New Wyoming Branch Librarians

East Central Regional Library is pleased to welcome Bruce Willms and Debbie Willms as the new Branch Librarians at the Wyoming Area Giese Memorial Library.  Bruce and Debbie succeed Erica Myhre, who left us last fall to take a new position in Washington County.  Debbie and Bruce (yes, they’re married) are sharing Branch Librarian duties, and will each be in the branch about 20 hours a week.  Debbie will have primary responsibility for programming and children and teen activities, while Bruce will handle day-to-day operations.

Prior to joining East Central Regional Library, Debbie spent most of her library career at St Paul Public Library, beginning as a library specialist, then moving to become a supervisor in the West Seventh branch, and finally become Deputy Director.  Becoming Branch Librarian in Wyoming pulls her back into library public services for the first time in a long time.

Bruce has spent his career in many libraries throughout the Twin Cities, including the East Side Freedom Library, Metropolitan State University Library, Ramsey County Library and Hennepin County Library systems, and Macalester College Library. He came to East Central Regional Library a little over a year ago as a Library Assistant in Wyoming. He served as interim Branch Librarian during the search for a new librarian.

East Central Regional Library is thrilled to be able to call on the years of library experience both Bruce and Debbie bring with them to the Wyoming Branch.

If you haven’t yet, please stop by the library to say hello and welcome them to Wyoming.


Ice-Out Author Visits Culminate ECRL Reads Program

The culminating event of the 1st ECRL Reads program is quickly approaching.  Our ECRL Reads author Mary Casanova will be visiting four East Central Regional Library branches during November to discuss her book, Ice-Out.  For the last 8 weeks community members throughout our six counties have come together through the reading and discussion of Ice-Out and by attending multiple programs on Prohibition, the Model T, jazz music, F. Scott Fitzgerald and more topics based on the 1920s era from the book.

Mary Casanova is an award-winning Minnesota author. Many of her books stem from her life on the Minnesota-Canadian border; yet some of her stories have taken her as far away as France, Norway, and Belize for research.  Casanova grew up in a family of 10 children in St. Paul, Minnesota. In a bustling camp-like atmosphere, Casanova found that writing became her voice. “Words are my paintbrush,” she explains, “my way of exploring the world around me.”

Ice-Out is the story about 19-year-old Owen Jensen who has big dreams growing up in tiny Ranier, Minnesota, near the Canadian border.  But in the lawless Prohibition era of the 1920s, few paths are open to young men in his town, other than farming, fishing and bootlegging.  Inspired by real events in early 1920s Minnesota, it is a story of young romance against terrible odds and true grit on the border between license and responsibility, rich and poor, and right and wrong.

Casanova will be at the following ECRL branches:

  • Aitkin Public Library on Monday, November 13 at 6:30 pm
  • Princeton Area Library on Tuesday, November 14 at 6:30 pm
  • Wyoming Area Library on Wednesday, November 15 at 6:30 pm
  • Pine City Public Library on Thursday, November 16 at 6:30 pm.

Books will be available for sale by the author and Scout and Morgan Books from Cambridge.

The ECRL Reads program and Mary Casanova’s visit is funded with money from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.  Join us for this free program and listen as Mary talks about how events from her own family became an integral part of the Ice-Out story and why historical fiction plays an important part in literature.

Raptors of Minnesota

Explore the different raptors of Minnesota and what makes them unique from other birds during a special program at the Wyoming Area Library.

The program, presented by the East Central Regional Library, is set for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 7. In addition to plenty of raptor talk, participants will hear some of the greatest environmental success stories involving, for instance, the peregrine falcon and bald eagle. Learn about The Raptor Center and its role in protecting raptors and the world we share.

This project was funded with money from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund