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From Books to New Beginnings: Using the Library as a Resource to Build a Better Life

As one of the founders of Grey Wolf Resort, a health and wellness agritourism business in Victor, Colorado, award-winning chef and entrepreneur Nathan Dirnberger is just as likely to be found planning menus for gourmet picnics as chasing down a loose rooster.

But among these tasks, and the many others he tackles on a regular basis, there’s one more the Colorado native wraps into his days as well: reading.

“My mom's a librarian, so she always read to me as a kid, and I grew up reading,” says Dirnberger.

As he got older, he says, he went to school to become a chef. Years after graduating, Dirnberger wrote an article for the American Culinary Federation (ACF) on quantum physics and how it connects to a chef’s thoughts becoming a tangible experience. “If you give us a pile of ingredients,” he says, “we think about what we're going to create, and then we apply ourselves — that's the key right there — to turn it into a dish.”

In the ACF story, he says, he made the broader analogy of “encouraging people that they can make changes in their lives” if they apply that same theory.

About six years ago, Dirnberger started applying the theory to his own life outside of the kitchen, and “a big part of that,” he says, “was books.”

Dirnberger began to take advantage of all of the free resources his Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD) card could offer, from checking out print copies of books to downloading audio reads through OverDrive — which mom Cynthia Roberts, who has been a PPLD librarian now for almost three decades, introduced to him. Dirnberger was able to dig into and study popular titles by authors like Tim Ferriss, alongside other books about entrepreneurship, marketing, and business.

One in particular, stands out for him, though: David Schwartz’ classic The Magic of Thinking Big, first published in 1959, which Dirnberger listened to during a cross-country trip after finishing an internship on a farm. The book’s push to get people to dare to dream (and put concrete habits behind those dreams) spawned his concept for an agritourism-focused farm and ranch — what would become Grey Wolf Resort.

But books aren’t the only PPLD resources Dirnberger used.

“When I actually started creating my businesses, I would use the library too,” he says, reserving classrooms at Library 21c so he and his business partners could set up projectors and map out plans on whiteboards. “I pretty much started all my businesses there.”

“Tony Robbins talks about how there’s never a lack of resources. There’s a lack of resourcefulness,” Dirnberger says. The Library District is “a resource box,” he adds, “full of tools for people to change their lives … if they apply themselves.”

Currently billed as a “boutique, private, high-altitude health and wellness center” situated on a family farm and ranch, Dirnberger’s two-year-old Grey Wolf Resort offers guests everything from massages and guided mountain hikes to farm-to-table gourmet picnics. And Dirnberger still has lots of big dreams when it comes to the resort, ranging from building a commercial kitchen and a little restaurant on the property to setting an example for those interested in emulating the concept and creating more agritourism across the country.

With his passion for books, one might wonder if Dirnberger has another dream up his sleeve.

“Well, yeah,” he says, “actually, I’ve been writing one for a few years now, but as I started writing, I knew the story still had to be finished. … I needed to be able to do something that was actually worth telling. … I wanted a family. I wanted to be able to spend time with my family, that’s why I wanted to become a farmer, to spend time outside and be with nature, and help out with food and clean water and air, and all the things that people and animals both deserve.”

“Now that I’ve got all of that,” he says, “it’s a matter of starting to tell the story.”

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Supplies:

Cardboard triangles
paper strips
other decorations
toothpicks
cardboard rectangle or square stand
glue
scissors

Directions:

1. First, have a grown-up help with cutting cardboard (see supply list above.)
2. Glue paper strips to cover the cardboard triangle trees.
3. Trim excess.
4. Stick a toothpick into each cardboard tree as a trunk.
5. Stick your trees into the cardboard stand to make a winter scene.

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Take and Makes for this project will be available at area PPLD Libraries beginning this Friday, Dec. 18, 2020

Supplies:

Provided in your Take and Make bag:

  • paper plate
  • ribbon
  • beans

You will need to provide:

  • glue/stapler/tape
  • scissors
  • markers
  • more decorative materials (opt.)


Directions:

  1. Turn your plate upside down and decorate it however you like.
  2. Fold your plate in half so the art shows.
  3. Cut each ribbon into smaller pieces (not too small, around 2-3 per ribbon length; they shrink when they are curled!) and curl with scissors. You will now have some curly ribbons. You might need to ask a parent for help with this step.
  4. Tape your curled ribbons to the edge of one half of your paper plate.
  5. Put your beans in your folded plate and staple along the edges to keep it secure.
  6. Make some music! With your art, the curled ribbons, and the noisy beans, you have a colorful and creative music shaker!
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Prenatal Series

Are you expecting and have so many questions? Join Pikes Peak Library District and Nurse Family Partnership for a series of prenatal classes. Classes are every Wednesday at noon. Each week we will explore a different topic and have a Q&A session.

*This is a six week series, if you are interested in any of the other sessions please be sure to register for those as well.

Each session attended earns you an entry for a prize to be given away following the last session. You can earn up to six entries!

  • Oct. 6: Birth Plan, Labor & Delivery, and the First Week
    This session will cover birth plans and alternatives to medicines. We will discuss medications you may encounter in the hospital, the first week after birth, what happens in the hospital, and more!
  • Oct. 13: Postpartum - The First 6 Weeks
    Wonder what life will be like the first six weeks after your baby is born? At this session, we will discuss healing, rest, and mental health in postpartum. Learn about self-care during pregnancy and after baby's arrival, so you can take care of yourself, too!
  • Oct. 20: Sleep and Purple Crying
    Having trouble getting enough rest? Learn techniques to help you and your newborn rest. Discover what the Purple Crying Period is and tools you can use to help calm your baby. Learn about the Best Start Program and how you can get a Best Start Baby Box.
  • Oct. 27: Breastfeeding
    This session will cover breastfeeding how-to's, latching, support, education, and more!
  • Nov. 3: Nutrition and Infant Feeding
    Do you wonder what nutrition looks like during pregnancy and postpartum? We will discuss nutrition for mom and also look at infant feeding. Learn about WIC and the resources it offers.
  • Nov. 10: Early Literacy and Prenatal Yoga
    This week learn about brain development and the five early literacy practices to begin at birth. Then practice a few prenatal moves introduced by a certified yoga instructor. Finally, learn about Peak Vista's First Visitor program.

