Friday, March 7, 2014

Spring is Coming!

Gardening Book
Spring is definitely going to arrive in Minnesota any day now.  How do I know this?  Because my calendar shows that Daylight Savings Time begins on Sunday, March 9th and Spring begins on Thursday, March 20th.  We are celebrating by having more Brown Bag programs for you to enjoy!

The first program, Easy Veggie Gardens, is at noon on Thursday, March 13th.  A problem many click here to learn our hardiness zone]  Carol Borich, a local Master Gardener, will introduce us to vegetables that are both easy growers and appropriate to our climate.  Not only that, she will also give tips on increasing yield and to those of us who have limited gardening space. 
people have is selecting vegetables that are suitable for Northeastern Minnesota's short growing season.  [

Cellist of Sarajevo Cover
Our next program is part of the annual One Book, One Community event held in partnership with the Duluth and Cloquet public libraries and affiliated organizations.  The reading selection this year is The Cellist of Sarajevo, by Steven Galloway.  The book takes place during the siege of Sarajevo, was influenced by a real cellist who played during the siege, and covers the lives of four individuals:  A cellist, a sniper, a man in search of bread, and another man in search of water. 

The program to be held here in Virginia is The Redemptive Power of Music:  Sarajevo Under Siege.  Local musician Sam Black will direct an ensemble in performances of Albinoni's Adagio and David Wilde's The Cellist of Sarajevo.  This program will be held at 6:30 on Sunday, March 30th, at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, in Virginia. 

Next comes... National Library Week!  Celebrate libraries with us during the week of April 14th.  While you are here, we will show you how to find the books you want and the information you need.  Did you know you can create a resume online?  [click here to learn how]  Are you hoping to find a certain book at our library?  [click here to search]  You can learn more about resume building, finding books, and more right here @ your library!

Christina Cotruvo
Christina Cotruvo will provide us with more music at noon on Thursday, May 8th.  Her program comprises songs from her CD release, Celtic Harp:  a Superior Love.  They are "[l]ove songs from the shores and oars of Lake Superior. songs from the people who have lived and traveled Lake Superior -- no sinking ships."
Frederick Blanch

Finally, at noon on Thursday, May 15th, we will have "Flights of Photography." Minnesota photographer Frederick Blanch encourages questions during his program featuring exotic images from around the world. 

Check our Facebook page closer to the dates for more information, or call us at 748-7525. 

Brown Bag Lunch Event Schedule

Friday, January 24, 2014

Brown Bag Lunch with Peter Geye

Join us in welcoming Minnesota author Peter Geye at the Virginia Public Library on Thursday, January 30, for our first Brown Bag Lunch of 2014!'s most recent novel, The Lighthouse Road, begins in the 1890s with a young immigrant woman settling into life alone outside of Duluth and continues in the1920s with the life of her grown son and his forbidden love. from the Sea, the author's debut novel, was the 2010 Indie Lit Award winner for fiction and the 2011 Northeast Minnesota Book Award winner, among other honors.  The novel centers on a strained father-son relationship.  The father, an officer on a doomed freighter and one of its three survivors in the 1960s, is dying and calls his grown son to his side to make one last request. 

Peter Geye will be here on Thursday at noon to discuss writing and his books, as well as to answer questions.  Call 748-7525 if you have any questions.  Coffee and goodies are generously provided by the Friends of the Virginia Public Library.

Susan Hoppe -- Adult and Reference Services Librarian

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Boost Your Brain!
Link to the library's online catalog
We all know that reading can take us places we've never been before.   It can teach us about the past, help us to improve ourselves, enable us to learn a language, and so much more.  Did you also know that it can boost your brain function? 

A study at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to measure brain activity of students over a nineteen day period.  The scientists obtained a baseline measure over the first five days, then had all participants read the same sections of the same novel--Pompeii, by Robert Harris--over the next nine evenings.  The results indicated increased brain activity starting the morning after the first reading session and continuing through five post-reading scans. 

Hot Reads logo
Hot Reads logo
So, what can you do to boost your brain power?  Read!  We have novels for those who like fiction, self-help books for those who want to change a specific aspect of their lives, repair manuals for home mechanics, biographies for those who like to read about other people; we have magazines, covering the same subject areas, for those who prefer more concise material; we have newspapers for those who want, well, news; and many databases covering nearly every subject available. 

Give your brain a little work out this winter.  While you're at it, join Hot Reads for Cold Nights, the library's adult winter reading program.  You will not only boost your brain function but also have fun earning raffle chances for fabulous prizes! 

Want more information?  To read the original research paper, click here.  This will take you to a .pdf file, which requires Adobe or an equivalent reader.  Alternatively, you can read an article on the study in The Independent

Thank you, Jennifer Armstrong, Friends of the Library president, for bringing this study to our attention.  

--Susan Hoppe, Adult and Reference Services Librarian

Original Study:

Article from Independent:

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

You're Invited! Virginia Public Library Centennial Gala - December 5

The 5th Avenue library building opened to the public in January 1913, and in January 2013 the Friends of the Virginia Public Library launched the centennial year celebrations with a birthday cake at their annual meeting. To further commemorate the Library’s 100th anniversary, the Friends decided to update Dorothy Petroskey’s 1992 history, Virginia’s Libraries, written the year of the City's centennial. Virginia High School junior Tucker Nelson volunteered to do the update, and what a remarkable job he's done! 

During his research, Tucker discovered an article from a 1912 edition of The Virginian indicating there is a time capsule under the cornerstone of the library! 

On December 5th, the Friends will host a gala dinner cosponsored by the Virginia Area Historical Society and the Virginia Study Club. Photographer Doug Ohman, author of Libraries of Minnesota, will present the history of the Library in the context of the history of libraries in Minnesota, and Tucker Nelson will present the new History of the Virginia Public Library and share the story of the time capsule.

Please join us for a wonderful evening of celebration as we commemorate this cornerstone of the community ...and be one of the first to read the updated and expanded history!

Virginia Public Library Centennial Gala
Thursday, December 5, 2013
Holy Spirit Social Hall – 306 S. 2nd St, Virginia, MN
5:00 p.m. social … 6:00 p.m. dinner … 7:00 p.m. program 
Cost: $15.00 per person. Pre-pay at the library by November 21.
Door prizes and books available for sale.

How to RSVP...
Fill in the form on this flyer and return it with your payment of $15 per person to the Virginia Public Library front desk or mail to the library at 215 South 5th Avenue, Virginia MN 55792. Make checks payable to the Friends of the Virginia Public Library.

~ Jennifer Armstrong, President
Friends of the Virginia Public Library

Friday, October 18, 2013

Learn a new language for free through Virginia Public Library!

Mango Logo

Learning a new language with Mango Languages is free for all VPL patrons, and offers a fast and convenient solution for today’s increasing language-learning needs. Each lesson combines real life situations and audio from native speakers with simple, clear instructions. The courses are presented with an appreciation for cultural nuance and real-world application that integrates components of vocabulary, pronunciation, grammar and culture. Users learn actual conversation, breaking down complex linguistic elements within an audio-visual framework that draws important connections and builds on information they have already learned.

There are more than 40 foreign language courses available and 16 English as a Second Language (ESL) courses.

To learn more about Mango and get a preview of what the program has to offer, stop by the library and we will give you an introduction. You can access Mango through the library website at 

For more information, call 748-7525.

--Susan Hoppe, Reference Services Librarian

Mango Logo