Bookmobile Saturday to showcase libraries on the move @ ALA Annual Conference

For Immediate Release
Tue, 06/02/2015


John L. Amundsen

Program Officer, Outreach and Communications

ALA Office for Diversity, Literacy, and Outreach Services

(312) 280-2140

CHICAGO — Every day, bookmobiles extend library programs, services and much more into the communities they serve. Bookmobile Saturday, a series of programs and events highlighting the critical services bookmobiles provide, will be held on Saturday, June 27 during ALA’s 2015 Annual Conference in San Francisco.

Bookmobile Saturday gives attendees the opportunity to learn, gain inspiration and network. Learn about model practices and programming ideas during “Bringing Service Beyond the Library’s Walls,” a panel discussion featuring bay area bookmobile staff as they discuss their mobile outreach programs. Hear about the latest trends in bookmobile vehicles from leading manufacturers during “Making the Bookmobile Purchase – Tips from Leading Vendors.” Connect with colleagues from across the country and get inspired at the Bookmobile Saturday author luncheon featuring Mac Barnett. Finally, explore the latest bookmobiles at the 2015 Parade of Bookmobiles, held on the exhibits floor.

The day’s events will begin from 8:30 - 10 a.m. in room 2008 of Moscone Center West with “Bringing Service Beyond the Library’s Walls,” a panel discussion highlighting innovative programming ideas from bookmobile staff based in the Bay Area and opportunities for bookmobile and outreach staff to advance their careers through involvement with the Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services (ABOS). Panelists will include Marianne Thompson, ABOS Vice President and Outreach Services Manager, Fountaindale Public  Library, Bolingbrook, Illinois; Amytha Willard, Santa Clara County Library District; Therese Jones, Mobile Library Services, Marin County Free Library; Carine Risley, San Mateo County Library, and Suzanne Beattie, Mobile Outreach Services Manager, San Francisco Public Library.  

From 10:30 - 11:30 a.m. in room 200-212 of Moscone Center South, representatives from leading bookmobile manufacturers Farber Specialty Vehicles and OBS Specialty Vehicles, Inc. will discuss the many aspects of purchasing a vehicle that libraries should consider when acquiring a new bookmobile, from size, green technologies, and other cutting edge developments in bookmobiles today, as well as what to expect when going through the purchasing process. Speakers will include Martin Marek, Farber Specialty Vehicles, Inc.; and Barb Ferne, OBS Specialty Vehicles, Inc.

Admission to both panels is free and open to all ALA Annual Conference Attendees.

Following the morning panel, attendees will have the opportunity to attend the Bookmobile Saturday Author Luncheon, to be held from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in the Sutter room at the Intercontinental San Francisco featuring Mac Barnett. Bestselling and award winning author Mac Barnett wrote The Terrible Two with his friend Jory John. The duo met through their jobs at 826LA and 826 Valencia, nonprofit centers that give kids free help with their creative and expository writing. Mac will discuss his work with 826 and his belief that one way to ensure we have diverse readers and writers is by making sure students everywhere—especially in low-income neighborhoods—have access to free, fun, high-quality writing instruction.

Tickets to the lunch are $25; a limited amount of tickets will be available for purchase at the door.  Please refer to Ticket OLS1 when registering at; space is limited. Barnett’s participation is made possible by Abrams.

After lunch, the program will move to the exhibits hall in Moscone Convention Center for the Parade of Bookmobiles from 3 p.m. - 5 p.m. During the Parade, attendees can explore four bookmobiles and speak with bookmobile staff and enter for a random prize drawing. Participating libraries will include the Marin County Free Library, the Santa Clara County Library District, the San Francisco Public Library, and the San Mateo County Library. The parade is free and open to all conference attendees. 

Bookmobile Saturday is made possible through the generous support of Farber Specialty Vehicles and OBS Specialty Vehicles, Inc.

For more information about ALA Annual Conference, please visit

About Abrams

Founded by Harry N. Abrams in 1949, ABRAMS is the preeminent publisher of high-quality art and illustrated books. Now a subsidiary of La Martinière Groupe, ABRAMS is the publisher of bestsellers such as the wildly popular Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney, the bestselling middle grade novel The Terrible Two by Mac Barnett and Jory John, the award-winning cookbooks of Alton Brown, and the stunning photography of Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s Earth from Above. ABRAMS publishes books in the areas of art, photography, cooking, interior design, comics, craft, fashion, sports, and pop culture, as well as children’s books and general interest. The company’s imprints include Abrams; Abrams Appleseed; Abrams ComicArts; Abrams Image; Abrams Noterie; Abrams Books for Young Readers; Amulet Books; Stewart, Tabori & Chang; and STC Craft/Melanie Falick Books.

About Farber

Farber Specialty Vehicles is a family owned business, currently introducing the 4th generation. Farber Specialty employs over 100 people and is engaged in the research, design, development and manufacture of custom specialty vehicles. A talented workforce with an extremely high retention rate has been the cornerstone of Farber Specialty Vehicles’ success. Farber’s team leaders oversee a staff of more than 100 skilled craftsmen and have been in the industry from ten to thirty years.

About OBS, Inc.

OBS INC is a custom designer and builder of high quality bookmobiles for customers worldwide. Our full complement of outreach vehicles are constructed on well -known chassis and body platforms.  From small vans to full size buses and trailers, OBS has a bookmobile style for each unique service.  Our 300 +  bookmobiles are known for their quality craftsmanship, attention to detail, and durability.

About the Office for Diversity, Literacy, and Outreach Services

The Office for Diversity, Literacy and Outreach Services drives activities around three professional issues which collectively support equity and inclusion as fundamental values of the association.  Relationships and major initiatives undertaken by the Office across these three issues help ensure the inclusion of diverse perspectives within our profession and association to best position ALA as a trusted, leading advocate for equitable access to library services for all.