Library Closed – 5/28 and 5/30

The Valatie Free Library will be closed on Saturday, May 28 and Monday, May 30. Enjoy your Memorial Day Weekend as we honor our military, past and present.

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Update: “Hannaford Helps” Reusable Bags

erica's karma bag 3 smallThank you to everyone who has bought a Good Karma bag during the first few weeks in May at the Valatie Hannaford.  We appreciate your support.  Since  May 1st  the Valatie Free Library has been receiving one dollar for every blue “Hannaford Helps” Reusable Bag with the good karma message purchased at the Valatie Hannaford.  We are pleased  to be a part of the exciting and innovative “Hannaford Helps” Reusable Bag Program, designed to support local nonprofits like us.

For the patrons who have indicated that they weren’t sure where to find the bags, they are located  near the self-check out counters.  Please continue to help the Library by purchasing one or more of these bags during the rest of the month.   They are great for carrying groceries, books and many other items, and they help our environment too!

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Change in Overdrive Usage!

The number of ebooks and audiobooks that patrons may now checkout and put on hold in Overdrive has been changed.  Patrons may now check out 10 ebooks /audiobooks at one time and place 10 holds.  Formerly the number of checkouts and holds was 3 each.  A welcome change as we head into summer vacations and more time for reading!

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One of the Mask Creations

mask day 1



Just one of the masks created
in our mask-making class on
Tuesday and Wednesday, April 26 and 27.
More pictures will follow.
Thank you to Mary Young for a fascinating and creative class.
The results were amazing as you will note in upcoming posts.

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Masks and Movie This Week

Just a reminder:  Create your own 3D masks on Tuesday and Wednesday, April 26 and April 27 from 10 a.m. – noon in the Library.

Movie Night is Wednesday, April 27 at 6:30 p.m. in the Library.  Enjoy popcorn, lemonade and the movie “Peanuts.”  Join us!  We need at least 5 people attending to have movie night.


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VFL Vacation Programs

Vector colorful ethnic african mask

The Valatie Free Library will present two free programs during the ICC spring vacation:
Create Your Own 3D Mask – Tuesday and Wednesday, April 26 and April 27 from 10 a.m.noon for ages 7 through 12.
Movie Night – Wednesday, April 27 at 6:30 p.m. for kids and adults.  Watch The Peanuts movie, enjoy popcorn and a beverage!

Call the Library (758-9321) for more information or to register.

(Reminder:  Cake Decorating on Friday, April 29, 2016 at 6:30 p.m.  Please bring an unfrosted sheet cake or cake layer.)

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Thank You, Dominick Lizzi

dom during speech

On Friday, April 15th, Dominick Lizzi, presented a lecture about the women in Valatie to a “full” house at Valatie Free Library’s new building at 1036 Kinderhook Street.  He concentrated on the contribution of women, past and present, to Valatie – their sacrifices, their work ethic, their struggles, their strength.  The Staff and Board of Trustees of the Library thank Dominick for volunteering his time to present this fascinating glimpse into the history of the Village.

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Photo Competition Winners

Again this year, the annual photo competition drew amazing photographs from local adults and kids.  Each year the judges are finding it more difficult to choose a first and second place photo in each category or the best photo of three submitted by kids 18 and under.    At the exhibition on Sunday, April 10th, the following winners in  ten categories were announced by VFL Board President, Erica Balon.

Insects :  1st Place: Jennifer Bock – Untitled (description -Dragonfly with Green “Eyes”)  2nd Place:  Brother Gilbert Pretto – Wasp on Thistle
Nature: 1st Place: Sage Arnold – Mushrooms on a Stump 2nd Place:  Sierra Dexheimer – Summer Sky
Architecture:   1st Place: Jean Thomas – Untitled (description -roofs)  2nd Place: Kara Keeler – “Train through 7th Street Park” Hudson, NY
Flowers:  1st Place: Steve Wildermuth – Flowers in Early Morning Sun  2nd Place: Trudi Roth – Large Camelia Bud
Kids: Samara Regan (12) – Heart of Stone  / Corey Dexheimer (14) – Honey Bee After Pollen / Grace Landry (10) My Cat Fuzzy / Blaise Perez (8) Sunset by the Park
Still Life: Ken Bovat – Four Vases
Landscape:  1st Place: Shana Perez – The Blue Boat at Brant Lake, NY  2nd Place: Ken Bovat – Sunset on the Catskills
People:  1st Place:  John Alicea – Child in the Brooms  2nd Place: Judy Harris – “Are you sitting down on the job AGAIN?”
Birds:  1st Place: Doug Stalker – Osprey with Fish   2nd Place: Trudi Roth – Two Laughing Gulls Courting
Animals:   1st Place: Bridget Arnold – “Well Hello There”  2nd Place: Paul Roberts – Lunch Break

