107 NE Monroe Peoria, Illinois 61602-1070

Reading Room

What Do You Think About the Opiate Abuse Epidemic?

Talk with other concerned citizens about Peoria's opiate abuse epidemic at one of four discussions moderated by Mike Kennedy, president and CEO of the Human Service Center.

• Saturday, October 22 from 1:00 to 2:15 p.m. at Peoria Public Library Main Library Auditorium

• Wednesday, November 2 from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. at Peoria Public Library Lakeview Branch Lakeview Room

• Monday, November 7 from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. at Peoria Public Library North Branch McKenzie Room

• Thursday, November 17 from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. at Peoria Public Library Lincoln Branch Hot Air Balloon Room

To attend any of these discussions, please contact Roberta Koscielski at 309-497-2186 or RobertaKoscielski@ppl.peoria.lib.il.us.


These programs were funded by an Illinois Speaks micro-grant from the Illinois Humanities Council and are designed to support efforts to understand and find solutions for the heroin and opiate epidemic that is occurring locally.

“The Illinois Humanities Council (IHC) is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Illinois General Assembly [through the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency], as well as by contributions from individuals, foundations and corporations.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed by speakers, program participants, or audiences do not necessarily reflect those of the NEH, the IHC, our partnering organizations or our funders.”

Meet Author Jordon Sonnenblick on September 28

Award-winning author Jordan Sonnenblick is coming to Peoria! Winner of the 2008 Rebecca Caudill Award for Drums, Girls, & Dangerous Pie, Mr. Sonnenblick has written numerous books for teens and younger readers, including Dodger and Me, Notes from the Midnight Driver, and Curveball: The Year I Lost My Grip. His newest book, Falling Over Sideways will be released on September 27. Mr. Sonnenblick will be at the Main Library on Wednesday, September 28 at 6:30 p.m. to talk about his latest book and meet readers of all ages.  Copies of Falling Over Sideways and other titles will be available for sale and signing. A portion of the proceeds from book sales will help support the Friends of Peoria Public Library. Learn more about Jordan Sonnenblick on his website.

Summer Reading Success

Another year of Summer Reading has been wrapped up! Peoria Public Library engaged almost 4, 000 readers of all ages in the seven week program that required just three hours a week of reading. Each week readers received a small weekly prize, ranging from magnetic bookmarks to chip clips to small pouches and ice cream coupons. Almost 1,000 summer readers who read at least six weeks then enjoyed a night out at Peoria Riverfront Museum and Caterpillar Visitor Center. They explored life as an astronaut, saw The Street, enjoyed the Planetarium and climbed in and out of enormous earth-moving machines -- all with wildly painted faces and fantastic balloon hats and animals. The program was made possible by the Friends of Peoria Public Library and many, many other generous sponsors. Summer Reading starts again next June, be sure to join us!

Free Library Apps Make Use Easy

Many of the online services from Peoria Public Library are now available through apps for your smartphone or tablet that you can download from the Playstore or the App Store.  Try Freegal Music and Freegal Movies for entertainment wherever you are.  To download e-books or audio books anytime of the day or night, look for the Axis360 and Overdrive apps. Take language learning with you wherever you go with the Mango Language app! Learn 60 languages, including English for ESL learners. Brainfuse homework help also now has an app. Students of all ages can set up an account on a computer and then use it on their tablet or phone. Brainfuse has live one-on-one tutoring and a wide variety of resources for students of all ages. Get an app today and enjoy the Peoria Public Library wherever you are!

Supermoon Eclipse Party!

