Thursday, December 23, 2010

Happy Holidays!

Wishing all our patrons a very Merry Christmas and a Happy new year!

The library will be closed December 24th and January 3rd in observance of the Holidays.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Digitized Tornado Photos

1958 Colfax Tornado

As part of a Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the Colfax Public Library has digitized the collection of the 1958 tornado photographs taken my professional photographer, Ron A. Blakeley. These items are now part of the University of Wisconsin Digital Collections’ (UWDC) State of Wisconsin Collection and are freely available online. The ability to keyword search the text and images is a great new tool for local history research. In addition, having digital copies of the 1958 Colfax tornado pictures preserves it for future generations.

The Colfax 1958 tornado photographs are part of a larger regional collection entitled Chippewa, Dunn, Eau Claire, Pepin, St. Croix, and Rusk Counties: Local History Collections. This collection showcases selections from the local history collections of the Baldwin Public Library, Chippewa Falls Public Library, L.E. Phillips Memorial Library in Eau Claire, Rusk County Community Library in Ladysmith, Pepin Public Library, Somerset Public Library, Menomonie Public Library, Colfax Public Library, Durand Community Library, Woodville Community Library, and Carleton A. Friday Memorial Library in New Richmond. These libraries, and several other Indianhead Federated Library System members, serve as repositories for important local history documents. The Indianhead Federated Library System is comprised of 53 member public libraries in West-Central and Northwestern Wisconsin.

The Chippewa, Dunn, Eau Claire, Pepin, St. Croix, and Rusk Counties: Local History Collection was funded, in part, through a 2010 Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant. These grants provide financial support for public libraries to digitize and make available online, their local library resources. For more information about LSTA grants in Wisconsin, contact the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) Division for Libraries, Technology, and Community Learning or visit the LSTA grant Web site at

To access the 1958 Colfax tornado photographs, go to There are many other valuable Wisconsin resources on the UWDC site. If you need assistance, please call the Colfax Public Library @ 715-962-4334, or stop by for more information.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Favorite Picture Books for Christmas Season

In The Christmas Alphabet kid's can follow the holiday season from A to Z in this lovely alphabet book.  As each lettered door is opened a fantastically wrought paper pop-out appears depicting images of Christmas time.  

Minerva Louise is definitely my favorite chicken.  I bet some giggles will break out when this book is read, especially when Minerva thinks the chicken (angel) on top of the Christmas tree has laid some pretty colored eggs in the branches.

Eric Carle's Dream Snow is a gem filled with collage images of a farmer dreaming of snow.  Clear pages  with snowy blobs add the illusion of Mr. Farmer and the animals covered in snow.  Mr. farmer awakes to find real snow covering the ground and realizes he better hurry and get some surprises set out for his animals.

In the book, The Snow Tree, the animals of the forest find a way, in the white of winter,  to remember the colors of the year.  Each animal brings something of a different color to decorate a special snow tree.

Kids will enjoy feeling the embossed pages and looking at the colorful animal images along with hearing the story of friendship, peace and the glory of nature.

Share one of these books with a child in your life.  Reading to and with children really does help children develop so many learning skills, plus it is time well spent with someone you love.

Happy Reading!
Click on the title links to take you directly to the MORE to request a copy of these books.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Favorite Picture Books for the Thanksgiving Holiday

Here are a few of my favorite titles to read with children in this Thankful season.

My first Thanksgiving, by Tomie dePola gives a short history of Thanksgiving and how families currently celebrate this holiday.  The text is very simple and perfect for a preschooler.

I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie, by Allison Jackson is a remake of the classic rhyme - I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly.  Kids will get a kick out of the silly text and pictures about an overzealous Thanksgiving guest.

This Plump and Perky Turkey outsmarts a whole village whose soul aim is to have a perfect Thanksgiving turkey for their holiday meal.
Preschool and Grade school children will giggle over this cleaver tale.

In Setting the Turkeys Free, the story follows a group of "hand" turkeys that escape from a sly old fox.  This book might spur a creative urge to make some hand turkeys of your own.