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STEM TAKE AND MAKE: Penguin Science

Take and Make kits for this project will be available at area PPLD libraries beginning this Friday, Dec. 11, 2020.

Materials in Take and Make:

  • Penguin copied on cardstock
  • Pipette
  • Printed penguins
  • Sand
  • Plastic egg

Materials from home:

  • Crayons
  • Water
  • Cookie sheet
  • Baking pan
  • Ice cubes
  • Tape

Penguin facts:

  • Penguins can’t fly. They use their flippers to help them swim and to propel themselves as they glide on the ice.
  • The torpedo shape of a penguin’s body helps it zip through the water at up to 25 mph.
  • When it’s in the water, a penguin is usually searching for food. It can hold its breath for about 6 minutes.
  • To move quickly across the ice, a penguin glides on its tummy.
  • Penguins are warm-blooded. Like whales, they have a layer of blubber (fat) under their skin. Their bodies are covered with a layer of feathers that seal in the warmth.
  • Penguins secrete oil from a gland that they rub over their bodies to make them water and windproof. They also huddle together to stay warm.

Experiment 1 – How do penguins stay dry?

Color the large penguin with crayons, pressing firmly. Use the pipette to drop water on it. See how the water rolls off the waxy coating. This works the same way with penguins when they rub oil over their bodies to make them waterproof.

Experiment 2 – How do penguins slide on the ice?

Tape a small penguin to an ice cube. Slide it down a slope. Add sand and see how it changes. Friction changes a penguin’s ability to glide quickly.

Activity – Egg transfer game

See if you can use your feet to transfer an egg to another person. This activity mimics the way that penguins transfer an egg from one parent to the other. Keep your egg safe while you do it!

For more information about penguins, look in the library’s non-fiction section (call number 598.47) or visit PPLD Kids Homework section.

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Homeschool: Keith Haring Action Figures

What do subway graffiti, city as canvas, and an energetic dance party all have in common? Join us to explore colorful action figures inspired by pop artist Keith Haring and discover ways to create your unique masterpiece that will POP! Download the attached PDF templates and provide the additional supplies from home to get started. For ages 7 - 12.

Watch the video on our youtube channel here.

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Homeschool: Creepy Science

Explore some spooky science activities and surprisingly strange science facts for ages 5 - 12.

Check out the video on our youtube channel here.

Download the attached document for activity instructions.

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Tween Twist Take and Make: T-Shirt Scarves

Take and Makes for this project will be available at area PPLD Libraries starting Friday, Dec. 4, 2020.

Watch this project here: https://youtu.be/v8AGvL83YRc

Supplies:

  • 1 T-shirt from home or Take and Make
  • Scissors

Directions:

  1. Lay out the t-shirt on a flat surface.
  2. Measure 1 inch up from the bottom hem and cut in a straight line all the way across. You will have a loop of fabric when you’re finished.
  3. Continue cutting 1 inch strips from the t-shirt. Stop when you reach the sleeves. When you finish, you should have a pile of loops.
  4. Stretch the loops out as far as you can by pulling at both ends.
  5. Once you’ve stretched all the loops, set one aside and line the rest up with one another. You will end up with one big loop made up of many strands.
  6. The next step is to tie them in place so that they stay together. Start by creating the tie. Take the loop that you set aside earlier. Now, cut the loop so that instead you have one long strand of fabric. Cut it in half so that you have 2 long strands.
  7. Optional: if you want to attach a braid to your scarf, cut three strips of fabric from what’s left of the t-shirt. Stretch them, tie a knot at the top, and braid them. You will tie the braid to the scarf in the next step.
  8. Now you will use one of the strips you cut in step 6 to tie the loops of the scarf together. Take one of the strips you cut and tie a square knot (right over left, then left over right) around all the loops (and one end of the braid if you made one). This will hold your scarf together.
  9. Now wrap the rest of the strip of fabric around the knot, covering it up, and continue wrapping until you’ve used up almost all the fabric. Once you have just an inch or two left, tie another knot and tuck it under the wrap to hide it.
  10. If you added a braid, take the second strip of fabric you cut and repeat steps 8 and 9 with the other end of the braid to secure it to the scarf. The scarf will be knotted in two places. Otherwise, you can either discard the 2nd strip of fabric or tie another section if you like how it looks.
  11. Loop it around your neck. You have a scarf!

T-shirt scarf 1T-shirt scarf 2

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TAKE AND MAKE: Homeschool: Keith Haring Action Figures Art Project

Watch this project at: https://youtu.be/VzCjt-OQf_s?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFctLfDQxsL5SmuE8zkwQFmu

Supplies:

  • Action figure template (in kit)
  • Guided drawing sheet (in kit)
  • Colored cardstock (half sheets) (in kit)
  • White drawing paper (in kit)
  • Bubble wrap (in kit)
  • Packing peanuts (in kit)

You supply:

  • Markers (colors and a black permanent)
  • Tempera or acrylic paints (optional)
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Glue

Directions:

Drawing the Figures (Two Different Ways)

  1. Cut out your templates and use them to trace the figures onto colored cardstock. Cut out your colored cardstock figures. These are the figures you’ll use in your project.
  2. Or … use the guided drawing sheet to draw your own figures on the colored cardstock and cut them out. You can also draw from observation (looking at the figures) and your imagination!
    *You might want to start with pencil, but be sure to go over your outlines using a black marker that makes a bold line. Cut near the outside edge of the black line.

Create the Background (Three Ideas)
The white drawing sheet is the background paper. You can use markers or paints to create the background.

  1. Draw a line across the paper, starting about a hand’s width from the bottom. Make it bold using a black marker. This is the foreground. You can use markers or paint to fill in the foreground and background (above the line) using two contrasting colors. You could also add a simple design in the foreground, like Keith Haring … black dash marks or a black line doodle design.
  2. Or … using a craft paint (tempera or acrylic), paint the sheet of bubble wrap. A primary color makes this Pop Art POP! Carefully lay the blank white sheet of drawing paper on top of the bubble wrap and gently “massage.” Be careful not to let the paper slide around. Carefully lift the paper off the bubble wrap and set aside to dry.
  3. Or … try making a black line “doodle” design that covers the solid white paper, another Keith Haring favorite.
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Hour of Code

Join Britt & Christa for this interactive program that will teach youth to build a holiday card of their choice in Scratch using block coding! This is a great introduction to coding for total beginners, or folks just starting to code.

