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Meeting Room Policy Change

It’s hard to believe we’ve  had  9 months to settle into our brand new building. As we’ve settled in, some of our policies need a little tweaking so we can make our space more useful and well cared for in the years ahead. We’ve recently changed our meeting room policy to accommodate non-profits and businesses alike. There will no longer be any charge for our meeting rooms. To offset this loss of revenue, we’ve implemented a $50 per hour rental fee for our Auditorium.  This fee will also help offset some of the costs of cleaning and keeping the space as beautiful as possible for our community events.

For more information, or questions, please contact us at 785-843-3833, or you can email us at

To reserve a room, visit


Career Clinic

Jump start your job search! 

Job Assistance

In partnership with Douglas County United Way, the library will offer a weekly Career Clinic. Trained Americorps members will be available every Friday from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm in the Health Spot to provide assistance with researching job opportunities, completing applications, writing resumes, dressing for success, and interview skills. No appointment is necessary, just drop in!

Career & Employability MOOC

Every Friday at 10:00 am to 11:30 am from June 5 to July 10, the library will offer a free MOOC (Massive Online Open Course) on enhancing career and employability skills. Learn how to set personal career goals, discover what you have to offer, find success in the workplace, make a positive impact, and build constructive work relationships. Registration is limited. Sign up today: 785-843-3833.


Financial Wellness Clinics

Your expertly crafted plans to win the lottery, marry rich, or inherit millions of dollars have fallen through. What now? Lawrence Public Library, in partnership with Housing and Credit Counseling Services, announce the return of its Financial Wellness Clinic. First offered in 2012, this popular program offers a series of financial literacy workshops that provides basic money management and investing information to anyone in Lawrence interested in improving his or her money IQ.

The series of five workshops begins April 7 and will continue every two weeks through June 2. All classes will be held at from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm in the Lawrence Public Library auditorium.


April 7: Money & You: Let’s Get Started

Three local panelists launch the series by sharing their personal financial stories: Cathy Hamilton, Lawrence’s “Boomer Girl” talks about moving toward retirement, Jai Nitz, shares his story as a self-employed author and single father, Lawrence Journal World’s “Daddy Rules” columnist Dan Coleman discusses juggling part-time work and parenting. Moderated by Anju Mishra of Housing and Credit Counseling, Inc.


April 21: The Good – the Bad – and Ugly in Your Credit Report

Have you claimed your free credit report this year? Your credit score can make or break your financial life. Anju Mishra of Housing and Credit Counseling, Inc. explains why it’s essential to keep tabs on what others are saying about your personal financial affairs.


May 5: Is it Better to Rent or Buy?

Find out the pros and cons and what you should consider when you buy and when you rent. Learn how owning can help or hurt your bottom line at tax time. Anju Mishra of Housing and Credit Counseling, Inc., and Lawrence’s Realtor of the Year, Thomas Howe, present the benefits and pitfalls of renting as a student, in mid-life, and as a retiree.


May 19: Teaching Your Kids About Money

How many of us look back on our childhood and wish we would have learned more about money? Gayla Randel, education program consultant for the Kansas Department of Education, joins Anju Mishra of Housing and Credit Counseling, Inc. to offer constructive ideas to parents who want their children to develop good money habits for life.


June 2: Basics of Investing

That .01% interest you’re earning in your passbook savings account just isn’t cutting it. Yet you’re overwhelmed about the world of investing. Learn about the five keys to investing and how to outsmart investment fraud with Shannon Stone, Randy Mullikin, and Kenneth Becker of the Kansas Securities Commission. Moderated by Anju Mishra of Housing and Credit Counseling, Inc.


Online Training Software

We just added a great new resource for our community: anyone with a library card can log on and start learning from, a vast collection of online software training in 3D, animation, audio, business, design, developer, home computer, photography, video, web + interactive, Adobe, Microsoft, Apple, and more!

Get started here – all you need is your library card:

This resource is made possible by the generosity of the Simpson Foundation.

Tax Time!

April 15th is just around the corner. We are one of the few places in town where you can pick up basic printed federal tax forms.  We have 1040, 1040A, and 1040EZ forms. You can pick up these printed forms for free at the library, and while in our building you can utilize one of our instruction booklets for these forms.

However, starting this year, the IRS no longer sends printed specialized forms with instruction booklets to librariesWe also do not have any Kansas tax forms, as  the state of Kansas encourages all filers to use the Department of Revenue website to file electronically.  We do not offer tax help, but check out this list of free tax help spots around Lawrence.

