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Author: Alison Gowans

Library Launches Winter Reading Challenge

From January 1 to January 31, the Cedar Rapids Public Library will participate in Beanstack’s Fifth Annual Winter Reading Challenge, “Read for a Better World,” sponsored by Lerner Publishing Group.   “Read for a Better World” encourages readers of all ages to explore diversity, empathy, and action through literature. Our community will have unlimited access to digital copies of Lerner’s “Read for… View more

Cedar Rapids Public Library Celebrates 125 Years

On Jan. 15, 2022, the Cedar Rapids Public Library will mark 125 years since first opening with exhibits and celebrations at the Downtown and Ladd Libraries. The exhibit at the Downtown Library’s Third Floor Gallery, at 450 Fifth Ave. SE, will explore the timeline of the library’s history. The exhibit at the Ladd Library Gallery, 3750 Williams Blvd. SE, will spotlight library… View more

Fantastical Works from Page to Screen

By Materials Librarian Kristine Olsen Frank Herbert’s Dune is one of the most seminal works of science fiction anyone can pick up. Full of unparalleled world building and character development, ecology, philosophy, and theology, it makes for a deeply compelling yet challenging read. I didn’t tackle this book and all its sequels until I was a twenty-something… View more

Cedar Rapids Public Library Receives Grant to Expand Workforce Development

The Institute of Museum and Library Services announced this week the Cedar Rapids Public Library is a recipient of the FY2022 American Rescue Plan Grant Program for Museums and Libraries. “We are proud to be among this group of public institutions across the country who are working to provide critical services during the pandemic and… View more

Striving for more mirrors: Using data to analyze, diversify library collection

“Literature transforms human experience and reflects it back to us, and in that reflection we can see our own lives and experiences as part of a larger human experience. Reading, then, becomes a means of self-affirmation, and readers often seek their mirrors in books.” ― Rudine Sims Bishop For the last three years, librarians have… View more

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library asks preschools for help reaching kids

When a child in her preschool brings in a book from Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library to show her, Julie Hanlin smiles. “It’s so rewarding,” she said. Hanlin is director of early childhood education at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, where she runs a preschool for children up to five-years-old. They also have summer camps for… View more

Events Specialist Kami Zbanek Hill loves ‘making magic’ at the Library

Events Specialist Kami Zbanek Hill just started at the library about a month ago, but this isn’t her first time working here. She was previously a summer seasonal employee for three seasons before starting on the Community Relations team. What does your job typically include? Coordinating events held in the Library and the use of… View more

Branch Supervisor Trevor Hanel likes that the Library ‘makes our community shine just a little more.’

Meet Downtown Library Branch Supervisor Trevor Hanel, the latest in our ongoing series of staff profiles. Trevor started as a shelver in October 2007. What does your job typically include? One of the most exciting things about my job is that I build many relationships with patrons. I assist staff in resolving issues with library accounts,… View more

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