The program will require a password to log on, so please make sure to register and to provide the correct email address.


Check out more coding videos!

Coming Soon: Raspberry Pi

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KidsMAKE: Craft Stick Scrolls

Take and Makes for this project will be available at area PPLD Libraries beginning this Friday, Nov. 20, 2020.

Watch this project at: https://youtu.be/XkX6xyy3Ai8?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFenhH3jVzKk-QmaHXdAFOBq

Supplies:

  • Construction paper (in kit)
  • Craft sticks (in kit)
  • Ribbon (in kit)
  • Scissors
  • Markers
  • Decorations

Directions:

  1. Decorate craft sticks with markers, glitter - anything!
  2. Cut the paper long, but slightly less wide than the craft sticks.
  3. Write a letter, secret note, or create art on one side of your paper.
  4. Glue a craft stick to the top and a craft stick to the bottom of the same side as your art. Let the glue dry.
  5. Roll the bottom craft stick up to the top like a scroll.
  6. Tie a ribbon around your scroll!

craft stick scroll

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Our Response to COVID-19

Last updated May 18, 2021

Library Lifts Mask Requirements, Continues to Reopen More Spaces

Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD) is here to serve you, regardless of the circumstances!

You’re welcome inside all of our libraries, now with almost all services, resources, and spaces available to you again Open hours and specific services may vary by Library location, so please check in advance.

PPLD continues to prioritize the health and safety of our patrons, staff, and greater community during the ongoing pandemic while making our resources and services accessible to everyone. PPLD has lifted its mask requirements, following the recent CDC and State of Colorado guidance for fully vaccinated individuals. Face coverings (including masks and shields) are now optional inside all of our libraries, but strongly encouraged for those 11 years and older who are not fully vaccinated. (If you need an accommodation, please contact your local library directly.)

Get vaccinated at a Library-hosted clinic in partnership with Governor Polis’ Vaccines for All plan!


What can I expect when visiting the Library inside?

During your Library visit, you can do the following:

Here’s what to expect during your Library visit to help prevent the spread of COVID-19:

  • Face coverings (including masks and shields) are now optional inside all of our libraries, but strongly encouraged for those 11 years and older who are not fully vaccinated. (If you need an accommodation, please contact your local library directly.)
  • Self-service cleaning stations are available at locations, in which patrons can use supplies to wipe down furniture and equipment before or after use if wanted. Staff will no longer clean such surfaces between patron use. There are sanitation protocols for equipment checkouts, along with public-use areas like makerspaces, studios, and meeting rooms. PPLD’s contracted cleaning service regularly cleans each facility using enhanced flu season protocol.
  • Other areas and items that remain temporarily unavailable with plans to resume soon: Some computers and children’s play area.

Please remember that open hours and specific services may vary by Library location, so please check in advance.


What else can I expect from PPLD?

In addition to services offered inside our libraries, we also offer:

  • Curbside services allow you to pick up Library materials, wireless print jobs, and take and make kits without having to go inside any location. All open libraries now offer a park and text option, making it even easier! You also can use our 24/7 book drops to return Library materials at any time.
  • Have a question? Ask a librarian! You can connect with PPLD staff by phone, live chat, or email. Or, book an appointment with one of our specialized librarians.
  • Take advantage of our large digital collection, extensive hub of online resources, and many virtual programs available for all ages and interests. Browse our online Catalog, conduct research, or participate in a Library event from almost anywhere, anytime. Get started using our Library remotely!
  • Need WiFi when our libraries are closed? It should be accessible outside most library facilities for anyone to use, day or night.

Here’s an overview of what is available – and not available – to our Library cardholders and patrons at this time:

  • Want to return items and pick-up holds? Curbside services are available at all libraries! Use the link to find out more and access your library’s service hours and pickup instructions.
  • There are so many ways to use the Library remotely! Browse our Online Catalog. Stream and download books, audiobooks, comics, magazines, music, and videos. Use our databases to conduct research, access ample resources for kids and teens, and more from your couch.
  • Check out our virtual programs! Our librarians are bringing their services to you, anywhere and anytime.
  • Have a question? Ask a librarian! Our staff are available to help you by phone, live chat, and email. You also can book an appointment with a specialized librarian.
  • Checked out items: Please check your PPLD accounts either through our Catalog or on the PPLD mobile app for return dates, which will be listed by item. (Returns are accepted outside of all libraries as part of curbside services and will no longer be held in quarantine effective Mon., April 5.)
  • Fines & fees: We officially went fine-free for most Library materials in early 2019, as long as they are not lost or damaged. (See above regarding checked out items.)
  • OverDrive: Cardholders can have 20 checkouts for a total of 21 days each with a total hold limit of 30. PPLD will continue to add copies of digital materials to our collection as our budget allows. Some digital checkouts can be returned early so others have opportunity for access. (Instructions for checking out and returning are available here.)
  • Use of meeting & study rooms: Meeting and study spaces are reopening at full capacity across the Library District, with the exception of the community room at East Library, the venue at Library 21c, and the Columbine room at Penrose Library. View what’s available and make a reservation online.
  • Library programs & events: The Library continues to host programs virtually as well as provide at-home options like take and make kits, discovery kits, and Dial-a-Story and TeleGram by phone. Now there are drive-in, outdoor, and indoor options at libraries and other community locations (like Storytime)! View our event calendar for all opportunities right now. More in-person activities hosted by PPLD and held inside of our facilities will continue to be reintroduced safely.
  • Use of creative spaces & services: Cardholders can take advantage of 3D print drop-off services, plus plus check out Studio equipment. Our makerspaces and studios are open, too. These services are only available at select libraries and hours may vary by location.
  • Use of family & children’s spaces: The Educational Resource Center at East Library reopened for public reservation on Wed., April 7. Other children’s play areas remain temporarily closed with plans to reopen soon.
  • Library card signup: Register online and start using your card immediately! If you sign up online during this time, your temporary account will be available for 90 days (instead of the usual 12-day limit), giving you immediate access to OverDrive and other digital resources from home. Bring your ID and proof of address to your nearest Library and they can activate your full privilege account inside or via curbside!
  • Account expirations & renewals: Library card/account expirations will be extended, including accounts that expired in the past 24 months.
  • Interlibrary loans: Due to staffing restrictions based on guidance from local public health officials, maintaining the current number of requests is not feasible. Therefore, we are decreasing the number of Interlibrary Loans requests to three per library card. We expect requests to take longer to fulfill (borrowing or purchasing), with a potential wait time of four to eight weeks.
  • WiFi access: All Library facilities continue to provide open WiFi access, which should be also available outside of most PPLD buildings.
  • Friends of PPLD and book donations: PPLD Friends Bookstores have reopened their bookstores inside of our libraries. Online sales continue with curbside pickup at East Library. Shop our collection now! Have donations for us? Complete the form here to request an appointment to donate your materials.

