Library Success Stories

We want to hear from you! 

The Saskatchewan Library Trustees' Association is looking for stories that tell us why your library matters. 

Has your library: 
- developed a special program that's made a difference in your community? 
- held a unique special event?
- celebrated a milestone in your community?
- tried something new that is unique and exciting? 
- done something that you think more people need to hear about? 
Tell us! 
Fill out our story submission form ( and feel free to send us photos if available. Please keep in mind that the SLTA may share your stories on social media and on promotional materials. 
Together, we can work to strengthen Saskatchewan libraries.

Saskatchewan Library Week - Carnduff Library

We have had a very busy Library Week with the following taking place:

1)  Book Spine Poetry Contest - all week
2)  Book & Bake Sale  -  All week.  Patrons could fill a plastic bag with used books for $3.00 and purchase some baking to snack on while reading their new books.
3)  Lego Competition - Tuesday - Children vs Adults - We had 45 attend. Everyone was given a theme and a time limit for building.  After clean up we talked about all the builds and put them on display.  We had $100.00 in Lego prizes to draw for and had a snack at the end of the evening.
4)  Filipino Spring Roll Demonstration - Wednesday - We had 12 attend.  A Filipino resident of Carnduff did the workshop and provided samples for everyone to enjoy. They were yummy!
5)  Craft Corner - Thursday - We had 30 children attend.  They made Spooky Spoons and Scratch Art Bookmarks. We secured a grant from Community Initiatives Fund to cover the cost of all our crafting supplies.
6)  Lego Club - Saturday - This was our regular Lego Club event. 

Programs at the Carnduff Library

The summer reading program was a tremendous success this year. They had 159 children take part in programs. Total attendance was 683 at 22 events. There were lego events, craft drop-ins, story/craft/snack drop-ins, a games event, and a science experiement event. They also had some special events with guests: Main Street Mobile (for preschoolers and care giver/parent, Adventure Smart presentation, Danny Kazam - children's entertainer and face painters at the wind-up. They were very thankful to receive two grants for the summer reading program - one from a community initiative fund and one from the Carnduff recreation board.


Programs at the Carnduff Library

Craft Corner - Is for children ages 5-12. One of the Carnduff Library Branch Assistants - Jacquie St Cyer - runs the program. She does all the planning and purchasing for it and leads it once a month. It is a free program.

Family Literacy Program - This is a free program. Branch Librarian Linda Kimball applied for and received a grant from Community Initiatives Fund for this program. For the kick-off in January they offered a free supper (chili & bun) with fruit for desert. The program was explained and the theme was dominoes. For the second event the theme was shapes. A couple of future event themes will include Lego and Play-doh. 


Carnduff Library - Percussion Kit March Band, July 11, 2018

Carnduff Library held an amazing MakerSpace Persuccsion Kit at their branch. The children enjoyed making music and taking turns leading a band. One day they had a marching band trailing through the library!


Carnduff Library

The Summer Reading Program is underway at the Carnduff Integrated Public Library. They have three drop-in events a week. Monday is Lego Drop-in. Wednesday is Craft Drop-in. Friday is Story Time Drop-in. Each week has a different theme and the three drop-ins are planned with that theme.


Carnduff Library

Carnduff Library has been busy!

On March 24 they held a superhero fundraiser event. Twelve boys and girls attended. They read stories, made masks and armbands, did some painting, watched a movie and enjoyed a light lunch. The children went home with a goodie bag.

Carnduff Library brought in a metal stamping kit and branch librarian Linda Kimball added beading to it - encouraging the boys and girls to create jewelry, keychains and zipper pulls. It was a lot of fun and was a free event. Some of the children made Mother's Day and Father's Day gifts for their parents.

A princess tea fundraiser was held April 21. Fifteen little princessess attended. They read stories, made crowns and wands, did some painting, watched a movie and had a tea party complete with fancy sandwiches. The girls iced their own cookies and had "tea" (apple juice) in real china cups - which they took home afterwards along with a goodie bag.

The Lego Club meets twice a month and continues to be a hit. There is always a theme that the children are challenged to build. It is a lot of fun.


Carnduff Library - Family Literacy Day

Today was Family Literacy Day and our branch celebrated by inviting families to participate in various activities. Children were given a check-off sheet and had to complete 8 different stations.

