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Our Book Van is on Holiday

The Book Van is on vacation this week.

Services will resume ​Wednesday, ​JAN 3​. Don’t be surprised if it comes back with a tan.

Let us bring the library to you! LPL offers ​free door-to-door delivery for patrons with physical disabilities or transportation limitations that prevent visits to the library. Deliveries are made within the city limits of Lawrence twice a month.

Call 785-843-3833 to arrange services.

Honoring Dr. King with an All-ages Day of Service

Take the “day on, not off” with us as we follow Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s steps in serving our community with a day of activities for everyone.

Beginning at 10:30 AM on Mon, JAN 15 in the Auditorium, join us in honoring America’s seminal figure of the civil rights movement with a day of service and dialogue.

Together with our partners from AmeriCorps, the NAACP, the Women of Color Muralists, and students from Lawrence and Free State high schools, we aim to commemorate King’s legacy on this day and throughout the year by involving the community in critical conversations.


10:30 AM | Diversity Storytime with LPL Board of Trustees trustee, Ursula Minor
11 AM | Community Art Project with W.O.C. Muralists
12 PM | Free lunch from Hy-Vee
1 PM | Get your free copy of 2018’s Read Across Lawrence selection, Wonder — while supplies last!
2 PM | Speak Up! for Teens
4 PM | Film screening of The 13th followed by moderated discussion

Book Squad Podcast 016: Hope in the Dark

Book Squad Podcast 016:

TWICE a month, the librarians are in, with their favorite recommendations in Two Book Minimum, a toe-to-toe discussion on a book or topic, as well as news from the book world, updates from Lawrence Public Library, and beyond. Listen to the latest episode:

Bookish News:

  • The LPL staff Best of 2017 list is here! Check it out!
  • Book Riot’s 2018 Read Harder Challenge is live! Some sample categories:
    • A comic written and illustrated by the same person
    • A sci fi novel with a female protagonist by a female author
    • A book with a cover you hate (Ughhh. WHY.)
    • A book with a female protagonist over the age of 60
  • Book Squad Goals 2018 is coming soon! If you need any recommendations for any challenge items in ANY challenge, let us know!  :D
  • LibraryReads Best of the Best list and January lists are out now

Two Book Minimum:

  • Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann (Narrative nonfiction that will draw you and and keep you reading, if you don’t mind reading while mad.)
  • Women & Power: A Manifesto by Mary Beard (slim volume that would make a GREAT gift – it’s based on two lectures Mary Beard delivered in 2014 and 2017.)

She Said / She Said: Hope in the Dark by Rebecca Solnit (2004, repub 2016)

Hope in the Dark was written (in 2004) to counter the despair of radicals at a moment when they were focused on their losses and had turned their back to the victories behind them–and the unimaginable changes soon to come. In it, she makes a radical case for hope as a commitment to act in a world whose future remains uncertain and unknowable.

Some favorite quotes:

“Hope locates itself in the premises that we don’t know what will happen and that in the spaciousness of uncertainty is room to act. When you recognize uncertainty, you recognize that you may be able to influence the outcomes–you alone or you in concert with a few dozen or several million others. Hope is an embrace of the unknown and knowable, a alternative to the certainty of both optimists and pessimists. Optimists think it will all be fine without our involvement; pessimists take the opposite position; both excuse themselves from acting. It’s the belief that what we do matters even though how and when it may matter, who and what is may impact, are not things we can know beforehand. We may not, in fact, know them afterward either, but they matter all the same, and history is full of people whose influence was most powerful after they were gone.”

“Joy doesn’t betray but sustains activism. And when you face a politics that aspires to make you fearful, alienated, and isolated, joy is a fine initial act of insurrection.”

“Cause-and-effect assumes history marches forward, but history is not an army. It is a crab scuttling sideways, a drip of soft water wearing away stone, an earthquake breaking centuries of tension.”

What we’re up to // Library news:

LPL is closed 12/24, 12/25, 12/31, 1/1 – stock up, and/or use our digital resources! 

 Winter Reading Bingo is here!

If you need last minute bookish gift ideas, remember to listen to our last episode

This episode was produced by Jim Barnes in the Sound & Vision studio. Our theme song is by Heidi Lynne Gluck. You can find the Book Squad Podcast on iTunesStitcher, or SoundCloud. Please subscribe and leave us comments – we’d love to know what you think, and your comments make it easier for other people to find our podcast. Happy reading and listening! xo, Polli & Kate

Library Holiday Closings

The library will be closed both SUN-MON, Dec 24-25 and SUN-MON, Dec 31-Jan 1 for the holidays, but our eLibrary will be open 24-7-365.

For those of you hitting the road, we’ll be here until 6 PM on the 23rd and 30th, so load up on stuff to read, listen to, and watch on your long drive.

If your preferred format is a smartphone, tablet, or other device, hit up our eLibrary for downloads or streaming content while traveling. You’ll need a library card to access, so get one now.

The LPL eLibrary is packed with stuff for all ages:

Overdrive | eBooks (including Kindle) and audiobooks
Hoopla | eBooks (including comics) and audiobooks
Flipster | popular magazines galore like TimePeopleUSRolling StoneThe New Yorker, etc.
New York Times | Yes! No more 10-article monthly limit! You get unlimited with your LPL card!
Kanopy | 26,000+ indie and documentary films!
State Library of Kansas | eBooks, audiobooks, picturebooks

Tech Help Two Ways

Smartphone got you seething? Feel like throwing your tablet into oncoming traffic? We get it.

