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Shelf Reading

January 20th, 2016


It should be no surprise to anyone that knows me that I am extremely Type-A. Order and control go hand in hand. That is why I absolutely LOVE the volunteer task of shelf reading.

Shelf reading is the act of methodically going through the collection and checking that each book is in order, either numerically or alphabetically, ensuring that they are in order. While doing this, the books are “edged,” which means books are pulled flush with the edge of the shelf.

The result is a masterpiece! To me, there is nothing more beautiful than a clean, shelf read row. It looks crisp and clean.

On top of my Type-A joy from the order, shelf reading truly is a necessary job in the library. If a few books are out of order, our shelvers may end up misshelving more books. Librarians and patrons alike won’t be able to find items because they aren’t where they are suppose to be. Everyone wins!

This is a great task for volunteers who arrive at the library to find there aren’t a lot of books to be shelved (it happens, especially during the winter months!) or short term volunteers who need to dedicate a set number of hours for whatever reason. We can ALWAYS use shelf readers.

If you are interested, let me know. If you are experienced in the ways of shelf reading, stop by the Reference Desk for an area and dive in!

Volunteering and Civic Engagement in Maine

December 9th, 2015


Every year, the Corporation for National & Community Service compile national statistics about volunteerism around the country as well as in each state. The release of the report is always cause for celebration in my mind. I am overjoyed to see how giving Mainers are!

In 2014, Maine ranked 13th out of the 50 states and Washington D.C. with 31.9% (or 336,570 individuals) volunteering. They gave 40.9 million hours of service! Think about that for a second. That is unreal. That equates to each citizen of the state giving 37.5 hours.

In addition to volunteering, 52.5% of Maine residents donated $25 or more to a charity in 2014. Even when the going gets tough, we still find a way to help each other out. And what makes this even better is that, while only 41.5% of non-volunteering Maine residents gave money to causes, a whopping 75.9% of volunteers in Maine also gave financially. The difference is staggering. Our volunteers are so generous as it is, to know they are also fiscally generous is so touching and makes me grateful to come to work each day to share in their joy.

To see the whole report, visit:

Volunteer Fire Tenders Wanted!

December 3rd, 2015


We try to keep the fire burning December through March, on Sundays from 1:00 to 3:00. What a wonderful tradition you can become a part of as you help create a warm environment for our patrons.

Volunteers aged 21 and over are welcome to join Melissa Hall on Friday, December 4 or Friday, December 11 at 10am at the fireplace in the 1904 Reading Room for a tutorial on operating the fireplace and keeping a fire going. She will review safety procedures and volunteers responsibilities.

After completing the brief training, volunteers can sign up for the 12:30 – 3:30pm Sundays throughout the winter.

Please let me know if you are interested but cannot make the two dates and we can figure something out. I can be reached over email at or 207-725-5242 x237