1) Puzzle Play - families had to work together to complete a puzzle
2) Bookmark Station - children colored a bookmark and got to take it home
3) Read Your Clothes - children had to see who in their family had something to read on their clothes. If none did they read the manufacturer tags.
4) Draw a picture from their favorite book. Pictures were collected and put on display in the library.
5) Book Charades - children had to act out a title of a book and have the rest of their family guess the title
6) Reading Corner - children had to pick a book and read it to their family. For the younger ones, the parents read to them.
7) Lego Station - children had to build something from a book they read.
8) Sign out a book

Upon completion of all 8 stations, they received a snack. They also were shown a selection of purchased/donated books and were allowed to take a book home for keeps. 

All in all it was a very busy afternoon and a lot of fun.


Frontier Library

The local librarian helped a patron register and bid in an online auction on the library computer.

Carnduff Library - Saskatchewan Library Week - (Click here to view the poster.)

Carnduff Library recently held an engineering workshop. The kids really enjoyed it. Below are pictures of the workshop, as well as some from their draws and baking sale.


Donna Hartley - Ogema Library

A teacher and I made a presentation all about what our Ogema public library has to offer and showed it to grades 6-12. (My intention was to get them better informed to enter our contest.) It was great. They asked so many great questions and talked their teacher into going to library in class time to get cards. Parents met them there too. Also presented to the EAL night class they were interested in the music and games. Their teacher took them to get cards as well. Turned out successful for our Ogema library even though that wasn't my first intention! Southeast only allows 5 downloads per month from Hoopla and kids are wanting more. 

Here are some quotes from the kids:

·         Princess: “I stayed up until midnight on Hoopla!”

·         Hanna: “We HAVE to get more uses for Hoopla, I used all of mine up right away.”

·         Brittney: “The first can’t come soon enough! I need more Hoopla!”

·         Ace: “There is just so much. Wow.”

·         Princess: “The Filipino books are great!”

·         Hanna: “Miss Hughes, check out Flipster with me!”

·         Kate: “I have my library card. Will you show me everything again? I have a list of stuff to order!”

·         Kaden H.: “Yes!! I got my own card!”

·         Gavin: “I got my card! Let’s check this stuff out.”

·         Luke: “This is pretty cool. I’m getting some movies right now.”

·         Clinton: “Libraries are more than just books.”

·         RG: “This is pretty neat. I’m actually a library kid now!”

·         Heaven: “Look at all this stuff!”

·         Jesi: “Look, I found my family in this book! I’m famous at the library!”

·         Bodee: “I don’t like books but this is pretty cool.”

Frontier Library

Libraries Matter...The Frontier Library Float in the Frontier 150 celebration on Saturday, September 23, 2017. The float was decorated and driven by branch librarian Carmen Andrejcin, and board member Caryl Swarbrick road with her in the parade.  

Carnduff Library
Branch Librarian Linda Kimball applied for and received two grants to run the Summer Reading Program. They had three drop-in events every week for children to attend. Monday was a Lego Drop-in - Wednesday was a Craft Drop-in - Friday was a Story Hour Drop-in. 
Mondays were run similar to the regular Lego Club - they gave the children a theme and 45 minutes to build something. Then they cleaned up, explained what they made, received a cookie and off they went!
Wednesday the children got to choose from three or four craft ideas. They made one or twp crafts and got to take them home. 
Friday for Story Hour the theme was about Canada (celebrating Canada's 150th Birthday) and the themes were: beavers, maple syrup, the Canada flag, moose, hockey, Hudson's Bay Company, loons and Canadian money. There were games, craft time and snack time.  Linda pulled books relating to all the themes and about Canada in general and had them available for the kids to sign out. Every time a book was signed out the kids were given a happy face sticker to put on a map of Canada. Over 450 books were signed out in July and August. 
They also brought in twp entertainers - in July there was Lulu and the TomCat and in August Richy Roy the magician. 
The summer ended with a Hot Dog lunch wind-up. And all events were FREE! 
One hundred and twenty nine children attended the summer events. Many parents volunteered their time to help and felt it was a success!

Oungre, A Hamlet of 15, Has Over 100 Children Attend SRC in July Alonge - Oungre

How did they do it? They monopolized on their greatest asset, Oungre Memorial Regional Park, and promoted their programs heavily at the beginning of July. As a result over 100 children attended their programming in July alone. Sixty-six children registered formally.  

Ivanka, the Librarian shared, “A girl came today to the Library to sign in for TD Summer Reading Club, and she told me how happy she is for her parents, that we have so many free programs this summer, and how they don't have money for a lot of things because her father lost his job.”

She commented, “I'm so glad to be a small part of her happiness”.

