Newsletter - February 2017

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Winter Greetings, readers!

As always, we spend time looking backwards even as we’re packing the calendar for the year ahead. 2016 was a very challenging  year. It started with the death of an employee and went on to include replacing the pillars but having another costly chunk fall off the building, a troublesome storage building project at the Askren Branch (that we started calling the “money pit,”) the abduction of a young library patron, and the devastating fire that claimed another staff member’s home. Like many of you, we’re happy to see the turn of the calendar into 2017!

But in retrospect, there were many great moments. The support of the community for the pillar project made us realize how many people love their library, which was quite humbling. Look for a “ribbon cutting” and auction of some of the old pillar pieces sometime in late spring, after the completion of painting and installation of the decorative emblem.     

A successful migration to our own computer system proved to me that we have the best staff and patrons anywhere. Good planning and constant communication kept the annoyance to a minimum, but there definitely was some…and our library users were incredibly patient and understanding. Since our reconnection to Search Ohio, circulation is once again booming as we borrow from libraries all over the state, and they borrow from us.   
And I was reminded just this week by viewing her presentation to the Massillon Board of Education, the partnership we’ve developed with Miss Studer, the new librarian at Washington High School, definitely goes in the “Win” column.  Students are again being taught about the rich research tools they can access from MPL, and are getting public library cards and having materials delivered to them at the school. Yay for such a strong advocate and partner!

Another thrill was to hear from our Fiscal Officer Amie Lynn about the library’s strong financial shape going into the new year. Not only do we find ourselves blessed in 2017 with the additional revenue generated from the passage of the operating levy, but, and this is huge…library staff UNDERSPENT what we budgeted last year, and the balance gets to start building up a rainy day fund. In other words, we’re doing what we promised during the levy campaign!

So, what do we see on the horizon for 2017?  I can’t believe it, but it’s time to develop another strategic plan.  You’ll soon find opportunities, and even pleas, to participate and tell us what YOU want the library to be and do.  

Also, coming very quickly is a fundraiser for the library, “Party Gras Part Deux” on February 23rd. So, why are we fund raising, when I just told you things are going so well?  Because we have a building to maintain that’s partially 81 years old, and partially *181* years old!  (If I were 181, I suppose I would also have crumbling mortar between my bricks, and cost a small fortune for every minor repair, even with good regular maintenance.) We have a ten-year-old bookmobile with constant generator problems, and an elevator that’s babied along after hearing a gasp-inducing number for replacement. We don’t want every unpleasant surprise, like the pillars, to require fund raising before we can make the repair. The Board of Trustees feels strongly that we need to be proactive and get ahead of those expenses by regular fund raising for capital improvements.

That all sounds very boring, but not when you add in a Zydeco band, Cajun catered dinner, Bayou décor, adult beverages and other shenanigans for $40 per person!  Please join us here at the library after hours on the 23rd.  Tickets will be available at the Adult Circulation desk or by calling or emailing me or my Administrative Assistant Nancy Bixler at 330-832-9831 x316 or

Coming back in 2017 will be proven successes like book clubs (we’re adding at least one!), reading challenges, story times and even our new hit, cursive classes. We’ve just been invited to be a “seed library” for StarkFresh, and distribute free seed packets.  Serving you just keeps getting better and better. 

Join us for a fabulous 2017! 

What I’m reading: 

Fiction: Jodi Picoult’s Small Great Things. Another riveting tale about complex social issues from Picoult, this one about an African American labor and delivery nurse and what happens when, after being asked not to touch the infant of white supremacists, the child has a medical emergency. One of our staff members just told me that she was impressed as a Person of Color, that Picoult really did her research to “get” what Ruth and other characters might feel.

Nonfiction: David Sax’s The revenge of analog: real things and why they matter.  If you enjoy print over e-books, vinyl over mp3 files, browsing in shops instead of online, you’ll thrill to know you’re not alone. A great topic and extremely readable.

Director, Massillon Public Library


Little Listeners Story Time
Wednesdays: February 1, 8, and 15
10:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.
For children ages 2-5, accompanied by an adult. No registration required. 330-832-5037

Genealogical Society Meeting
Wednesday, February 1 --- 6:30 p.m.
The February monthly meeting will feature a presentation on the history of Valentine's Day. The public is invited to Genealogical Society meetings and events. 330-832-9831 ext. 337

Tyke Tales
Thursdays: February 2, 9, and 16
10:15 a.m. - 10:35 a.m.
For children ages 0-2 ½, accompanied by an adult. No registration required. 330-832-5037

Shake-It-Up Story Time
Thursdays: February 2, 9, and 16
1:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
For children ages 2-5, accompanied by an adult. No registration required. 330-832-5037


United Way Free Tax Preparation Clinics

Free tax preparation assistance from United Way will be available by appointment on February 3, February 10, and February 17 from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. at the main library. Information about income qualifications and what documentation to bring to the appointment can be found at:

Registration is required. To schedule your appointment, call 330-994-VITA(8482)

Simply Stories
Fridays: February 3, 10, 17, and 24
10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
For all ages, accompanied by an adult. No registration required. 330-832-5037

Junior Friends Meeting
Saturday, February 4 --- 3:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Membership is open to students in grades 7 through 12. 330-832-9831 ext. 321

Friends Meeting
Monday, February 6 --- 6:30 p.m.
New members always welcome! 330-832-9831, ext. 301

Family Story Time
Mondays: February 6, 13, and 27
7:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
For all ages up to grade 6, accompanied by an adult. Children may wear pajamas if they wish! No registration required. 330-832-5037