If you’d like specialized forms and/or instruction booklets, you can get these directly from the IRS through these methods:

  1. Call the IRS directly. They will mail any form and instructions for free. They may be put on hold and it takes a little while to receive the forms. The IRS number for these forms is 1 (800) 829-3676.
  2. Order forms from the IRS online at These forms will be mailed to your home address.
  3. Download and print forms and instructions online at You can also view the instructions online and use them to prepare your forms and schedules.


Community Yarn Bombing

Yarn Bombing Information

Thanks for participating in our Yarn Bombing project, made possible by the generous donation of 300 skeins of yarn from our friends at Yarn Barn (yay!). Here’s some quick information on why we’re doing the project and some directions to make this organized street art installation a bit easier.

Why are we doing this? Each year for Read Across Lawrence, we choose a book that we encourage everyone in the community to read during the month of February and then come together at a variety of events to talk about it. This year, the adult book is The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. The book revolves around a society that controls women and oppresses them into specific roles. Being a handmaid is one of those roles, and these women are only valuable as child-bearing individuals for their masters. The handmaids are required to wear red, and can only leave their houses once a day to go to the market. They are not allowed to read or work, among other restrictions. However, some of the women in the book take to knitting scarves, which may not ever get used but give the women an outlet to feel like their work matters. It is a way to create even under an oppressive society, but knitting is still viewed by society as a purely feminine task.

To build on this theme of the book, we’re sending out a call to Lawrence knitters to yarn bomb trees around the library and their own homes using red yarn. The red yarn symbolizes the red outfits worn by the handmaid’s, and the street art project will bring both awareness to the book and show the beauty and culture of knitting.

How can I participate? There’s two ways you can participate:

  1. Starting Wednesday, Jan. 14, sign up at the library to yarn bomb one of the 25 trees surrounding the library. We’ll give you dimensions and a map of where your tree is located. Once you’re assigned a tree, you’ll get up 2 skeins of red yarn (for free!) to start knitting. On Sunday, Jan. 25, we’ll all install our yarn bombs at once.
  2. Want to use the trees in your own yard? You can still get up to 5 skeins of red yarn to use in your installation. Stop by the library to let us know you’re participating and get your free yarn (first come, first serve starting Jan. 14). Once it’s up, take photos of your trees and tag us on social media:
    1. Twitter and Instagram: @lawrencelibrary   -or-   Facebook: Lawrence Public Library

Community Installation: Sunday, Jan. 25, 12:00-4:00pm
*Yarn will be up at the library until the end of February


Yarn Bombing Directions

How do I get started? The easiest way to start is to knit a rectangle that’s the width of the circumference of the tree. The height of your knitted rectangle is whatever portion of the trunk you want to cover. For example, if you measure the tree around the trunk, and it’s about 10 inches around, and you want to cover from the bottom of the trunk to the first branch (which measures 5 feet), your rectangle would be 10in wide x 5ft tall. It can be all one color or you can include stripes, patterns, etc. within the rectangle. Be as intricate or simple as you like! It’s actually better to make the rectangle a bit smaller in width as the yarn will stretch. We want the yarn to be snug around the tree (not like a droopy blanket).

Now how do I install? When you install your yarn, all you have to do is wrap your knitted yarn around the tree, and sew a seam up the back. We’re asking that you use a different color of yarn for the seam so it will be easy to detach later (while still keeping the yarn intact).

What should my tree look like? That’s up to you! There’s many examples of yarn bombing available online, that range from simple to intricate. Choose something that fits your skill level, and just have fun! It can be anywhere from just the trunk to a complicated pattern that travels into the branches!

yarn bomb

What will you do with the yarn/knitting afterwards? We want to reuse as much of the yarn and knitting after Read Across Lawrence month is finished. We will work with local knitters to make the leftover yarn and knitting into hats, scarves, and other items for local non-profit organizations that serve women and children. Please plan and construct your knitting project so that as much of your great work can continue to be enjoyed well past February.

Questions? Contact Kristin Soper ( or Jeni Daley ( at (785) 843-3833.

Huge thanks to Yarn Barn for making this project possible!

