We’ve asked libraries across Colorado to submit program they’ve run in the last year that they’re proud of and they want the rest of us to see and celebrate. Sharing stories in books is great… but what about our stories? The stories of the ways our libraries bring the community together, enrich the lives of our neighbors, and serve the people who live and work in our cities and towns.
Lanna Gonzales, Marketing & Circulation Supervisor, answered our call and we’re excited to let them tell you about Lake County Public Library’s “Author Talk with Nic Stone” in their own words.
Library Name: Lake County Public Library
City/ Town: Leaderville/ Twin Lakes
Program Name: Author Talk with Nic Stone
Date/ Date Range of Program: September 28, 2022
Intended Audience: All age community members from Lake County and surrounding areas!
Lake County Public Library threw a Banned Books Week Celebration and brought Nic Stone, a NY Times Best Selling author of the challenged book Dear Martin, and Jamie LaRue, current director and formerly a part of the ALA’s Office of Intellectual Freedom, to Lake County. In a time where books are being challenged more than ever, we found it imperative to celebrate books and the authors that are actively trying to be silence.
How did you come up with the idea for this program?
Banned Books Week
What partners (if any) did you work with in developing or implementing this program?
The entire community rallied behind this program. We partnered with FREIGHT (a beautiful venue), who hosted the space for the author talk. Our local newspaper, The Herald Democrat, donated advertising space in their newspaper to help promote the program. We had a silent auction to fundraise the costs for this program and many local businesses donated amazing items, we had everything from a Copper Mtn. season pass to local ATV tours to CBD packages! We held our silent auction at the local Trivia Night, where all the proceeds from the door went to our awesome cause. We even received a grant from our Tourism Panel and financial support from our Board of County Commissioners. We couldn’t have done it without our community and felt very supported the whole way!
What about this program did you find successful? How did you measure the success of this program?
We found this program very successful for three reasons: First, we were able to raise the funds, which was huge for our rural mountain town. Second, the turnout was incredible and a surprise; we had about 70-100 people, which is significant due to our rural situation. Third, the engagement and positive feedback we received from the community was a huge indicator we had done something right.
We had adults and children asking Nic Stone questions, whose silly and down-to-earth attitude made our community feel a level of ease that was greatly appreciated by Nic Stone. We received a lot of positive feedback, one being about an individual’s perspective change, and that was the exact intent behind this program. We were asked when we were going to do this again, so ultimately, we call that time we did a Banned Books Week Author Talk a huge success!
Lanna has permitted us to share their contact information so that anyone interested in reaching out to them about their program can do so. It is an incredibly generous offer of which you are invited to avail yourself if you’re inspired by their work and want to celebrate them or if you have questions about ways you can follow their lead.
To reach Lanna, email them at firstname.lastname@example.org
Resources shared in this post include:
- 1_4 page ad Nic Stone
- Google Drive with Event Photos and Media Pack
- Nic Stone’s official website
- ALA Banned Books Week Press Kit website
- FREIGHT venue’s website (Leadville)
- The Herald Democrat (Leadville community newspaper)
Colorado State Library (and the readers of this point as well, no doubt) understands how time consuming, emotionally draining, costly (in so many ways), and challenging it can be to run a program or project. Sometimes they fail gloriously… sometimes they fail with barely a whisper. It can be hard to recover from that. You’ve worked so hard!… and it just didn’t work out. Be gentle with yourself. Self-reflect. Pick up the pieces. And then get to the next thing. It’ll be worth it.
For all those other times, be sure to celebrate. Brag about it! Feel good about yourself, the team that collaborated on your work, and the community members who participated with it. Celebrate your hard work and the value that you contribute to your community.
Tell us the story of your program just like this library did here. Submit your library’s program for a Program Spotlight featured here and shared as far as Colorado State Library news reaches.
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