Thank a Friend today

October 15-21 is National Friends of Libraries Week, honoring the volunteers who contribute their time to help enhance library services, materials, and facilities. At its last meeting, the Board of Library Trustees proclaimed the week National Friends of Libraries Week as a formal recognition of our Friends in connection with the American Library Association national celebration. Special displays around the library will highlight the resources and equipment made possible by their support.

Since 1991, the Friends of the Algonquin Area Public Library District (AAPLD) have raised more than $260,000 to cover items not supported by the Library’s budget, such as Summer Reading T-shirts, employee scholarships, and 3,000+ softcover children’s books to give away at community parades. The Friends were integral in bringing cutting-edge technology to the Library with the purchase of a MakerBot Replicator Desktop 3D Printer in 2014. Their popular annual Fall Book Sale is right around the corner on November 2-5 at the Eastgate Branch Library.

Currently, there are more than 20 AAPLD Friends actively volunteering with fundraising efforts that include their popular book sales held in the spring, summer and fall. They are also active supporters of The Literacy Connection (Elgin, Ill.), participating in its annual Trivia Bee and other events.

Executive Director Stephen Bero notes that the Friends of the Library play an integral role in serving the community. “Our Friends walk the talk of supporting the library in everything they do,” he says. “We are grateful for their service and their support of all library staff.”

Friends' membership is open to library district residents high school age and older. Learn more about what they do, how they do it and how you can help at their meetings at 11:30am on the first Tuesday of the month at Eastgate. Questions? Click here or contact Jim Golden at 847-658-8996 or

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The walls go up

Not even rainy days can stop construction progress at Harnish! We know it's been a little noisy, but we promise it will be worth it. Work on the addition focused mainly on getting metal studs in place in order to build those exterior walls. Inside the building, it wasn't unusual to see ceiling title pulled down and workers up on ladders with their heads "inside the ceiling" as they worked on mechanical systems and wiring. 

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Register now for geocaching film festival

geocaching film fest Join us on Thursday, November 2, at 6:30pm for an international film festival featuring short, entertaining videos about people who hunt for geocaches all over the world. These films feature real-life experiences participating in this outdoor treasure hunt with global appeal. You might want to join the geocaching community yourself! Register now for this engaging program for ages 13 and up!

What is geocaching? Watch this short video:

Materials Shifting: Youth Services

On Friday, September 22, Harnish closed so that staff could collect and box duplicate and low-circulating Youth Services books for storage during construction. It was a very productive day, with thousands of books placed carefully in storage boxes and labelled for easy retrieval. These items will be moving off site this week, but right now they are staged near the 1st floor construction wall and in several staff areas. If you have any questions about books you need in Youth Services, please stop by the desk and staff will help you! In most cases, we can borrow what you need within 2-3 days via interlibrary loan.

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Your Library Under Construction

The long-awaited construction project at the Harnish Main Library is underway!

In addition to the big double gate for construction traffic to pass through the fenced area, a separate construction traffic entrance drive has been constructed on Harnish Drive just east of the regular entrance. Please be careful as you walk and drive through our parking lot.

Next time you’re at the library, be sure to look out our back windows to get a glimpse of the progress.

pic_construction_update2pic_construction_update1Inside the library, smaller collections have moved to make room for the construction of a temporary “wall” where the addition will be tied into the existing building.  For example, on the lower level we have moved youth magazines to a space near the youth foreign language collection.  The youth foreign language AV collection has been sent to storage during construction. Upstairs, classical music CD’s have been shifted and the Classics collection has been moved into storage. Magazines and newspapers are now located by the nonfiction section (west side of the library). If you need help finding materials, please ask! Library staff is happy to help you. If an item you need has been put in storage, we will help you borrow it through interlibrary loan.

The Harnish Main Library will be closed on Friday, September 22 as we work to manage and move materials either to alternate locations in the library or into storage. Many of our collections will be impacted, and we ask for your patience and understanding throughout this process. We all look forward to new and improved spaces once construction is completed in September 2018.

Celebrate Summer Reading

On Monday, July 31, from 10am to 6pm, the Library will celebrate our fabulous finishers of our summer reading program with a party and storytelling festival!

Participants are invited to celebrate their summer reading experience and enjoy a variety of performers and activities. From 10am to 3pm, local storytellers and musicians will enchant audiences of all ages. Kids can jump around in our bounce house and stop by the meeting room for snacks, games, and coloring sheets. Children wearing their summer reading T-shirt will be eligible to enter drawings for prizes.

The Kona Ice Truck will be here from 11am to 3pm for purchases and/or redemption of “Reading by Design” coupons. Face painting will take place from 10am to 1pm.

