Library News

Bob Whitsitt of NBA, Seahawks fame to highlight fundraising luncheon

Originally published Mar. 17, 2015

Bob Whitsitt

Bob Whitsitt, once named the most influential figure in Northwest professional sports, will speak at an April 24 lunch sponsored by the Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation. Organizers promise “a no-holds barred look at how professional sports really work” and a chance for guests to bid on a round of golf with Whitsitt.

The event will begin at 11:30 a.m. at the Useless Bay Country Club in Langley. Proceeds will benefit the Trudy J. Sundberg Memorial Lecture Series. Tickets are $100 and can be purchased online at or by contacting Marshall Goldberg at (360) 675-5888 or
Whitsitt was deemed “most influential” by Washington CEO Magazine. He spent 17 seasons as an NBA president and general manager, building teams in Seattle and Portland that made the playoffs sixteen times. As president of the Seattle Seahawks from 1997 through early 2005, he negotiated the acquisition of the team for Paul Allen, and led a successful statewide referendum that secured $300 million in public funding for what is now known as CenturyLink Field.

The annual Trudy J. Sundberg Lecture Series will honor a public school teacher who had a passion for literature, ideas, and civic engagement. Sundberg was known as an activist and innovator whose causes included the Whidbey Island Democratic Club, League of Women Voters, and Whidbey Camano Land Trust. She was founder of the Save Our Kids Crusade anti-violence coalition and numerous book clubs. She died in 2013.

Those unable to attend the luncheon but wishing to donate may do so by visiting and selecting "Trudy J. Sundberg Memorial Lecture Series" under the donation options menu.

Darrington Library dedication will honor late library manager

Originally published Mar. 6, 2015

Linda McPherson
(photo: The Herald)

DARRINGTON, Wash. — The Darrington Library will dedicate its community room in honor of late library manager Linda McPherson at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 21. The public is invited.

McPherson managed the library and served on the Darrington School Board for two decades. Earlier in her career, she was an oceanographer and a teacher. She was among 43 people who died on March 22, 2014, when a massive landslide destroyed homes in nearby Oso. 

At the dedication, the Friends of Darrington Library will unveil a plaque featuring McPherson’s portrait. Light refreshments will be served. The library is located at 1005 Cascade St.


Auto-renew makes life easier for library customers

Originally published Mar. 5, 2015

We’ve just made it easier to renew your library materials. In fact, thanks to auto-renew, you don’t have to do anything at all.

Here’s how it works. Instead of sending you an “almost overdue” notice for that book, DVD, CD or other item, our system will extend your original loan period for three weeks.

Auto-renew will renew your item up to five times as long as the following conditions are met:

  • There are no active holds on the title
  • Your account is in good standing
  • The material can be renewed (Interlibrary loan material and popular items designated “Best Bets” can’t be renewed)

What if you don’t want auto-renew notifications? No problem. You can opt out of the auto-renew notifications through the “My Account” page under “Contact Information and Preferences.” Remember that if you choose not to get auto-renew notifications, you won’t get “almost overdue” notifications either.

Have questions? Just contact us.   

Third Grade Reading Challenge final rounds set for March 9-25

Originally published Mar. 5, 2015

You're invited to root for your favorite school in the semi-final and final rounds of the Sno-Isle Libraries Mega-Fun, Biblio-Trivia, Rockem-Sockem Third Grade Reading Challenge. Competitors come from public schools throughout Snohomish and Island counties.

The program encourages children to have fun and enjoy reading while honing their literacy and teamwork skills. After reading six books, children participate in a book knowledge quiz bowl game to determine champion teams. The events are listed below.