Our team also continues to work with community organizations, school districts, and other partners to support El Paso County residents with many different needs during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.


Information About COVID-19

Vaccinations

Vaccines are now available to all Colorado residents 12 years and older! State and local public health officials encourage you to get vaccinated. It’s free, safe, and effective in protecting you against COVID-19; no ID or insurance required. Learn more and find a local provider to book your appointment in El Paso County. You also can call 2-1-1 or text “vaccine” to 667873.

Get vaccinated at a Library-hosted clinic! As part of Governor Polis’ Vaccines for All plan, PPLD has been selected to host vaccine equity clinics. Learn more about participating locations, dates, and registration!

Have questions about the novel coronavirus?
We understand that people may be concerned about COVID-19 and how it may affect them. Please check out the following public resources for more information:

What should I do?
To help stop the spread of germs and any contagious illness, local and national public health experts recommend that everyone should take everyday preventive actions and practice good hygiene. Here are some tips from the CDC specific to the COVID-19 pandemic and particularly for those who are not fully vaccinated:

  • Put distance between yourself and other people; at least 6 feet apart.

  • Stay home if you’re sick.

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover whenever inside public settings, such as grocery stores, pharmacies, medical facilities, and other crowded spaces.

  • Frequently and thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer, if you cannot wash your hands.

  • Keep your hands away from your eyes, nose, and mouth; avoid touching with unwashed hands.

  • Cover your mouth with tissue when coughing or sneezing, and then properly wash your hands.

  • Clean surfaces and personal items, such as cell phones, using household disinfecting products.

What is COVID-19?
There is a global pandemic situation involving a respiratory illness named COVID-19, which is caused by a new coronavirus that spreads through coughing or sneezing, much like influenza (also known as the flu). Vaccines have been approved and are being distributed.

For current information and updates on the pandemic:

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Buying Books as Gifts this Holiday Season?

Check out the pdf link to see what young children like in books. Brought to you by the Colorado State Library.

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In these unprecedented times, Pikes Peak Library District is a constant. This year, the need for PPLD’s resources has been greater than ever.

A couple months ago, I was visiting the Old Colorado City Library and met a man named Charlie. The building was still closed to the public at that time due to COVID-19 public health restrictions, but curbside service was available and Charlie was waiting to collect items he had checked out. We got to talking and Charlie told me he was there to check out a WIFI hotspot. Like so many others, Charlie lost his job during the pandemic and without internet he couldn’t apply for jobs. “I don’t have internet at home and everything is online these days. I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t get internet through the library.”

As the second largest library system in Colorado, PPLD operates 16 facilities and serves a population of more than 660,000 residents in El Paso County. In 2019, patrons made 3.1 million visits to the library and checked out nearly 8.3 million items. There were more than one million uses of our paid and locally developed databases. We received 50,000+ online meeting room requests and 250,000 people attended a library program.

Mobile Libraries during COVID-19When COVID-19 hit El Paso County in March of this year the impact library closures had on our community was felt immediately. Hundreds of thousands of people who rely on the library for critical resources and services suddenly found PPLD’s doors closed. During the course of weeks and months following the library’s initial closure, PPLD quickly adapted to a new reality, and the accomplishments we have realized while successfully pivoting around a “new normal” have become a model for libraries throughout the country.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, PPLD expanded its remote and virtual offerings in a myriad of ways. Our librarians are bringing their services to you, anywhere and anytime. Library patrons can watch a virtual story time with their kids, participate in a virtual book club, or join us for a community movie discussion. Patrons can ask one of our reference librarians questions by phone, live chat, and email. For parents who have suddenly found themselves teachers, we have ample resources for children and teenagers, including homework help, reading help, planning for the future, and more. Patrons can stream and download eBooks, music, and videos from almost anywhere!

All 15 Libraries and three mobile Libraries continue to offer curbside service, making it easy for you to return materials and safely pick up items without having any direct contact with Library staff or other patrons. And, on July 1, Library facilities have re-opened to the public in accordance with public health and safety guidelines.

PPLD participated in several initiatives to address unique community challenges brought about by this pandemic. We have been a part of the statewide Make4Covid movement and worked with makers throughout our region to help in the production of personal protective equipment for the medical community, first responders, and those who need it most. PPLD staff installed public water stations at Penrose Library so any and all can fill containers whenever needed. Staff members also boxed up thousands of books and handed them out at free lunch distribution sites throughout Colorado Springs. So, when people came for a meal, they got a book, too.

PPLD Makerspaces during COVID-19For nearly 60 years, Pikes Peak Library District has stood as a pillar of the community, and we will continue to serve the community in every way we can during this pandemic and beyond. But, none of this is possible without the public’s investment and donors like you. PPLD has felt the economic impacts of the pandemic, and we are now facing a budget shortfall of at least $500,000. Will you support PPLD, and people like Charlie, by donating today? Your charitable gift of $30, $50, $100 or $1,000* will help PPLD be stronger and more prepared to accommodate the changing times and the growing need for our many critical services.

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Take and Make STEM: Science of Flight

This Science of Flight Take and Make STEM project will be available at area PPLD Libraries starting Nov. 13, 2020 and is intended for ages 5-12.

Watch these projects at: https://youtu.be/6W6ZtLCe1ow?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFctLfDQxsL5SmuE8zkwQFmu

Materials provided in Take and Make:

Materials you provide:

  • Tape
  • Hole punch (or something else to poke a hole)
  • Scissors

The Science of Flight

Four forces of flight not only affect how an airplane flies, but also affect a paper airplane. These forces – lift, thrust, drag, and weight – determine how a plane will fly.