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Drawing Exercises: Creative and Fun

first drawing class










The workshop “Drawing Exercises with Margot” was very enjoyable last night.  It started with drawing what each participant thought was in the plastic bag he or she had drawn out of the “grab bag” and ended with some really great collages.  In between there was drawing with eyes closed, with the non-dominant hand, with graphite, with markers and with lots of cutting and pasting.  There are two more sessions, each completely different from this first workshop and each other.  So. . . feel free to join us for an evening of fun and creativity even if you could not attend last night.  Dates:  April 12 and April 19.  Time: 6:30 p.m.  Location:  the Library / 1036 Kinderhook Street.  Call us at 758-9321.

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This Week

We still have space!  Call us at 758-9321 to register.

Drawing Exercises with Margot:  Tuesday, April 5th at 6:30 p.m. in the Library, 1036 Kinderhook Streetkatie's cake2

Cake Decorating with Lori:  Friday, April 8th at 6:30 p.m. in the Library.  Bring an unfrosted sheet cake or cake layer.


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Dates Reminder:

April 2 – Final Submission  of Photos for Annual Photo Competition  (Adults and Kids)
April 5 – First of 3 Art Exercises Workshops with Margot – Call the Library to register.  (Adults)
April 8 – First of 2 Cake Decorating Classes with Lori – Call the Library to register.  (Adults)

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April Library Events

for Adults:
Saturday, April 2, 2016 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.- Last Day to Submit Photos at the Library for the Annual Photo Competition.
Monday, April 4, 2016 at 7 p.m.Board of Trustees Meeting.  The Public is welcome to attend.
Sunday, April 10, 2016 from 2 – 4 p.m. – Annual Photo Exhibition at the Valatie Senior Center on Williams Street in Valatie.
Monday, April 11, 2016 at 7 p.m.
Book Club.  We will be discussing The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown.  Newcomers are always welcome.
Monday, April  25, 2016 at 7 p.m. Knitting/Crochet.  Newcomers of all skill levels, including beginners, are welcome.  Instruction  is available.
Tuesdays, April 5, 12, 19, 2016 from 6:30 – 8 p.m. Drawing Exercises with Margot.  Join us for fun and drawing!  Each week’s activity is independent of the others so if you can’t make all three, just let us know when you will be attending.
Fridays, April 8 and 29, 2016 p.m. from 6:30 – 8 p.m.Cake Decorating with Lori.  Join us to learn the art of cake decorating or to improve your decorating skills. Take home a beautifully decorated cake.
Friday, April 15, 2016 at 7 p.m. Dominick Lizzi’s Presentation of Women in Valatie.  Join us to learn about the amazing women in the history of Valatie:  their lives, struggles and hardships.  Refreshments will be served.

*** Please call the Library (758-9321) or drop in to register for the Tuesday and Friday programs so that we have enough supplies and seating available. ***

for Kids:
Tuesdays, April 5, 12, 19, 2016 at 10:30 a.m. Story Hour for Preschoolers.  Join us for stories, crafts, snack and Posie, our Library Therapy Dog, and her owner Marje.
Wednesday, April 27, 2016 at 6:30 p.m. – Movie Night for Kids and Parents.  We hope to show Zootopia.  Popcorn and other snacks and water will be served.  ***Please call (758-9321) or visit the Library to register so that we have enough seating and snacks.

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Women of Valatie 4/15/2016

At 7 p.m. on Friday, April 15, 2016 , the Valatie Free Library will be hosting Valatie Village Historian, Dominick Lizzi’s, presentation “Women in Valatie.”  The presentation is an overview of Valatie’s unique history and the women who participated in it.  Mr. Lizzi will cover the lives, struggles and hardships of women in one of the major rural mill villages in the Hudson Valley.  Long overlooked, both the village and its working class women will be brought to light by Mr. Lizzi in this 45 minute presentation which will take place at the Library, 1036 Kinderhook Street.

Dominick Lizzi is the author of  Valatie The Forgotten History: a Rural Mill Village, Microcosm of America, Governor Martin H. Glynn: Forgotten Hero and Let There Be Light: the Forgotten History of the Chatham Library, a Carnegie Legacy as well as numerous historical articles.

Although registration is suggested so that there is enough seating, walk-ins are welcome.   You can register by phone (758-9321) or at the Library.  Desserts and coffee/tea will be available after the presentation.  We invite you to share in this informative evening.

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2016 Photo Competition / March 8 – April 2

cameraJUST TWO MORE WEEKS TO SUBMIT PHOTOS!!  Children, Teens, Adults, Seniors: We invite you to submit up to 3 matted photos at the Library (1036 Kinderhook Street) from March 8 through April 2, 2016.  Photos will be judged the following week, and the winners will be announced during the Photo Exhibition which will take place on Sunday,  April 10th at the Valatie Senior Center on Williams Street in Valatie.   Click on 2016 Photo Competition at the top of this page, print the submission form (one form per photo) and then submit at the Library with your favorite 5*7 or 8*10 photos depicting the subject of your choice.    Join your friends and neighbors at the exhibition on April 10th.  Call 758-9321 for more information.

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March / April Events at the Library

For Kids and Families

Game Night – Friday, March 4 at 6:30 p.m.
Story Hour – Tuesdays, March 8, 15, 22, 29, April 5, 12,19 at 10:30 a.m. in the Library (1036 Kinderhook Street).  Join us for stories, crafts, therapy dog Posie and snacks
Mud Creek Presentation – Tuesday, March 22 at 6:30 p.m. in the Library.  Michelle from Mud Creek will present an interactive program about amphibians.
Movie Night – Wednesday, April 27 at 6:30 in the Library.  Join us half-way through April Vacation for a movie (To Be Determined), popcorn and soft drinks.

For Adults and Young Adults

Board of Trustees Meeting – Monday, March 7 and Monday, April 4 at 7 p.m. in the Library.  The Public is welcome to attend.
Book Club – Monday, March 14 and Monday, April 11 at 7 p.m. in the Library.  New York Times Best Selling Author Chris Bohjalian will join us in March via Skype or Speaker  Phone.
Knitting / Crochet – Monday, March 21 and Monday, April 25 at 7 p.m. in the Library.  Newcomers of all skill levels are always welcome.
Seasonal Plate Craft – Friday, March 11 at 6:30 p.m. in the Library.  Create an easy but very attractive snack / dessert plate.  Please register by March 7th so that we have the needed supplies.lesley's plate
Drawing Exercises with Margot – Tuesdays, April 5, 12, 19 from 6:30 – 8 p.m. in the Library.  Each week a new technique will be presented by local artist, Margot Curran.
Cake Decorating with Lori – Fridays, April 8 and 29 at 6:30 in the Library.  Each week a new technique will be presented.  Please bring an unfrosted sheet cake or cake layer with you to class.  Tips, bags and frosting will be provided.

For All Ages

Submission of Photos for the Annual VFL Photo Competition – Tuesday, March 8 through Saturcameraday, April 2 during Library hours.  Matted photos must be submitted at the Library.  Children, teens, adults, seniors are invited to submit up to three photos per person to the competition.
Photo Competition – Sunday, April 10 from 2 – 4 p.m.  Join us to see the photos submitted by your friends and neighbors.  Coffee / Soft Drinks and Desserts will be served.  Location is being finalized.


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A Welcome to the Neighborhood!

giftfromkhkWe had a very welcome visit today from Marie Orlando and Bonnie Shannon who brought us a gift basket from the Friends of the Kinderhook Memorial Library.  Thank you to Bonnie and Marie and all the Kinderhook Library Friends for knowing just the right supplies to include in the basket, the very necessary items like stickies, pencils and bookmarks for the kids, snacks for the VFL staff on those late Thursdays and  a great basket for miscellaneous materials.  We appreciate your thoughtfulness.

