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We invite you to spend a few moments looking at our new library Web site. With help from the State Library of Iowa and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation we are able to create a place on the Web where you, our customers, can explore, learn and get help with all your information needs.

Blakesburg Public Library New Briefs 


Library closed for 4th of July Holiday

The Blakesburg Public Library will be closed Tuesday, July 4th so library staff can celebrate the holiday. The library will resume regular hours on Wednesday, July 5th. Have a safe and happy 4th.


 Look who's coming to the Family Film Fest @ the Library this Summer

Every Thursday afternoon during the summer, the library will present a family-friendly film. Come beat the heat, cool off in an air-conditioned library and enjoy some free treats along with a free family movie. Movies will start at 1:00 p.m. each week on Thursday afternoon through Thursday, August 3 -- most will run 75-90 minutes. The first film will be "Trolls." 

The following review is from Common Sense Media: Parents need to know that Trolls is a cute, colorful adventure inspired by the tall-haired troll dolls that first became popular in the 1960s. It centers on peppy troll Princess Poppy (voiced by Anna Kendrick), who teams up with grumpy pessimist Branch (Justin Timberlake) to rescue her friends from the troll-hungry Bergens. Along the way everyone learns lessons about inner happiness, never giving up, and being proud of who you are. Everything has a fuzzy, felted look to it, which softens some of the danger and peril. But little kids are still likely to be scared by the greedy, hungry Bergens. And they may well hide their eyes when Poppy and her friends flee from danger and have several narrow escapes. There's also a sad moment when Branch remembers losing someone he loved. Two of the Bergens flirt, striking some "sexy" poses and exchanging a couple of mild innuendoes. Bodily function humor includes the projectile-glitter farts of Poppy's sparkly friend, Guy Diamond, whose glittery buttocks are also visible. Expect a few uses of "OMG"/"oh my gah" (the ending of the word is left undefined) and "stupid"/other insults. But in the end, what you'll remember are the great songs, the strong themes of friendship and empathy, and the fun characters.

 Adult computer skills

Computer classes for adults on tap at the library

Are you an adult who could use some technology assistance? This summer the Blakesburg Public Library is offering some adult computer classes to help you learn how to harness technology. The summer schedule of classes and topics is as follows:

Monday, June 5, 7:00 p.m. Computer Basics Class

Monday, June 12, 7:00 p.m. Email Class - learn how to set up an email account, send email with attachments, set up folders in your email, and manage your account.

Monday June 26, 7:00 p.m. Microsoft Word -- Learn how to create, edit and save a text document. You will also learn how to insert images or tables, and use the text toolbar. 

Monday, July 3, 7:00 p.m. Microsoft Excel -- Learn how to set up a spreadsheet, insert columns, create graphs in this introduction to Excel.

Monday, July 10, 7:00 p.m. Social Media -- Introduction to Facebook -- learn how to set up a Facebook account, add pictures,add friends, hide or delete posts, like, share, poke, and add stickers or graphics to your posts.

Monday, July 24, 7:00 p.m. Tablets -- Learn how to use a tablet as a hand-held computer and and e-reader. We'll introduce you to BRIDGES, Iowa's e-book and e-audio book program. You will learn how to download search the catalog and download e-books that provide 14 days of free access to the book before it is automatically returned (no late fees -- ever !!). Bring your own device (Nook, Kindle, Tablet, Smartphone, etc.), or use one of our four tablets.

Summer Schedule of Events @ The Library

The Library will be a very busy place this summer -- with something for everyone to do.  Be sure to check out the daily schedule to see what's happening, and refer to the library's web page and Facebook pages for updates. Print the schedule below to keep in a handy spot so you will always know what's going on. You won't want to miss out on some great activities and events !! 

PDF document icon Blakesburg Public Library 2017 Summer Schedule of Events.pdf — PDF document, 406 kB (416213 bytes) 

 Iowa Travel Guide

If you are thinking about Summer Vacation plans, be sure to stop in at the Library and pick up a copy of the new Iowa Travel Guide. This is provided free to libraries and their patrons from the Iowa Tourism Office, a division of the Iowa Economic Development Authority. Iowa has a lot to offer -- get your copy of the Iowa Travel Guide and start making your getaway plans !!

