget those un-right-handed authors including H.G. Wells, Peter Benchley and Lewis Carroll.

So whether you’re a right-y or a left-y or somewhere in between, head to the library to get some great books, magazines, DVDs and more! Hand us your library card and we’ll get everything checked out to you to take home and enjoy!
Children's Librarian

August 09, 2014

Library Now!

Neill Public Library is excited to unveil a mobile library app for our patrons!  Library Now consolidates library services into a single point of access ready for downloading onto your favorite mobile device.   This is another innovative way to bring library resources to you when you want, where you want, and how you want!

Development of this app began last year when the Washington State Library received a $200,000 grant from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation.  Neill Public Library had the distinction of being one of several libraries involved in establishing a list of desired specifications and features for the new app.  Boopsie was the vendor selected by the Washington State Library to incorporate our wish list and make our app a reality.

Why a mobile app?  Advances in technology continue to play a major role in shaping how patrons access library services.  Circulation of downloadable books continues to rise and use of online research databases remains high.  The Pew Internet Project survey found that 25% of all Americans ages 16 and older visited a library website in the past year.  Of those Americans, 82% searched the library’s catalog, 72% got basic library information (hours of operation, location of branches, or directions), 62% reserved books, and 51% used an online database. To facilitate patron usage online access should be quick and easy.  Libraries need to continue to adapt their services to remain relevant.

Library Now is easy to set up.  It comes in two versions, depending on whether the library is public or academic.  Both versions run on all standard mobile device platforms.  Users can download the app from their respective app stores and use the keywords “library now” to search for the full name of the app: “Washington State Library Now”.  Select, open, and download the app to your smart phone or tablet device.  Once downloaded to your device, find your library’s name from the drop down list of participating locations and enter your library card number to sign in.   It’s. That. Easy.  Neill Public Library, Whitman County Library District, and Asotin County Library are local participants.

Library Now offers the same level of access available through our standard website but with the added ease of single point access.  In the palm of their hands, patrons can now check their accounts, place holds on items, find library hours, see special event calendars, and access online resources such as downloadable eBooks and audio books, research databases, and the Microsoft IT Academy digital literacy curriculum.

Library Now also offers additional features to enhance your online library experience.  Travelling?  Use the GPS function to find the closest library to you and map directions to get there. See a book that catches your interest?  Use the BookLook feature to scan the book’s ISBN number (or enter it manually) to see if your local library has it in their holdings for you to borrow!

Can it get any better?  You bet!  We offer personalized training sessions to help you download this app to your mobile device.  Contact Neill Public Library at 509-334-3595 or email us at to schedule your Book-a-Librarian session today.  H-APP-Y library surfing!

Joanna Bailey
Library Director