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Marathon County Public Library

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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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Community Writing Project submissions!

adult women in front of a laptop and wearing a face mask

May 8, 2020

In March and April, we asked patrons in our communities to submit original works they wrote related to thoughts, feelings and experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. We received submissions from four people, and we are very happy to share three of them – two poems and one piece of short fiction - with the public. (The fourth submission is not included because it didn’t match up with the intent of the community writing project.) Thank you to those who submitted their work, and we hope the rest of you enjoy what they came up with! “COVID-19 Stinks” by Atia Kampstra (Age 7) The sun has gone down and the curtains have closed I sit in a graveyard sobbing so much I might not be able to cry...

Adults Community COVID-19 Events Writing

DIY @ Home Craft: Colored Paper Spinners

colored paper spinners

May 6, 2020

If you're looking for a colorful way to occupy your time, you can craft your own homemade toy that encompass elements of both art and science! Supplies needed: Printed template of circles String (ribbon or twine can also be used) Thin cardboard or heavy cardstock Markers, crayons or colored pencils Glue Scissors Steps: Cut a string to a length of 15 inches. Set aside for later. Print out the template of circles. Using crayons, markers or colored pencils, draw an artistic design of your choosing on each circle. The design can be the same on both circles or different - the choice is yours! Cut out each of the circles. Use a scissors to cut out or puncture the two black dots in the...

Children Arts and Crafts

Frog and Toad celebrate 50 years!

Frog and Toad image from 50th anniversary media kit

May 5, 2020

Arnold Lobel first introduced the world to Frog and Toad in 1970 and the pair have been delighting young readers (and their caregivers) for years. Two friends, a frog and a toad, go on everyday adventures in this series of early reader chapter books. They fly a kite, bake cookies, rake leaves, and more, all while enjoying each other’s company in this four book series. Celebrate Lobel’s stories about friendship by not only reading a favorite Frog and Toad book, but by sending a letter to a friend! During these socially distant times, friendship and connection is more important than ever. Harper Collins Publishers put out an activity kit that includes a letter template for kids to use to write...

Books Children

DIY @ Home Craft: Make Your Own BB-8!

example of bb-8 craft

May 4, 2020

Do you love BB-8? You know, the round, adventurous droid from the latest trilogy of Star Wars films? Now you can make one at home - and he even rolls, just like the real one! Just follow the steps below and you'll soon have your own little companion to travel the galaxy with! Supplies: •  1 paper plate •  1 printable template •  1 paper fastener •  1 long piece of cardboard •  Masking tape •  Crayons, markers or colored pencils •  Hole punch   Steps: 1. Print out and color your template for the top of your BB-8. Make sure to print out a template that matches the size of the paper plates you have at home.  2. Decorate your paper plate however you’d like. This...

Arts and Crafts

DIY @ Home Craft: Chromatography Butterflies

chromatography butterflies

May 2, 2020

Let the kids bring a little color into your home with chromatography butterflies!  This easy craft (and science experiment) can be done at home using items you probably already have!  Just take a look at the list of supplies below and get started! Supplies: •  Coffee filters •  Water-based markers (such as Crayola) •  A small cup •  Water •  Pipe cleaners •  Clothes pins First, a little science!  Experiment Steps:   1. Color a coffee filter with different blocks of color. The more color you use the more vibrant your filter will be. 2. Fold your colored filter in half, and then in half again creating a pie shape.  3. Put your pie-shaped filter in a small cup that has a...

Arts and Crafts Children

Curbside service set to begin at all MCPL locations

example of a curbside pickup bag

May 1, 2020

Beginning Monday, May 4, all nine MCPL locations will begin offering curbside pickup for the duration of the library’s COVID-19-related closure. To participate in this service, please thoroughly read and follow the steps below:   1. PLACE YOUR HOLDS ONLINE OR BY CALLING YOUR LOCAL MCPL LOCATION To place a hold on an item, patrons can either call their preferred MCPL location or place holds via the V-Cat catalog. If contacting by phone, please call the library that you plan on picking up your items at.  Hours that phones will be answered vary by location. For more information about times to call, visit https://mcpl.us/about/locations and click on the...

Books COVID-19 Libraries

Love 'Dog Man'? Check out these graphic novels!

Dog Man cover

April 30, 2020

One of the most popular questions at the Youth Services reference desk is, “where are the Dog Man books?!” These graphic novels are wildly popular with kids and tweens due to their quick-witted humor, fast-paced plots, hilarious illustrations and pun-ny titles. Kids devour these books - sometimes in one sitting! If your young one has already read all of the titles in the Dog Man series and are wanting more, listed below are some other graphic novels that Dog Man lovers will gobble up!

Children Books Graphic Novels Reading Recommendations

DIY @ Home Craft: Paper Bag Kites

brown paper bag kite

April 28, 2020

Blustery spring days are here! When the wind starts to blow, why not take advantage of it and go fly a kite? If you don't have one on-hand, that's okay - you can easily make one using some common household supplies and craft supplies! Just follow the simple steps below to create your own paper bag kite. Then, get outside and test it out! Supplies: •  Brown paper lunch bags •  Yarn, ribbon or streamers •  Popsicle sticks or wooden tongue depressors •  Scissors •  Scotch tape •  Crayons, markers, stamps, stickers, paints or other supplies to decorate your kite   Steps: 1. Using crayons, markers stamps, stickers paints or other crafts supplies, decorate the outside of a...

Arts and Crafts

DIY @ Home Craft: Tissue Paper Flowers

three tissue paper flowers

April 27, 2020

It's said that April showers bring May flowers, but you don't have to wait for May to bring some floral color into your home! Our Rothschild Branch originally had planned to offer a DIY craft event for adults on May 5 that would show them how to make paper flowers in a variety of crafting styles. Since that event has been canceled due to our current closure, we're going to show you how to do it at home instead! Just follow the steps below, and you'll soon have a handful of bright, colorful flowers to enjoy (and best of all, they won't wilt or need to be watered!) Supplies: •  Tissue paper (use a variety of colors for best results) •  Scissors •  Staples or string (your choice) Steps...

Arts and Crafts

MCPL planning to offer curbside service

Ralph Illick, Library Director

April 24, 2020

As you know, the offerings provided by MCPL for the communities we serve have been limited by the Governor’s "Safer At Home" orders[1][2] over the last several weeks. Fortunately, we are now authorized to begin the reintroduction of some services on a limited basis in the coming days. Our staff are looking forward to the opportunity to do so with limitations designed to protect everyone – staff and public alike. Our intention is to develop a schedule and a process at each MCPL location that will allow for curbside pickup of materials with a start date of Monday, May 4, 2020. Currently, we are awaiting finalization of the expected capacity for our...

Director's Report Community COVID-19

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