Carnduff Kids are Wild About Reading - Carnduff

Carnduff Library took their Summer Reading Club on a Wild Safari this summer. The librarian made up a poster, “Get Wild about Reading" and "Join Our Reading Safari". Then she made a "jeep" out of a huge cardboard box. There were doors at the sides and the kids could go in and have their picture taken. The pictures were printed and posted on the bulletin board. Of course, if you were going on a real safari, you would most likely need a passport to get there, so they made a passport booklet for each child. They were encouraged to take out animal themed books and the librarian and assistants filled out their passport pages and stamped them. When the passports were complete, they turned them in for a prize. Also, when they took out animal books, they were given an animal sticker for each book. The stickers were then put onto a 'mural'. The goal was to fill the mural with animals, representing how many animal books were read over the 2 months. They also decorated the library with vines and leaves and had lots of stuffed animals on the shelves and throughout the library. They had animal bingo sheets for the kids to do once they finished their passports, animal puzzles to make and animal pictures to color.

Thirty-five children registered in the program and over 600 books were read. 

Spelunking in a Library????? - Milestone

That’s right! Milestone children spent an afternoon ‘Spelunking’ at the local library. A couple of local individuals gave a presentation along with power point slides and shared about the recreational past time of exploring caves. To make this a real experience the librarian converted over half of the library into a cave. She made the cave walls with crumpled brown paper and the stalagmites with toilet paper rolls covered in tin foil with a battery tea light inside and the kids used glow sticks for their lights. There is a video on Milestones’ Facebook page - check it out!

Summer Partnership Project Enhances Programming Opportunities in Oxbow - Oxbow

This year Oxbow Public Library Branch partnered with the Museum and Family Centre and hired a Summer Student to run programming in their community all summer long. The partnership was funded by Community Initiatives Fund and Canada Summer Jobs. As a result the library was able to host some great programming and had lots of traffic all summer long. They went wild with programming keeping to the TD Summer Reading Club theme of “Go Wild” and hosted a variety of programs including: Wildlife Photography with local photographer Doug Sully, Wild Hair Day with a local hair stylist, Geocaching & Exploring the Great Wild World with a local geocaching enthusiast, Bee a Wildflower Child dress like a hippie and plant wildflower garden day, culminating with a Wild wrap-up Party. Special events included Summer Kick-off and 50th Anniversary event with special guest magician Richy Roy and a special day, “Books with the Bruins” reading, and playing a game of min-stix hockey with some of the Estevan Bruins. Sixty-two children registered for the program and well over 1000 books were read.

There was no end of excitement and activity at the branch over the summer. 

Children's Book Week Event a "Howling" Success - Montmartre

On May 12, 2016, the Montmartre Public Library Branch and the Montmartre School paired up to host author Judy Bird, in celebration of Children's Book Week. Judy presented her second children's book, "Domino and Buttons to the Rescue", to students from kindergarten to grade 4. Also in attendance, were children from Montmartre Daycare with several people from the community attending for a total of 100 people. 

Accompanying Judy was her husband, Nelson Bird, as well as the inspiration for her books, Geronimo, their pet Bloodhound dog. This is the second book in a series of books featuring the antics of "Geronimo". The first book is titled "Domino's Nose Knows".

Following the reading, there was much discussion about blood hounds and their habits and in particular the habits of Geronimo as their pet at home. The children were given an opportunity to pet and sing (howl) with Geronimo.

The author presentation was very much enjoyed by all and we are anxiously awaiting Judy's next book in the "Geronimo" series.

Ensuring Library has a Strong Community Presence Through Outreach - Maryfield

Volunteers with Maryfield Public Library have offered an outreach program for many years to Maryfield Sunrise Villa, providing hours of enjoyment to the residents living there. Several tenants have no access to the library except for the delivery services. And over the years there have been many tenants who are vision impaired who gained great pleasure in listening to books on CD as well. 

Not only does the library deliver resource materials but they host a "Popcorn and a Movie" night at the home on a regular basis. The tenants request a movie from the library and popcorn and pop are provided by the Chairperson, who also runs the movie. Visitors are welcome; some regulars come from the next door Heritage Haven for these evenings. One gentleman enjoys the popcorn as much as the movie. One lady is always in the common room by 6 p.m. even though the movie starts at 6:30 p.m. It is a service to the community that Maryfield Library is pleased to provide.

Offering services outside the 4 walls of the library creates a strong community presence.  


Boys, Men and Mighty Machines - Gainsborough

Every spring, Gainsborough Public Library Branch hosts a “Mighty Machines” event for men and boys. This year they had 26 boys come with Dads, Grandpa’s, uncles or family friends in tow, to check out the machinery at a local company called ‘Shaw Earth Moving’. The boss, Hank Shaw, took the group to one of the ‘mighty machines’ on site to inspect and then gave a tour of all the different equipment they use in their earth moving business. After the tour was done they played on the dirt pile with their tonka trucks and machines, along with other toys they brought with them. Then everyone got to go for a ride in a rock truck or a semi. The event wound up with a hot dog, drink and treat. This yearly event is always a highlight. So the girls don’t miss out they sponsor a “Princess Day” as well.                                                                                                  

Frontier Library

Below are pictures of Frontier Library's April 2017 Talent Night.