Share some of these great Thanksgiving themed books with a child in your life!

Click on the titles to go the MORE page to request a copy.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Veterans Day Closing

The Colfax Public Library will be closed Thursday November 11th in honor of Veterans Day.
Thank you for your service Veterans!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Teen Movie Night

Teens are welcome to attend teen movie night, Tuesday November 9th at 5:00pm - 8:00pm.
Free pizza and pop will be served.
We will be showing The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Happy Halloween

Wishing all our patrons a safe and happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Family Fun

"Madame Lanita"

Madame Lanita (a.k.a. Kris Winter) entertained the children October 18th at the Colfax Public Library.  Her gypsy storytelling caught the attention and imagination of our youngest patrons!

Who can resist dressing up and learning a new dance?

Even the youngest dancer enjoyed the song and dance, while decked out in pretty jewels.  Whoever said the library has to be a quiet place???

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

October Picture Book Picks

Here are some favorite pumpkin and Halloween themed books from storytime.  Share them with a child in your life!  Click on the links to take you to the MORE to request a book.

Boo To You, by Lois Ehlert is a fun book where mice take on the scary role.

 It's Pumpkin Time, by Zoe Hall is a classic book with bright illustrations and simple text that takes kids through the life of a pumpkin from planting time to harvest.

The Fierce Yellow Pumpkin by Margret Wise Brown, tells the tale of a little pumpkin who has big dreams of how big and scary he'll be someday.

Pumpkin Shivaeree by Rick Agran tells the story of a pumkin's life in poem form from seed to jack-o-lantern.

Happy Halloween and happy reading!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

An Evening of Food & Fun

Thursday October 21, 2010 @ 6:30 pm.

Come and join us for a fun evening with Karen Burrell, author of, "The Spirit Within."  After working on her cookbook for ten years, Karen is excited to be introducing her new book.  Filled with lots of yummy recipes, Karen's book will be available for purchase the night of her program.  Samples will also be available, so don't miss this delicious evening of food and fun.

For more information about Karen Burrell, visit her webpage.  For questions about the book talk, please call the library @ 715-962-4334. 

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Social Security Online Services @ the Colfax Public Library

Social Security Program @ the Colfax Public Library, Thursday September 30, 2010 @ 6:30 pm.

The local Social Security office staff from Eau Claire will be hosting a program at the Colfax Public Library to bring awareness to using their online services. By logging on to the Social Security Administration website (, you now have access to checking your status of a recent application, earning statements, estimated retirement benefits, reporting fraud and locating a local Social Security office in your area. You will also have access to a variety of forms and publications, which can be printed out from the website.

Need to ask a Social Security question? Go online and type your question and receive your answer. No need to call your local office!

Attend this program and learn how to use the Social Security online services, plus much more. For more information, call the library @ 715-962-4334, or email: . This program is free to the public.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Picture Book Picks of the Month

Fall is a great time for kids, with so many fun things to do outside from jumping in leaf piles to looking for animal tracks and just enjoying the cooler weather and beautiful autumn colors. But when it is time to come in and rest from all that fun, there is no better way to relax than with a good book. Here are some of my favorite picture books that I love to share with children.

Fall Leaves Fall by Zoe Hall has wonderfully bright illustrations and easy text that younger children will love. This is a great pick for a short simple read.

Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert (a Wisconsin author) is fantastically imaginative and will take you on an autumn tour with illustrations constructed out of real leaves. This book will encourage you and your children to get creative with the things of nature.

By the Light of the Harvest Moon by Harriet Ziefert is a new favorite that encompasses a tale of leaf men that come to life by the light of the harvest moon. The bright fun pictures are a joy to look at.
Ten Red Apples by Pat Hutchins starts as a countdown of apples from ten. Various farm animals help Mr. Farmer pick the apples from his tree as you help count. Kids will have fun with the counting theme and the great illustrations.

Count Down to Fall by Fran Hawk is full of fall counting fun with wonderful lifelike illustrations that inspire you to go explore the Autumn outdoors.
To request a copy of any of these books just click on the title links and they will take you to the request page on the MORE.
Happy Reading.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Story Time Begins - Yippee!