Which is why each week we’ve got Tech Tuesdays from 5-6 PM, to take all your questions, from upgrades to downloads and everything inbetween.

If you prefer to meet individually, schedule some One-on-One Tech Assistance. Don’t get mad — get help!

Community Hanukkah Menorah Lighting

Come out for food, music, and fun to celebrate lighting the menorah with the Chabad Jewish Center on Sunday, DEC 17 from 4-6 PM in our Auditorium.

Jews around the world will begin lighting the menorah (and marking the beginning of Hanukkah) on Tuesday night, DEC 12. The holiday lasts for eight days and ends on DEC 20.

Find library books, ebooks, and audiobooks about Hanukkah right here.
Learn more about Hanukkah story here.

Winter Supply Drive Spot

The Lawrence Community Shelter is the only emergency homeless shelter serving Lawrence and Douglas County in Kansas.

To help members of our community who are struggling with basic needs, from MON-FRI, December 11-22, the library will be a drop-off site for the following items listed below.

Together we can support the mission of the Lawrence Community Shelter in providing “safe shelter and comprehensive programs that set individuals and families facing homelessness on a path to a positive future.”

Please bring donations to our Welcome Desk. Personal hygiene products, intimate apparel, and edibles should be new. Coats, shoes, socks, and sheets can be gently used, but washed and/or clean.


  • twin size sheets
  • Light blankets
  • baby wipes
  • coffee and full-size filters
  • coffee mugs
  • powdered creamer
  • sugar
  • large plastic tubs with lids
  • toilet paper
  • razors for any gender (no single blades, please)


  • coats + jackets for all ages and sizes
  • adult snow or work boots in all sizes
  • kids snow boots
  • underwear for all ages, sizes, and shapes
  • mens socks

Logo Lawrence Community Shelter


Holiday Concert with the Lawrence City Band

Get in the tinseling and latke-making mood with the Lawrence City Band on Saturday, DEC 9 from 3–4 PM in the Auditorium.

The Lawrence City Band began as a pioneer band in 1854. The band is still popular today, producing weekly summer concert series.

City Band History
SOURCE: Kenneth Spencer Research Library

In 1854, sponsored by the anti-slavery Emigrant Aid Society, numerous pioneers left their homes in New England to establish the Kansas Territory. Four members of the Savage family brought musical horn instruments along on the journey, and formed one of the earliest Kansas bands. The band originated on the train ride to the Kansas Territory, with Frank Savage as the first conductor of the band. It was at this time that the popular poem by John Greenleaf Whittier was turned into the song, “The Kansas Emigrant,” which the band played regularly on the passage.

Once in Kansas, the band continued to play at special occasions, such as weddings, funerals, or gatherings. During the Lawrence Massacre in August, 1863, three members of the band were killed. About a year later, the existing band members, including Savage, formally established the town band, although the group operated as a military unit. There has continuously been an official town band in Lawrence ever since.

The band began hosting regular outdoor concerts around the turn of the century. In 1906, Buch’s Military Band (as the band was called), gave a special concert for then vice-presidential candidate Theodore Roosevelt at Lawrence’s Santa Fe Train Station. The event raised enough funds for a gazebo to be built in Lawrence’s South Park. Shortly after this, the band was disbanded and taken up by the Haskell, Lawrence High School, and University of Kansas bands.

In 1964, Charlie Kassinger, the high school’s band director, reorganized the Lawrence City Band. Like today, the band comprised of Lawrence locals, rather than students. During Kassinger’s time, the first established “Summer Concert Series” were held in different parks in Lawrence. However, when Conductor William Kelly took over in 1969, he quickly established the South Park Gazebo as the only location for the concerts, which remains in effect today.

In 1992, Robert Foster took over the role of conductor and soon implemented the first recordkeeping procedures of the band, including filing yearly notebooks made up of rosters, printed programs, and newsprint. Today, the band is comprised of forty-five players, with room for fifteen extra players at a given concert. The band continues to play in the South Park Gazebo weekly during the summer season.


New Book Club Offers Quiet with Company

Like reading alone, but don’t wanna be alone? Exactly!

Silent Book Club is just that a book club where we meet and quietly read together.

Join us Sunday, DEC 10 from 4:45-6 PM for comfy seating, cozy beverages (hocho, anyone?), and books for anyone who needs one. All you have to do is show up ready to read…silently, of course.

We’ll meet up in the Auditorium.

$2 Books Make Great Gifts (and Holiday Travel Buddies)

Get ready to cook, craft, read, give, and celebrate with seasonal books hand-picked by the LPL Friends, Saturday–Sunday, DEC 9-10.

We’ll have books for all ages, including a huge selection on fiction, history, and art. You might even find something to keep you busy during end of year travels and layovers.

All books are priced under $2, so grab one for everyone on your list! Learn more and/or become a member at


SAT | Dec 9 | 10-4 PM | Library Atrium
SUN | Dec 10 | 12-4 PM | Library Atrium