Library News

Arts Commission invites artist proposals for TEDxSnoIsleLibraries

Originally published Jul. 29, 2015

The Snohomish County Arts Commission is seeking a Washington state artist or artistic team to create a temporary, interactive-based work that will be featured at TEDxSnoIsleLibraries.

The day-long event presented by Sno-Isle Libraries will be held Nov. 6 at Edmonds Center for the Arts. Its theme, “Creating New Futures,” should be the inspiration for the installation. Performance art will also be considered.

The concept must be “original, bold, innovative and visionary.” The artist or artists whose work is chosen will receive $4,500 to cover all costs associated with the project. The submission deadline is Aug. 17; artists will be notified by Sept. 30.

Detailed information is available at

Sparked by the celebrated TED conferences worldwide, TEDxSnoIsleLibraries will feature talks, demonstrations and performances under 18 minutes each. The program will harness the spirit of TED's mission, "ideas worth spreading," and focus on the rich innovation, invention and cultural depth of the region.

For more information, visit






For more information, contact: 
Wendy Becker, Snohomish County Cultural and Economic Development Manager, 425-388-3186,
Julie Titone, Communications and Marketing Manager, 360-651-7081,

Catalog upgrade will cause intermittent outages July 31, Aug. 1, 2

Originally published Jul. 24, 2015

Due to a planned system upgrade, the Catalog, My Account, and other areas of the Sno-Isle website may be down or have intermittent access from 6 p.m. Friday, July 31, through Saturday morning, Aug. 1, and again at 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2 for several hours. We appreciate your patience during this outage.

Friends of the Library issue second call for Camano Island Library art

Originally published Jul. 24, 2015

eagle sculpture

Josh Henrie’s basalt eagle stands watch outside the new Camano Island Library

A call to artists for the new Camano Island Library, which will open Aug. 1, resulted in an outdoor sculpture of an eagle. Now, the Camano Island Library Friends group is seeking proposals for an indoor work of art.

The two-piece basalt sculpture has been installed and will be dedicated in September. It is the work of Josh Henrie, a Pacific Northwest native with more than 20 years of carving experience. The first piece of the sculpture depicts an eagle perched high on a pillar overlooking a book; the second piece is a smooth basin bowl which will naturally collect water and is representative of the ocean and tide pools that surround the island. 

The themes of the art competition were Pacific Northwest, water, beach, reading and writing. The Camano Island Library Art Committee selected the winning design. The art committee is comprised of Friends of the Library members, project architects, and Sno-Isle Libraries staff.

The committee is now seeking submissions with the same theme for a two-dimensional piece that will be mounted in the library’s reading room. Members strongly encourage the artists to include a child or children in the design. Preference will be given to artists from Camano Island or Stanwood; however, all are encouraged to apply. The budget for this project is not to exceed $4,500, including installation.

The submission deadline is 4 p.m. Sept. 15 and the artwork is to be installed in April 2016.

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.  

Lynnwood Library to host candidate forum July 22

Originally published Jul. 17, 2015

Candidates who are running for Snohomish County Executive, Snohomish County Council, and Lynnwood City Council will answer questions at a public forum on July 22 at the Lynnwood Library, 19200 44th Ave W., from 6:30 to 8:45 p.m.

The forum is presented by the League of Women Voters of Snohomish County (LWVSC), Sno-Isle Libraries, American Association of University Women (AAUW), and Snohomish County Elections.

Candidates for Snohomish County Executive who plan to attend are Dave Somers, John Lovick, Robert Sutherland, Norm Nunnally, and James Robert Deal.

Candidates for Snohomish County Council who plan to attend are Greg Tisdel and Brian Sullivan. Stephanie Wright is unable to attend. 

Candidates for Lynnwood City Council who plan to attend are Shirley Sutton, Loren Simmonds, Maria Ambalada, Chris Frizzell, Benjamin Goodwin, George Hurst, Shannon Sessions, and Van Aubuchon. Sid Roberts plans to send a representative and Douglas Jones is unable to attend.

New Camano Island Library to open Aug. 1 with community celebration

Originally published Jul. 16, 2015

Camano Island LibrarySno-Isle Libraries and the Camano Island community will celebrate the grand opening of a new library on Saturday, Aug. 1. The public is invited to attend the opening ceremony at 9:30 a.m. and enjoy the library’s first day of service in its newly renovated location in the Terry’s Corner complex at 848 N. Sunrise Blvd.

The 4,900-square-foot library facility will replace the nearby interim library, which served as the site of the pilot library over the last seven years. The new Camano Island Library will boast a larger collection of materials, expanded public computer resources, a reading room, children’s room, and a community multi-purpose room that will also be used for library programs and classes.

Sustainability was a major consideration in the choice of carpeting and furniture. The new library also features extremely efficient heating, ventilation and lighting.

“We are excited to present the Camano Island community with the larger, permanent library which voters approved in April 2014,” said Sno-Isle Libraries Executive Director Jonalyn Woolf-Ivory. 

The last day of service in the nearby interim Camano Island Library will be July 25. That library will be closed from July 26 to July 31 to prepare for the opening of the new facility on Aug. 1. Items requested by library customers will be available for pick-up at the Stanwood Library, 9701 271st St. NW, during the one-week closure.

Wireless Internet access will continue to be available in the interim library parking lot during the closure. The book drop will also be available.

The new open hours of the Camano Island Library effective Aug. 1 will be Monday and Wednesday 10a.m. to 6 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and closed on Sundays.

The celebration continues the following Saturday, Aug. 8, with the Camano Island Library Friends’ book sale from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“I am very grateful for the community support that has made the Camano Island Library a reality,” said Woolf-Ivory. “We appreciate the work of our architect, construction crews and the building committee, which has resulted in a unique library space for the community.”

Library to host panel discussion on police-community relations

Originally published Jul. 8, 2015

(panelist names updated July 9, 2015, 5:17 p.m.)

On July 30, a panel of experts will address issues on police-community relations, including body cameras and the use of deadly force.

The Whidbey Island public forum, “21st Century Policing: Big Job, Big Questions,” will take place at 7 p.m. at the Oak Harbor Library, 1000 SE Regatta Dr. The event is part of the Sno-Isle Libraries Issues That Matter series, held in partnership with the League of Women Voters of Whidbey Island.

In recent years, an increase in confrontations between police and civilians have made regional and national headlines. Police are using technologically advanced tools, which can present big questions. For example: When is the use of deadly force appropriate? Are police forces becoming overly militarized? Are officers adequately trained in the use of non-lethal force? What are the pros and cons of officers’ body cameras? The panel will address these and related police matters, and take questions from the audience.

Panelists will be Greg Banks, Island County prosecutor; Mark Brown, Island County sheriff; Ray Heltsley, law enforcement instructor at Skagit Valley College and retired police officer; and Chris Carney, attorney representing the American Civil Liberties Union.

Dr. Marshall Goldberg will moderate. The panel discussion is free and open to the public.

“We are pleased to partner with the League of Women Voters in getting people together to discuss this important topic,” said Mary Campbell, managing librarian at the Oak Harbor Library. “The years of experience and insights our panelists bring to the discussion are invaluable. We encourage community members to participate and to bring their questions.”

For more information, visit The Web page includes links to websites and library resources relating to law enforcement.

Special Board Meeting, Early Learning Public Library Partnership, July 9

Originally published Jul. 6, 2015

Upcoming candidate forums on Whidbey Island

Originally published Jul. 3, 2015

Candidates will answer questions and discuss topics presented by the League of Women Voters of Whidbey Island at two forums in July:

  • The candidate forum for the mayor of Langley and hospital district commisioner position 2 will be held on Thursday, July 9 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the United Methodist Church at 3rd and Anthes Ave. in Langley.
  • The candidate forum for mayor of Oak Harbor and hospital district commisioner position 2 will be held on Thursday, July 16 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Elks Lodge, 155 NE Ernst. St. in Oak Harbor.

Both events are free and open to the public.Supported by League of Women Voters of Whidbey Island and Sno-Isle Libraries. For more information, email

Accommodations for people with disabilities will be provided upon request. Please contact your library with two weeks advance notice. 

Victims’ advocate returns to Stanwood Library, where he once found refuge (HeraldNet)

Originally published Jun. 29, 2015

Sno-Isle Libraries closed July 4

Originally published Jun. 28, 2015

Sno-Isle Libraries will be closed on Saturday, July 4 for Independence Day. All libraries will resume with their regular hours on Sunday, July 5. See locations & hours.

Monroe Library unveils Early Learning Space (Monroe Monitor)

Originally published Jun. 23, 2015

Book by Joshua Safran chronicles his life growing up around Stanwood (HeraldNet)

Originally published Jun. 22, 2015

Author remembers refuge in Stanwood Library (Stanwood Camano News)

Originally published Jun. 16, 2015

Pop culture historian to talk about geeks and gamers

Originally published Jun. 12, 2015

Jennifer K. Stuller

Jennifer K. Stuller

Scholar and pop culture historian Jennifer K. Stuller will present "Using Their Powers for Good: Geektivists, Geek Grrls, and Gaymers" at 10 a.m. June 20 at Langley Library, 104 Second St.

Stuller is a Seattle writer, scholar and pop culture historian. Her talk, presented by Langley Library and Humanities Washington, is free and open to the public.

Stuller contends that geek activists, geek grrls and gaymers are making the personal political. Inspired by their love of fandom, tech, comics, games, television, costuming, and conventions, they are using their powers of good to challenge the self-appointed gatekeepers of geekdom with efforts that ensure their beloved culture is progressive, representative, and inclusive.

She will discuss how people and organizations are using community-building to create alternative spaces, crowd-sourcing to circumvent traditional modes of production, media criticism to challenge and raise awareness, and performance to subvert gender norms.  

Stuller is co-founder of GeekGirlCon, an organization dedicated to the recognition, encouragement and support of women in geek and pop culture and STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). She is an author and contributor to multiple publications, including Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology, and the editor of Fan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She regularly appears at the Comic Arts Conference, the Slayage Conference on the Whedonverses, and San Diego Comic-Con International. 