Event: Supermoon Eclipse Party
Date & Time: Sun., Sept. 27, 6 - 10:30 p.m.
Location: Northmoor Observatory & Donovan Park · 5805 N. Knoxville Ave. · Peoria, Ill.
Cost: Free and open to the public (all ages)
Sunday’s supermoon is undergoing a super-rare lunar eclipse – the likes of which hasn’t been seen in 32 years. To usher in the 2015 autumnal fun, Peoria Astronomical Society, Peoria Riverfront Museum, Peoria Public Library and the Peoria Park District are celebrating by hosting a Supermoon Eclipse Party, with all events free and open to the public beginning at 6 p.m., Sun. Sept. 27 in Donovan Park.
The total lunar eclipse will cause the moon to appear an eerie orange-red because the Sun’s light waves bending around the Earth’s surface cast a red glow on the Moon, despite the Moon being fully in the Earth’s shadow. The spooky event is doubly rare because it is happening to a supermoon – or perigee-syzygy of the Earth-Moon-Sun system – a full moon coinciding with the moon’s closet orbit to the Earth (which, to our eyes, makes the moon look larger).
The event promises fun for all ages with moon stories and activities (until dark), a Moon Walk Contest, moon music and the guided observation of the supermoon’s total eclipse, as the big moon rises and then moves into the Earth’s shadow.
NorthMoor Observatory will also be open and a variety of other telescopes will be on site for close-ups of the night sky. Peoria Astronomical Society members and Riverfront Museum Dome Planetarium staff will be on hand to answer questions about the eclipse and astronomy in general.
Events begin at 6 p.m., moonrise is at 6:40 p.m., sunset is at 6:47 p.m., and the eclipse begins at 8:07 and ends at 11:27 p.m., with the entire moon eclipsed from 9:11 to 10:23 p.m. The event is free, but event officials recommend bringing a blanket or chair, binoculars (not necessary), a flashlight and snacks.
As with all astronomical events, the Supermoon Eclipse Party is weather dependent. In the event of full cloud cover or inclement weather, the Riverfront Museum will post on its web homepage and Facebook page a notice of cancellation along with a link to allow viewers to watch the eclipse live via NASA TV.
The public may call the Peoria Public Library at 309-497-2143 or the Dome Planetarium at 309-863-3030 with any questions. For more information, visit RiverfrontMuseum.org.

Tickets Now On Sale for What's Your Story 135th Anniversary Celebration

 “What’s Your Story,” a celebration,  to honor 135 years of Peoria Public Library, will be held on Monday, October 12 from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m. at Peoria Public Library Main Library at 107 N.E. Monroe in Peoria and will feature New York Times bestselling author Melanie Benjamin as well as many other events.

            The evening will include two chances to hear the New York Times bestselling author of The Aviator’s Wife, Melanie Benjamin along with Book Talks by interesting Peorians, hors d’oeuvres from Cracked Pepper, a cash wine bar, birthday cake, art displays, the Peoria Jazz AllStars, silent auction and more.

            “What’s Your Story” is based on the idea that books and the Peoria Public Library have had an enormous influence on our community in the past 135 years, so 135 of our citizens were asked to write about the book that was the biggest influence on them. Those choices will be revealed at the event.  Single admission tickets are $35, a ticket that includes a hardbound copy of The Aviator’s Wife is $60. A “Book Club” or set of 10 tickets is available at a savings for $300. Sponsorships that include special incentives are also available for the event.

            To purchase a ticket call (309) 497-2137 or email programmingdept@ppl.peoria.lib.il.us. Credit cards can be taken over the phone. Ticket orders may also be mailed with a check made out to Friends of Peoria Public Library to Programming Department at 107 NE Monroe, Peoria, 61602.  More information and order forms are available on the library website under the “Events” tab at /135-years-what-s-your-story.

Project Next Generation Brings Technology to Lincoln Branch

by Sherry Criss

In today’s society, technology has become very essential. Because it is considered mainstream, it is important that our youth sharpen their skills through an experience that will help prepare them to enter the work force. This is where Project Next Generation comes into play; mentoring and technology.

Every year since February 2002, the Peoria Public Library Lincoln Branch has been awarded the grant to implement the Project Next Generation program. This is such an exciting time for us from recruiting students to be mentors to the visit from Illinois Secretary of State and PNG founder Mr. Jesse White. Along with this grant came three brand new Dell computers, printers, cameras and computer programs. Diorama Design was among one of my personal favorites.

The program was designed for students in grades 5-8. We have had many student mentors continue on through the end of their senior year of high school.  (We just could not get them to leave!) Every so often, we get the opportunity to invite a mature fourth grader to get involved. Some of our most successful students include: Kiayra Childs, Sedrick Jackson, Sterling Jackson, Spencer Jackson, Alexa Cary, Andre Walker and Israel Henderson.

Currently we have ten student mentors that are actively participating, but we have the capacity to accommodate a total of sixteen. There are also two mentors on staff, including our Branch Manager Cynthia Smith.

For more information about the program, visit /project-next-generation or call the Peoria Public Library Lincoln Branch at 309-497-2600.

Check Out e-Books with the New RSA Cat

By Cindy Wright

            Beginning in March, you can now check out e-books directly from our new RSA Catalog. To find e-books, go to the Peoria Public Library home page at www.peoriapubliclibrary.org. At the top of the screen you should see a green Search box. Type your search terms (author and/or title), then click Start Search. You will be taken to the new RSACat with a list of books from your search. Over to the right side of the screen, there are many ways to refine your search. Look at the second set of choices, Electronic Format. Click on any e-book format that you can use on your device, then click Include. Conversely, you can also click any e-book format that you don’t want, then click Exclude. (Please note that EPUB e-books from e-Read Illinois are labeled “EPUB” whereas EPUB e-books from OverDrive are labeled “ADOBE EPUB”.) Another option allows you to browse by e-book vendor. Choose OverDrive for the Alliance Digital Media Library from OverDrive, Inc., or Baker and Taylor for e-Read Illinois powered by Axis 360. You can also filter the titles by device, also listed in the left column.

            Want to read a few pages before checking out an e-book? You can now download a sample of an OverDrive e-book onto your computer right from the new RSACat. To find titles with preview samples, scroll down the list of titles until you see one with a Preview toolbar on the right side of the screen. Click Preview, then select the format you prefer from the pop-up window. Depending on the format you choose, your preview will open in either Adobe Digital Editions or OverDrive Read. When you are ready to check out your e-book, just click Download on the right side of the screen, then sign in to your account. To find your downloaded e-book, go to Adobe Digital Editions on your computer or the OverDrive or Kindle app on your device and your book should be ready to read! To check out e-Read Illinois e-books, click Download on the right, sign in to your account, choose your format, then go to Adobe Digital Editions on your computer, or the Axis Reader or Blio on your device.

            For more information about the new RSA Cat and/or e-books, visit your local Peoria Public Library branch or call (309) 497-2000.

February YA Spotlight - The Latest in Young Adult Literature

Welcome to our blog series, “YA Spotlight.”  Each month, we will bring you a variety of YA titles, new and old, to add to your to-be-read pile.

This month, check out some award-winning books that were recently announced at the American Library Association Midwinter Conference.  There are three major awards given for Young Adult books: The Michael L. Printz Award, The William C. Morris YA Debut Award, and the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction.

This year’s winner of the Michael L. Printz Award is I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson.  This book has been generating buzz all year, so it was no surprise that it picked up the award.  It tells the story of twins, Noah and Jude, who are inseparable until something drives them apart.  Jude tells one half of the story, while Noah tells the other.  They have to put the two parts together to find out what truly happened.

The William C. Morris Award is given to a first-time author writing for teens.  This year’s prize went to Gabi, a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero.  Told through the voice of Gabi as she writes in her journal, it is the story of her senior year in high school.  She writes about the struggles of her friends and herself as they fall victims to stereotypes, and she fights against them.

This year’s winner for Excellence in Nonfiction was written by a teen.  Maya Van Wagenen, author of Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek, is only fifteen years old.  Her book chronicles her journey to popularity by following the advice of guide from the 1950s.  She followed the guide for a year with surprising results.

Check out these exciting titles and more at any Peoria Public Library location.  If you are an adult and like to read YA, consider joining the YA for Adults Book Club that meets the 3rd Tuesday of every month at 6:30 at the Lakeview Branch.  Look for more information on our book club page.

January YA Spotlight - The Latest in Young Adult Literature

Welcome to our blog series, “YA Spotlight.”  Each month, we will bring you a variety of YA titles, new and old, to add to your to-be-read pile.

This month, we are highlighting some new and upcoming releases to add to your reading list.

Perennial favorite Gayle Forman released her newest book, I Was Here.  Known to write books that are realistic and tackle difficult topics, this one is no exception.  High school senior Cody travels by herself to clean out the college bedroom of her best friend, Meg, who recently killed herself.  What she finds in Meg’s room reveals that there were many things she did not know about Meg.  For fans of: Gayle Forman and Laurie Halse Anderson

I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios is another realistic fiction title that undertakes a difficult topic.  This time the main character, Skylar, is trying to escape her small town after high school graduation without any extra baggage (like a baby).  Plans change, and she starts working at a motel where she meets recent war veteran Josh.  For fans of: Something Like Normal by Trish Doller

Ally Carter, author of the Gallagher Girls series, has a new series about the teenage children living on Embassy Row in Washington, D.C.  The first title, out now, is All Fall Down.  Army brat Grace, who is also the granddaughter of a powerful ambassador, comes to live on Embassy Row after her mother’s death.  She uncovers a conspiracy that leaves her questioning who is her friend and who is her enemy.  For fans of: Ally Carter,  Robin Benway, and Jen Calonita

Check out these exciting new titles and more at any Peoria Public Library location.  If you are an adult and like to read YA, consider joining the YA for Adults Book Club that meets the 3rd Tuesday of every month at 6:30 at the Lakeview Branch.  Look for more information on our book club page.