Our Story Time for preschoolers resumes again in September.  Story Time will run every Wednesday @ 10 am through mid December.  No registration is necessary.

Sept. 1 - Oceans - Come  make a splash with some great ocean tales and make a flying fish!

Sept. 8 - Pets - Listen to fun stories about lots of different kinds of pets and make your own pet.

Sept. 15 - Shapes - Explore the world with shapes.  We'll look at books that help tell a tale with shapes and make a picture using different shapes.

Sept. 22 - Farm Animals - We'll read some wacky tales about animals you'd find on the farm and decorate a rooster picture.

Sept. 29 - Fall Leaves - Celebrate the colorful fall season with some great stories and a fun fall tree craft.

Be sure to come and enjoy the fun!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Two Good Reads

I've seen this book being requested and checked out quite a bit so I thought I would give it a try and read it.  I like history and a good story and this was both. 

The book follows the life of Rachel, a young Hawaiian native, around the turn of the century.  Her life is tainted by leprosy, the lost of loved ones to that disease, plus the eventual contact of it herself.  As a young child Rachel is shipped off to Molokai, the Hawaiian island set aside as a leper colony. 

I was intrigued as the story unfolds of how Rachel survives despite her limitations and leads a life among the lepers of Hawaii. 

I highly recommend this as a good read, it's the kind of book that would make a great movie.

Another title I ran across lately is the 13th Tale by Diane Setterfield.  I simply loved this book.  It has the essentials I like to see in a good story, a bit of history, love, and mystery all well told and wrapped in a Victorian setting without the smothering vernacular.  The story enfolds the past and the present as a writer struggles to leave her last tale amidst the living...a tale of deception, love and mystery.  It is the 13th tale.

Hope you give these books a try!

Friday, July 30, 2010

How Libraries Stack Up!

Just the other day, our system's Library Director (Indianhead Federated Library System) sent out a really interesting link about comparisons in relations to public libraries through out the United States.  The nicely created graphics, plus the statistical information makes this link an eye-opener for all librarians working hard at their library facilities.  We should be proud of our efforts to bring good quality service to our patrons.

You will find the link here:  "How Libraries Stack Up for 2010"  Created by

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Summer Reading Kick-Off

Today was our kick-off to Summer Reading...."Make a Splash."  Of course you have to start with story book reading.  The children love to be read to, along with reading themselves!

Our Children's Librarian ran the whole show today, with assistance from me (Director) and one volunteer.  Many of our children registered, were still attending our school district's summer school program this week, so a lot of those children were not present today.  Too bad because they missed out on a nice selection of fun water experiments.  We also let the children blow bubbles.....lots of bubbles.  Today was a nice start to the entire summer reading adventure.  I'm guessing we will have triple the attendance next Wednesday.  Let's hope for good weather since we will be outdoors again.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Kids Can Fiddle @ the Colfax Public Library

Come and join us for an afternoon of bluegrass music with, Dale Martell, bluegrass musician on Thursday July 8 @ 5-6 pm. in the Colfax Tower Park (613 Main Street). 

All ages of children are welcome to come and listen to an overview of American country music and bluegrass tunes.  Kids can learn advice on playing the mandolin, fiddle & guitar!

For more information call the library @ 715-962-4334 or email:  No registration is necessary and event is free.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Start on Summer Reading

Where can kids explore the wonders of water, learn about freshwater boating, have adventure on the high seas, and see the colors of the the Colfax Public Library Summer Reading Program!

Check out specifics on our kids programs page.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

We Had Visitors Tonight

Boy Scout Troop Pack 42

Gave a library tour tonight to 5 active Boy Scouts!  Wow, they had lots of energy, but were very eager to learn everything there was to know about the library.  They even wanted to know about the Dewey Decimal numbers!  Good job boys.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Yes....It Was Very Tasty

Ahhhhh, chocolate sheet cake!  Every year for National Library Week, I always order a decorated sheet cake to feed our hungry library customers.  This year, the customers are slim & far between....must be the weather.  Oh well, cake is leftover for the hungry municipal employees!


