216 N Marshall Ave

Litchfield MN 55355


All Pioneerland

While all Pioneerland Library System buildings remain closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Curbside Pick-up of library items is available. You may place items on hold using the online catalog. Library staff will call you to schedule a pickup time once your hold is ready. Pickup days/times vary by location. Please contact your library if you have questions or need assistance in using this service.

Friday, March 27, 2015

What Will You Make Today?

By Margaret Weigelt
Teen Programming at Litchfield and Grove City

Encourage TEENS to TAKE this library SURVEY!

If you’re of a certain age you may have noticed the public library isn’t quite like it used to be.  It’s still the place to find book titles on every topic under the sun, but some of the activities happening may surprise you.  People around the country and around the world are utilizing libraries for animated interactions together “discovering, making and doing” stuff like inventing, building and creating new content. Maybe you’ve noticed Lego creations on display? What’s that all about?  For a number of years now libraries have been building into their programming a new capacity to host and facilitate the creative genius of their communities.

In the future libraries may be the favorite place to go for community interaction, support, mentoring and to access a wide variety of tools and resources (other than books) cooperatively shared by community members to research and experiment, take apart or put together, and create or experience new content in both the real and the digital world. Instead of simply consuming someone else’s creative content we might be lending, submitting our own ideas, creations, compositions, coding, animations, inventions and discoveries to the community and library for input, feedback and review.

 In the future our resources will likely expand far beyond books and computers. In the future we might be coming to the public library to do a little research and then tackle a DIY/DIT or scientific project with tools and supplies available at the library! We might come to make a prototype with a 3D printer or work on a new invention or enterprise, investigate various technologies, try out new hobbies, get involved in service learning, learn to sew, cook, or make furniture. Who knows? It’s really up to you!
Here at the library we’ve taken baby steps toward a “Maker” kind of mindset for all ages.  In particular we’ve tried to make adjustments to our attitudes and are working to create library spaces where tweens and teens feel comfortable, especially for use of digital devices and social interaction. The teen programming at the Grove City and Litchfield libraries is set up to encourage and facilitate the creative, social and intellectual development of young people. The first step in achieving that has been to greet and get to know the teens that visit our libraries, find out about their interests, invite them to share their thoughts, advice, ideas and visions of what would make their experience at the library outstanding! We create programming around those interests.

One of our newest programs makes use of a tiny box of stuff called a Makey Makey.  It contains a whole lot of fun in the guise of a small circuit board powered by USB connected to conductive materials with alligator clip wires. Everyone’s eyes light up with ideas when they see the myriad possibilities of interacting with a computer’s apps, games and software via banana, play dough, spoons, or through a chain of conductive objects including three of your friends!

There will be a MAKEY MAKEY invention session for teens at the Litchfield Public Library Saturday April 11 starting 1:30 pm in the big meeting room! Another session will be offered at the Grove City Public Library on Monday April 20 at 3:30 pm. All young people ages 12-18 welcome. Refreshments will be served. No registration required. For more information call 320-693-2483 (Litchfield) or 320-857-2550 (Grove City).

Friday, March 20, 2015

Share a picture book

 by Jan Pease

When I was a child, reading with a flashlight under the covers was something I tried frequently, and just couldn’t understand why my parents seemed to magically know what I was doing.  I kept my door closed, but didn’t think about the ray of light that was visible under the door in that old parsonage.   These two new books might just encourage that habit.  The books are titled, “A Day and Night in the Forest” and “A Day and Night in the Rain Forest,” both written and illustrated by Caroline Arnold.  These were published in Minnesota, and feature a fun twist.  If you shine a flashlight in back of some of the pages, or hold the book up toward a bright light, you will see a hidden animal.  Perhaps one could say, “If you give a child a flashlight…..”

“Big Bad Detective Agency,” by Bruce Hale, looks like the first book in a series.  Fairy tale characters are the prime suspects in a crime for which Big Bad Wolf has been framed.  According to School Library Journal, “Readers will snicker as they discover that some have alibis, some have no motive, and some aren't bright enough to pull off the crime.”

