What's New: General

PPLD.org has received a facelift! Don't be nervous – all the content you know and love is still the same. We’ve made some minor updates to the homepage and header, and refreshed the colors. Take a look and familiarize yourself with the changes. We’ll be going live with the new version soon!

Here is a list of what has changed:

  1. Colors used on the website now follow the PPLD brand.
  2. Our homepage message is now at the top of the page. It will only be active if there is a message to report.
  3. Catalog and My Account links are now on the right side of the header.
  4. The main menu is now below the header.
  5. The search bar is now in the center of the page.
  6. The quicklinks have been removed.
  7. Hours/Locations and Library Locator are now below the slideshow.
  8. The Give and Make buttons are now called Donate and Create.
  9. The Research link has been removed. You can still access Research from the main menu.
  10. Teens, Seniors and Homeschool Hub have all been updated to reflect the new site format.

Comments: 2

When Shauna Gerritsen was handed a breast cancer diagnosis, she took a look at her life and decided there were still some things she wanted to do.

Breast cancer was going to have to get out of her way.

“When I came in to meet with PPLD [Pikes Peak Library District] about a Career Online High School scholarship, I still had drain tubes and bandages from my surgery,” Gerritsen said. “When they asked me why I wanted the scholarship, I showed them my drain tubes and told them I was going to show my kids that, no matter what you’re going through in life, it’s about finishing the goals you set.”

Gerritsen is a driven individual with a laser focus on realizing her aspirations. After her diagnosis, she created a list of ambitions, and one of them was to receive her high school diploma.

The reason she couldn’t graduate the first time around? Her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer.

“I was very much against having hospice come in for my mom, because I always felt like once hospice comes in, that’s the end,” Gerritsen said. “I switched from a traditional school to homeschooling and got so wrapped up in taking care of my mom. Before I knew it, my senior year was there, and I didn’t have enough credits to graduate.”

This time around was going to be different. Gerritsen was determined to make it so.

“I realized now I’m in my mom’s shoes in my journey, and I had to do this to show my daughter that it can be done.”
In February of 2018, Gerritsen underwent her first surgery. What should have taken just one procedure turned into five because of an infection. Regardless, she began her first prerequisites for COHS in April, just two months later, and was admitted to PPLD’s COHS program on May 8, 2018.

COHS is a program that allows participants to earn an accredited high school diploma, an alternative to taking the GED. PPLD provides the program, which costs about $2,000 per student, at no charge to participants like Gerritsen who qualify for scholarships from the PPLD Foundation. The stipulations to receive a scholarship include completing the program in eighteen months.

As Gerritsen underwent multiple surgeries at the beginning of her COHS journey, the coursework timeline became even more difficult: she found out her family was moving nearly 600 miles away.

“Through all of this, through all of my surgeries, school, everything, my husband came down on orders.”

Gerritsen’s husband was stationed at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs, Colo., and got reassigned to Fort Sill in Lawton, Okla. The family had to sell their home and move just a month after Gerritsen’s final surgery.

“His date got pushed back, because I ended up having surgery in June, and the doctor wouldn’t release me to travel with drain tubes.”

So, among all of the family’s challenges, they relocated in July of 2018. Nevertheless, Gerritsen pushed on.

“My husband watched me cry through nights of not feeling good, but knowing I had classes to do,” Gerritsen said. “But I had to finish it, because I set goals. I gave myself exactly one year to graduate.”

And, of course, Gerritsen beat her goal.

She finished her COHS courses on May 1, 2019. She finished her eighteen months of coursework in less than a year. And, she’s in remission. Her body is clear of cancer.

Her husband was so proud of her accomplishment that he insisted the family attend Shauna’s graduation at Library 21c. Though both of them had to work the next day, the Gerritsens—Shauna, her husband, and their two children ages 7 and 4—drove through the night for PPLD’s Celebrate Literacy graduation ceremony on May 30, 2019.

“He told me that I couldn’t miss this, that I worked so hard for it, and that if we had to drive all day and night, we would be here for it,” Gerritsen said.

Gerritsen’s family sat proudly in the audience, snapping photos and loudly cheering, as she walked across the stage to receive her high school diploma. Just a few hours later, they’d head back out on the road to their new life in Oklahoma.
Now that she’s received her diploma, Gerritsen is determined to pursue her master’s degree and become a physician’s assistant. Pity the fool that dares to get in her way.

Comments: 0
summer adventure

Colorado Springs, Colo. (July 9, 2019) – Children’s Hospital Colorado, Colorado Springs announced a partnership with Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD) to support the Summer Adventure reading program serving more than 37,000 kids each summer. Additionally, the new hospital will provide free health-related resources, educational opportunities and family programming as part of their partnership with PPLD.

“As parents, one of our primary focuses is on stimulating our kids’ imaginative, creative cognitive abilities,” said Margaret Sabin, president of Children’s Colorado’s Southern Region. “This program provides families and kids with fun summer activities that are healthier and more engaging alternatives to watching Netflix for the rest of the summer. Our partnership with PPLD allows us to support families in creating summer fun that encourages mental and physical wellness and connects kids to their local community.”

The Summer Adventure reading program invites kids ages 0-18 to complete a series of activities listed on age-specific game cards, such as reading a book, camping, crafting, making a new food dish, or visiting a local museum. Once completed, kids are eligible to win prizes through July 31.

Established in 1903, PPLD is a nationally recognized system of public libraries and it is the second largest library district in the state with a service area covering 2,070 square miles. More than 185,000 children live within the District, and 2.7 million items for children and teens are checked out of PPLD each year. The service area includes Calhan, Colorado Springs, Monument, Falcon, Fountain, Manitou Springs, Ute Pass, Palmer Lake, the United States Air Force Academy, Fort Carson and many other municipalities and military installations.

“Partnering with Children’s Hospital Colorado, Colorado Springs is a natural fit for our organization,” said Lance James, Chief Development Officer and Foundation Executive Director for the Pikes Peak Library District Foundation. “Our mission is to connect our patrons with the resources they need to achieve their goals. Providing additional access to state-of-the-art healthcare resources through this partnership, in addition to the health information resources already provided in our Family Place Libraries, is just one more way for us to achieve that goal.”

Find more information about the Summer Adventure program here: Summer Adventure

About Children’s Hospital Colorado
Children’s Hospital Colorado is one of the nation’s leading and most expansive pediatric healthcare systems with a mission to improve the health of children through patient care, education, research and advocacy. Founded in 1908 and recognized as a top children’s hospital by U.S. News & World Report, Children’s Colorado has established itself as a pioneer in the discovery of innovative and groundbreaking treatments that are shaping the future of pediatric healthcare worldwide. Children’s Colorado offers a full spectrum of family-centered care at its urgent, emergency and specialty care locations throughout Colorado, including its location on the Anschutz Medical Campus, and across the region. Scheduled to open in mid-2019, the new Children’s Hospital Colorado, Colorado Springs, will be the first pediatric-only hospital in southern Colorado. For more information, visit Children's Colorado, or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Children’s Hospital Colorado complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.

ATENCIÓN: si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingüística. Llame al 1-720-777-9800.

CHÚ Ý: Nếu bạn nói Tiếng Việt, có các dịch vụ hỗ trợ ngôn ngữ miễn phí dành cho bạn. Gọi số 1-720-777-9800.

http://www.hhs.gov/civil-rights/for-individuals/section-1557

About Pikes Peak Library District
Pikes Peak Library District seeks to engage and transform people’s lives by providing free and equitable access to information via 15 facilities, online resources, and mobile library services. It is a nationally recognized system of public libraries serving a population of more than 650,000 across 2,070 square miles in El Paso County, Colo.”

Comments: 0
Babies 'n Bumps Resource Fair

PPLD invites you to participate in our 2nd Annual Bumps 'n Babies Resource Fair! Due to Covid-19, the fair will be conducted entirely online during the month of September.


Check out our Bumps 'n Babies programs on PPLDTV!

Videos are available for viewing anytime after they premiere:

  • Babytime: Mondays at 10:30 a.m.
  • DIY Craft for Babies: Tuesdays at 10:30 a.m.
    • Sept. 1: Touch & Feel Box
    • Sept. 8: Ball Drop
    • Sept. 15: Baby Sensory Play with Ice
    • Sept. 22: Tug & Pull
    • Sept. 29: Sensory Bottle/Bags

Special Events

Registration is required for these events. After you register, you will receive a link to attend.

  • Best Books & Toys for Babies: Wed., Sept. 2 at noon
    Learn about awesome books and toys babies love – and tips for how to use them!

  • Prenatal Series: Wednesdays, Sept. 9 - 30 at noon.
    This four week series is in partnership with Nurse Family Partnership. Families do not have to attend each week.

  • Baby & Me Yoga: Sat., Sept. 12 at 10:30 a.m.
    Join us virtually for a gentle class taught live by a licensed yoga instructor for caregivers and the infants they love (4 weeks to crawling). Special attention focused on baby bonding and postpartum moms.

  • Newborn Care: Sat., Sept. 12 at noon
    Dr. Susan Townsend, Neonatologist at Children’s Hospital Colorado in Colorado springs will speak on the topic of Newborn Care. She will discuss topics such as getting your baby to stop crying, sleeping through the night, breastfeeding, storing breast milk, how babies learn, and much more. Questions from the audience are encouraged. We hope to see you there!

  • FREE book for Babies! While supplies last at all Library locations starting Sat., Sept. 12!

    Comments: 2
    Maker in Residence: Mixed Media Collage Art with Roxanne Lingle

    Roxanne Lingle, The Maker in Residence for September/October 2019, is a mixed media artist and teacher. She has been teaching for many years and loves to inspire her students and see them “come alive” when they realize they can do something they never thought possible. She loves mixed media art and all its variety of color, texture, and amazing avenues for creativity. Roxanne has taught many types of mixed media classes in the Pikes Peak region as well as across the United States.

    Visit PPLD's Maker/Artist in Residence page for more information about this program.

    Comments: 0

    Pikes Peak Library District is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 Jean Ciavonne Poetry Contest for Children:

    Colin Bevan - "Bahamas"
    Mayah Bolenbaugh - "The Essence of Warmth"
    Eva Goroski - "Bioluminescent Beach at Night"
    Brody Karr - "Papayalulu Paradise"
    Sally Peterson - "The Mystical Land"
    Jana Yuschalk - "Darkling Dwabidisador"


    Bahamas
    By Colin Bevan

    Fisherman rip tonight’s dinner from the ocean
    Bloody hands filet the dead fish
    Smells of fresh fish turns my head
    Salt fills the air rusting old boats
    Charcoal beach fires cook todays catch
    Warm water surrounds my feet
    Small birds run from the waves
    Boats dot the horizon for miles
    Paradise, I hope I never leave


    The Essence of Warmth
    By Mayah Bolenbaugh

    Firewood receives the spark
    Steam rises from the bread, fresh from the oven
    Soft snuggle from a purring kitten
    Sip a large mug of cider under a changing tree in the fall
    Enter a cabin to kick off winter’s freeze
    Submerge in hot springs as the snowflakes dance
    Comfort and serenity, as the shower pours through your hair
    Earth is nourished by the elements
    Now the sand takes in the sun
    The day’s last hour bathed in dark orange sunshine on a summer’s day


    Bioluminescent Beach at Night
    By Eva Goroski

    Twilight creeps up the coast
    Waiting for the moon to come with a gleam
    Shells adorn the beach like jewels
    Stars twinkle and glimmer like diamonds
    Tide pools shine with a radiant beam
    The ocean has an eerie glow
    Bioluminescent dinoflagellates show off in a chain of lights


    Papayalulu Paradise
    By Brody Karr

    I dream of a land called Papayalulu
    It’s a tasty paradise for me and you-you
    It’s hard to get to - this is true-true
    First you must make a papaya canoe-noe
    Row your canoe-noe to the end of the sea
    And soon Papayalulu you will see

    As papaya trees sway in the papayamint breeze
    You can paddle down to the Papaya Juice River with ease
    You can even lean over and take a sip
    But better take care - your canoe-noe might tip
    Look out! What’s that I hear?
    It’s Papaya Juice Falls - better stay clear!

    Safe at last upon the shore
    What’s that sound I cant ignore?
    It’s the singing papaya birds high in the trees
    A song so sweet my ears it does please
    I think I’ll stay a while in this land
    Papayalulu is oh so grand!


    The Mystical Land
    By Sally Peterson

    I know a place, not far away
    It glistens and it gleams.
    I go there every time I sleep
    It’s called the “Land of Dreams.”

    So when I sleep I don’t count sheep
    Or toss and turn in vain.
    I just fly to the “Land of Dreams”
    In my one-man twinbed plane.

    Each night I fly right out the door
    And pass the moon and sun.
    I’m going to the “Land of Dreams”
    To have some dream like fun.

    And when I land on snow white sand
    A lovely sight I see.
    A wondrous civilization is
    Stretched out in front of me.

    A mountain looms above you
    If you look to the west.
    On the east there is a river
    And a town where you can rest.

    There are bubbles in the air
    That are floating in the breeze.
    You can smell the scent of honey,
    And hear the rustling trees.

    Then my views were interrupted
    By a woman clad in white.
    She was the noble Queen
    Of this land of truth and right.

    “Welcome” she said. “Welcome
    Won’t you come to my estate”
    And she pointed to a castle
    With a shiny marble gate.

    “Of course” I said, “how gracious,
    How could I refuse?”
    We started towards the castle
    And she told me all the news.

    We walked into the town
    Where the buildings stand so tall.
    Everything is vibrant
    From the big to really small.

    The people there wear brilliant robes
    Of many different hues.
    There are feathers on their hats
    And feathers on their shoes.

    Aromas that are new
    Are wafting towards my face.
    I wonder what the food is like
    In this amazing place.

    We came to a kiosk
    Where a man was selling food.
    The food was shaped like balls
    Some were red and some were blue.