 Iowa Travel Guide

   FY16 Annual Report Available

The library was a very busy place in Fiscal Year 2016. The Annual Report for the Blakesburg Public Library for FY16 is available on the library's web site. The annual report includes financial information (where we get our money and how we spend it), along with numbers of how many people visited us, what types of programs we offered and many other tidbits. Enjoy reading about the many services and resources provided for you at YOUR library. 

PDF document icon FY16 BPL ANNUAL REPORT.pdf — PDF document, 451 kB (462025 bytes)

 Link to Library Catalog

The link above is to our new library management system including a card catalog and circulation program for the Blakesburg Public Library. It uses the data (our collection holdings) from our current LibraryThing account. Please spend some time searching the catalog by subject, author, title, keyword or format  (dvd, hardcover, paperback), or genre (mystery, romance, etc.). Click on the item's title to see if it is available for checkout, find reviews, read-alikes, etc.  Thank you to the Friends of the Blakesburg Public Library for paying the annual fee for this subscription for the first year. We appreciate everything our Friends group does to support the library. The library staff is trying to bring this library up-to-date with technology and make the collection searchable to anyone with an internet connection.  It even works on smartphones, so be sure to check this out.

 Library Hours

The Blakesburg Public Library Summer Schedule begins Monday, June 5, 2017. Summer hours are:

Monday -- 5:30 -9:00 p.m.

Tuesday --9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Wednesday -- 5:30 - 9:00 p.m.

Thursday -- 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Friday -- Closed.

Saturday -- 8:00 a.m. -- 100 p.m.

Sunday -- Closed.


 Bridges Logo


Bridges E-Books and Audio Books

Use your library card to access thousands of ebooks and audio books across all genres and interest all ages through Bridges -- the State of Iowa's Overdrive portal.

 LearningExpress 3.0

 Learning Express Software available @ the Library

LearningExpress is an interactive online platform, providing career and academic resources.
will help you with job preparation, career advancement, and college readiness.
helps build skills in math, reading, writing, grammar, and vocabulary.                 

Interlibrary Loan

If the library doesn't have the book you are looking for, we can order it for you from participating Iowa Libraries through the Inter-library Loan Program. Through this sharing program, Iowa libraries are able to offer patrons a wide variety of materials, and share costs.

Ebsco logo

 EBSCOhost, the most used reference source worldwide, is available 24/7/365 to patrons of the Blakesburg Public Library. A customizable, intuitive search experience, EBSCOhost is designed to cater to various user needs and preferences at every level of research.

The EBSCOHost Database features a nearly a dozen focus areas within its resources. These include MasterFile Premier, Health Source--Nursing/Academic Edition; Primary Search; ERIC; Academic Search Elite; Business Source Elite; Vocational and Career Collection; TOPICSearch; Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia; Regional Business News and Health Source--Consumer Edition. Check with the library staff for the user ID/Password to access the database 24/7/365 from your home, laptop or smartphone. Contact library staff to obtain the user ID/Password.

Ottumwa Legacy Foundation Grant Update

The Library has purchased 9 desktop computers and 1 laptop with funds from the Legacy Foundation Grant it was awarded in the fall. All of the machines have been installed and have been updated with Microsoft Office 2016 on them. Five of the desktop computers are in the adult/main library space, and four are located in the children's room. Three of the older computers that have a Windows 7 Operating system have been moved into the Quiet Study/Reading Room for use there.  The library will be holding classes on using Office applications in the near future. The laptop computer and projection system will be used for training and entertainment purposes (showing family-friendly movies during school breaks, etc.). Be sure to stop by the library and check out all it has to offer. 

Library awarded Alliant Energy Grant

The Blakesburg Public Library has been awarded a $1,000 Alliant Energy Foundation Grant to purchase audio books for visually impaired readers, emergent and struggling readers. The library plans to purchase audio book kits (books and audio cd books) for early/beginning readers and struggling readers so children can read along in the text while listening to the CD, and books on CD for teens and adults who are visually impaired, or who simply prefer listening to a good book to reading it. In addition the library will purchase a couple of personal CD players with headphones, and pay for its annual public performance movie license so the library can continue to provide free family movie entertainment for the community.  Be watching the web page and the library's Facebook account for more information in the coming months.

 hawaiian nights 2

Father/Daughter Hawaiian Nights Dance a Huge Success

 About 55 dads (or grandpas) and their daughters attended the 5th Annual Father-Daughter Dance Saturday, March 11, 2017, at the Blakesburg Elementary School Attendance Center Gymnasium. Each participant was presented a lei, all of the girls received a Hawaiian-themed bracelet, and everyone enjoyed lots of great snacks, beverages,  doing the limbo, hokey-pokey and chicken dance, along with rocking out to oldies and today's greatest hits. Commemorative pictures were taken and will be available soon. Participants took plenty of their own fun "selfies" and more than one dad were totally on board with dressing up in Hawaiian sirts or coconut bra tops, grass skirts, floppy hats, put flowers in their hair and donned sunglasses for the fun photos.  Thank you to everyone who attended and to all who worked to make this a success by donating cookies, funds for treats, decorating and helping with the clean-up crew. This was another great community event, and all proceeds will help fund library collections, programs and services. 

Free Children's E-Books

Use the following link to access free children's e-books to read on your computer screen. Contact the library for the user ID/password.

Bored? Check out the many board games and video games available @ the library 

In addition to great books, magazines, newspapers, DVDs, online databases, e-books and audio books, the library has jigsaw puzzles, children's puzzles, toys, craft materials, and a collection of board games for patrons to play at the library. Come check out the library -- where there is something for everyone !



New magazines

The Blakesburg Public Library has received the gift of a almost two dozen magazine subscriptions. Some of the titles have already been arriving in the library's mail. A variety of interests, genders and ages are included in the gift subscriptions. New titles include: Automobile, Boys Life, Country Living, Girls Life, Good Housekeeping, Jack & Jill, Kiplinger's Personal Finance, Outdoor Life, Prevention, Redbook, Scholastic Parent and Child, and Woman's Day.

 RAGBRAI visitors RAGBRAI riders relax outside

RAGBRAI riders check in @ the Library

Four hundred and fifty-six RABGRAI visitors signed the guest book at the Blakesburg Public Library Thursday as one of their first stops in our small town. That is more guests in one day, than we sometimes get in a month !!

Guests from 38 of our 50 states as well as visitors from the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico (a U.S. Territory) were here, as well as folks from Winnipeg (Manitoba), Canada; Edinburgh, Scotland; and Istanbul, Turkey.  In addition to those who signed in, an estimated 250 or more visited the library.

Our guests were thrilled to have access to restrooms with flushing toilets and water for washing up,  and access to water fountains to refill their water bottles. Air conditioning was very popular as was the Wi-Fi. “We haven’t had internet or Wi-Fi access for four days,” was a common refrain.  Another said they thought this RAGBRAI was “More about finding Wi than Pie.” Several guests wrote thank you notes, or supported their local sports teams alongside their signature. Comments included “Go Cavs!”  “Go Cubs,”  “Hook ‘em (Horns)” etc. Several just wrote “Thank You,” or “Thanks” or simply drew a heart.

It was fun watching the bikers ride past the first entrance to the library/school grounds then see the sign listing our available services and decide to turn around and come back through the second entrance.  

Our visitors used the library to read the paper or magazines, find a book, get online with our computers or the Wi-Fi, charge their phones, catch a nap in a cool place, or play a game of chess. We had one couple who needed to make a work-related conference call, so offered them our phone, and another visitor who needed to print some emailed documents then FAX them to California.

Many of our guests shared their love of libraries, told us about their connection to libraries (“My mom, girlfriend, grandma, etc., is/was a librarian) and education (lots of teachers, former teachers, school counselors, etc. in the group).  We also had a computer programmer who has written code for a library management system and a children’s author stop in to say hello.  One Idaho visitor bemoaned the state of education in her state where they have cut public school funding and funneled it into charter schools.

RAGBRAI participants were all gracious, friendly, and so appreciative. They were patient when the lines got a little long and appreciated when we tried to show them alternative restrooms where the line wasn’t quite as long.  They were very neat, and picked up all of their trash. They were an awesome group.

Chris and I were so busy and loved every minute of it. A few of the riders agreed to let us take pictures (we didn’t want to intrude on their privacy), and others wanted to take a picture with us. Even more took pictures of our “Bikin’ the ‘Burg” display window, and one of our early visitors loved the Kool Aid stand in the children’s room and had her picture taken in it. All in all, it was a fantastic day -- we can’t wait to do this again the next time RAGBRAI rolls through.