  • Lift is the force that keeps the plane in the air. Lift works opposite the weight of the plane.
  • Thrust is the force that propels the plane forward.
  • Drag acts opposite to the direction of motion. This force is affected by friction and differences in air pressure.
  • Weight is the force of gravity. The pull of an object toward the center of the earth.

In today’s Science of Flight activity, we’ll do several activities. Since paper airplanes are subject to the same forces as actual airplanes, think about the forces of flight and experiment to see what helps your plane fly straighter, more accurately, or farther.

Paper Airplanes:

Use the paper to create paper airplanes. See the pdf link below for the template. Which ones fly the farthest? Which has the best aim? How can you adapt them to change their flight? Test them out.

Paper Airplane catapult:

Start by using the template to create a paper airplane. Just fold on the numbers in order, always folding to the inside so you cover the number with the fold. Once your airplane is folded, punch or poke a hole through all layers about 2 inches from the nose of the plane. Push a rubber band through your hole and then put one end of the rubber band through the other and pull gently. Fly the airplane by hooking the rubber band to your thumb or finger, gently pulling back on the airplane, and then letting go of the plane. See how far it will go! Can you aim it?

Whirly-gig:

Take the whirly-gig in your Take and Make or go to the NASA link above to print out a Mars Helicopter template. On the end where the paper is divided in half, fold the halves in opposite directions. On the part that’s divided into thirds, fold the 2 outside parts in on the dotted lines and then fold the bottom up twice. Either toss the Whirly-gig straight up or drop it from a high place and watch it float down. Experiment with it.

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July 31, 2021 marks the 150-year anniversary of the founding of Colorado Springs by William Jackson Palmer. The city, founded at the base of Pikes Peak, experienced many changes over the last 150 years as it has grown to the 39th largest city in the United States.

Sesquicentennial - noun
ses·​qui·​cen·​ten·​ni·​al | \ ˌse-skwi-sen-ˈte-nē-əl \
A 150th anniversary or its celebration.

Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD) and other community organizations are planning an extensive series of programming and events throughout the year. Many programs focus on providing a historic background to better understand our city today, both for people new to the community and for folks just starting to learn about the region’s history. Other programs are designed to critically examine and appraise the complexities of Colorado Springs’ past. The history of our city is important to all of us; there is something for everyone.



Check back for more programs and events as they are added.

Genealogy Basics (Colorado Edition) [Virtual]

Are you interested in researching your genealogy, but aren't sure where to start? Join us for an introduction to basic genealogy research strategies including getting started, organizing research, and selecting and searching for records. In celebration of Colorado Day, this month's Genealogy Basics classes will focus on researching your Colorado ancestors!


Knob Hill Street Art Walking Tours [In-Person]

The Knob Hill neighborhood is home to an extraordinary amount of street art. Tour the neighborhood and see the murals at the street level with the street artists who created the art. Learn about the community focused organization, Knob Hill Urban Art District, that creates the murals. Talk with the artists. Experience the art up close. Snake your way through the alleys of the district to find hidden gems. Don't forget your walking shoes!


Library Explorers: Colorado Springs History [Virtual]

Library Explorers programs are designed for adults of all abilities. Join us to learn more about Colorado Springs history using PPLD's Digital Collections. Bonus points if you can find the cat or dog in these historical photos!


Pikes Peak Regional History Symposium

Nice, Naughty, & Notable: Colorado Springs at 150
In a year marking the 150-year anniversary of the founding of Colorado Springs by William Jackson Palmer, Pikes Peak Library District is pleased to offer our 2021 Pikes Peak Regional History Symposium virtually! This year's program has been divided into four separate virtual events. We are excited to celebrate our city's sesquicentennial with you!

  • Sat., May 22
    • Kathy Sturdevant: “Instant Civilization”: The Engineer of “Progress” and the Magic Early Years of Colorado Springs
    • Steve Plutt: The Lake George Ice & Power Company
    • Doreen E. Martinez: Historicizing Indigenous Presence: Footprints, Artifacts, Ways of Being and Knowing
  • Sat., June 26
    • Susan Fletcher: Glen Eyrie at 150 (Give or Take Several Millennia)
    • Tom Noel: The Broadmoor Hotel’s Beginnings: From Count James Pourtales to Spencer Penrose
    • Eric Swab: Three Trails That Ring Cheyenne Mountain, Three Tales of Infidelity, Bribery, and Provocation
  • Sat., July 24
    • Leah Davis Witherow: CC Professor Edith Bramhall, teacher, mentor, city council member, & activist
    • Eric Metzger: The McAllister House and its Place in 150 years of Colorado Springs History
    • Greg Atkins: City Business: Colorado Springs and the Libertarian Party
  • Sat., Aug. 28
    • Rick Sturdevant: Air and Space Forces in Colorado Springs: Their Bases and Memorable Characters
    • Mark James: Dr. James, Moral Reformer, Scientist, Pikes Peak
    • Kathy Sturdevant: The Quaker Trail: Moral Infiltration, Disintegration, and Revival in the Pikes Peak Region

Previous Events

CoS History Book Club

The past is the window to the present. Using the published works of local historians as inspiration, this program will highlight specific themes of Colorado Springs and the region. It is offered in concert with the books referenced, which provide additional background. However, attendees should not feel obligated to read the books in advance of the discussion. The series will provide high-quality information about the community to a broad and diverse audience.

Previous Topics

April Topic: Invisible People

Join editors Takiyah Jemison and Heather Jordan in a panel discussion of the newest release of the Pikes Peak Library District’s Regional History Series: an updated edition of The Invisible People of the Pikes Peak Region by John Stokes Holley. Originally published in 1990 by the Friends of the Pikes Peak Library District and the Friends of the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum, this book presents a comprehensive history dedicated to the local African American community. The reprint includes the original publication in its entirety, along with new chapters, an index, and additional images.

A copy of the book may be checked out from the Library (via our Catalog) or purchased from PPLD Special Collections (20 N. Cascade Avenue), the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum (215 S. Tejon St.), or clausenbooks.com. A recommended chapter will be emailed to all registrants.


