Tuesday, December 29, 2015


Closure Required While Work is Done on Adjoining Property 12/29-12/31

We're putting up a park at our Howe Branch! 

This project requires us to close Howe, at Schuyler and Broad streets in the South End, on Dec. 29-31 (Tues-Thurs) so we can do work on an adjoining property. The closure is for the convenience and safety of patrons and staff. 

We are doing work on the neighboring property in preparation for the new park, which will be completed and open to the public in the spring. Before it was renovated in 2009, the Howe Branch included a very popular "Peace Park" that was used by the library for programming. The new park will be a gated greenspace that can be used by library patrons and the neighborhood, just like the original. 

All of our other branches will be open while Howe is closed this week, so we hope you'll visit one of them, or use our online eLibrary

We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience as we make improvements to the Howe Branch property!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Upcoming activities at APL, including School Break Boredom Busters!

Visit the Library for Great Programs
It's a quieter week at APL, but we've still got some interesting activities planned. Please join us!

DEC. 21 (Mon)
Reading for Book Bucks (teens)3:30-6 pm @ Delaware Branch

DEC. 22 (Tues)
Car Q and A6-7:30 pm @ Arbor Hill/West Hill Branch

DEC. 23 (Wed)
Waffle Cone Trees (kids, teens)4-5 pm @ North Albany Branch

DEC. 24 (Thurs)
Craft Lab with Fiona12-2:30 pm @ Howe Branch
Note: All branches close at 3 pm

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Albany Public Library adding Sunday hours

From the Albany Times Union:

A second Albany Public Library branch will be open on Sundays starting next month.

The Bach branch on New Scotland Avenue will be open from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., mirroring the existing Sunday hours at the Washington Avenue branch downtown.

The new hours, funded with $22,000 the library board found in the existing budget, will take effect January 10.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Albany Public Library Board of Trustees Seeks to Fill Vacancy

Letters of Interest and Resumes for Temporary Post Due on or Before Jan. 11, 2016

The Albany Public Library (APL) Board of Trustees is seeking interested candidates to fill a temporary vacancy due to the resignation last month of Daniel Curtis. The chosen candidate will serve until the May election.

The Nominating Committee of the APL Board of Trustees is asking interested candidates to submit a resume and a letter of interest by Jan. 11. The committee will review submissions and then conduct interviews the week of Jan. 25. The selected candidate will be appointed at the Feb. 9 board meeting and immediately start serving a four-month term.

The library will run an election on May 17 for city voters to elect a trustee to fulfill the final year of Curtis’ term. Candidates interested in the temporary trustee appointment to the APL board must submit a resume and a letter of interest on or before 5 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 11, to:
Nominating Committee
Albany Public Library Board of Trustees
Washington Avenue Branch
161 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY 12210

APL trustees must be at least 18 years old, U.S. citizens, and residents of the city of Albany. For more information, please contact APL Public Information Officer Stephanie Simon at 427-4344.

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Craft & Music Programs on Tap at APL

We've got some fun programs planned to help make your holidays brighter. Please join us for these free holiday-themed activities!

+ Greeting Cards & Gift Tags Workshop: Dec. 12 (Sat) at 1:30 to 3:30 pm (ages 13+) @ Delaware Branch
Snowflake ScratchersDec. 15 (Tues) at 4 to 5 pm (ages 6-17) @ North Albany Branch
Ornament WorkshopDec. 15 (Tues) at 6:30 to 7:30 pm (ages 18+) @ Delaware Branch (register: 463-0254)
Snowflake BraceletsDec. 16 (Wed) at 4 to 5 pm (ages 6-17) @ North Albany Branch
Snowflake WindowsDec. 17 (Thurs) at 4 to 5 pm (ages 6-17) @ North Albany Branch
Easy Bake Holiday CreationsDec. 18 (Fri) at 3:30 to 4:30 pm (ages 11-17) @ Pine Hills Branch
Candle JarsDec. 22 (Tues) at 3:30 to 4:30 pm (ages 5-12) @ Pine Hills Branch
Waffle Cone TreesDec. 23 (Wed) at 4 to 5 pm (ages 6-17) @ North Albany Branch