Carnduff Library

Carnduff Library had the Regional KidsFirst Main Street Mobile Famly Resources Van visit them this past Thursday morning as part of their regular scheduled Story Hour time for preschoolers. It was a sunny morning with a cool breeze but everyone had fun. The children had lots of games and activities to choose from, and there were lots of parents as well. The children received a snack and went home with a book.


Carnduff Library

Carnduff Library held a SuperHero event on Saturday, May 13. It was a fundraiser for the library. Nine children attended and all came dressed as their favourite SuperHero. The children read stories, played a game, made a SuperHero mask and shield, watched a short movie, and enjoyed a snack of pizza, veggies, dip, and rice krispie squares. The game was "Catch the Villian". The villian was played by branch assistant Amy Marsh. After she was caught the SuperHeroes tied her to a chair so she couldn't escape. This then became the backdrop for the group picture.

Carnduff Library
The lego club continues to do well. The club runs twice a month - once after school and once on a Saturday. It is a free event. The last lego club event was a lot of fun. Each of the children picked a letter of the alphabet from a jar and had to build something that started with that letter. The kids were very creative.

Carnduff Library

Carnduff library held a Princess Tea at our branch on Saturday, April 1st. Twenty 'princesses' attended the event, which was a fundraiser. There were stories, crafts, a short movie and of course a 'tea' party. The girls were all given goodie bags, their crafts and the tea cup & saucer to take home. There was a photographer who took pictures of the girls and emailed them to the parents.

Celine Farley - Story Time at the Library

We had a 3 year old girl, very shy, did not talk, would just sit on her grandmas lap and not join in any games or play with other children. After coming to story time program, within 4 months she was starting to talk, join in the games and she has become one of the chattiest children I have in my program. What a great way to prepare her for kindergarten.

ESL Field Trip to the Library - Frontier Library

Members of the ESL class came to the library last Thursday evening and I helped them fill out their questionnaires. We discussed how the library works, where our region spans, we looked at the map of all the other regions and talked about loans from other provinces. The class milled about, asked me a series of questions pertaining to renewals, fines, loan periods. I showed a few of them the process of checking out books. And I filled out 4 new registrations and handed out their library cards. They were excited! They couldn’t believe they didn’t have to pay anything to get them! 


Button Maker Worksshop - Carnduff Library

Southeast Regional Library has many MakerSpace Kits that are circulated to different branches at their request. We recently brought in the Button Maker Kit for a workshop. Children pre-registered and could bring in their own pictures for their buttons or use some we had ready. The kids were very intrigued about how the machine made the buttons. One young girl was very excited to make a button for her mom as a surprise Christmas gift. Seeing the children learn new things is very rewarding.


"A Sweet Note" Concert and Dessert Afternoon


In 2012 the Glenavon Library Board decided to host an event that would celebrate local area talent.   "A Sweet Note" was born and was so successful it has been held annually ever since. A Sweet Note features local area singers, musicians, dancers and artists.  To keep you happy we serve up delectable desserts to an appreciative audience.  "A Sweet Note" helps us come together and celebrate community.  It also helps us raise funds to keep our awesome library running!  Once again we will Herald in the Christmas Season and serve up a "Tasty Chord" to all those who come out on Sunday December 4 at 1:30 p.m.                                     

Drop Off Site Gets the Programming Bug

While the site cannot boast a full service library, they still take their position seriously in the community.  On behalf of the library, the volunteers of the Tourquay drop off site host Friday evening gymnasium for family community sports.  They keep their volunteer site viable by encouraging mothers and children to engage in reading.

Tourquay Drop Site 

Changes in the Wind for White City Branch

The White City Library Branch looks forward to starting a major rejuvenation project in the New Year, creating a new facility to serve our growing community.  In the meantime, they continue to offer a variety of programming to the community including Library Week events. 

This year they hosted a Seniors Coffee Time and a special presentation, Nutrition with Lil'MissFit - Krista Mayer.  

