Sheep River Library – 2013 Year in Review

Diane Osberg, Chair, SRL Board

Library Operations

  • LEEDS Silver Certification was presented to Library Chair and Manager at a January Turner Valley Council Meeting. Award will be on permanent display in library.
  • Ruth Lindsay took over the position of Art Coordinator upon Palma Heming’s resignation.
  • Newspapers became available on line thru the Alberta Public Library Electronic Network  from over 1,200 publications around the world in 48 different languages.
  • Regular Quilt Displays from community guilds and clubs were featured throughout the year.
  • The FLOOD created much disturbance. The Library became an operations centre for several groups including Disaster Services, Counselling Services, Evacuated individuals. The Medical Clinic set up doctor visiting hours including storing urine and blood samples in our fridge. Evacuees were helped on the computers to search out help and faxing and scanning of documents was provided gratis.

Programs and Events

  • Authors Among Us - February Event featuring authors Dave Armstrong, Maxine Spence, Linda Penton, Marilyn  Halvorson and Wendy Dudley who gave readings around the fireplace. Winners of the “Authors Autograph Ballot” gift baskets were drawn for from over 60 entrants.
  • 30th Anniversary Celebration in March included cake cutting, speeches by dignitaries, awards for essay contest entrants, launch of Untitled Productions film, and student Film Festival showing.  Celebration Banner to be a permanent display designed by Vireo Productions. Photo historical timeline was on display.  Permanent Donor Display featuring building-donors in the form of books was created by Rob Osberg.
  • Family Day Scavenger Hunt and Activities in the Flare featured Library Book Sale with volunteers.
  • School Author Talks for elementary students from Turner Valley and Ian MacLaren Schools were held on four separate days when the schools bussed students to meet and listen to readings from Karen Gummo, Carolyn Fischer, Susanna Heaton and Sigmund Brower.
  • PD Day movies saw increasing attendance by school children. The special Magician PD Day was a hit.
  • Community Wide Volunteer Celebration held at the library in April.
  • Special spring speakers John Gilchrist and Paul Rumbolt were both a huge success.
  • Rambler’s walking/hiking/snowshoe program was a huge success under the coordination of Gita.  Pedometers, walking poles, and snowshoe’s were purchased to be borrowed by members.
  • Trivia Night, sponsored by the Library was held at the STOP during the summer and fall.
  • Poetry on the Patio during summer morphed into monthly Poetry by the Fireplace.
  • Kindergarten visits – two of the three classes visited the library to receive family memberships sponsored by Mark, manager of AG Foods (for the third year).
  • High Country Lodge monthly large print book deliveries start up again with volunteer Janet Graham.
  • OUT LOUD  featured many special programs during this second season including:
    • Story Telling workshop with Donnalynn Grunewald
    • Special Speakers – Brian Keating, Paul Rumbolt, Sun Ergos, Cassie Stocks, Tipi Tales
    • School Author talks with Richard the Magician, Georgia Graham and Jacqueline Guest
  • Many candidate forums held at the library prior to the election and SRL hosted the Oct 21 polling station.
  • Avenue of Trees organized by the Sheep River Health Trust again displayed the trees for a month and the library was the location for the auction.

Building Initiatives

  • Sound Baffles and Quilt Rods were installed by Rob Osberg in February.
  • The exorbitant electricity bills were a constant concern for several months until, after an April energy audit, a resolution was put in place in late spring.
  • Glass Display cabinets by Spring Creek Woodworking arrived.
  • Outdoor signs were approved by TV Council and installed in the spring.
  • Smart Board arrived for program use.
  • Spring Cleaning with a newly purchased vacuum was done by our cleaner Lorraine of LG Cleaning.
  • Concrete curbing was installed around flowerbeds by the town.
  • New Wi-Fi Hardware was installed in September with a new log-in procedure.
  • New Marigold Initiatives in our library:
    • Freegal Music - number of free song titles 7 million;  8,000 free music videos.
    • Magazines – over 100 now on line free to card holders.
    • Library Aware – free templates to create flyers, bookmarks, brochures, facebook posts, twitter, e-newsletters and other marketing initiatives.
  • December decision to make some significant purchases for the library including Art Display racks, a storage shed for outside, another set of folding chairs, and another set of shelving.

Fundraising and Donations

  • New Horizons Grant of $18,900 approved for the Ramblers Program.
  • Applied for Canada Summer Jobs grant.
  • Friends of Sheep River Library funded special authors, 30th Anniversary Celebrations, Sound Baffles, Glass *Displays, Outdoor Sign, MPowered Marketing session and the Out Loud program speakers in the fall.
  • Community Spirit Grant (1) Application final report submitted in May.
  • Rob Osberg Endowment fund of over $4,000.00 was used to start the Rob Osberg Cowboy Poetry Permanent Collection and a projected fall Cowboy Poetry contest.
  • Donation of $500 from Medical Clinic for use of rooms during flood.
  • The MD of Foothills agreed to support the towns with 20% of the town funding requisitions.

Staff, Volunteer and Board Development

  • Gita and Jan completed Introduction to Libraries SAIT course in February with Flying colors and enrolled in other programs.
  • AGLC Casino Training workshop attended by Quinn, Diane, Linda M and Wayne.
  • Marigold meetings were attended by Diane O and Linda M.
  • MPowered Marketing Workshop put on by Kim Gluckie was a hit for board members, staff and community.
  • Vitalize Conference in Edmonton was attended by Diane O and Linda M.
  • Ministers Award for Excellence in Public Library Service for the Out Loud Series held fall 2012 presented to Jan and Gita by Minister Doug Griffiths at the Alberta Library Conference in Jasper.
  • Marigold Member Libraries Workshop in May
  • Marigold Making a Difference Award presented to Sheep  River Library along with $500.00.
  • Volunteer BBQ for library volunteers held in June with Doris Daley and Bruce Innes providing the entertainment of their special Stampede Show.
  • Summer Program under the coordination of Linda Penton was successful.
  • June ALTA Board members retreat attended by Diane O. Diane appointed head of the Education Committee charged with developing a Practical Guide to Successful Advocacy for rural libraries.
  • Brenda Smedhurst tendered her resignation in September. A Farewell gathering was held in her honor.
  • Staff reviews were held in the fall. Plans set to hire a casual employee.
  • Annual Christmas Volunteer and Staff event was held in early December with great food provided by Sarah Fay Cunningham and entertainment by Jan and her band. Soup jars were again handed out, and gifts provided to the retiring board members.
  • The workshop proposal by Jan and Gita to give a presentation on programming at the next Alberta Library Conference was accepted as was Diane’s submission on Advocacy in Small Libraries.

Board Governance

  • Margie Newington resigned from the board in the spring.
  • Pam Vipond and Deanna Smith tendered their resignation in October. (Deanna moved to Okotoks)
  • Dave Patterson and Mae fisher, both of Black Diamond, were appointed to the board in October;  Marlis Pollock was appointed in November by Turner Valley to fill the TV vacancy.
  • Fall board review of Strategic Plan and the Vision Mission and in particular the goals
  • SRL Board Policy Manual was a yearlong undertaking that saw the conclusion of many meetings, discussions, revisions, and adaptations in July.  A huge celebration of board members was held at this meeting.  New policies coming - including Advocacy, Safety and Workplace Policies and Technology Policies.
  • Doris Daley successfully completed her performance review and joined the staff of  SRL.
  • New Trustees Workshop was conducted in November by PR Chair Irene and Chair Diane for new trustees - Mae, Dave and Marlis.
  • First Draft of the SRL Advocacy policy was submitted to the board for discussion in November.

Advocacy, Publicity and Community Awareness

  • Extensive marketing for the Anniversary Celebrations including invitations to donors, dignitaries, councils, newspaper, ads, radio, sign boards, posters
  • Full Page Ad for February Programs Anniversary Celebrations and Out Loud were in High Country News.  Four page pull-out section of course offerings for spring and fall were also in this publication that goes into all post boxes.
  • Sheep River Library Promo video was posted on YouTube and a link to it was added to the SRL Webpage.
  • Sheep River LIBRARY Out Loud Series video was on YouTube and a link to it was added to the SRL Webpage.
  • Many photo galleries were added by Norma to the web page including the Youth Film Makers, 30th Anniversary Celebrations, Spring School Author talks, Building the Library, Building the Tile Wall, and the First Grand Opening.
  • Parade Day Float coordinated by Linda M with volunteer help from decorators, drivers and hand-out helpers.
  • Council presentations were held in early June in Black Diamond and Turner Valley in December.
  • During the Flood, our web page became the number one source of information for the community.
  • Spring Courses, Summer School activities, Fall Programs, Special Event brochures were available.
  • Spring and fall courses and events were included in the Foothills Continuing Education Council Booklet.
  • Posters were put up in various locations in both towns.
  • Monthly article submitted to High Country News and posted on the web page kept public up to date.

Hub of Community Activities

The library continues to be a hub of community activities.

  • Many agencies and organizations are program partners including Literacy for Life, McBride Career Group, Dogtooth Film, Search and Rescue.
  • Meeting rooms are utilized by many agencies including FCSS, High Country Wellness, Turner Valley Oil and Gas Group, Corvus Co Housing Group,  Elections Alberta Candidate Forums, Friends of the Library, Turner Valley Council meetings twice a month, TV Town staff meetings monthly, Inter Agency group, Municipal Planning Commission, West End Group, Quad Water, Elections training and polling station, Community Garden, Writers Group, Cause and Effect Group, Lions, High Country SPCA, 4h,  Infinite Possibilities, MacLeod EDA, Permaculture Group, Bee Keeping Group, St. Georges Anglican Church, Millarville Community Church, Travel Alberta, MPowered Marketing, Disaster Services, Ridgestone Condo Association, Beneath The Arch Board, COR Solutions, Diva Duathlon, Shine FM.