Holiday Music by Classical Harpist DahrDec. 12 (Sat) at 2 to 3 pm (all ages) @ Pine Hills Branch
Holiday Concert by Albany High School Select ChoirDec. 22 (Tues) at 12 to 1 pm (all ages) @ Washington Ave. Branch

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Shop at the Book House 12/3, 6-9 pm & support Friends of APL

The Friends of the Albany Public Library provides weekly programming for the Albany Public Library at its Washington Avenue branch, plus other programs throughout the system. FAPL donates money to the Summer Reading Program, and has purchased items for the library not in its budget, such as a piano and lecturn.

A portion of the receipts from the Book House in Stuyvesant Plaza on Thursday, December 3 from 6 to 9 p.m. will be donated the Friends, allowing them to augment APL programs and services. Author Peter Golden is generously giving of his time to help in the effort.

Light refreshments will be served.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Book review by Casey Seiler of Butcher's Crossing by John Williams, Tues, Nov 17.

Tuesday, November 17. Book review of Butcher's Crossing by John Williams. The Times Union's noted columnist Casey Seiler will present this gritty story of the fate on the Western Plains of the iconic American Bison or buffalo. Find out what famous New York State institution was instrumental in helping to save the bison from extinction. Light refreshments are served at 11:30 am and our speaker is introduced at 12:15 pm. Always free and open to the public. Please join us on November 17th and every Tuesday for a stimulating presentation and then participate in the lively discussion and Q & A to follow.

Friday, November 06, 2015

Lydia Davis Will Receive 2016 Hadada Award from the Paris Review

Mark your calendars: on Tuesday, April 5, 2016, at Cipriani 42nd Street, The Paris Review will honor Lydia Davis with the Hadada Award at our annual gala, the Spring Revel.

The Hadada is our lifetime-achievement award, presented each year to a distinguished member of the writing community who has made a strong and unique contribution to literature. Previous recipients include John Ashbery, Joan Didion, Paula Fox, Norman Mailer, Peter Matthiessen, George Plimpton (posthumously), Barney Rosset, Philip Roth, Norman Rush, James Salter, Frederick Seidel, Robert Silvers, and William Styron.

It’s only fitting that Lydia Davis should join their ranks.

More from the Paris Review

Thursday, November 05, 2015

"Through the Looking Glass" at Pine Hills Branch

Albany Public Library's winter art exhibition -- "Through the Looking Glass" -- debuts Friday, Nov. 6, with a special opening reception from 5:30 to 7:30 pm at the Pine Hills Branch.

The exhibition features whimsical and imaginative works by artists Zach Austin, JoAnne Carson, Emily Dorr, and Ingrid Ludt. Jessica Cone, APL's art coordinator, curated the exhibition.

We hope you join us for the opening reception, which is free and open to the public and features live music as well as light refreshments.

"Through the Looking Glass" remains on display during regular hours at the Pine Hills Branch (517 Western Ave.) through March 26.

The Spirit of New York: Author talk by Bruce W. Dearstyne, Tues, Nov 10.

Tuesday, November 10. Author talk by Bruce W. Dearstyne. Mr. Dearstyne will discuss his book The Spirit of New York: Defining Events in the Empire State's History. This should be a most informative presentation. Light refreshments are served at 11:30 am and our speaker is introduced at 12:15 pm. Always free and open to the public. Please join us on November 10th and every Tuesday for a stimulating presentation and then participate in the lively discussion and Q & A to follow.

Wednesday, November 04, 2015


161 Washington Avenue at noon

December 1—Book Review—The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey by Rinker Buck. Reviewer: Marggie Skinner of the Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza.