    They tasted sweet and juicy,
    And suddenly I knew!
    They were little berries,
    And in the fields they grew.

    A woman selling flowers
    Gave me a bouquet.
    It smelled just like sweet roses
    In my wildflower spray.

    The red flowers were the largest.
    The blue flowers were large, too.
    The yellow flowers were tiny.
    My favorites were the blue.

    We entered a cute clothes shop
    Filled with rows of silk,
    They were soft and they were comfy,
    And smooth and cool like milk.

    I chose a robe with red, blue, and yellow
    For they would match my blooms.
    I got nice shoes and a fine new hat
    With fluffy little plumes.

    Next we went to a pet shop
    And saw a little dog.
    He was not like mine at all, though.
    My dog is brown like a log.

    But this dog had new colors.
    This dog was so bright!
    So were all the other dogs.
    It was a crazy sight!

    I thought the cats were normal
    Until I heard them speak.
    They spoke such perfect English
    I fought the urge to shriek!

    A bird screeched in the background
    And I turned in surprise.
    The bird that was behind me
    Had creepy human eyes.

    The castle was our last stop
    And it was getting late.
    I was getting pretty tired
    When I walked up to the gate.

    The gates were swiftly opened.
    We ran to a bench and sat.
    It was nice to calmly sit there
    And hear the robins chat.

    Said the Queen “Oh heaven help us.
    The feasts about to start”
    We raced inside the castle
    And I couldn't calm my heart.

    I changed my clothes and entered
    The room of the great feast.
    There were many fruits and veggies
    And for meat they had roast beast.

    Many fancy people
    Were invited here to dine.
    Some were very famous.
    All were very fine.

    They all told me hello
    Then sat and ate and ate.
    I listened to their stories
    As I cleaned off my plate.

    A toast was to be done.
    I lifted my cup.
    Then “beep” went my alarm clock
    And quickly I woke up.


    Darkling Dwabidisador
    By Jana Yuschalk

    To bed I went on that ordinary night,
    Not knowing in the morning what I may fight.
    I woke up on a pile of hay,
    Wondering what would fill my day.
    Surprised and frightened, I immediately felt.
    Suddenly, I wished I could just melt.
    It seemed so sunny without any rain.
    Smells of sweat hovered over the plain,
    From jumping creatures who seemed insane.
    The so-called “Dwabis” had a mane.
    No animals were there.
    Not even a bear.
    I was informed, this was Dwabidisador.
    Wow, I really need to study by geography more!
    The Dwabi’s legs were awfully long.
    They jumped then fell, I am not wrong.
    The sound of jumping pounded the ground.
    Their favorite hobby was jumping. That I found.
    The language they spoke was also Dwabidisador.
    At least I don’t need to study my languages much more!
    “Dwabi fell down,” they said over and over again.
    “English without pronouns,” I thought. Until then,
    A young Dwabi who was probably only four,
    Came up and said, “Why don’t you enter that door.”
    I did as he commanded only to find,
    A Dwabi whose name was Filabind.
    He bought me a cupcake with sprinkles on top,
    The smell was so sweet I thought I would pop!
    All that was better than the taste, was the smell.
    It looked and smelled like sweet caramel.
    The taste was Dwabilicious.
    Red velvet without mush.
    After I finished my delectable cupcake,
    I was sure Dwabidisador wasn't fake.
    Then we departed and walked a long ways.
    We entered a place called “Dwabi’s Good Maze”.
    Since Filabind was my guide, he led me through,
    A portal that said, “How do you do?”
    Filled with wonder and awe, I heard a loud, “MOO!”
    Before I knew it, I was back home on our farm.
    Lying in my bed was my noisy alarm,
    Trying to wake me up from my-dream?
    What it was, it filled me with gleam!

    Comments: 0

    Pikes Peak Library District sparks development, opportunity, and inspiration for everyone across El Paso County. Whether you've got a young one who's learning to read, or you're a lifelong learner looking for a new skill, the Library has something for you.

    We are excited to share stories of how the Library positively impacts the lives of our patrons.

    To tell your story, click here to take our short survey or use the hashtag #shareyourspark on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

    INSPIRATION

    PPLD sparks inspiration. In this video, hear Price Strobidge's story about how the Library helped him become Poet Laureate of the Pikes Peak Region.

    OPPORTUNITY

    PPLD sparks your opportunity. In this video, hear Allan's story about how the Library helped him improve his English language skills and provide him with GED test preparation. Read more about Allan's personal growth and development through the Library in this article from The Gazette.

    DEVELOPMENT

    PPLD sparks your development. In this video, learn about how our children's areas are free, safe places that encourage development and growth.

    Stay tuned to learn how PPLD can spark your opportunity and your inspiration.