The schedule of performances is as follows:

10am      Terrence Lynch (Storyteller)
11:15am Kevin Farris (Musician/Storyteller)
1pm        Laura Doherty (Musician)
2:15pm   Bob Kann (Storyteller)

This free event is being offered in cooperation with Village of Algonquin Events and Recreation Department and will be held rain or shine.

One of our summer reading sponsors, the Chicago Sky WNBA team, has a treat for you as well! At the August 5 game against the Atlanta Dream, reading will be celebrated and Algonquin Area Library summer readers will be honored for their accomplishments during announcements and on the jumbotron. Their summer reading coupon also includes discounts to attend grams on Friday, August 18 vs. Los Angeles Sparks 7:30 PM and Sunday, September 3 vs. Seattle Storm 3:00 PM (Fan Appreciation Night).

We have a lot to celebrate: more than 1350 young readers (preschool through 8th grade) signed up to partipate, and the 485 adults and 101 teens participating read more than 1600 books!


We hope you enjoyed “Summer by Design”!

Enjoy our latest collection

Jennifer Lilliebridge is happy to present this mixed-media collage collection at the Harnish Main Library.

As a student of gallery shot 1commercial art/advertising/graphic design Jennifer knows a lot of thought and planning goes into the design of what we throw away, whether it’s the pattern printed on agallery shot 2 tissue box or the complicated cardboard packaging of a bottled six pack. She started noticing it all, and wondering to herself “What can I do with this? What can this become?” Art from refuse was the result.

The focus of the gallery pieces was the use of reclaimed materials such as product packaging, ephemera, book/magazine/newspaper pages, packing material, wooden items (sticks/skewers/popsicle sticks/post-kicked karate boards). She used these items sometimes blatantly and sometimes covertly, decoupaging or painting them to enhance their pattern and texture.

Color was an important factor, as most recyclables are cardboard-colored and dull on at least one side. Jennifer sought to elevate these materials and included embellishments such as buttons, beads, bingo chips, ribbon, fibers, cording, drywall tape, paint chips, formica countertop samples, and found metal pieces. She was attracted to the text and colors that advertisers used in their product designs.

“I hope you enjoy the result of my recycling bin raid,” Lilliebridge says. “You’ll have to excuse me now…my studio is just TRASHED! I’d better get started cleaning up.”

Jennifer Lilliebridge is an artist, wife, and mother of two very artistic kids. She and husband Peter run a creative design company called ‘Cross the Lilliebridge, which specializes in graphic design, illustration, logo design, cross-stitch patterns, and custom cards ( Jennifer will be teaching mixed-media collage classes at the Lake in the Hills Village Hall starting in June. Check the Village’s Parks & Recreation seasonal brochure or register through their website (

Dogs Love Santa, Too!

On Sunday, November 20, the Library held our 2nd Annual "Your Dog's Picture with Santa" program at The Dog Waggin in Algonquin. Rich Chapman of Your Pet's Tale took pictures of dogs with Santa and provided digital images for their owners to keep. We sure had a good time--and it looks like the dogs did, too! Here are just a few of the photos taken that day. 


Get in the Spirit!

The best place to be during the holidays? The Library, of course. We’re your one-stop shop for holiday-themed movies, music, and books! And don’t miss our programs/events where you can enjoy holiday sights and sounds, create gifts, learn how to endure the winter weather, and more!

Sneezy the Snowman
Tuesday, December 20, 10 to 10:45am
Warm up to a silly story about a snowman who just can’t seem to stop melting. After reading Sneezy the Snowman by Maureen Wright, we’ll have a blast creating a snowman craft! For children ages 4 to 6 who can attend on their own. Register. 

Winter Break Activities
December 26-30
Stop in at the Youth Services Department on your Winter Break and play a board game, color, create crafts or play with robots! We’ll have different activities each day.

“The Future is Now” Wins at Founders’ Days!

On Saturday, July 30, the Library won the Founders' Days "Best Float Award 2016" for their "Future is Now" float. Volunteers worked diligently to represent this year's parade theme "Turn of the Century" with a storytime scene imagined from 2501.

An "adult" robot (complete with moveable head) sitting on a pile of appropriately titled books reads a Rolie Polie Ollie story to three "child" robots. A banner on the back of the float featured a Ray Bradbury quote: "Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future."

Float walkers wore futuristic silver outfits complete with face paint, antennae, and foil bracelets, and handed out children's softcover books (courtesy of the Friends of the Library).  We had a great time participating in this traditional community event!

The Library is grateful to volunteers John and and Marilyn Baker for their donations of time and materials in creating this float. We would also like to thank teen volunteers Hayley Masching, Susan Lim, Sharon Chacko, Brina Patel, Julia Frank, Kameron Mack for their energy and dedication.