December 8—Special Program—Gifts for Grandchildren: What’s New in Children’s Books. Moderator: Mary Beth Earley, MLS, Head of Youth Services, APL.

December 15— Book Review—Anonymous Soldiers: The Struggle for Israel, 1917-1947 by Bruce Hoffman. Reviewer: Gene Damm, treasurer & past president of the Friends of APL.

December 22—Holiday Concert by The Albany High School Choir, directed by Brendan Hoffman.

December 29— Book Review---In the Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the USS Jeannette by Hampton Sides. Reviewer: Jonathan Skinner, PhD, retired statistician.

The New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books of 2015

Every year since 1952, the Book Review has convened an independent panel of judges to select the New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books. Judged purely on artistic merit, it’s the only annual award of its kind.

This year’s judges were Frank Viva, Monica Edinger and Marjorie Ingall. Viva has written and illustrated several acclaimed books for children, including “Along a Long Road” — a previous Times Best Illustrated winner — “Outstanding in the Rain” and “Young Frank, Architect.” He is a frequent cover artist for The New Yorker and the managing director of the design firm Viva & Co. Edinger has been an elementary- and middle-school educator for more than 25 years and currently teaches fourth grade at the Dalton School in New York City. She is also the author of the picture book “Africa Is My Home” and blogs about children’s books at Educating Alice. Ingall is a columnist for Tablet and a frequent contributor of children’s book reviews to The Times and other publications. Her book “Mamaleh Knows Best: What Jewish Mothers Do to Raise Successful, Creative, Empathetic, Independent Children” will be published next year.

Here's the list from The New York Times.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Luther 'Ticky' Burden

From the district:

The City School District of Albany is saddened to report the news of the death of Luther "Ticky" Burden, a 1972 graduate of Philip Schuyler High School and a 2014 inductee into the district's Hall of Fame.

Burden is considered the finest basketball player ever to come out of Albany. After earning All-American status during his career at Schuyler, Burden went on to a stellar career at the University of Utah. He was a first team All-American at Utah in 1975 and played on the United States team that traveled to the World Championships in Puerto Rico. There, he average 20.2 points per game, a record that stood until 2012.

The Virginia Squires of the former American Basketball Association drafted Burden and he averaged 20 points in his one season with the team. He went on to play for the NBA's New York Knicks for the next two seasons, ending his pro career in 1978.

For almost three decades, Burden had lived in Winston-Salem, N.C., teaching basketball to and coaching children at the Gateway YWCA there. You can read more about Burden in the Hall of Fame section of our website.

Burden suffered from ATTR amyloidosis, a disease that causes the body's immune system to produce abnormal forms of antibodies. He was hospitalized last week and died early Thursday.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Albany school board candidates on Facebook

There are eight candidates competing for three school board spots – one 4-year term, one 2-year term and one 1-year term.

You can find more information on each candidate’s Facebook page:
·         Mark Barthhttps://www.facebook.com/MarkBarthAlbany?fref=ts
·         Ellen Roach: www.facebook.com/albanysbo

The League of Women Voters, the NAACP, and the Albany City Council PTA held a candidates forum on October 20

Sunday, October 18, 2015

7 Reasons Libraries Are Our Only Hope In Case Of A Zombie Apocalypse

When the zombie apocalypse rises from out of nowhere, as The Walking Dead has shown us it will, there will more than likely be wide-spread confusion as to where everyone should run to... I'll share with you the perfect hideout answer: Libraries. Yes, you heard that correctly. I'm not talking about your tiny home-town library or bookstores, but the giant academic libraries that are the heart of college campuses and cities.

Academic libraries are usually somewhat massive, which means they'll be able to hold a lot of people. The giant front doors are more than likely heavy and lock-down approved. Libraries are full of resources and entertainment, so really, what better place could you go to? If you still need further convincing, I've got a couple good reasons for you. Because this is important business, people.

