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Happy New Year! The Morris Public Library is celebrating 125 years of existence in 2011. The first concept of a public library in Morris was being discussed in May 1886. In honor of the occasion, we will be celebrating all year long, with a party in May. We hope to gather your stories and publish a book detailing the history of the library. If you would like to be part of the planning committee, contact me for details.

Hot Reads for Cold Nights 2011 will begin January 10 and run through the end of February. This is an annual reading program for adults to help buffer our cold winter nights. Bingo cards have been created and by reading four specific types of books, your name will be put in a drawing for prizes. We have had good participation in past years, so join us if you can this year.

The library, along with several other Stevens County organizations, is a recipient of a Blandin Foundation Broadband project meant to strengthen online access. The library will be receiving six (6) laptop computers to provide increased opportunities for online computing activities for our community members.

The PRCA (Prairie Renaissance Cultural Alliance) will be hosting a book reading by Chrissy Kolaya. Meet at the PRCA Art Gallery for a brown bag lunch, Friday, Jan. 21, at 12:10 p.m. Chrissy will read from her book in progress, Charmed Particles. She will lead a Q &A afterwards talking about her book project and the writing process.

Chrissy Kolaya serves as coordinator in the UMM Office of Grants Development. Chrissy was instrumental in arranging for our last author event with John Reimringer and his book, Vestments.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank our board members who serve a three-year term to guide the direction of the library. They determine the vision and set policy for services provided. The Library Board members continuing on are Eric Buchanan, John Amundson, Tim Dudding (taking over his father's term), Ruth Roquitte, Pam Solvie, and LaVerne Swanson. Outgoing board members are: Evy Rodney-Cole, Ardath Larson, and Verna Zeiher. New in-coming board members are: Jayne Blodgett, Dr Michael Lair, and Darlene Pasche. Thank you all.

The Friends of the library have purchased a digital camera for the library. Thank you to our Friends! Our first use of the camera was to document water damage when the roof leaked over the New Year's weekend.

In addition to the camera the Friends also got us started on our first order of non-fiction DVD's:

Best of Europe

Best of Travel with Rudy

Cooking Italian

Disney Nature: Oceans

Egypt Uncovered

Mystery of the Maya

National Geographic: Great Migrations

Trekking the World

The War (Ken Burns)

The West (Ken Burns

Yoga for the Rest of Us