March Topic: Doctors, Disease & Dying

Join Katie Rudolph, Denver Public Library archivist, and Matt Mayberry, director of the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum, as they present on their chapters from our Regional History book series title, Doctors, Disease & Dying. Katie will outline the events leading up to and surrounding the 1918 influenza pandemic in Denver, mirroring her chapter, "The influenza pandemic of 1918 : a Colorado Springs timeline." Matt Mayberry will speak with us about the local tuberculosis industry in, "On a cough & a prayer : the Modern Woodmen Sanatorium & the tuberculosis industry in the Pikes Peak Region."

For more information about the pioneers, traders, and military personnel who were both the purveyors and the recipients of needed care in the Pikes Peak Region, Doctors, Disease & Dying can be checked out from library locations.


January Topic: Visible People

Downtown Colorado Springs contains visible monuments to multiple significant local historic figures. Regional History and Genealogy Director, Brett Lobello, will discuss how these monuments offer a window, not just into William Jackson Palmer, Winfield Scott Stratton, and Spencer Penrose, but also the people and community that chose to commemorate their life and actions.

150 years after the founding of Colorado Springs, historians are still learning from the words and deeds of General William Jackson Palmer. Leah Davis Witherow, Curator of History for the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museums will explore manuscripts, photographs, artifacts, and memories of those who knew him best – General Palmer is more valuable and relevant than ever.

For more information about the history of Colorado Springs, Newport in the Rockies can be found in the catalog and checked out from library locations.


November Topic: Extraordinary Women

Inspired by the Pikes Peak Library Districts’ Regional History Book Series book, Extraordinary Women of the Pikes Peak Region, the first program will introduce women important to Colorado Springs history.

Chris Nicholl, PPLD Regional History and Genealogy staff member, will share the story of three Colorado Springs women whose political demonstrations at the gates of the White House landed them in prison and helped win the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, granting American women the right to vote. Susan Fletcher, Glen Eyrie Navigators Historian and Archivist, will explore the lives of Queen Palmer, wife of General William Jackson Palmer, and their three daughters, Elsie, Dorothy, and Marjory.

For more information about women of the Pikes Peak Region, Extraordinary Women of the Pikes Peak Region highlights these stories as well as the stories of 18 other women. Susan Fletcher's chapter is published in Bigwigs & Benefactors of the Pikes Peak Region.


Streaming History: Fannie Mae Duncan

To celebrate Black History Month, PPLD Special Collections will host a live chat while streaming the Rocky Mountain PBS documentary, Fannie Mae Duncan. While watching the documentary, you can chat with PPLD staff and the documentary's producer, Kate Perdoni.

Meet the inspiring Fannie Mae Duncan, an African American nightclub owner who brought the motto “Everybody Welcome” to true meaning at her Colorado Springs Cotton Club despite the volatile Civil Rights Movement of her day. The granddaughter of slaves and the daughter of tenant farmers, Fannie Mae stood up against disharmony and heartbreak to maintain the first racially integrated club in the city. Premiered on Rocky Mountain PBS November 8, 2018.


Invisible People Book Release

Join the Pikes Peak Library District and the Special Collections team for a virtual book release of The Invisible People of the Pikes Peak Region by John Stokes Holley. To help celebrate the book’s release, we will hear presentations from two Colorado Springs natives. PPLD Senior Adult Services Librarian Melissa Mitchell will present “Growing up with Greatness” and Colorado Springs native Sharon Tunson will present “Unsettled Settler.” Also speaking at the event will be PPLD Chief Librarian John Spears and the book’s editors, Takiyah Jemison and Heather Jordan of the Pikes Peak Library District. Registration is required for this zoom event.

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Tween Twist: Election Day Bottle Cap and Fridge Magnets

Take and Makes for these projects will be available at area PPLD Libraries starting this Friday, Nov. 6, 2020.

Supplies provided:

  • Bottle cap
  • “I Voted” sticker
  • Blank sticker
  • Epoxy sticker
  • Circle or square magnet
  • Blank business card
  • Rectangular magnet

Supplies needed (from home):

  • Markers or colored pencils

Watch the “how to” video on PPLD TV: https://youtu.be/GPgX1oKgfNE?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFctLfDQxsL5SmuE8zkwQFmu

Bottle Cap Magnets:

  1. Choose if you want to use the “I Voted” sticker or design your own. If you would like to design your own sticker, do so on the blank white sticker (not the clear, thick sticker).
  2. Peel off one sticker and stick to the inside of the bottle cap.
  3. Peel off the epoxy sticker (the clear, thick sticker) and place on top of the first sticker inside of the bottle cap. Press down to make sure it is stuck tight.(Avoid touching the back of the sticker as it will leave fingerprints.)
  4. Peel the adhesive backing off the small round or square magnet. Stick the magnet to the back of the bottle cap.

Fridge Magnets

  1. Decorate the blank business card. You can design it however you want. Some ideas include drawing a mini poster for your favorite fictional character or writing out words on the business card to make magnetic poetry.
  2. If you decide to make magnetic poetry, start by drawing 4 light pencil lines on your business card. Then write out election day themed words with colored markers. Be sure to include some articles (a,an,the), some descriptive words, overreactions, and some nouns (like people, animals, places, or things). Your imagination is the limit! (Only decorate one side of the business card).
  3. Peel off the back of the rectangular magnet and stick it to the back of the decorated business card. You now have a fridge magnet! If you decided to create magnetic poetry, use a pair of scissors to cut out each individual word,then arrange them into funny or meaningful poetry phrases.

Want to share your creations? Tag us on Facebook @ppldteens or @ppldkids.

magnet 1magnet 2magnet 3

magnet 4magnet 5

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Library reaches record-breaking milestone with two million digital books checkouts!

Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD) reached a record-breaking milestone this week, with two million digital book checkouts. This accomplishment illustrates the continued growth and importance of library digital lending of eBooks and eAudiobooks, especially in a year with building closures due to the global pandemic. PPLD is one of only 40 OverDrive digital collections worldwide to hit the two-million mark at this point in 2020.

PPLD has been providing cardholders with 24/7 access to eBooks and eAudiobooks for several years through OverDrive and its award-winning Libby reading app. Reader interest and usage has grown every year, with about a 42% increase since 2016. In the wake of COVID-19, PPLD took extra steps to make the collection as accessible as possible like extending the length of online library card signups and reinstating expired cards from the 24 months prior to March 2020.