More from Bustle.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Libraries at the Crossroads

American libraries are buffeted by cross currents. Citizens believe that libraries are important community institutions and profess interest in libraries offering a range of new program possibilities. Yet, even as the public expresses interest in additional library services, there are signs that the share of Americans visiting libraries has edged downward over the past three years, although it is too soon to know whether or not this is a trend.

A new survey from Pew Research Center brings this complex situation into stark relief. Many Americans say they want public libraries to:

support local education;

serve special constituents such as veterans, active-duty military personnel and immigrants;

help local businesses, job seekers and those upgrading their work skills;

embrace new technologies such as 3-D printers and provide services to help patrons learn about high-tech gadgetry.

Additionally, two-thirds of Americans (65%) ages 16 and older say that closing their local public library would have a major impact on their community. Low-income Americans, Hispanics and African Americans are more likely than others to say that a library closing would impact their lives and communities.

More from Pew Research Center

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Albany School District Candidates' Forum October 20

Albany School District Candidates' Forum
Tuesday, October 20 at 6:00pm
First Unitarian Universalist Society, 405 Washington Ave, Albany, New York across from the downtown SUNY campus

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

New York Voter Alert -OCTOBER 9 DEADLINE!

The deadline for New Yorkers to register or change party affiliation in time to vote in the April 2016 Presidential primary, Democratic or Republican,. isth - in only 2 days! Because of New York’s obscure election law and closed primaries, voters who wish to change to a party in order to vote for their candidate to do so right now!

While NY does have online registration, it is now too late to use the online tool! If you need to update your registration, the safest way is by visiting your local Board of Elections. You can find the nearest BOE location here.

All set? Help spread the word to other New York voters .Be sure to forward this email along to any potential voters that might not know about the deadline!

Bruce Hallenbeck on the History of horror films 10/17 at Howe branch of APL

Event Type: Adult Program
Age Group(s): Adult (Ages 18+)
Date: 10/17/2015
Start Time: 2:00 PM
End Time: 4:00 PM
Horror films are something that have captured people's imaginations for generations. They take our real life fears and warp them into something bigger than life. Join us at the Howe Branch on October 17th for a presentation on the history of horror films and other things that go bump in the night. Leading this event will be Bruce Hallenbeck, the author of books such as "Monsters of New York: Mysterious Creatures in the Empire State" and "The Hammer Frankenstein: British Cult Cinema: as well as a contributor to a number of magazines on the subject of horror films.
Library: Howe Branch
Location: Howe Large Meeting Room

Monday, October 05, 2015


161 Washington Avenue at noon

November 3—Book Review—Fallingwater: A Frank Lloyd Wright Country House by Edgar Kaufmann, Jr. Reviewer: Harris A. Sanders, Albany architect.

November 10—Author Talk—Bruce W. Dearstyne discusses his book The Spirit of New York: Defining Events in the Empire State’s History.

November 17—Book Review—Butcher’s Crossing, a novel by John Williams. Reviewer: Casey Seiler, Times Union state editor & columnist.

November 24—Book Review—Confronting the Classics: Traditions, Adventures, and Innovations by Mary Beard. Reviewer: Sylvia Barnard, PhD, classicist retired from the University at Albany, SUNY.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

CheckItOut - Taylor Swift Parody Video for National Library Week

The Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library's parody of Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off." In homage to Taylor Swift and her outspoken support of public libraries and literacy and in celebration of National Library Week. April 2015.

Watch now.

Thursday, October 01, 2015

1st Saturdays At Pine Hills: Sensory Story Time

Hey Albanians! hThe Pine Hills branch of the APL is starting something new on the first Saturday of each month (2pm) - a monthly Sensory Storytime and playtime intended for kids on the Autism Spectrum, their siblings and their parents/caregivers. Come with your little ones for a soft opening.