Coloring for Grown-Ups
Pam S. Belloni Branch

Tuesday, February 7 --- 6:00 p.m.
Join us for an evening of relaxing, creative entertainment. No registration required. Contact the Belloni branch for more information. 330-737-9939

Tuesdays: February 7 and 21
6:30 p.m. - 7:45 p.m.
Join us as we explore topics and techniques in meditation practices. Registration required. 330-832-9831, ext. 312

Samantha & the Edwardian Era
An American Girl Doll Program

Saturday, February 11
11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Kids in grades 3 and up are invited to bring their favorite adult and their own doll to enjoy stories, an old fashioned valentine craft and light refreshments as we learn about history and Samantha, a character in the American Girl series representing the Edwardian Era. Registration required. 330-832-5037

SARTA Travel Training
Monday, February 13 --- 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
A valid picture ID is required to receive a bus pass at the end of the training session. Registration required. 855-887-2782

PAWS To Read
Tuesday, February 14 --- 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Children of all ages are invited to come meet and read to some very friendly and well-behaved dogs. This program provides a relaxed atmosphere for children to practice their reading skills, and to interact kindly with dogs of various sizes and breeds. No registration required. 330-832-5037

Pinterest Craft Series
Wednesday, February 15 -- 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Join us as we try our hand at popular crafts being shared on Pinterest! Space is limited. Registration required. 330-832-9831, ext. 312

Board of Trustees Meeting
Thursday, February 16 --- 4:00 p.m.
The public is invited to attend board meetings.

Anime Night
Saturday, February 18 --- 2:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Teens in grades 7-12 are invited to watch Anime and enjoy snacks! 330-832-9831 ext. 321


Presidents' Day

Monday, February 20
All locations.


Askren Branch Book Club 
Barry Askren Memorial Branch 
Tuesday, February 21 --- 9:00 a.m.  
"Night Road" by Kristin Hannah 
No registration required. For more information, contact the Askren branch at 330-879-2113.

Family Movie Night
Tuesday, February 21 --- 5:30 p.m. - 7:45 p.m.
Auditorium doors open at 5:15 p.m. Limited seating offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. Free popcorn! 330-832-5037

YA Program: Make Your Own Chocolate Suckers
Wednesday, February 22 --- 3:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Open to teens in grades 7-12. 330-832-9831 ext. 321


CLOSING at 4:00 p.m.
Thursday, February 23
The library will close at 4:00 p.m. in preparation for the Party Gras Part Deux Special Event.

Party Gras Part Deux Special Event
Thursday February 23 --- 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Casual fun with a Catered Cajun dinner and live music by Zydeco Kings.
Reservations are $40 per person.
Please contact Nancy Bixler at 330-832-9831, ext.316 or for more information.


Tween Time: Fabric Marker Art
Saturday, February 25 --- 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Kids in grades 4-8 are invited to bring their own clean T-Shirt or tote bag to create wearable art! Wear old clothes. Registration suggested. 330-832-5037

Monday Book Discussion
Monday, February 27
"In Order to Live: A North Korean Girl's Journey to Freedom" by Yeonmi Park
An afternoon book discussion will take place at 12:00 p.m. in the library auditorium. An evening discussion about the same book will be held in the Second Floor Meeting room at 6:00 p.m. No registration required.


Winter Reading Challenge

Between February 1st and March 31st, the Massillon Public Library invites adults to be part of the 2017 Adult Winter Reading Program. Readers who successfully complete the challenge will receive an Adult Winter Reading Challenge tote bag and will be entered into a grand prize drawing!

To complete the challenge, read any five books (audio books and eBooks count!) and complete at least one of the following activities:
 - attend a library program
 - explore a library research database
 - download content from the Ohio Digital Library or hoopla
 - Like or follow the library on a social media site.

Completed Reading Logs may be turned in at any library location. Logs must be received by Friday, March 31, in order to be entered in the prize drawing.

Winter Reading Logs are available at the Reference and Adult Circulation Desks, and can be downloaded from the library’s website.

This challenge is open to Massillon Public Library cardholders, ages 18 and over. If you don’t have a library card, you can get one for FREE at at any Massillon Public Library location.

For more information, contact the library at 330-832-9831, ext. 312.


A display featuring the art of Michele Waalkes
January 3 - February 25, 2017

Michele Waalkes is an artist, freelance curator, and teaching artist living in Canton, OH. She received a B.A. in Art from Malone University. Her photography-based work which is often transferred onto metal, fabric, wood, and canvas, has been exhibited in solo, group, and juried shows in Ohio as well as other venues across the US, and also in Italy. Her work has won awards and is in numerous public and private collections. Waalkes has also been involved in the design and creation of many community public art projects.

To view Michele Waalkes’ artwork online, visit her websites:

Michelle also has a studio, Michele Waalkes Arts, located in the Avenue Arts Marketplace and Theater, 324 Cleveland Ave. NW., Canton, OH 44702.

For purchase information, please contact Michele Waalkes at


Beginning Thursday, February 9, the bookmobile will be making a new stop at Mayflower Apartments, 424 Grosvenor NW in Massillon. The bookmobile will visit this stop every other Thursday morning from 10:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m.


Massillon Public Library

208 Lincoln Way East
                    Massillon, OH 44646                   



See the bookmobile schedule online:

330.832.9831 ext. 329

Barry Askren Memorial Branch

1200 Market Street NE
Navarre, OH 44662


Pam S. Belloni Branch

12000 Navarre Road SW
Navarre, OH 44662-9486