    Comments: 0

    Shirley Dale, PPLD's Maker in Residence for March/April 2019, has been creating in one way or another since childhood, applying this creativity in many different endeavors and careers. The joy of creating and the belief that everyone has the ability to create art have been constants throughout her life. Shirley has worked with many different mediums as a teacher and artist, always finding exciting, creative possibilities with whatever art materials are at hand. She is currently working with acrylics for monotype prints as finished pieces, and also for use in mixed media collage pieces.

    Visit PPLD's Maker/Artist in Residence page for more information about this program.

    Comments: 0

    Have you heard about auto-renewals? Beginning Mon., Feb. 11, 2019, PPLD will save you the step of renewing your checkouts.

    The day before items are due, the library’s system will automatically renew them if there are no holds and they haven’t already been renewed twice.

    There are some exceptions to the materials that can be automatically renewed, including:

    • Rapid Read, Rapid View
    • eBooks, eAudios
    • Equipment
    • Interlibrary Loans

    Patrons will receive an email notice letting them know what, if anything, was renewed as well as the new due date.

    Comments: 10

    Overdue books? Fear not. Pikes Peak Library District will no longer charge you for being a little bit late on your returns.

    The library will officially eliminate overdue fines Fri., Feb. 1, just in time for a county-wide celebration of Library Lover’s Month. Patrons will no longer be financially penalized for books that are late in returning to the library.

    “Our mission as an organization is to eliminate barriers to information and resources, not create them,” said Director of Library Services Tim Blevins. “We had a trial run of eliminating overdue fines and didn’t see longer hold times for patrons, but did see a positive impact on borrowing. It makes perfect sense for us to permanently eliminate these fines.”

    Fines, Blevins says, are particularly prohibitive for the community’s most vulnerable families. Plus, overdue fines accounted for less than one percent of the Library’s overall revenue in 2017.

    There will still be fees assessed for lost or damaged materials. Materials are considered lost if they are 21 days overdue.

    Additionally, Pikes Peak Library District will roll out automatic renewals later on in Library Lover’s Month. The day before books are due, the library’s system will automatically renew them up to two times, so long as no other patron placed a hold on the material.

    There are some exceptions to the materials that can be automatically renewed, like rapid reads, eMaterials, and equipment checkouts.

    “What we’ve seen here, and in library facilities across the country, is that by taking these steps to increase ease of access to materials, use of library resources and checkouts is positively impacted,” Blevins said. “We’re here to help people access the resources they need to achieve their goals. This is just one more way for us to do a better job of achieving that mission.”

    Comments: 3

    We want to celebrate your successes! Pikes Peak Library District is looking for stories about how our resources and staff have helped enrich minds, fuel learning and growth, spark imagination and ideas, build community and connections, and/or achieve goals.

    To tell your story, click here and take our short survey.

    Comments: 9

    For the 27th year in a row, Pikes Peak Library District is being recognized for excellent financial transparency.

    The Government Finance Officers Association awarded Pikes Peak Library District the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting this month, the association’s highest award.

    “The attainment of this award represents significant accomplishment by a government and its management,” the Government Finance Officers Association said in a press release. “This is the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting.”

    Each year, the association judges government organizations through an impartial panel. According to the association’s website, the program was designed to motivate government agencies to “go beyond the minimum requirements of generally accepted accounting principles,” with the goal of encouraging financial transparency by those agencies.

    Earning this award illustrates an organization’s commitment to good stewardship of public dollars.

    “This award is one of the highest honors a government organization can hope to achieve,” said Pikes Peak Library District Chief Financial Officer Michael Varnet. “To receive an award of this caliber so many years in a row is a testament not only to the finance team, but to the Library District as a whole. The group of people I work with each day truly has dedication to transparency and honorable financial reporting, and I am very proud to be part of such a team.”

    Comments: 1
    Kathleen Owings

    The president of the Pikes Peak Library District Board of Trustees attended her last board meeting after ten years of service to the library.

    Kathleen Owings will retire from the board as of Dec. 31, 2018. Owings first joined the board on Jan. 1, 2009, and was board president from 2012-2014 and in 2018.

    Her fellow board members, library employees, and library leaders alike reminisced fondly on Owings’ contributions to the Library District and the community during her final board meeting on Dec. 11, 2018.

    “While we are saddened to see Kathleen go, we feel very fortunate to have benefited from her leadership over the last ten years,” said PPLD Chief Librarian and CEO John Spears. “Her direction over the last decade has carried the library forward in such a positive way. Kathleen has put us on a path that will help us best serve all of our patrons across El Paso County for years to come.”

    Owings is a Principal and Financial Advisor with Westbilt Financial Group. She is also a current and past member of several boards throughout the Pikes Peak Region, including the Children’s Literacy Center, Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Springs Leadership Institute, and the local chapter of the West Point Alumni Association.

    The new president of the PPLD Board of Trustees, Wayne Vanderschuere, will take over the role on Jan. 1, 2019. Terms on the board are five years, and board leadership changes annually.

    Comments: 4
    Linda Riley

    PPLD Maker in Residence for January/February 2019, Linda Riley learned to knit when she was a young girl, taught by her granny when growing up the Chicago suburbs. She continually grew her skills and eventually began creating her own unique patterns. Her original designs have been published in both print and online outlets. Her project portfolio ranges from simple items such as hats and scarfs all the way to full size afghans and cable knit sweaters. Mittens are her favorite item to knit!

    Visit PPLD's Maker/Artist in Residence page for more information about this program.

    Comments: 2

    Alyssa Rail is one of two Pikes Peak Library District interns through the Inclusive Internship Initiative, a program run by the Public Library Association (PLA) whose goal it is to introduce high school juniors and seniors of diverse backgrounds to librarianship. This year, the internships were funded by donations to the Pikes Peak Library District Foundations. For Alyssa, this was an opportunity to spend more time in one of her favorite places and have an impact on her community.

    “I love how the library has always been a second home to me. It's welcoming and even if you're just picking up a hold and leaving, you still can enjoy your time there. I love that I could stay for hours and always find something to do.

    "Getting to host my LGBT roundtable in August was the best thing I think I've ever done with my life. Getting to help my community like that was awesome. I've loved being able to teach people about the library, and getting to connect with teenagers from all across the country was incredible (PLA). I learned a lot about myself this summer, and I believe I'm a better person because of it!”

    During her internship, Alyssa discovered just how important libraries are to everyone.

    “Libraries are integral to a community. They're a place of learning and safety. From basic computer questions to books to the resources for those in need, there really isn't anywhere else like the library. (Plus, the first time I saw the yellow sign saying "safe space" I almost cried. Being the queer teenager I am, I really appreciate it.)”

    How can you impact the lives of people like Alyssa?

    Give: Make a donation! Big or small - every contribution helps our community.
    Share: Share your library experiences with friends and family. Post your story on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, send an email, or share the link above any way you like!
    Participate: You can be a part of Pikes Peak Library District and our community by participating in library programs and events!

    Comments: 0

    Ana Bojorquez was beginning to think she would never earn a high school diploma, no matter what she did. She bought preparation books, enrolled in classes and more, but nothing panned out.

    “I’ve been trying to get my diploma for years, ever since I was forced to leave high school,” Bojorquez said. “I was trying everything to do it on my own.”

    But then Bojorquez noticed an advertisement for a free program through Pikes Peak Library District that helps participants earn accredited high school diplomas online.

    “The fact that it was free, that it was online, those were a big deal for me,” she said. “The GED class schedules just didn’t work for me.”

    Bojorquez was brought to the United States from El Salvador as a very small child, and adopted. Her adoptive mother, for reasons unknown, changed Bojorquez’s age on a lot of her documents and in the school system.
    “They weren’t a very good family, so I ended up back in the foster system,” Bojorquez said.

    After being placed in foster care and re-enrolled into the school system, the school district made a startling discovery.

    “The school saw my birth certificate, and they said, ‘Why are you in the 9th grade when you are 17 years old?’”
    The district took her out of high school, even though she begged to stay. Bojorquez was enrolled in a GED class at a community college instead.

    At the same time, her social workers knew that her eighteenth birthday was approaching; Bojorquez would no longer be eligible for support from the foster care system and needed a job to survive.

    “They did provide me with transitional housing at the time, but I had no food, so I had to work. I just did not have time to finish high school.”

    After experiencing success as a realtor’s assistant, the thought of a high school diploma faded from her mind until she met her future husband who was determined to support her in achieving her dreams. He finally convinced her to focus on studying full-time for a diploma.

    “For a long time, I said no when he told me to leave my job,” Bojorquez said. “I was so used to taking care of myself. Finally I gave into it, and I quit my job. Within a week of me finally deciding to leave my job, he got fired.”

    The couple relocated from California to Colorado Springs in search of work, had children, and once again her hopes for a diploma were dashed.

    That’s when she saw the advertisement on PPLD’s website for Career Online High School. For Bojorquez, who does custodial work for her church and volunteers at the school her two boys attend, an online program without a huge financial burden was an enticing option.

    She applied in March of 2017 and received her scholarship soon after. She then began to work tirelessly toward the goal she had for more than a decade. Less than two years later, Bojorquez celebrated a huge educational milestone. She completed the Career Online High School program and was the proud recipient of an accredited high school diploma at a graduation celebrated on Oct. 10 at East Library in Colorado Springs.