This program will feature thirty minutes of books, songs and movement, followed by an hour of play time. Children can participate as much or as little as they want, and sitting still is not required. It's intended for kids up to age 8, but we won't even hold you to that. This will be a really welcoming, supportive, and fun environment for families. This storytime is the only one where participation is limited, to 10 families, so sign-up on the website or call the children's desk for questions, comments or any specifications you or your child might have.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Romanian city offers free rides to people reading on the bus

Those who can’t resist reading a good book on public transport have been rewarded by a city in Romania, which offered a free bus ride to anyone who read a book during their journey.

The initiative, which ran for a week in June, was proposed by Victor Miron, a book-lover and resident of Cluj-Napoca in north-western Romania.

Miron said that he wanted to “encourage more people to read on public transportation”.

He proposed his idea to the city’s mayor, Emil Boc, who then posted it to his followers on Facebook.

The idea received such an overwhelmingly warm response that a year later it was put into action.

More from The Independent

Thursday, September 17, 2015


Parking Restrictions:

September 17, 2015 at 8:00 a.m. until September 20, 2015 at 10:00 p.m.
Lancaster Street, both sides from Lark Street west 10 spaces on each side

September 19, 2015 from 4:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m.
Lark Street, both sides from Washington Avenue to Madison Avenue
and much more

Road Closures:

September 19, 2015 from 4AM-10PM
Lark Street between Washington Avenue and Madison Avenue
Hudson Avenue between Lark Street and Willett Street
Lancaster Street between Lark Street and Willett Street
State Street between Willett Street and Lark Street
and more

Residents of Center Square and Hudson Park can utilize the interior roadways of Washington Park for parking starting 5:00 p.m. on Friday September 18, 2015. All vehicles must be removed from the interior park roadways by 6:00 p.m. on Sunday September 20, 2015.

Also, residents may report NON-EMERGENCY incidents specific to and during the Lark Festival by calling 300-5070. After event hours, please call 438-4000.

As always, EMERGENCIES should be reported by calling 911.

For more information, go to Nixle

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Librarians on Bikes Are Delivering Books and WiFi to Kids in “Book Deserts”

“Food deserts" refer to low-income areas where convenience stores are often the only viable food source and fresh produce is a rarity. But nutritious foods aren't the only thing kids need to thrive and grow.

Many of these undernourished kids also live in so-called "book deserts"—areas without easy access to libraries and reading material to nurture their imaginations and development (just think of the 12-year-old boy in Utah who asked his mailman for junk mail to read because he couldn't get to a library).

To combat these problems, creative-thinking librarians and literacy supporters are using inventive solutions to expand access to books and promote a love of reading.

More from GOOD

Monday, September 14, 2015

The homeless man who turned his life around by offering book reviews instead of begging

As a child growing up in KwaZulu Natal he had always loved books. But after moving to Johannesburg to find work, he started taking drugs.

“I left my job and couldn’t afford rent anymore – I lost everything. While living on the streets I noticed how many beggars there were getting money for nothing on street corners. I thought I could be different and actually give people something worthwhile – like a book or book review – in exchange for money.”

So he started selling books on the streets – but only after he had read them and could offer passers by a detailed review.

More from One.org

Sunday, September 13, 2015

How the New York Public Library digitizes its vast map collection

While much of the city's mapping community is focused on creating something new, a great deal of energy also goes into recovering maps that are quite old.

The New York Public Library, the spiritual heart of the city's mapmaking community, is gradually putting online its vast collection of 435,000 maps. Using a software program called "Building Inspector," more than 1,000 users are manually inputting information or checking contained on old maps that computers can't easily handle, such as street addresses. It's arduous work—only 33,000 of the library's maps have been digitized—but so far the volunteer army has completed 1.2 million tasks and helps the library to bring old maps online much faster than it could otherwise.

More from Crain's New York

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Second Annual Programs Squared Symposium

Do you find yourself coming up short on good programming ideas?
Looking for creative program opportunities for your library, school or social group?
Want to meet some performers and presenters who can fill your programming void?