How would you complete this question? “If I could fly, I would ________ .”   Humphrey the class hamster is very happy in room 26, but he has to find a way to answer that question.  This is book 11 in the series about this likeable, and imaginative, little hamster, "Imagination according to Humphrey,"  by Betty G. Birney.

Is there anyone who doesn’t know the song, “The Itsy Bitsy Spider?” The new book, “Just Itzy,” by  Lana Krumwiede and Greg Pizzoli asks us to imagine how   Itzy Bitzy feels  when he hears that song over and over.  His plight reminds me of the beleaguered writer Gelett Burgess, famous for writing the poem “I never saw a Purple Cow, I never hope to see one; But I can tell you, anyhow, I'd rather see than be one.”     Itzy, fortunately, does not go to the extremes of Mr. Burgess, who wrote in 1897, “Ah, yes, I wrote the "Purple Cow" I'm Sorry, now, I wrote it; But I can tell you Anyhow, I'll Kill you if you Quote it!”

Can you find spring?  I’ve seen robins in our yard and heard red-wing blackbirds singing up in the trees.     Carin Berger’s new book, “Finding Spring,” is the perfect winter-into-spring book.  Maurice, a little bear, leaves his den a little early.  He brings home a snowball, full of magic and light, and wraps it up to show his mom.  Of course, the snowball melts by the time they wake up do Maurice must go out and learn about spring again.  The art in this lovely book features dioramas and paper cut outs.  

Finally, “Henry Finds His Word,” written  by Lindsay Ward,  tells the story of a toddler who goes searching for the right word to be his very first “real” word, since he is saying things like “Rah Rah Rah Rah Rah!" and "bbbghsh," which his parents don’t understand.  The review at mentions the classic book, “Leo the Late Bloomer,” by Robert Kraus. Like Leo, Henry finds his word at the perfect time.  This is the perfect time to share a picture book with someone you love.

Regional author book signing

Happily Ever After by Danielle Miller

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Wine & Cheese is tonight, cookbook extravaganza on Saturday!

by Beth Cronk, Litchfield head librarian

The library has two events this week for the food and drink lovers in the community.  One is a wine tasting to benefit the library, and the other is our book sale, which will feature a cookbook extravaganza this month.

The Litchfield Public Library Foundation is hosting a wine, cheese, and chocolate-tasting fundraiser tonight, Thursday, March 19.  This event will be held from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Litchfield VFW on East U.S. Highway 12.  

Those who attend will be able to sample 34 high-quality wines, plus three non-alcoholic wines, and nine regular and non-alcoholic beers and ales.  Bruce Cottington will be providing seven types of cheese to sample.  Edward Jones will be providing chocolate. 

The event will feature an exhibit of black and white photography by local artist Robert Wilde

The Foundation will also offer a silent auction with items from many local businesses.  The list so far includes donations from Peter’s on Lake Ripley, Parkview Grille, Carlito’s, Swan’s CafĂ©, Dairy Queen, Litchfield Natural Food Co-op, Stockmen’s Nursery, Prairie Drifter Farm, Open Sole Yoga, Cricket Meadow, and Rodan + Fields consultant Heather Guyan, plus Jackie Zender and NFL player John Carlson.  We are so grateful for their generosity.

Tickets can be purchased at the door, at the library or liquor store, or from library board members for $20 each.  All proceeds benefit the library’s Foundation, which is a nonprofit that supports our local library.

For those who want to pursue their food and drink interests at home, our next book sale will be a good place to stock up.  This month’s sale will feature a huge selection of cookbooks.  The Friends of the Library book sale will be held Saturday, March 21, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the library’s meeting room. 

There will be cookbooks by celebrity chefs, cookbooks from cultures around the world and around regions of the U.S., and books filled with quick and easy recipes.  The sale will also offer cookbooks featuring special ingredients, such as cheese, meat, game, fish, berries, and vegetables.  Books about coffee, tea, beer, and wine will be available, as well as cookbooks for special diets. 

The March book sale will also feature a 25 cent special on vintage mysteries.  The usual wide variety of books and movies will be part of the sale, as well.

Proceeds from this sale always benefit the Friends of the Litchfield Public Library, another nonprofit organization that supports our local library.  Library Friends groups are like booster clubs for school activities or auxiliaries for hospitals, which may help you to understand the difference between our Foundation and our Friends group.  We are grateful to have both!

Join us for the events this week and enjoy the finer things in life.  As Julia Child said, “People who love to eat are always the best people.”

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Join us to toast the library's future

The Litchfield Public Library Wine and Cheese Fundraiser is coming soon! 
Thursday, March 19 from 5:30-7:30 pm
Litchfield VFW
Enjoy 34 high quality wines, 9 beers and ale (some non-alcoholic), 3 non-alcoholic wines, 7 cheeses, chocolate, a silent auction, and a black and white photography exhibit by local photographer Robert Wilde.
Thank you to the following businesses who made donations to the Silent Auction: Peter's on Lake Ripley, Parkview Grille, Carlito's, Swan's Cafe, Dairy Queen, Litchfield Natural Food Co-op, Stockmen's Nursery, Prairie Drifter Farm, Open Sole Yoga and Cricket Meadow Tea Shop. We appreciate the support of all of these fantastic local businesses!
Tickets can be purchased at the library, at the liquor store, or from a board member and are $20. All proceeds will go to benefit our library.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Five for Spring

By Jan Pease

In an interesting coincidence, just after I looked for information about Marion Dane Bauer for this article, a patron asked about   In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb, also written by Ms. Bauer.  Her new book is Crinkle, Crinkle, Crack: It’s Spring!    She lives in St. Paul and knows about spring in Minnesota.  Quoting from the review at, “Rap, bap, tap, crunch, scrunch, crinkle, crackle, CRACK!  In an explosion of spring, ice shatters, a baby bird is born, and flowers burst forth.”  The thought of spring   makes me smile, and the sounds of spring will be very welcome. 

Victoria Kann began inventing new words when she wrote Pinkalicious, published in 2006.  She wrote several Pinkalicious books and then began inventing new words such as GoldiliciousSilverliciousEmeraldalicious, and Purplicious, books that feature her character, Pinkalicious and her brother Peter.  Her new book, Aqualicious, continue their adventures, as the siblings discover a miniature mermaid named Aqua.  These books are among the most popular in our library. 

Do you wake up at night wondering about the origins of superheroes like Batman or Wonder Woman?  We have added two origin stories to the collection, Batman: an Origin Story, and Wonder Woman: an Origin Story, both by John Sazaklis.  These are chapter books illustrated by DC Comics illustrators, according to   They are already checked out, and I think they will be very popular.

Sara Pennypacker has written a seventh Clementine story, Completely Clementine.  Clementine is a third grade vegetarian who gives her dad pictures of sad animals that don’t want to be eaten.  She isn’t ready to leave her favorite teacher, and she’s trying to think of a name for the new baby expected in her family.  This may be the final book in the Clementine saga.  The other six books in the series are ClementineThe Talented ClementineClementine’s LetterClementineFriend of the WeekClementine and the Family Meeting, and Clementine and the Spring Trip
Herman Parish was in the fourth grade when his aunt, Peggy Parish, wrote the first book about Amelia Bedelia.  He grew up with the stories about Amelia Bedelia, and felt that her adventures needed to continue, even though Peggy Parish passed away in 1988.  He began writing Amelia Bedelia chapter books in 2002.  His new Amelia Bedelia book, Amelia Bedelia Cleans Up, is the sixth chapter book in his series.  It might be an interesting experiment to read one of Peggy Parish’s stories, such as Thank You, Amelia Bedelia, published in 1964, and one of the newer books by Herman Parish.   If you conduct this little experiment, let me know what you think.

If you are interested to know what books are new or on order for the library, go to the Pioneerland catalog page and click on  the link to “New Items Purchased,”  and have some fun exploring this new feature of the online catalog.