107 NE Monroe Peoria, Illinois 61602-1070


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      December 2019
        Volume 28, No. 12

Happy Holidays From Peoria Public Library!

This month, enjoy a variety of holiday-themed programs for all ages – from classic movies like White Christmas to Christmas crafts to cookie decorating – across all five Peoria Public Library locations. Use your library card to check out everything from holiday crafting books to our new Binge Box DVD sets, full of holiday favorites.

Peoria Public Library has at least three locations open every day of the week with the exception of December 24 and 25th when the Main Library and all branches will be closed.

Below are some holiday programs you won’t want to miss:

Winter Wonder Express – Tuesday, Dec. 3 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at Lincoln Branch
Celebrate the start of the holidays with fun STEM projects, a photo booth and a simulated “train ride” all while listening to the Christmas tale The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg. At the end of the program, everyone will take home a complimentary treat! Ages 3 to 5. To register, please call 497-2600.

DIY Holiday Gifts – Saturday, Dec. 7 from 2 to 3 p.m. at Lakeview Branch
The holidays are coming and with them the gift giving season. Join us to discuss different DIY gifts suitable for all the special people in your life. We will also make an easy-to-replicate gift to take home with you. For adults only.

Sugar Cookie Decorating – Saturday, Dec. 21 from 3 to 5 p.m., McClure Branch
Join us for some sugar cookie decorating while a classic Christmas movie plays in the background. Then enjoy your uniquely decorated treat with some hot cocoa before taking off. All ages welcome while supplies last.

Countdown to Noon – Tuesday, Dec. 31 from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. at Lakeview Branch
Get ready for an exciting party for all the youngsters who can’t stay up until midnight to ring in the New Year! We’ll countdown to noon by dressing up, enjoying snacks, coloring, and taking silly photos in front of our special New Years Eve backdrop. At noon we’ll have a balloon drop and dance to some favorite songs. Your little ones won’t want to miss this special party. Ages 1 to 7.

Out and About

The picture you have of a typical librarian’s day is probably wrong. We aren’t sitting primly behind a desk, just waiting to shush you. Whether it’s singing and jumping at StoryTime or working patiently with EP!C members, we engage with our patrons!

Above Left: Peoria Public librarian Cindy Wright, pictured here, is helping EP!C patron Glen build a stand-up cactus, a craft included in October’s program about Texas.Every month, except December, Cindy visits and works with patrons at eight memory care facilities in our area. 

Above Right: Jennifer Jacobsen-Wood, manager of North Branch, brought Peoria Public Library to the East Bluff Community Center event on Nov. 1.

Innovation in Peoria: Public Libraries

By Chris Farris

From the past to the present, the Peoria area has a history of being innovative. Home to the fathers of the first successful gasoline-powered automobile in the U.S., the Duryea brothers. The first to discover how to mass produce penicillin, saving untold numbers of soldiers during World War II. Even today, Peoria ranks among the most innovative cities in the country based on the number of patents issued per capita.

On Nov. 4, the hope for more innovation to come was announced at the corner of Adams and Fulton streets: Peoria’s forthcoming Innovation Hub.

Peoria’s hub will be part of the Illinois Innovation Network (IIN), a statewide initiative led by the University of Illinois system to seed breakthroughs in research discovery and job creation.

Perhaps by chance, its location has a historical connection with both innovation and the Peoria Public Library.

The innovation comes in the form of the law permitting the establishment of tax funded public libraries, which was passed in 1872 by the Illinois Legislature. This was the first comprehensive library law in the United States and was eventually copied by 47 other states.

The provisions of the law were written by Peorian E.S. Willcox. Willcox (shown in the accompanying photo) stated that the law he had authored, “was the first broadly planned, comprehensive and complete Free Public Library Law placed on the statute of books of any state in the Union.” Willcox further went on to proclaim that Illinois had, “placed herself at the head of her sister states in encouraging the spread of general intelligence.” E.S. Willcox later went on to become the head librarian of the Peoria Public Library.

Eight years after the law was passed, the first Peoria Public Library was established at the corner of Adams and Fulton on the exact spot of the new Peoria Innovation Hub. The original building that housed the first Peoria Public Library was replaced in 1954 by the building that now stands on the same corner.

When you pass Peoria’s new Innovation Hub, imagine the thousands of citizens of this city and the countless millions of this nation who have benefited from the establishment of free public libraries in the United States.

PPL Staff Elected to RSA

Jamie Jones, manager of Peoria Public Library McClure Branch, has been elected to the RSA (Resource Sharing Alliance) Board. RSA is a consortia of libraries in central and west central Illinois sharing a common library automation system. RSA facilitates the checkout and sharing of materials among member libraries, providing access to materials from nearly 200 different libraries across the state. RSA is just one of several resource sharing services through the Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS).

What's New in Large Print

Holiday for December 2019

By Teri Miller

Large print books are for anyone who enjoys the ease and convenience of reading larger type. Enjoy these Holiday titles appearing soon on a Large Print Shelf at your favorite branch!

Spirit of the Seasonby Fern Michaels: Joy Preston is a successful CEO in Denver. She miser her late grandmother but is shocked and angered to learn that the terms of Nana’s will expect her to take over a bed and breakfast in North Carolina for six months. Yet there’s no denying Heart and Soul’s charm, especially at holiday time. The B&B is always elaborately decorated for the season, with themed guest rooms and dazzling lawn displays created for the annual Parade of Homes competition. The entire town takes part in the festivities, and soon Joy, too, is joining in the gingerbread house contest and letting her reservations melt away. (Main, Lakeview, McClure and North)

Wreath Between the Linesby Daryl Wood Gerber: Just as Jenna Hart is decorating the Cookbook Nook for all the festive holiday events, her father’s good friend Jake shows up on her doorstep with a frantic report that his friend has been murdered – impaled with a Christmas tree star. When Jake himself is poisoned and nearly dies, Jenna knows she’ll have to whatever it takes to corner the culprit before its lights out for Jake. (Lakeview, Main, McClure and North)

Have Yourself a Beary Little Murder by Meg Macy: Just before Silver Hollow’s annual tree-lighting ceremony and village parade are set to begin, the parade’s mascot, Santa Bear – played by Mayor Cal Bloom is found dead, having been electrocuted. While the police investigate the grisly crime, Sasha attempts to track down the murderer herself. Can she wrap up this case in time for Christmas – or will Sasha meet her own shocking end? (Lakeview, McClure and North)

Owl Be Home for Christmasby Donna Andrews: its a few days before Christmas, and Meg’s grandfather is hosting a scientific conference on owls at the Caerphilly Inn. When an unexpectedly severe snowstorm traps the conference-goers in the hotel and one of the visiting ornithologists is murdered, it’s up to Meg to Save Christmas. (Lakeview, Main, McClure and North)

Christmas in Winter Hillby Melody Carlson: Krista Galloway is not a fan of Christmas. The holiday season just brings too many bad memories to the surface. But when she accepts a job as a city manager in the mountain town of Winter Hill, Washington, Christmas is part of the deal. The small town is famous for its Christmasville celebration, something that the city manager oversees. Can a friendly stranger and his family help restore Krista’s Christmas spirit before the bigday? (Main, Lakeview, McClure and North)

A Christmas Haven by Cindy Woodsmall and Erin Woodsmall: For fans of holiday romances and Amish life comes a new Christmas tale of surprising expectations and discovering miracles. Old Order Amish Ivy Zook is wrestling with her need to shed her community’s ways and find modernization so she can grow the business of her dreams. When Ivy meets Arlan, from an ultra-conservation sect, the young people must discover what God has in store for them. (Lakeview, Main, McClure and North)

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