Answers to these question can be found at the
Second Annual Library Programs2Symposium
October 16, 2015 / 12:00 - 2:00 pm / University at Albany, Campus Center Ballroom

We are bringing new and innovative types of programming information to libraries, schools and other institutions across the Capital District region and beyond. This event features exhibits of programs from educational, entertainment, social, and cultural programming specialists. These informative displays will highlight presentations and demonstrations that will focus on education, entertainment, and cultural awareness, creating new programming opportunities to bring back to your institution. And it’s FREE.

This year's Programs2 Symposium includes over 50 presenters who offer a variety of programs, workshops, classes and demonstrations. We will also have fabulous door prizes and light refreshments.

Please go to our website for additional information: http://libraryprogramssquared.wordpress.com/

Who is this “We”, anyway?
We are the University at Albany IST666 class for Summer 2015. We are all graduate students in the Information Science program at the University at Albany and will one day be planning our own educational programming at institutions similar to yours.

An RSVP would be nice (not necessary) either to cgermain@albany.edu (our instructor) or via the RSVP link at  http://libraryprogramssquared.wordpress.com/ .

See you on October 16th!

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Delaware Trolley Tree Sculpture Dedication – Sept. 22

The Albany Public Library and Delaware neighborhood are formally dedicating the Delaware Trolley Tree Sculpture on Tuesday, Sept. 22, at 4:30 pm at the Delaware Branch.

Please join us for the dedication ceremony, during which you will hear from people and organizations instrumental in creating the sculpture, including the library, Delaware Avenue Merchants Group, city of Albany, artist, and more. The ceremony will take place outside on the back patio of the Delaware Branch library, at 331 Delaware Avenue, and is expected to last about 30 minutes.

The Delaware Trolley Tree Sculpture was created by local artist Matt Hart as a memorial to Virginia Bowers, Albany native, former city historian, and Delaware neighborhood booster. The sculpture is crafted from trolley tracks that used to run along Delaware Avenue. The sculpture is a celebration of Albany’s history and the vibrant Delaware neighborhood.

We look forward to seeing you on Sept. 22 for the Delaware Trolley Tree Sculpture dedication.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015


We're proud to announce that the Albany Made Creative Lab is now open for business!

You can visit the makerspace on the first floor of the Washington Ave. Branch for open labs on:
  • Mondays from 4 pm to 7:30 pm
  • Thursdays from 2 pm to 5:30 pm
During open labs, you'll be able to see demonstrations and learn how to use:
  • 3D printer and scanner
  • screen printing press
  • sewing machine
  • silhouette craft cutter
  • crocheting and knitting tools
  • audio and video editing equipment
  • color laser printer
  • bike repair station
We are planning on adding more open labs, along with classes and group use of the makerspace, soon. For more information, please call 427-4349 or email albanymade@albanypubliclibrary.org.

Sunday, September 06, 2015

Albany Public Library NEW PROGRAM GUIDE AVAILABLE; Issue Details September and October Library Events

The September/October program guide is now available. You can pick up a copy at an APL branch, or view the guide online.

This issue profiles dozens of library programs, including:
  • Albany History Race on Sept. 26
  • Albany Homicide Tales and Murder Ballad Program on Oct. 6
  • Silent Film Spectacular on Wednesdays from Oct. 7 through Nov. 18
  • Youth FX Filmmaking for teens at three branches starting in October
  • Halloween activities for kids at all locations
Please pick up a program guide and join us for the fun!

Back to School Shopping Reminder (in multiple languages)! Clothing and Footwear Sold for Less Than $110 is Always Exempt from New York State’s 4% Sales Tax

The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance today reminded parents and college students that qualifying clothing and footwear purchases are exempt from New York sales tax year-round. While many states offer “sales tax holidays” leading up to the school year, New York has a constant exemption from the State’s 4% sales tax on items of clothing and footwear sold for less than $110.
Course textbooks purchased by college students are also exempt from New York State and local sales and use taxes. This exemption is also available throughout the year.
Read the full release in English or in these languages: