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The MCPL Blog

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Follow our blog for that latest library news, reading suggestions, research tips and more!

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Prepare for the ACT online!

ACT test sheet

July 6, 2020

Even though its summer, now is a great time to prepare for the ACT, PSAT or the SAT! The Grandview Heights Public Library in Ohio will be offering a fast paced ACT prep course on July 11 form 12-4:30 (CDT). Taking a test preparation course is a great way to prepare for these tests. Even though this course will focus on the ACT, this prep course will help prepare you for both the PSAT and the SAT.  Follow the link below to register for the course, and GOOD LUCK!   ACT CRASH COURSE Date: Sat, July 11, 2020  Time: 12p-4:30p ONLINE, Central time  For: High school students. Cost: FREE Length: 4 hours of online instruction (plus 30-minute break midway through the class). Registration Link:...

Computer Classes Education Learning Online Resources Teens

Director's Report

Ralph Illick, Library Director

July 2, 2020

As we are all well aware, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we are all conducting our daily activities. Here at MCPL, we are focusing our efforts to seek a balance between ensuring the safety of our staff and the public, and still finding ways to connect our communities with information and ideas. This has been, to say the least, a daunting challenge. Most of us I’m sure have friends, neighbors and loved ones who are very much at risk of serious impact or even death should this virus infect them. I include myself among those at risk, as well as many members of our staff. We also serve a large number of patrons who cannot dismiss the potential for catastrophe should they be exposed to...

COVID-19 Director's Report

The 2020 Central Wisconsin Book Festival will happen the last weekend in September!

Former Montana Poet Laureate Lowell Jaeger reads during the 2018 festival

July 1, 2020

The Marathon County Public Library, on behalf of all its partners, is happy to share that the Central Wisconsin Book Festival will return to the Wausau area for its fourth year. This year's festival takes place Friday, Sept. 25 through Sunday, Sept. 27. (We may add another day or two, or three, if we have a chance to bring in authors unable to participate during the weekend.) We're moving ahead with the festival and we're exploring a variety of options to make it happen safely in light of the global pandemic. Some of this year's events may be completely virtual, some may be held in-person (perhaps with capped attendance and proper distancing) or even a mix of the two. We'll...

Authors Books Central Wisconsin Book Festival Events

Make a Gnome...At Home!

popsicle stick gnome and toadstool mushroom house

June 30, 2020

Are you a fan of adorable little gnomes?  The Marathon County Public Library's Athens Branch offered Grab & Go craft kits from June 29-July 2 featuring these cute little characters. The kits contained all of the necessary materials needed to make a Popsicle stick gnome and a Popsicle stick toadstool gnome house.  If your little ones missed these kits when they were available, never fear! Parents and children just need to follow the steps below to make both of these crafts at home. As previously mentioned, both crafts require the use of Popsicle sticks, so if you don't have any laying around, the first step will be consume a few Popsicles or other frozen treats! Popsicle Stick Gnomes...

Children Library Branches

Fairy Tale Reads for Teens, Part 1

Cinderella with carriage and castle

June 26, 2020

Most everyone has a favorite fairy tale, whether it’s from a picture book or from a Disney film. Fairy tales are ripe for retelling and reimagining, whether envisioning Cinderella in a science fiction setting, or a retelling of Little Red Riding Hood where the wolves are really men. We get to hear the story of the evil stepmother (Spoiler: they aren’t all mean and evil,) and the drama and curse of the Beast. Sometimes, an author will combine two stories and create a new story as a result. And sometimes the frog stays a frog, even after a kiss. Enjoy these young adult and middle-grade (MG) novels that use fairy tales as the basis for the story! It was so hard to pick our favorites, and there were so...

Books Reading Recommendations Summer Library Program Tweens

Libraries were created for times like these!

never stop learning displayed on a laptop

June 24, 2020

Let’s face it: A library, on its own, cannot change the world. It’s a physical building — bricks, windows, shelves — filled with inanimate, physical materials like books, movies, and music. But… a library can be an agent of change for the people who visit — a source for learning about the world as it exists today and the history of where we’ve been as a planet, as a country, as a state, and as a people. Through the materials in our buildings, libraries are places that foster understanding and empathy.  People who work at libraries (myself included) pride themselves on the fact that we provide information on just about any topic, and always in a...

Books Community COVID-19 Libraries Magazines and Newspapers Reading Recommendations

Need to use a library computer? Here's what you need to know

computer station

June 21, 2020

In keeping with the recommendations of the State of Wisconsin, the Marathon County Health Department and other public health authorities, the Marathon County Public Library and its eight branch libraries will be open by appointment on June 22, as previously announced. Our Wausau location will offer appointments for computer use only. Appointments can be made for up to one hour per person per day. Browsing for materials will not be permitted at this time. To make an appointment, call the MCPL Wausau reference desk at 715-261-7230. Patrons visiting one of the eight branch libraries can make an appointment of 30 minutes per week, which can be used either for computer use or for browsing for...

Adults COVID-19 Libraries Library Branches On-Site Services Technology Wausau Headquarters

Marathon County Public Library set for limited reopening

woman wearing face mask using a computer

June 16, 2020

After being closed for the past three months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all nine Marathon County Public Library (MCPL) locations will reopen on Monday, June 22, with limited services. This includes locations in Wausau, Athens, Edgar, Hatley, Marathon City, Mosinee, Rothschild, Spencer and Stratford. MCPL’s limited reopening on June 22 will be the first phase in a multi-step reopening plan that will unfold throughout the coming months. During this phase, library locations will be open by appointment only, and with limited hours (see a list of location hours here). At MCPL’s Wausau Headquarters, the public may call the reference desk at 715-261-7230 to schedule an appointment for computer...

COVID-19 Libraries Library Board Library Branches

Get out of your comfort zone with "uncomfortable" books!

hands holding an open book

June 11, 2020

I believe that if you read for personal growth and broaden your perspectives you should also be opened to challenging yourself in terms of what you read. I often read as a form of escapism, and sometimes that escape is someplace borderline unsettling and difficult, but it’s fascinating to experience something so foreign. Much like reading a book where the protagonist is the ‘villain’ or someone unsavory, it allows you to see the world through their perspective and you learn a little about why they are the way they are. Banned books are also often good examples because being controversial, they challenge a person's personal opinions but often are impactful. I recently started reading My Dark Vanessa by Kate...

Adults Books Reading Recommendations

Raising a Diverse Reader

Visual representation of 2018 statistics re: representation in children's literature

June 9, 2020

With recent events in America, it is more important than ever to expose young children to people of all races and ethnicities. It is never too early to start talking to children about race and its place in our country. Parents, caregivers, and educators have the power and responsibility to broaden children's understanding of the world. Talking about race may be intimidating and uncomfortable, so check out this great article by embracerace.org that gives small talking points and advice on how to start the conversation with children. Representation in children's books is very unequal. Studies show that children need to see people that look like them in books and other media to form a positive self image and...

Authors Books Children Community Early Literacy Reading Recommendations

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