Kennedy Supports New Immigrants in Library Access - Results in Avid Users (Kipling Public Library Branch)

We had a new family recently move to our town from the Philippines.  The father has his Canadian Citizenship and his three children had just joined him.  They came into the library hoping to get cards for the children, but the kids didn’t have their Canadian ID yet.  As Canadian ID is required to register I told them I would have to check with our Regional Branch Manager to see if we could work something out.  He was incredibly understanding and we came up with a way to go ahead and give them patron cards.  It was a lot of fun getting them started.  They were delighted and so appreciative to have library access. That family has continued to be avid library users ever since! 


Carnduff Library - Book & Bake Fundraiser

Carnduff Library recently held a two day Book and Bake Fundraiser event. The baking was contributed by patrons, board members and staff, with one staff donating some of her home-made preserves to sell. Over $350.00 was raised for the library so it was a very successful endeavour.

Please see the attached poster.

Carnduff Library - Super Hero Event 

Carnduff Library held a Super Hero Event on Saturday, April 30th. There were nine "super" boys aged three to eight attend in costume. The afternoon included stories, making a mask, building a tall Lego tower, watching a movie and a snack of pizza, veggies, dip and decorating their own cupcakes.

Spiritwood Public Library Celebrates 55th Anniversary with Remembrance and Laughter 

On April 13, 1961, the Spiritwood branch of the Wapiti Regional Library was formed. Fifty-five years later, the library and community celebrated the landmark with a Come & Go party featuring anniversary cake and refreshments.

Wapiti Regional Library Director Tony Murphy attended the celebration as did a former librarian, who, currently in her nineties, served from 1974 to 1979.

To visually experience fifty-five years of history, guests were invited to browse meeting minutes, scrap books, and memorabilia from days gone by. The result was a pleasant afternoon spent swapping memories and laughter as photos revealed former hair styles, clothing, accessories, and younger versions of everyone. Some even remembered the early days when the first library was housed in the basement of the rural municipality building.

More than sixty people signed the guest book that will now take its place in history, saved for the enjoyment of future generations who will continue to celebrate the creation of such a vital community asset.  


Left: current librarian;                                                                    Guests enjoy historical documents.
Right: former librarian now in her nineties.

Lego Club Kick-off

Last fall the Carnduff Branch Library applied for a Community Initiatives Fund grant with the purpose of starting a Lego Club. We received a $1,000 grant and planned to get the club going in the spring, with two events a month. Supplies were purchased and we held our kick-off event on Wednesday, April 20th after school. There were 47 enthusiastic children, ranging in age from 4 to 13, who attended. The children aged 4-9 were instructed to build a boat. They could work individually or together with friends as a team. Those aged 10-13 were given a Lego base plate and told to include water and land with their boat. The results were amazing! Such creativity! After the building time, they displayed and explained their projects, which were put on display in the library. The afternoon closed with a snack, draws for door prizes, and everyone received a small toy as they left; eager to come back for the next event. 


This event was possible due to the grant from Community Initiatives Fund.

Princess Tea

The Carnduff Integrated School Public Library held a Princess Tea on Saturday, April 16th. Fourteen princesses attended the event. They watched a Cinderella movie, were read a few Princess stories, made their own special wand, played a wand game and decorated their own cupcakes which they then enjoyed with their lunch. The lunch menu was mini sandwiches, pickles and cheese with their cupcakes and "tea" (apple juice) in real china tea cups. It was a grand event!


Ogema Branch Library

For several years Ogema Branch Library has played an important role in welcoming and helping newcomers settle into a new community and country. Currently there are about 150 Philippine immigrants in our town of 368. This includes 40 students in the school population of 100. For the past 4 years an English as an Alternative Language Class from Southeast College has been offered in the town. The library tries to plan its Adult Programming on the same night as this class. This allows the teacher to bring all her students to the program. Regardless of the topic, the English learners are challenged to listen carefully and with encouragement from their teacher ask questions in English. Recently during Saskatchewan Library / Education Week the library program was “Dare to Know Your Province”. The library hosted Jason Sylvestre, illustrator of You Might Be From Saskatchewan if……… and Strange Saskatchewan – a walk through what makes this great province and its people so compelling. This provided an excellent opportunity for the newcomers to learn more about the province and also to be entertained by some great Saskatchewan humour! I could go on and on……….. about the opportunities and services that make our library indispensable in our community.

Donna Hartley

What my Library Means to Me

I am seventy seven years old and have had a life-long love of being read to, of receiving my favorite Nancy Drew book for Christmas, and now, because I am downsizing and no longer want to own books, being able to order all the books that I am interested in reading, I can simply order on line and return the books when I have read them. I become aware of books that I would like to read from television interviews, from magazine articles, and because of the library I am able to order these books and to enjoy reading them and to experience all of the different thoughts and ideas that are happening in the world outside my door.

Thanks, Lois