IN THIS ISSUE 2 A Note from the Director 3 Library News 4-5 Central 6-7 West River 8 Keystone 9 South 10 Outreach 11 Library Friends 12 Special Services UPCOMING CLOSINGS 2 www.elyrialibrary.org DEAR FRIENDS, Memorial Day May 29 Independence Day July 4 Welcome to our summer edition of The Next Chapter! We are gearing up for another fantastic summer of reading, creating, learning and having fun together. This summer’s theme All Together Now is centered around kindness, unity and friendship. Our EPL team has been inspired to develop wonderful programs with something for everyone. Please come take advantage of these opportunities to connect and enjoy being part of our vibrant LaGrange and Elyria communities. I love to hear what people are reading, so I’ll start by sharing a new book I picked up that connects with our Summer Reading Program theme. The book is Awe: The New Science of Everyday Wonder and How it Can Transform Your Life by Dacher Keltner. Awe is an experience we all have felt; it’s when our sense of self gives way to a wider view of our place in humanity, nature, or the universe. We can feel awe through experiences like seeing art, hearing music, watching an exceptional athlete, being in nature, the collective shared energy of a rock concert, spiritual and religious practices, and seeing moral courage and human selflessness. There is a story of kindness in the book about a young woman from rural Mexico who traveled to San Francisco with her new baby so that an ailing grandfather could meet his new baby grandson. An unfortunate setback left her unable to return home. Scared and alone, the new mom had to get by in San Francisco, navigating a foreign place and culture. She walked into a library branch one day and a librarian changed her life. The librarian took interest in her, and even though they had limited ability to communicate at first, the librarian introduced her to books for herself and her baby and ultimately helped her find sense of belonging at the library. The book contains a letter the woman wrote later in life thanking the librarian for kindness that changed her entire life course. Reading that brief letter of gratitude, I experienced a moment of awe at the goodness of people and the power of libraries and library workers. The woman in the story turned out to be Yuyi Morales, highly lauded Caldecott Award winning author and illustrator, whose lifelong passion for children’s books was set in motion by a welcoming librarian. I hope that you find many ways to experience beauty and awe this summer, whether reading books about courageous acts, seeing the sunset across Lake Erie, or cheering in the crowd during a Cleveland Guardians game. Please enjoy this guide to summer programs at the library, and stop by to connect, engage, and find inspiration at the library. Warmly, Jen Starkey