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Good Doughnuts, Colorful Bookmarks, Fun!

breakfast1On Saturday, February 6th, Take Your Child to the Library Day, kids and adults enjoyed a breakfast of donuts, juice and coffee.  While the adults browsed or conversed, the kids also made some neat bookmarks.  We all had fun and thank the generous patron who donated the food!

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Digital Magazines – Zinio for Libraries

All the libraries in the MidHudson Library System are providing a new service to patrons – digital magazines which you can borrow at any time and keep as long as you wish.  You can download one or more  magazines immediately onto your computer or mobile device.  There is never a wait; there are no holds.  To register for this service simply sign up using your library card number.  You will be prompted to give a username and password which you will use each time you borrow a magazine.

To start the process, scroll down on the Valatie Library web page until you see the Zinio for Libraries logo in the right sidebar.  Click on the logo and follow the directions to register, create a username and password and download one or more of the 94 magazines available.  There will also be a list of mobile devices which can be used to borrow the magazines.   Go to the Apps Store on your  device, download the free Zinio App and register as you do on your computer.

Tip:  If you cannot download the free app and have internet connection on your mobile device, just follow the directions for accessing Zinio for Libraries on your computer.

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VFL New Email Address

Although our former email ( will still be operational for two more months, the Library has a new email.  It is

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From Our New Home

 The Valatie Free Library has now been operating for nine days in the new building at 1036 Kinderhook Street (Route 9, four buildings south of the Valatie Medical Arts facility).  This would not have been possible without the many people who gave countless hours of help in packing, lifting, moving and reshelving the collection.  Thank you:  

Our wonderful organizer, Mimi Johnson,  former ICC high school librarian and veteran of relocating libraries, having done so four times in in her career, who not only directed placement of books and furniture, but also packed, moved and shelved non-stop for 5 days
Steve Sigler,  constructor and visionary, who has assisted in every phase of the renovation of the building from its inception, who moved countless items from Church Street  to Kinderhook Street and then  arranged and rearranged items in the new building as we worked to set up a functional and pleasing library, who responded to every request and never once lost his patience with our many requests
Library Program Coordinator, Lesley Hallenbeck; Lucille Ouimet; Tracy Dauria; Christa Slater; Board Member, Dorothy Hotaling; Susan McDermott; former Assistant Library Director, Becky Hoff; Andrea Briggs; Jennifer Clark who packed, carried boxes and shelved
Al Johnson, John and Eric Sundwall, Pastor Jim Slater, Bob Clark who spent days transporting the library collection from Church Street to Kinderhook Street
Jeff Johnson and family of J & J Contracting who moved the heaviest furniture
Board Vice President, Lisa Benfield, who with Board Treasurer, Fran Fullerton, finished packing up computers and supplies and cleaned up the Church Street building; Board Secretary, Matt Griesemer; who carried boxes, shelved and then got our computers connected to their new wireless address; Board President, Erica Balon, who calmly and efficiently worked out the logistical decisions for accommodating the old library into the new facility

As Director of the Valatie Free Library, I can’t even begin to express my gratitude to these wonderful people who volunteered so much of their time and expertise during the transition.  Without them, the project would have taken twice, perhaps even three times, as long.  As I packed, moved boxes, shelved, set up the computers and looked at what seemed  a mountain of items to be relocated, I was often amazed at what was being accomplished.  With the support of the people involved in every aspect of the move, the new Valatie Free Library is a reality, and we welcome you, our patrons, to it.

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VFL Open House on Kinderhook Street

On Saturday,  December 12th, our new building was open for a preview of what has taken place in Phase 1 of the ongoing renovation at 1036 Kinderhook Street.  We appreciated the enthusiasm and very nice comments of the many people who dropped in to inspect the work and to share cider and donuts with us. A highlight of the evening was an informative and very interesting presentation of the history of the library in Valatie and the Kinderhook Street building itself given by Dominick Lizzi, Valatie Village Historian.  We are looking forward to the move to our new location very early in 2016.  Please check the web page for exact dates on which we will close the Church Street building and then open the Kinderhook Street open h adj2 sue and julieadj

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End of Year Programs

Join us for two special programs!