The milestone checkout was Cold as Ice: Lucy Kincaid Series, Book 17 by Allison Brennan and Ann Marie Lee on the evening of Oct. 27, 2020. At this point in 2020, PPLD’s highest-circulating digital title has been Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens, checked out as an eBook or eAudiobook over 6,000 times. The top-circulating genres through OverDrive include fiction with more than one million circulations, nonfiction at nearly 460,000 checkouts, and romance at nearly 415,000 circulations.

Here are the top five titles borrowed through PPLD’s digital collection as of Oct. 29, 2020:

Top eBook Titles in 2020:
Top eAudiobook Titles in 2020:

Residents in El Paso County only need a valid library card to access digital books from PPLD’s OverDrive-powered digital collection. Readers can use any major device, including Apple(R), Android™, Chromebook™ and Kindle(R) (US only).

Check out our eLibrary or download the Libby app to start borrowing eBooks and eAudiobooks anytime, anywhere!

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Homeschool Creepy Science

Note: See pdf file below to print and see pictures of activities.Watch these projects at: https://youtu.be/HXYILnF5914?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFctLfDQxsL5SmuE8zkwQFmu

I. MAGIC PUMPKIN

Supplies:

  • Large bag of Reese’s Pieces
  • Measuring cup with hot tap water (works best with freshly boiled water due to Colorado’s high altitude; an adult can place in a measuring cup and pour)
  • White plate or platter
  • Toothpicks or small straws

Directions:

  1. Arrange your Reese’s Pieces in the shape of a pumpkin. We placed the orange candies in a circle to form the sides and used four brown candies to make the stem at the top. You can add a brown mouth and maybe even yellow for the eyes if you like. Do you like theway it looks?
  2. What do you predict will happen once we add the water? In science, we call your guess a hypothesis. Tell each other your guesses or write them down. You can even draw what your pumpkin looks like now and what you think it will look like after we add the warm water. This is called the Scientific Method (see below for more information on the Scientific Method).
  3. Very slowly add some hot water, pouring along the outside edge of the pumpkin. Add only enough water to cover the plate (adult help may be required).
  4. The magic pumpkin will slowly appear! Enjoy a couple nibbles of candy and watch what the water does. You can use your toothpicks or straws to swirl the colors. It’s magical!

Project adapted from: https://www.playdoughtoplato.com/magic-pumpkin-science/

II. CREEPY SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS WITH DRY ICE

SAFETY NOTE: Dry ice can be purchased at the Customer Service counter in the grocery store. Keep it in the heavy plastic bag it comes in! The ice should be purchased the same day you plan to use it; it will gradually sublimate, returning to its gaseous state, if it sits unused for too long. Don’t plan to store the dry ice in your freezer! It is so cold that it will trick your freezer into thinking that it needs to shut off!
Do plan to store it in a Styrofoam chest … unless you are going to use it as soon as you get it
home. An adult should oversee these projects for safety.
.

Screaming Dry Ice

Supplies:

  • Dry ice
  • Heavy work gloves
  • Stainless-steel tongs

Directions:

  1. Using a pair of heavy work gloves (leather is best), hold a piece of dry ice in one hand, and a pair of stainless-steel kitchen tongs in the other. Use the tongs to securely grab hold of the chunk of dry ice.
  2. As the room temperature tongs bring heat to the surface of the extremely cold dry ice, the ice will begin to sublimate (kind of like “melting” from a solid back to a gas). The process causes the tongs to slightly vibrate, producing a high-pitched scream! So be prepared!
  3. Set your dry ice aside for another experiment.

Spooky Bubbling Tower

Supplies:

  • Dry ice
  • Heavy work gloves
  • Hammer
  • Tall glass container
  • Tray or cookie sheet with low sides
  • Very warm water
  • Food coloring
  • Dawn dish soap

Directions:

  1. With a gloved hand, place your plastic bag of dry ice on a surface that will allow you to hammer the ice into some smaller chunks (not too tiny) … like a sidewalk or driveway. Leave all the pieces in the bag and return them to the Styrofoam chest until you need them.
  2. Place the glass container on a tray or cookie sheet. Fill the container with 2-3” of very warm water.
  3. With your gloved hand, pick up a couple of ice chunks and place them in the container. The water will bubble as the ice begins to sublimate, and carbon dioxide gas will be released from the ice in the form of a misty “smoke,” or “fog.” Put your hands in the
    “fog” and blow it around a bit!
  4. While the water is rapidly bubbling (you may need to add 2-3 more chunks of ice … don’t forget the leather glove), add a couple drops of food coloring for a spooky potion.
  5. Next, drizzle in some Dawn dish soap. This will produce a bubbling tower! The movement of the water, caused by the sublimating ice, will cause soap bubbles to form, bubbles that are filled with carbon dioxide. Go ahead … POP a handful of bubbles. Then watch to find out how long it takes for the ice to completely sublimate and escape in the form of a gas in the soap bubbles.

Crystal "Bubble" Ball

Supplies:

  • Dry ice
  • Heavy work gloves
  • Glass mixing bowl with rounded rim (less than 12” in diameter)
  • Tray or cookie sheet
  • Very warm water
  • Dawn dish soap
  • Strip of cotton fabric (old t-shirt)
  • Small plastic cup

Directions:

  1. Mix 2 tablespoons dish soap with 1 tablespoon warm water in the small cup. Submerge the cotton strip in the cup to soak.
  2. Fill the glass bowl half full with very warm water. Place on tray or cookie sheet. Add a few chunks of dry ice to the water so that a lot of “fog” is produced.
  3. Dip a finger in the soap/water solution and run your finger around the rim of the bowl, wetting the rim surface.
  4. Remove the cotton strip from the cup, running your fingers down it to remove excess soap. Stretch the cloth between your hands and slowly pull the soapy cloth across the rim of the bowl. Your goal is to create a soap film that stretches across the entire bowl.
    *It might take a little practice to master the technique! The thin layer of soap stretched across the rim of the bowl traps the expanding cloud of carbon dioxide gas to create a giant bubble … a kind of crystal ball perfect for looking into the future!

