A morning with a storyteller/photographer

East Central Regional Library presents a special performance by Steve Maanum, an award-winner for his storytelling and photography, at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 12 at the Aitkin Public Library.

Maanum will perform a collection of personal stories… some from the mind of a boy growing to manhood, others through the eyes of a confused, middle-aged man who is still struggling to find or rebel against maturity. Maanum, of Park Rapids, Minnesota, won the title of Great American Storyteller in 2017.

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Last-Minute Election Information

If you’ve suddenly realized that you’re not quite prepared for the upcoming elections, your friendly local librarians are ready to help you out. Except where it’s noted otherwise, all of the following information comes from the Minnesota Secretary of State’s web page.

Register to vote in Minnesota
http://www.sos.state.mn.us/index.aspx?page=204

Find your polling place
http://pollfinder.sos.state.mn.us/

Need a ride to your polling place?
http://www.sos.state.mn.us/index.aspx?page=1631

Interested in absentee voting?
http://www.sos.state.mn.us/index.aspx?page=211

Need to know how to return your absentee ballot?
According to the MN Secretary of State, there are four ways you can return your absentee ballot:
1.   Mail back your ballot in the pre-paid envelope provided by your local election official.
2.   Up until 5 p.m. on the day before the election, you may deliver your ballot in person to your local election official.
3.   You may also have someone else return your completed ballot, sealed in its envelope, to your local election official until 3 p.m. on Election Day. Persons delivering ballots may not do so for more than three voters.
4.  If you are worried about your ballot not arriving on time using First Class mail, you may choose to pay for package delivery service to return your ballot. Ballots must be received by your local election official by 3 p.m. on Election Day.

Find your local election official
(which will also tell you where you can submit an absentee ballot):
https://minnesota.overseasvotefoundation.org/vote/MN-ElectionOfficialDirectory

Find out which candidates and issues you’ll see on your ballot
http://myballotmn.sos.state.mn.us/Default.aspx

Interested in Political Fact-Checking?
http://www.factcheck.org/ (a project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center, a nonpartisan, nonprofit “consumer advocate” organization
http://www.politifact.com/ (a project of the Tampa Bay Times newspaper)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about elections and voting
http://www.sos.state.mn.us/index.aspx?page=1530

Wondering about other voting and election topics that you don’t see here? http://www.sos.state.mn.us/index.aspx?page=134  (Main page for Minnesota Voting Info)

As always, if you need anything else, don’t hesitate to contact your local ECRL library branch (http://www.ecrlib.org/branches.html). We’re happy to help you find the information you need!

Robin Duple
Branch Librarian, Pine City Public Library

McGregor Library Supports Habitat for Humanity

McGregor Library for opened up for Habitat for Humanity on Monday, July 12, 2010.

135 bicycle riders and approximately 40 support staff came into McGregor for the Habitat 500 – a 500 mile bicycle ride fund-raiser: Pedaling to build a cycle of hope.

They started in Sandstone and after passing through many other towns, end up in Cloquet.

They camped in the yard at the McGregor School in tents or slept on the floor in the BIG gym. The school is across from the library so I thought maybe we could offer them some connection to their family and friends. We opened the library for two hours (4-6 p.m.). They were waiting at the door to get in at four and I had to shoo several out of the community room, the WiFi center, at 6 p.m., for another group that had reserved the room.

There were approximately 65 that stopped in to use the internet, relax in the coolness or browse the shelves. Several bought books from the Friends’ dollar cart; a nice surprise. One did a little research in a Consumers Report magazine and another requested the words to Home On The Range. ALL the computers were in use, and I figured we had it in one of our sheet music books, and sure enough we did. He was happy because they do a program on Friday night and he was incorporating the song into his act.

Although everyone was very laid back and shared, I was happy to have Branch Library Aide Norma stop in and help for an hour and a half.

They appreciated us being open “just for them” and thanked ECRL for opening up. It went very well for all.

The last bicyclist left town, followed by a support vehicle, at 7:09 a.m., with a temperature of 57 degrees Fahrenheit on Tuesday, July 13th.

Penny Olson, McGregor Branch Librarian

Bicyclists using wireless in the Community Room. Click on the photo for more photos.
McGregor Library assists Habitat 500

ECRL PRESENTS: Fool in a Mask Productions !

From June 28th through July 9th the library will present Fool in a Mask Productions in “The Amazing Adventures of Stuart Lindman and Other Short Plays”.

Four young actors will perform in four short plays commissioned for the “Minnesota’s Greatest Generation Project”. This program is made possible through the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund and results from a new partnership between the Minnesota Regional Public Library System (MRPLS) and the Minnesota Historical Society.
Danielle Bronshteyn, Jacob Budnick, Tylinn Fahrni, and Marshall Sonsteby will entertain ECRL patrons in the following plays, all of which are based on oral histories and original historical documents:

“The Amazing Adventures of Stuart Lindman” by Joseph Scrimshaw
“Parachute Silk” by Carson Kreitzer
“The Secret Storm” by Sheri Wilner
“Swell” by Craig Johnson

Please check the ECRL homepage for the dates and times of scheduled performances. The theatre troupe will perform at all branch libraries in the ECRL service area.

This FREE program is suitable for the entire family!
Bob Gray
Reference and Interlibrary Loan Librarian

Christmas Tea at Aitkin Public Library

It was a festive afternoon at the Aitkin Public Library on Sunday, Dec. 2. Library patrons celebrated the coming Christmas season by reading a variety of Christmas prose and poetry. Afterwards, Christmas tea and elegant goodies were enjoyed by all in the beautifully trimmed library. Many remark that this event is the beginning of their Christmas celebration and even their favorite Christmas event—very relaxing and charming. This was the 13th annual Friends of the Library Christmas Tea.

Mary Beth Woodrow, Aitkin Library Branch Manager