ALSC selects three Libraries for second annual Bookapalooza program

Contact: Aimee Strittmatter
ALSC Deputy Director
(312) 280-2164
astrittmatter@ala.org
For Immediate Release,
February 22, 2008

ALSC selects three Libraries for second annual Bookapalooza program

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), is pleased to announce the winners of the second annual Bookapalooza program. The three libraries selected to receive a collection of children's materials are Enid M. Baa Public Library (St. Thomas, USVI), Lena (Wis.) Public Library and Montrose (Colo.) Regional Library District- Naturita Branch Library. The ALSC Executive Committee reviewed and scored the applications.

The collections, which consist of books, videos, audiobooks and recordings produced in 2007 and submitted by children's trade publishers to the 2008 award and media evaluation committees for consideration, are intended to help transform each library's collection and provide an opportunity for these materials to be used in each community in creative and innovative ways. The Bookapalooza program aligns with ALSC's core purpose of creating a better future for all children through libraries.

“As a part of the review process for this second Bookapalooza program, I was reminded again how difficult it is for many libraries to serve children on very scarce resources. It's a unique opportunity to help ALSC send these wonderful books out to libraries in need who will put them in the hands of so many children.” said ALSC President Jane B. Marino.

The Enid M. Baa Public Library will use its collection to provide adequate holdings for the islands' first bookmobile. Librarian Rachelle Shells said, “Although we indicated that our intent for use of the Bookapalooza materials will be to provide service to the underserved areas in St. Thomas, our real charge is to create a library environment where all Virgin Islanders have equity to access, young and old.”

Jennifer Thiele, Lena Public Library Director said, “I can't express enough how much this grant could mean to our library. I would want nothing more than having these kids take this love of libraries into their adulthood. I want them to look back on the library fondly, as a place where they felt comfortable, nurtured and happy. Many of these kids don't have that at home or school, and I want to offer them as much as I can if we have it available. I think these kids deserve some really great books, and as a librarian it is my job to make sure they are getting what they need.”

“Items from Bookapalooza will revolutionize the Naturita children's collection and add zing to the new library's shelves, but we won't wait until the new library's opening to begin putting the Bookapalooza collection into children's hands. The Naturita Library will expand its commitment to youth with the arrival of the new library, and we look forward to being able to hold story hours and other programs in the library. It will be wonderful to share items from the Bookapalooza program at these events,” stated Janet Oslund, head of children's services at the Montrose Regional Library District. Naturita, a mining and natural gas drilling town, is located in western Colorado.

Information on how to apply for the 2009 Bookapalooza program is available on the ALSC Web site, http://www.ala.org/alsc. Applications must be received by Dec.1in the ALSC office. For more information contact the ALSC office, (800) 545-2433, ext. 2164; or e-mail: astrittmatter@ala.org.