Oak Harbor students in their Reading Challenge T-shirts

Arlington Semi-Final Reading Challenge
Arlington High School’s Byrnes Performing Arts Center
18821 Crown Ridge Blvd, Arlington, Wash.
6:30 p.m. Monday, March 9
Participating schools from Arlington, Darrington, and Granite Falls School Districts (5 schools)

Whidbey Island Semi-Final Reading Challenge
Oak Harbor Elementary (in the North Gym)
151 SE Midway Blvd., Oak Harbor, WA
6:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 11
Participating schools from Coupeville, South Whidbey and Oak Harbor School Districts (7 schools)

Lynnwood  Semi-Final Reading Challenge #1
Lynnwood High School (gymnasium)
18218 North Road, Bothell, WA
6:30 p.m. March 16
Participating schools from Edmonds and Monroe School Districts (6 schools)

Lynnwood Semi-Final Reading Challenge #2
Lynnwood High School (gymnasium)
18218 North Road, Bothell, WA
6:30 p.m. March 17
Participating schools from Edmonds and Monroe School Districts (6 schools)

Lake Stevens Semi-Final Reading Challenge
Lake Stevens High School PAC
2908 113th Ave NE, Lake Stevens, WA
6:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 18
Participating schools from Lake Stevens and Snohomish School Districts (7 schools)

Mukilteo Semi-Final Reading Challenge
Odyssey Elementary Multipurpose Space
13025 17th Avenue West, Everett, WA
6:30 p.m. Monday, March 23
Participating schools from Mukilteo and Mill Creek School Districts (6 schools)

Final Reading Challenge
Edmonds Community College Black Box Theater
20310 68th Avenue West, Lynnwood, WA
6:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 25
Top scoring teams from each of the six Semi-Final Challenges will participate

Sno-Isle Libraries offers high-quality eBooks from StarWalk Kids Media

Originally published Mar. 2, 2015

Sno-Isle Libraries customers now have access to the StarWalk Kids Media Digital Streaming Collection at

With more than 500 titles and growing, the StarWalk Kids Media collection presents quality literature by well-known and respected children’s authors in an eBook format that works with almost all electronic devices. StarWalk Kids Media is one of the most affordable ways to provide great fiction and nonfiction eBooks with professional narration by actors and various additional features that complement the titles’ use in libraries, classrooms and at home.

StarWalk offers eBooks for children from pre-kindergarten to 8th grade. Founded by children’s science author Seymour Simon and former Sesame Street Creative Director Liz Nealon, the StarWalk Kids collection includes books by authors and illustrators such as David Adler, Jim Arnosky, Johanna Hurwitz, Pat Mora, Laura Vaccaro Seeger and Jane Yolen.

The company’s aim is to provide children, librarians and other educators with a tightly curated collection of high-quality fiction and nonfiction titles supporting educational standards. The StarWalk Kids Reader™ software works on virtually any device, allowing multiple simultaneous access for children at an affordable, annual subscription price. The StarWalk Kids platform has been awarded the QED seal, signifying “Quality, Excellence, Design,” by the Digital Book Awards.

New Edmonds managing librarian emphasizes importance of community

Originally published Feb. 27, 2015

Whidbey Reads events lineup includes author, children of ‘Boys in the Boat’

Originally published Feb. 24, 2015

Daniel James Brown

Whidbey Island’s five community libraries are hosting a six-week series of events inspired by "The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics" by Daniel James Brown.

One highlight will be a panel discussion featuring descendants of the famous University of Washington rowing team, set for 1:30 p.m. March 14 at Coupeville Library. Events will culminate on April 15 with presentations by the author. Brown will speak at 1 p.m. at South Whidbey High School and 7 p.m. at Best Western Plus Harbor Plaza in Oak Harbor.

Other events during Whidbey Reads 2015 will include discussion groups, film showings, musical presentations and lectures. They will explore such topics as the Depression era, World War II, and the region’s boating culture. Full calendar listings, online and printable, can be found at Printed calendars are also available in the Oak Harbor, Coupeville, Freeland, Langley and Clinton libraries.

Whidbey Reads annually brings island residents together to read and talk about a book. The shared experience serves as a springboard to explore commonalities and differences, said Whidbey Reads organizer Kathy Bullene.  

Whidbey Reads is a collaborative effort of Sno-Isle Libraries, Whidbey Island Friends of the Library groups and volunteers from each community. Other partners include Skagit Valley College, Best Western Harbor Plaza, Wind & Tide Books, Island Thrift and Moonraker Books. Funding is provided by the Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation.

Use Overdrive eMedia? Be aware of sign-in change

Originally published Feb. 18, 2015

Sno-Isle Libraries customers who download eBooks and other media from Overdrive will notice a change in the way they sign in.

Previously, customers downloading from the Overdrive website were required to provide their library card numbers. Now, they need both their card numbers and library account PINs or passwords (which default to the last four digits of their phone numbers). The latter number was added to improve security and make the log-in process consistent across Sno-Isle Libraries services.

Customers can change their password using the "My Account" page and looking for the "Change Sign in" section. They can learn more about logging in, and find help, at

Performer to explore what it takes to defeat racism

Originally published Feb. 10, 2015

Seattle performer Eva M. Abram will present “Defeating Racism Today: What Does It Take?” at 11 a.m. Feb. 28 at Mukilteo Library, 4675 Harbor Point Blvd.

Eva M. Abram

The free, hour-long Saturday event is sponsored by Sno-Isle Libraries and Humanities Washington.

Abram will explore such questions as: Does the eradication of racist laws really combat institutionalized racism? How does subtle and sometimes hidden institutionalized racism affect the citizens, economy, and future of Washington state? She will talk about the history of racism, and how it affects specific groups in our society today. And she will discuss how the invisible divide of racism — fed by both knowledge and ignorance —  continues to exist despite progress to eradicate it made in recent decades.

Abram has performed in schools, theatres, and history museums throughout the northwest. Using the crafts of acting and storytelling, Abrams creates dramatic presentations that explore race and race relations. She presents compelling, little-known stories of African Americans as well as stories that examine how business, government, and public policies affect social practices.

About the sponsors

Humanities Washington sparks conversation and critical thinking using story as a catalyst, nurturing thoughtful and engaged communities across our state. 

Sno-Isle Libraries serves 697,770 residents in Washington’s Snohomish and Island counties through 21 community libraries, online services, and Library on Wheels.

Sno-Isle Libraries closed Feb. 16

Originally published Feb. 10, 2015

Sno-Isle Libraries will be closed on Monday, Feb. 16 for Presidents Day. All libraries will resume with their regular hours on Tuesday, Feb. 17. See locations & hours.

Sno-Isle Libraries seeks ideas for public forums

Originally published Feb. 5, 2015

Sno-Isle Libraries managers are planning the district’s 2015 Issues That Matter forum series of timely topics and want to add the public’s ideas to the mix.

The programs are meant to encourage community conversations on high-profile issues. In 2014, there were four forums on two subjects: drug use and end-of-life health care. Previous topics were bullying, same-sex marriage, gun rights, the marijuana initiative and the state income tax.

“Ideas we are considering for future forums include suicide, police/minority relations, and housing,” said Chuck Pratt, leader of the Issues That Matter team. “But before making any decisions, we’d like to hear from the public about what topics are important in which communities.”

Ideas can be emailed to Pratt at by Feb. 16.

There is no set schedule for the programs, which feature expert panels before live audiences. More information and videos of past forums are available online at

Civil rights sing-along set for Mill Creek Library

Originally published Feb. 3, 2015

African-American History Month will be celebrated at the 4th Annual “We Shall Overcome” Sing-Along on Feb. 12 at Mill Creek Library.

The event will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the library, 15429 Bothell-Everett Highway. People of all ages and ethnicities are encouraged to attend.

Accompanied by violin and guitar, and led by Snohomish County Executive John Lovick, participants will sing the song that inspired one of the greatest freedom movements in U.S. History. Lyrics will be provided.

The sing-along started in 2012. Managing Librarian Darlene Weber asked the Friends of Mill Creek Library how they would like to celebrate African-American History Month. Selma Bonham, an experienced flash mobber, suggested a “We Shall Overcome” flash mob. The idea became reality when then-Sherriff John Lovick agreed to lead.

Lovick has led every year since, and Sno-Isle Libraries Communications Director Ken Harvey has helped shape it into a moving commemoration of African-American History and the Civil Rights movement.

Parking at the library is limited. Additional parking is available across the street at the Mill Creek Town Center; visitors are urged to use the crosswalk.

Sno-Isle Libraries awards remodeling contract for new Camano Island Library

Originally published Jan. 28, 2015

On Monday, January 26, the Board of Trustees of Sno-Isle Libraries awarded a contract to Kirtley Cole Associates, LLC, an Everett construction firm, to remodel a former restaurant into a 4,900 square foot library designed to serve the Camano Island community.

“This is an exciting step because we know library customers have been anxious to see the actual renovation work begin,” said Sue Cohn, President of the Sno-Isle Libraries Board of Trustees. “Based on everything our trustee board has heard, we are certain the community will enjoy everything this larger library will offer Camano Island.”

The $2.3 million library project was approved by Camano Island voters in April, 2014. “We are on budget to deliver this project as promised to voters,” said Jeanne Crisp, project manager for the Camano Island Library. The library project budget covers all the costs to open the doors of a larger library, including property acquisition, architectural and engineering services, renovation, space conversion, furnishings, equipment, library materials, and financing costs.

“The community took full advantage of the public involvement meetings we held in June, July and September last year,” said Jonalyn Woolf-Ivory, Executive Director of Sno-Isle Libraries. “Residents of all ages came out and helped shape the new library’s floor plan and interior color design.”

Renovation work is scheduled to begin in early March and be completed before the end of summer. The remodeling project at 848 N. Sunrise Blvd. is located within the same retail complex as the 1,800 square feet, interim library. Sno-Isle Libraries will continue to provide library services from the smaller space at Terry's Corner until the doors open on the larger facility.

The new 4,900-square-foot library will be approximately 3,000 square feet larger than the interim library. The additional footage will provide space for:

  • Expanded book and media selections
  • Library activities for children, such as toddler, infant and preschool story times
  • Quiet study, comfortable seating
  • Additional computers for public use
  • Multi-purpose room

Library seeks artist for Camano Island sculpture

Originally published Jan. 27, 2015

Camano Island Library

Sno-Isle Libraries is inviting artists to submit design concepts for an outdoor sculpture on the north side of the Camano Island Library. While preference will be given to artists from Camano Island or Stanwood, all artists are welcome to submit.

The Camano Island Library Art Committee will select the final design. The committee is comprised of Friends of the Library members, project architects and Sno-Isle Libraries staff. The submission deadline is 4 p.m. March 2.  

Details on sculpture requirements, theme, budget, and submission content are available online at

The residents of Camano Island passed a bond to build a permanent library on Camano Island in April 2014. Construction for the remodel/expansion of a former restaurant at Terry’s Corner will begin by March. The new library is expected to reopen to the public in late summer.

Third-Grade Reading Challenge teams to meet author Patrick Jennings

Originally published Jan. 27, 2015

Author Patrick Jennings

Patrick Jennings, author of the popular Guinea Dog children’s books, will appear at a series of Saturday events celebrating the annual Sno-Isle Libraries Third Grade Reading Challenge.

On Jan. 31, Jennings will be at Snohomish Library, 311 Maple Ave., at 10 a.m.; Mukilteo Library, 4675 Harbour Pointe Blvd., at 2 p.m.; and Lynnwood Library, 19200 44th Ave. W., at 6:30 p.m.

On Feb. 21, he will visit Oak Harbor Elementary School, 151 S.E. Midway Blvd., at 10 a.m.; and Arlington’s Hadley Hall, 18513 59th Ave. N.E., at 2 p.m.

The author will meet with members of the Reading Challenge teams from Snohomish and Island County public schools. The public is welcome to attend.

Jennings’ books have received multiple honors from Publishers WeeklyThe Horn Book, and Smithsonian Magazine, to name a few. Guinea Dog also won a 2011 Washington State Book Award.

The Reading Challenge is a quiz bowl program that encourages children to enjoy reading while improving their literacy skills. Students at participating schools form teams of readers who answer questions based on six books selected by Sno-Isle Libraries staff at a series of challenge events, culminating with the top six teams from across two counties participating in the grand Final Reading Challenge at the end of March.

Besides “Guinea Dog,” participants are also reading “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” by Roald Dahl, “Frindle” by Andrew Clements, “Little Wolf’s Book of Badness” by Ian Whybrow, “White Fur Flying” by Patricia Mac Lachlan” and “The Year of the Dog” by Grace Lin.

The Reading Challenge program is funded by the Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation. For more information, visit

IRS makes fewer forms available for library customers

Originally published Jan. 20, 2015

Because of Internal Revenue Service cutbacks, Snohomish and Island County residents seeking printed tax forms will find fewer of them in their community libraries.

“Some basic forms will be available, but even the number of those will be limited,” said Terry Beck, information services manager for Sno-Isle Libraries. “The Tax Forms Outlet Program that supplies us with forms blames the appropriations bill recently passed by Congress, which made significant cuts to the IRS budget.”

Forms available in the library will include 1040, 1040A and 104EZ, as well as some tax-help publications.
Beck noted that forms can be downloaded from the Internet at They can also be ordered for delivery by mail at and by phone at 800-829-3676.

“Customers at our 21 community libraries can use our computers to access the IRS forms online, then make free copies using our printers,” she noted. “We have all of the necessary links, plus other helpful tax preparation resources, on our website at”

Sno-Isle Libraries Closed Jan. 19

Originally published Jan. 11, 2015

Sno-Isle Libraries will be closed on Monday, Jan. 19 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. All libraries will resume with their regular hours on Tuesday, Jan. 20. See locations & hours.

Seeking teen, adult actors for Sno-Isle Libraries video

Originally published Jan. 7, 2015

Would you like to have a starring role in a new video for Sno-Isle Libraries? We’re looking for two energetic actors who can communicate the exciting non-traditional products and services offered by our libraries, from video downloads to online practice SAT exams.

• Female, 16 to 18 years old, any ethnicity, know-it-all teen who schools her dad on the value of libraries, several lines
• Male, 40 to 55 years, any ethnicity, lovable but clueless father of a teenage daughter, several lines

Read our casting call notice to find out more.


Special Board Meeting, Early Learning Public Library Partnership, Jan. 22

Originally published Jan. 7, 2015

Openings still available for free advance care planning classes

Originally published Jan. 6, 2015

Judy McCay

An upcoming class for those who wish to plan for end-of-life health care is proving popular, according to Coupeville Library Manager Leslie Franzen, but there are still openings for those wishing to participate.

The class in advance care planning will be offered at the library, 788 NW Alexander St., at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 13. Openings are still available for the morning class. The sessions follow a Monday, Jan. 12 panel discussion at the library called “End-of-Life Health Care: Honoring Choices.” All events are free and open to the public.

The two-hour class sessions will be taught by Judy McCay, a volunteer with Compassion & Choices of Washington. She will explain how to write an advance care plan, a document that combines a living will with a durable power of attorney for health care. Participants are asked to register online via the Sno-Isle Libraries events calendar at, or by calling 360-678-4911.    

No registration is required for the panel discussion, which is part of the Sno-Isle Libraries Issues That Matter series. For more information, visit The web page includes links to websites and library resources relating to end-of-life care.

It had been startling and disappointing to me to find out that story books had been written by people,
that books were not natural wonders, coming up of themselves like grass.
- Eudora Welty

Sno-Isle Libraries Administrative & Service Center, 7312 35th Ave NE, Marysville, WA 98271-7417
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