YARNBARN_bw copy

Start with a Healthy New Year

MOOCs are massive open online courses, bringing people together to learn more about a specific topic. This MOOC will focus on enhancing knowledge about healthy lifestyle changes to improve eating practices, physical activity habits, and related wellness behaviors such as sleep habits, stress management, and substance abuse. Join our first library MOOC group as we meet together for 7 weeks:
Jan. 14 – Orientation
Jan. 21 – Setting Healthy Goals
Jan. 28 – Foods and Their Nutrients
Feb. 4 – Physical and Non-Exercise Activity
Feb. 11 – Macro and Micronutrients
Feb. 18 – Planning Healthy Meals
Feb. 25 – Emotions, Stress, and Loss of Motivation

The class will gather at 1:00pm on each of those days in meeting room C. We’re asking that people register so we can get a head count (call the library at [785] 843-3833). We’ll have healthy snacks and even a raffle drawing for a Fitbit for participants of the class!

TEDx Lawrence Public Library

TEDx events are now being held at the Lawrence Public Library!
The wildly popular TED talks (short for Technology, Entertainment, and Design) are “devoted to ideas worth spreading” and inform, inspire, and entertain people around the world.

With TEDxLawrencePublicLibrary Douglas County Residents will have the opportunity to watch curated programs of TED talks, hear new talks given by members of the community, and perhaps even share their own inspirations. All programs will be free and open to the public.

The inaugural TEDxLawrencePublicLibrary event will be held on Saturday, January 24th, 2015 from 3:00-5:00pm in the Library Auditorium. We’ll be screening several different TED talks and discussing them over hot chocolate and snacks.

Then, on May 2nd, 2015 we’ll be holding an event where local teens will take center stage and share inspiring stories of achievements, wishes, and dreams. Come and learn about the amazing things our teens are doing!

Stay updated with the latest information about these and additional events by following us on Facebook ( or visit our TEDx events page at


About TED

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California 25 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. The annual TED Conference invites the world’s leading thinkers and doers to speak for 18 minutes. Their talks are then made available, free, at

TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Al Gore, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Nandan Nilekani, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Isabel Allende and UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. The annual TED Conference takes place in Long Beach, California, with simulcast in Palm Springs; TEDGlobal is held each year in Oxford, UK. TED’s media initiatives include, where new TEDTalks are posted daily, and the Open Translation Project, which provides subtitles and interactive transcripts as well as the ability for any TEDTalk to be translated by volunteers worldwide. TED has established the annual TED Prize, where exceptional individuals with a wish to change the world are given the opportunity to put their wishes into action; TEDx, which offers individuals or groups a way to host local, self-organized events around the world; and the TEDFellows program, helping world-changing innovators from around the globe to become part of the TED community and, with its help, amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities.

Follow TED on Twitter at, or on Facebook at


About TEDx

In the spirit of “ideas worth spreading,” TED has created TEDx. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. Our event is called TEDxLawrencePublicLibrary, where x = independently organized TED event. At TEDxLawrencePublicLibrary, TEDTalks video and live speakers will combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events, including ours, are self-organized.


2014 Banned Book Trading Cards for Sale!

For the third year, we celebrated the freedom to read with our Banned Book Trading Card project. Each year, we send out a call to artists to submit their original artwork for any banned or challenged book. Of the 47 entries we received this year, 7 were chosen to be turned into limited edition trading cards. You can now purchase the entire set at our online store here, and we’ll ship it to anywhere in the world. They make great gifts, too! Our 2013 sets are also still available in our store

2014 Trading Cards from Lawrence Public Library on Square Market

Our call for submissions resulted in 47 entries from local artists of all ages and backgrounds. All of the submissions are on display here – just click on an image to read why the book was banned and the artist’s statement about the piece.

New Catalog Now Live (with Mobile App!)

Our new catalog is now live! You can try it here. Some of our favorite features include:

  • Patrons create a username (won’t have to type your barcode every time you want to place a hold!)
  • Ability to create book lists for yourself or to share, and see other people’s suggestions (great vacation reads, mysteries for middle grades, Matilda’s epic reading list, and more)
  • Can rate and review titles you like (or dislike!)
  • Add books to your shelves: “read,” “in progress,” or “for later”
  • See great staff picks
  • Better search capabilities (want to find new music? Type “new music”)
  • We now have a mobile app!
  • Plus all of the previous features of placing holds, renewing books, paying fines online, and more.

You can now download our mobile app for iPhones and Android devices. iPhone =  Android = 

We’d love to hear what you think of the new catalog or if you have any questions!