    “I am very grateful to the Pikes Peak Library District. I wouldn’t have graduated high school, something I’ve wanted to do for years now, without the library’s help.”

    How can you impact the lives of people like Ana?

    Give: Make a donation! Big or small - every contribution helps our community. Make your gift today.

    Share: Share your library experiences with friends and family. Post your story on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, send an email, or share the links above any way you like!

    Participate: You can be a part of Pikes Peak Library District and our community by participating in library programs and events!

    Comments: 1
    Andi Sperry

    Andi Sperry has been a Cheyenne Mountain Library patron for so long that it has become one of her favorite places to spend time with her husband. In her own words, Sperry tells us the library’s impact on her life.

    “I participated in the 2018 Winter Adult Reading Program because I love reading and enjoyed the incentives; chocolate, popcorn, and a beautiful coffee mug commemorating the event. My husband and I have also taken several classes for card making, guitar lessons, pasta making, herb and succulent gardening. We enjoy doing these programs because it’s fun to spend quality time together while creating something beautiful!

    "Besides the wonderful programs, resources, and patron experiences we’ve received, the library has inspired me to pursue a career in Library Science!”

    Sperry hopes to have the same impact on others that the library has had on her. She truly believes that libraries are what help communities grow.

    “It is important to support libraries because they are the glue that holds our community together. They offer an evolving environment that celebrates diversity and learning through programs designed for all ages and abilities. Libraries provide resources that may otherwise be inaccessible to patrons and they inspire people, like me, to pursue their lifelong dreams.”

    How can you impact the lives of people like Andi and have a hand in the next generation of librarians?

    Give: Make a donation! Big or small - every contribution helps our community. There are various ways you can make your gift.

    • Donate Now – click here to make your contribution today!
    • #GivingTuesday – schedule your gift for November 27, #GivingTuesday, click on the link and hit save to put it on your calendar.
    • Colorado Gives Day – Click on the link to schedule your gift for Colorado Gives Day, Tuesday, December 4.

    Share: Share your library experiences with friends and family. Post your story on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, send an email, or share the links above any way you like!

    Participate: You can be a part of Pikes Peak Library District and our community by participating in library programs and events!

    Comments: 1
    Beau Buren

    Beau Buren, a Career Online High School graduate hopes his new diploma will help him excel at a higher level in his career. Buren, a Colorado Springs native, finished the program in less than eight months. He set aside time after almost every full day of work and completed nearly six hours of coursework per day on the weekends.

    “I feel good about finishing,” Buren said. “I’m really proud of how hard I worked at this.”

    Buren has his sights set on college now that he has received his diploma. Buren is hoping to bask in the glow of his achievement until the end of the year, then reassess his goals and consider going back to school for a business management degree.

    “The library was definitely there to help me,” Buren said. “Lacey (PPLD Instructional Designer) was really great. I really appreciated the tuition help, too, because otherwise, I may not have been able to do the program at all.”

    How can you impact the lives of people like Beau?

    Give: Make a donation! Big or small - every contribution helps our community. There are various ways you can make your gift.

    • Donate Now – click here to make your contribution today!
    • #GivingTuesday – schedule your gift for November 27, #GivingTuesday, click on the link and hit save to put it on your calendar.
    • Colorado Gives Day – Click on the link to schedule your gift for Colorado Gives Day, Tuesday, December 4.

    Share: Share your library experiences with friends and family. Post your story on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, send an email, or share the links above any way you like!

    Participate: You can be a part of Pikes Peak Library District and our community by participating in library programs and events!

    Comments: 0

    Laurie Frydendall and her family have turned trips to the library into a tradition. Her daughters have grown up at the library and are learning the many ways that libraries can help you in life.

    “We started attending library programming when my girls were toddlers and we would come to Storytime each week. It was important to me to instill a love of learning at a very early age and the library was just the place to do that! It was a rite of passage at our house to receive your very own library card when you turned five. As the girls got older we participated in the summer reading program. We have also attended many other special programs offered to kids and families.”

    It’s not just with her family that the library makes a difference for Laurie, it’s in her job as well.

    “In addition to using the library for unlimited access to personal reading, my family finds that the library helps us in many other ways. I use it as a resource for my work, not only do my teens use the library for research but they also learn HOW to research…”

    The opportunities Laurie has found at the library have inspired her to see the library as more than just a place for books.

    “The library helps to create and support our community at large. It is an invaluable resource that offers knowledge, technology, and creativity to everyone regardless of age, income level, or background.”

    How can you impact the lives of people like Laurie?

    Give: Make a donation! Big or small - every contribution helps our community. There are various ways you can make your gift.