Owls Program for Kids 5 and Older: Monday, December 7 at 7 p.m.  Michelle from Mud Creek will present this fascinating program.  Join us to examine owl pellets and learn what owls eat.

gingerbread manChristmas Cookie Decorating for Kids and Parents:  Saturday, Dectotsj
ember 12 from 1 – 3 p.m.  St. Luke’s Fellowship Hall.  Please register for this program so that we have enough cookies.  Tots the Clown will also join us that day to entertain and to make balloon animals for all.


Our usual groups will meet as follows:

Book Club:  Monday, November 30 at 7 p.m.  The group will be discussing The Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole.  Newcomers are welcome.
Board of Trustees:  Tuesday, December 1 at 7 p.m.  The Public is welcome to attend.
Story Hour:  Tuesdays, December 1, 8, 15, 22 at 10:30 a.m.
 Kids and Parents, join us for stories, snack, craft and Posie, our Library Therapy Dog.
Knitting / Crochet:  Monday, December 14 at 7 p.m.  Newcomers, beginners and experienced, are welcome.

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Adult Holiday Craft: Fun and Productive

The group who met for the holiday craft program on Friday, November 13th had lots of fun and made beautiful centerpieces.  They discussed doing other crafts iamy 2n the future so look for program updates in the new year.


group 1oriana and sara 1 for web

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Renovation Has Begun!

The Valatie Free Library Board of Trustees is pleased to announce that renovations have begun on phase 1 of its Kinderhook-Hudson Steam Railroad Freight Barn at 1036 Kinderhook Street. The completion of this phase of the project will increase the Library’s space with almost double the square footage, provide a parking lot for patron convenience, increase accessibility for all patrons and bring the 1890 barn back to use within the Village.
Upon completion of this phase the Library will move operations from the current Church Street location, which has been our home since 1940. We anticipate beginning services from our new location on February 1, 2016.
Over the past several years the Board of Trustees has explored the various ways to utilize the space at the Kinderhook Street location along with the financial resources available within the community we serve. We are not discarding the Hudson Design Studio plan but instead breaking the project into multiple manageable phases.
The Valatie Free Library has been an important community resource for 84 years. We are excited to begin this new chapter in the library’s history.
With your help, we continue to grow with our community.

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Friendly Ghosts and Big Smiles!

A few photos of the beaded ghosts made in the Halloween Craft Program on Wednesday evening.  Kids and parents had fun with the project, beading ghosts and pieces of candy corn, and they now have some new Halloween decorations to display.ghost and patty2lauren2ella2


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October Programs

October: For Kids
Story Hour for Preschoolers:  Tuesdays, October 6, 13, 20, 27 at 10:30 a.m.  Fire Prevention, Pumpkins and more!  Special Guest on October 13 – Firefighter Fran.
Halloween Craft Program for Kids 7 and Older:  Wednesday, October 21 at 6:30 p.m.  Create a Halloween design with beads– A witch, perhaps!
October: For Adults and Young Adults
Board of Trustees:  Monday, October 5 at 7 p.m.
Book Club:  Monday, October 12 at 7 p.m.
Lyme Disease –
How to Prevent, Detect and Treat, a presentation by Victoria from the Columbia County Health Department: Tuesday, October 13 at 6:30 p.m.  Victoria will be accompanied by a communicable diseases nurse, also from the Health Department.
Knitting / Crochet:  Monday, October 26 at 7 p.m.



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Thank You to the Columbia County Health Department!

The Lyme Disease Workshop presented by Victoria Mcgahan and Registered Nurse, Pam Ferber, from the Columbia County Health Department was very informative.  Attendees saw photos of different types of ticks, discovered the many diseases ticks can cause, were made aware of myths surrounding the removal of ticks and learned how to prevent ticks from attaching to them.  The question and answer segment of the program was especially interesting and valuable.  We learned that the incidence of Lyme disease in Columbia County has fallen which is encouraging, but the number of people affected each year is still much too high.  Preventing attachment and removing ticks promptly and correctly as well as knowing when to seek medical attention are facts that should be known by all of us who live or work in Columbia County, and the workshop made this information current and available.   Thank you, Victoria and Pam!

If you would like more information about this topic, we have booklets in the Library and can obtain more.

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