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

New manager heads Lake Stevens Library

Originally published Jun. 11, 2015

Sonia Gustafson

Sonia Gustafson

Sno-Isle Libraries has named Sonia Gustafson as managing librarian for Lake Stevens Library.

Gustafson previously worked for the Spokane County Library District, where she was employed since 2007. She led that library district’s strategic planning initiative.

Her most recent position was manager of Spokane Valley Library.

“Lake Stevens seems like an engaged, connected community — and I’m excited to be a part of it,” she said. 

Gustafson is a graduate of the College of Wooster in Ohio and holds a Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Washington.

Lake Stevens Library has a 14-person staff. Gustafson’s first day there was June 8. 

New Camano library set to open this summer (HeraldNet)

Originally published Jun. 8, 2015

Boy who sought refuge in Stanwood Library returns as successful author

Originally published Jun. 3, 2015

Free Spirit book coverAuthor Joshua Safran, who as a child found shelter and identity at Stanwood Library, will speak at 7 p.m. June 25 at the Stanwood Camano Community Resource Center, 9612 271st St. NW.  

Safran will discuss his memoir, “Free Spirit: Growing Up on the Road and Off the Grid.” Following his talk, a reception and book signing will be held across the street at the library.  

Safran was born to a coven of lesbian witches in a Haight-Ashbury commune. He spent part of his formative years in northwest Washington. His book recounts his childhood hitchhiking, and surviving the elements and a violent alcoholic stepfather before finally finding his way to law school and becoming an Orthodox Jew.

In “Free Spirit,” he writes:

“The Stanwood Library opened its doors to me without question. The patient librarians didn't care about my frayed clothes and never questioned my determination to spend every waking hour under their roof. Mercifully warm and clean, the library was a shelter from the rain and the echoes of my mother screaming in the night. I washed my face in the clean white sink and took refuge in books about the Talmud, the Golem of Prague, and Israel.”

Joshua Safran headshotJoshua Safran

Publishers Weekly hailed “Free Spirit” as a “beautiful, powerful memoir . . .  reminiscent of David Sedaris’s and Augusten Burroughs’s best work: introspective, hilarious, and heartbreaking.”   

In his 2013 Huffington Post blog post, “My Library Card to Redemption,” Safran recaps how the library made a lasting impact on his life.

Safran is a nationally recognized advocate for survivors of domestic abuse and the wrongfully imprisoned. His seven-year legal odyssey to free an incarcerated survivor of domestic violence from prison was featured in the award-winning documentary film “Crime After Crime,” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and on the Oprah Winfrey Network.

Library program helps students avoid 'summer slump'

Originally published Jun. 1, 2015

Explore Summer graphicsSno-Isle Libraries has launched its 2015 Explore Summer program, offering kids and teens a way to have fun and be ready for school come fall.

Students involved in summer activities that include critical thinking, creativity and hands-on discovery begin the school year better prepared for success, said Leslie Moore, Sno-Isle’s youth and outreach services manager. “Research confirms what every teacher knows: that students can easily fall behind academically during the summer. It’s commonly known as ‘summer slump.’”  

Explore Summer Participants who read for 10 hours during the summer will win a free prize book at their local libraries. If they read for 50 hours, they earn the title of “Power Reader” and will be entered into a drawing to win a Kindle Fire HD 6. All will be encouraged to take advantage of library programs that build skills for school success. They will have the chance to create catapults, discover insects, explore super science, write online book reviews and meet real-life heroes.

Online registration is required. Children can register at; teens can register at

Reading logs can be printed online or picked up at one of Sno-Isle’s 21 community libraries and Bookmobile.

Moore encouraged parents to watch the two-minute video Summer Learning, which explains how much activities can enhance school success. 

Darrington Library to host June 8 wildfire prevention events

Originally published May. 28, 2015

Smokey BearA U.S. Forest Service expert will share fire prevention tips in back-to-back presentations for adults and children on June 8 at Darrington Library, 1005 Cascade St.

From 3 to 4 p.m., kids will hear the story of Smokey Bear and go over his five rules for fire safety. They will also have the chance to get their photo taken with Smokey and get a bear hug. Stickers and goodies will be provided by presenter Kimberly Marshall-Trask, Patrol 11 Captain for North Zone Fire of the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.

From 5 to 7 p.m., Trask will discuss Snohomish County’s “Firewise” home initiative. She will explain how homes and neighborhoods can be made more likely to survive a wildfire.

Trask will also provide information about spark arresters, and how the Forest Service determines the Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) and fire danger rating. She will explain how agency officials assess the need for structure protection when they come into a community threatened by wildfire.

“Given predictions for an above-normal fire season this year, and the fact that many of our community members live in or near forests, I thought wildfire prevention was an important topic,” said Darrington Library Manager Asheley Bryson. 

Library staff will provide some fire-prevention activities for children who remain in the building while their parents attend the evening session, Bryson said.

Sno-Isle Libraries see growing demand for DVDs (HeraldNet)

Originally published May. 28, 2015

At the moment that we persuade a child, any child, to cross that threshold,
that magic threshold into a library, we change their lives forever, for the better.
- Barack Obama

Sno-Isle Libraries Administrative & Service Center
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