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

International Day of Laughter - April 13, 2010

The second day celebrating National Library Week (I forgot to post yesterday....sorry). Who can resist a joke right?  I made a tri-fold display of "clean" jokes for all ages and placed it right across from the circulation desk. 

Hot diggity dog.....bring on the cinnamon rolls baby!  The gals at the Colfax Public Library know how to treat their loyal customers.  Actually, the cinnamon rolls were baked this morning by the Grain Bin Bakery & Market near Wheeler, WI (right off of State highway 25 north of Wheeler).  They make the best cinnamon rolls, plus on the weekends they bake my favorite rolls....caramel pecan.  Trust me, it's worth the drive north of little Wheeler, Wisconsin! 

Who says you can't enjoy treats in the library?


Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Look Whooooo's Coming

Hoo Who Cools For You?
Thursday April 15, 2010 @ 6:30 pm

Join Beaver Creek Reserve Naturalist Ruth Forsgren as she explores the world of owls. Learn what adaptations these birds have that make them successful nocturnal hunters. Determine which owl may be living in your back yard and find out which "facts" you have learned about owls that are actually myths.

Come and meet Ebeneezer, Beaver Creek's resident educational owl. This program is free to the public. For more information, call the library at 715-962-4334.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Hobbies & Crafts Reference Center

Have you ever wondered how to crochet, knit, decorate cakes, brew beer, make wine, how to raise tropical fish? Well now you have access to a handy dandy resource database through the Colfax Public Library. This database can be accessed at the library or at home using your library card.

The Hobbies & Craft Resource Center, an EBSCO database funded through Indianhead Federated Library System for all their member libraries, can now provide you with electronic access to over 250,000 documents supporting full-text articles, patterns for projects, and how-to videos.

In our economic time of many financial cuts everywhere, the public libraries keep offering more and more resources to help you enjoy your daily life. Aren't public libraries wonderful?

Call the library (715-962-4334) if you need help accessing Hobbies & Crafts Reference Center.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

We Have a New Library Database

LearningExpress - Job & Career Accelerator
Wow, I just checked out the new library database that our library system purchase for all the IFLS libraries. I absolutely love, love, love this new database. There's like over 700 practice exams that you can take such as, the GED, SAT, ACT, Civil Service etc. There's also useful information for job skills like mastering job interviews, writing cover letters and resumes.
My favorite part of this database is the section on computer skills. Oh can view tutorials for Adobe programs and Microsoft program. I was sooooo excited when I saw all the computer programs. I've been telling myself for years that I need to learn Photoshop, and guess what program is listed on this database? Yup, Photoshop!!!!!! There's also Adobe Illustrator, which is another program I want to learn for my library & personal blog.
Thank you Indianhead Federated Library System........I approve and my library customers will benefit as well.

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Barnyard Banshees....the Langby Family

(Leah plays both the flute & tin whistle, while Oliva play fiddle)
What a great foot stomping, fingers tapping kind of night it was at the Colfax Public Library. The Barnyard Banshees performed last night for one hour! Their specialty is Celtic music....ballads, waltzes, jigs, reels and a slip jig!!! A slip jig is a style of Irish dance and music.

Alice is playing the Irish Bodhran.....she did an excellent job, plus Alice did quite a bit of solo singing for the group. What young talent.

Dean (on the right) plays the Cello & the fiddle, while Ralph (on the left) plays guitar.

Our space was limited at the library, but the acoustics sounded wonderful. It was such a treat to have this talented family (and one friend) come and perform for the library. Our audience was small last night, but that's usually how it is for us here in rural Wisconsin.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

What Makes Your Library Special?

What do you like about your local library, or what makes your library special? If you feel compassionate about your local library, consider entering the Woman's Day essay contest. In 700 words or less, tell your story about your favorite library in your community and what makes it special. Hurry, deadline is May 9, 2010.

To see full details and official rules go to Woman's Day

Friday, February 26, 2010

It's Time To Celebrate a Little Celtic Music

Barnyard Banshees
Left to right: Ralph Suechting (guitar), Dean Langby (cello and fiddle), Alice Langby (bodhran and vocals), Leah Langby (flute and whistle), Olivia Langby (fiddle and vocals). Romeo the llama....... he hums!

~Special Performance~

@ the Colfax Public Library
Thursday March 11, 2010 @ 6:30-7:30 pm

Come join us and take pleasure in a night of Celtic and old-time fiddle tunes. This family ensemble guarantees to get your toes tapping to their upbeat Celtic jigs.

The family group includes eleven year old Alice, who plays the bodhran (Irish drum) and also sings. Her older sister Olivia, the fiddle champ, will blow your socks off with her fine fiddle talents. The adults in the band fill in with fiddle, flute, whistle, cello and guitar. It’s guaranteed to be a fun night of music.

No registration required and the event is free. For more information call the library @ 962-4334 or email:

Monday, February 8, 2010

A Must Read

Hi, Jenny here....I guess it has been awhile since my last book review, not that I haven't been reading some great books, just haven't taken the time to write down my thoughts. Out of all the books I've read these past months, Bloodroot was the best and I highly recommend it as a must read for 2010.

If you are looking for a book that will stick with you, this is the one. First time novelist Amy Greene weaves a fascinating story of one Appalachian family that spans decades. The book unfolds like a living scrapbook, penned all in first person using the voices of each different character to write on the hearts of readers the ethereal joys, sorrows and intimate decisions of each person.

I am intrigued with the authors ability to breathe life into each character and give them their own distinctive voice. The story language of this book is like a slow brewed and savored drink that once drunk, becomes a part of you.

Click here to reserve your copy.

"Named for a flower whose blood-red sap possesses the power both to heal and poison, Bloodroot is a stunning fiction debut about legacies - of magic and madness, faith and secrets, passion and loss - that haunt one family across the generations, from the Great Depression to today." (taken from the publishers description)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

They Claim It's Easy To Use

The library is considering purchasing a Digital Camcorder, however, I've been hearing a lot of good things about this Flip Cam. Supposedly, this little video device is simple and easy to use.
After doing a Google search, the Flip Cam is available in 60 or 120 minutes of recording time. Prices range from $149.99 to $299.
Does anyone currently own a Flip Cam? Is it really that easy to use?


Monday, January 11, 2010

Victoria Houston - Program & Book Signing

Author Program & Book Signing
Colfax Public Library
Thursday January 21, 2010 @ 6:30 pm

Please be sure to come and join us January 21st to welcome Victoria Houston, author of the poplular series, "Loon Lake Fishing" mysteries. Houston just released her 10th book in the series called "Dead Renegade." As of today when I checked the MORE system, there were already 40 holds on her new book!

We are all excited to meet Victoria and learn more about her, so please stop by Thursday night. Any questions about the author program, give us a call 962-4334, or email: Hope to see you there.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

It's me, Kris!

I know, I know! It's been a long long time since I have been here. I have been reading a lot of book but it seems that a lot of them have been real duds!

I just read Sandra Brown's Rainwater. It was not her normal style of book. It was OK. I liked that the characters were not the normal ones she has. David was not super macho but still a man of quite strength. Sandra did a good job ( I think ) of developing them. And they did not "hop" into bed on the first page!

But I did not like Sandra Brown's Smash Cut. I can't put my finger on it but I found it dull.

I just read Julie Garwood's Sizzle. I found that I had to force myself to read it. Dull. I feel that Brown was trying too hard to make the funny parts funny, the sexy parts sexy and the tense parts tense. Remember, this is just IMHO.

I also read Dean Koontz Breathless. I got to chapter 5 and put the book down. This pains me as I am a big Koontz fan. But the book left me cold. You know how he has some dry, sharp humor in his writing? Well it was too dry and too sharp. I felt that Koontz was just trying to make a deadline. I want him to write another book like " From the corner of his eye" or "One door away from heaven" and many more. I know he has it in him to do another great one.

Well, that's enough book bashing for now.