    • Donate Now – click here to make your contribution today!
    • #GivingTuesday – schedule your gift for November 27, #GivingTuesday, click on the link and hit save to put it on your calendar.
    • Colorado Gives Day – Click on the link to schedule your gift for Colorado Gives Day, Tuesday, December 4.

    Share: Share your library experiences with friends and family. Post your story on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, send an email, or share the links above any way you like!
    Participate: You can be a part of Pikes Peak Library District and our community by participating in library programs and events!

    Comments: 0

    PPLD's AppDownload the new Pikes Peak Library District app! Our brand new app is fast and easy to use. It offers streamlined management of your library card account, and access to all the online resources your library card has to offer! You can:

    • Place holds
    • Track checkouts
    • Manage your account
    • Access ebooks, music, and other online resources
    • Access PPLD research databases
    • and so much more!

    Download now at:

    Comments: 27
    Gay Houghtaling

    PPLD's Maker in Residence for October/November 2018 was Gay Houghtaling. A decade ago, she saw an art exhibit made up entirely of suitcases filled with found objects. This exhibit introduced her to the art of assemblage, the art of displaying a collection of objects in a way that expresses a meaning or idea. Gay works with Who Gives a Scrap, a local creative reuse store, to provide craft swaps and classes through the Pikes Peak Library District. Gay has an eclectic teaching background that includes Kindergarten in an overseas classroom, language acquisition and cultural studies for children moving overseas, fourth grade art, and reentry programs for tweens and teens. She currently homeschools her 12 year old grandson.

    She taught classes throughout Pikes Peak Library District and hosted open studio hours at Library 21c.

    Visit PPLD's Maker/Artist in Residence page for more information about this program.

    Comments: 0

    IN RESPONSE TO KOAA ARTICLE DATED 8/27/2018:

    While many libraries across the U.S. do offer “Drag Queen Storytime,” Pikes Peak Library District does not provide it as a library-sponsored program. If ever offered or sponsored, the program would be part of a larger exploration of diversity as well as contextualized for children and families in a broad frame of respect for individuality and difference.

    The “Drag Queen Story Hour” by Sarah Bellum, which is taking place at Penrose Library on September 1, is sponsored by Club Q. This program is offered by a member of the community under the auspices of another organization and is not sponsored by the library.

    We make our meeting rooms available to the public, and all community members are allowed to use them for any purpose as long as it does not violate our Meeting Room Policy. This use does not violate our policy in any way.

    Click here for PPLD's offical statement.

    Comments: 15
    Aja Black and Big Samir of The Reminders

    PPLD's Makers in Residence for September/October 2018 were The Reminders (Big Samir and Aja Black), a rare and remarkable musical duo, blending soulful sounds and roots music with insightful messages and thoughtful lyrics. Releasing their debut album Recollect in 2008 and their latest Born Champions in 2012, The Reminders have been recognized and applauded for their work both nationally internationally through concerts, tours, music awards, and television and radio appearances. The duo is constantly and actively engaged with community organizations, schools, universities, delivering workshops, talks, and specially catered performances.

    They taught songwriting classes throughout Pikes Peak Library District and hosted open studio hours at Sand Creek Library and Library 21c.

    Visit PPLD's Maker/Artist in Residence page for more information about this program.

    Comments: 1
    Family Place Libraries image

    Family Place Libraries™ is a network of children’s libraries nationwide who believe that literacy begins at birth and that libraries can help build healthy communities by nourishing healthy families.

    Family Place Libraries feature:

    • Specially designed spaces
    • Programs for ages 0 - 5
    • Materials and resources for parents
    • Family support services

    Our Family Place Libraries also offer extensive collections of toys that are developmentally appropriate for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers.

    Research shows that play fosters a variety of skills that children need: social, physical, intellectual, creative, and emotional. Through play, children express feelings, communicate, build imagination and vocabulary, and develop eye-and-hand coordination; all vital steps in their journey toward reading and writing.

    Your Family Place Libraries

  • Fountain Library, (719) 382-5347, 230 S. Main St.
  • Library 21c, (719) 531-6333, x1527, 1175 Chapel Hills Dr.
  • Sand Creek Library, (719) 597-7070, 1821 S. Academy Blvd.
  • Comments: 2
    All Pikes Peak Writes

    Congratulations to the winners of All Pikes Peak Writes, PPLD's adult fiction writing contest. PPLD received over 60 submissions this year. The five winning stories were announced at an award ceremony on Saturday, May 5.

    You can read the winning entries by clicking here.

    First Place
    “In the Shadow of the Mountain” by Leisel Hufford

    Second Place
    “A Rational List” by Sandra Hendricks

    Third Place
    “Hungry” by Davyne DeSye

    Honorable Mention
    “Checkmate” by Molly Bailey
    “Friends Aside” by Ann Amicucci

    Comments: 0

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