III. FROG EYES (Edible Water Beads):

Supplies:

  • Tapioca pearls
  • Food coloring (if desired)
  • Pot for boiling water
  • Colander
  • Container for bead play

Directions:

  1. Follow instructions on package for boiling Tapioca.
  2. Once boiled, rinse Tapioca under cool water.
  3. If desired, divide pearls into separate containers, add food coloring, let sit for about 15 minutes, then rinse.
  4. Place beads into container and have fun!
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Invisible People: Book Release

Join the Pikes Peak Library District and the Special Collections team for a virtual book release of The Invisible People of the Pikes Peak Region by John Stokes Holley.

To help celebrate the book’s release, we will hear presentations from two Colorado Springs natives. PPLD Senior Adult Services Librarian Melissa Mitchell will present “Growing up with Greatness” and Colorado Springs native Sharon Tunson will present “Unsettled Settler.” Also speaking at the event will be PPLD Chief Librarian John Spears and the book’s editors, Takiyah Jemison and Heather Jordan of the Pikes Peak Library District.


About the Book
An Afro-American chronicle published in 1990, presented the first comprehensive history dedicated to the local African American community. Co-published by the Friends of the Pikes Peak Library District and the Friends of the Colorado Springs Pioneer Museum, the book brought to light the history of accomplishments and struggles often ignored by local history books.

The reprint presents the original publication in its entirety with an expanded index and new images as well as new content not available in the original. It is our hope that this reprint will further illuminate the stories of the Invisible People of the Pikes Peak region and enlighten readers with a more complete and representative history of our community.


How to Read It

  • Special Collections at Penrose will sell the book.
  • Clausen Books, will also sell the book. They are offering a flat $21.00 + free shipping offer for the first week of release so until Thu., March 18. Regular price is $24.95.
  • Libraries will have it for checkout on Fri., March 12.
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MAKE: Cupcake Liner Monsters

Pick up your Cupcake Liner Monster Take and Make at area PPLD Libraries beginning this Friday, Oct. 23, 2020

Supplies:

  • Construction paper
  • 1 cupcake liner
  • Googly eyes
  • 1 craft stick
  • Glue (not in Take and Make)
  • Scissors (not in Take and Make)
  • Markers (optional)

Directions:

  1. Start by flattening your cupcake liner and glue it onto the piece of construction paper to give it more weight. Cut out the cupcake liner.
  2. Cut out a mouth, arms, legs, horns, and teeth (or whatever you want on your monster) from your construction paper and glue them onto your cupcake liner. Glue the googly eyes onto your puppet. Make it scary or silly!
  3. Add some glue to the top of your craft stick and glue your cupcake liner onto it. Once it has dried completely, you can have fun putting on a puppet show with your monster puppet!

For video instructions, check out last Tuesday, October 20's video for detailed instructions with one of our librarians here: https://youtu.be/e60Ig4x0XXQ?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFctLfDQxsL5SmuE8zkwQFmu

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STEM: Clothespin Button Racers

The Take and Make for this project will be available at area PPLD Libraries starting Fri., Oct. 16, 2020.

Supplies:

  • 1 plastic straw
  • 2 twist ties (or bread ties) or two paper clips
  • 1 clothespin
  • 4 same size buttons
  • Scissors

Directions:

  1. Cut 2 straw pieces that are each about 1 inch long.
  2. Slide a twist tie through each straw.
  3. Use the bread tie to secure a button at each end of the straw by looping the tie back through the button hole.
  4. Clip one axle to the clothespin.
  5. Slide the second axle into the back of the clothespin as close to the spring as possible.
  6. Use a rubber band to secure it in place.
  7. Begin racing!

racer 1racer 2racer 3

racer 4

Find the tutorial video at: https://ppld.librarymarket.com/virtual-stem-clothespin-racers

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Tween Twist: Dragon Eggs

TAKE AND MAKE: Tween Twist: Dragon Eggs
Pick up your Take and Make supplies at area PPLD Libraries starting this Fri., Oct. 9, 2020

Supplies:

  • Styrofoam egg
  • Box of thumbtacks
  • glue
  • toothpick
  • Optional supplies: Sharpie markers, nail polish, or rhinestones

Watch the “how to” video on PPLD TV https://youtu.be/YyPNAoIxy3w

Directions:

  1. Start the dragon egg at the very bottom of the Styrofoam egg. You can glue this “starter” tack in for stability.
  2. Insert tacks into the egg so that they overlap the “starter” tack and each other. The tacks overlap like fish scales.
  3. Keep adding tacks, overlapping them as you move up the egg and cover it with tacks.
  4. You will put a final tack at the very top. You can also glue this tack to help it stay in.
  5. You can add glue to any tacks that feel loose or like they might fall out. Use a toothpick to push the glue in where it needs to go.
  6. If desired, you can use colored sharpies, nail polish, and/or rhinestones to further decorate your egg.

dragon egg 1dragon egg 2

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STEM: Zany Zip Line

Supplies:

(Pick up your Take and Make for this project at area PPLD libraries starting this Friday, Oct. 2)

  • String (fishing line, or unwaxed dental floss)
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Binder clips
  • Several large paper clips
  • Recycled container to use for carrier (yogurt container, paper cups, empty boxes, etc.)
  • Hole punch or scissors
  • Masking tape and/or scotch tape
  • Paper and pencil
  • Small plastic animal

Directions:

To make your carrier:

  1. Brainstorm how you want to make your carrier and what you want to make it out of.
  2. Punch holes in the sides of the container for the pipe cleaners.
  3. Thread the pipe cleaner(s) through the holes and twist them into place.
  4. Add binder clip or paper clip to act as your pulley.

To set up your zip line:

  1. Run a 4-foot length of string between two objects, such as a chair and a stack of books on the ground.
  2. Be sure the zip line is at least two feet higher on one end than on the other.
  3. Use masking tape or scotch tape to attach your string. You want to be able to easily undo one end of the zip line to attach the carrier to it.

Zany ziplineZany zipline

Watch this project at: https://youtu.be/yAJUMuPC0Vc?list=PLMEg2Dd0dSFeL2073EuA0bc6TD1nM8wUN

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Parenting Little Ones: Q&A Series

Do you have questions about parenting little ones ages 0-5? PPLD’s Family Place Libraries hosts periodic Q&A series on Zoom where caregivers can ask community professionals anonymous questions on a variety of topics, including child development, behavior and social-emotional health, learning activities, nutrition, safety, and more!

Look for information on our upcoming fall series to be announced soon! In the meantime, check out recordings of previous sessions on our PPLD TV YouTube channel.


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