ALA Midwinter 2018

Finishing #alamw2018 strong with Bill Nye in real life! And Greg Mone too!

Science nerds and librarians were thrilled with a geeky and fun end to ALA Midwinter 2018 with Bill Nye (the science guy) and Greg Mone. Nye and Mone have a new middle-grade series out- Jack and the Geniuses, where kids go on scientific adventures around the world. The duo talked about their new series and interviewed one another. Here is some fun information I learned from the closing keynote: Bill Nye’s mom was a World War II Code Breaker! (Totally where he got his smarts) One of Jupiter’s moons- Europa is a fascinating area where there may (or may not) have been life. Side note (If Bill Nye could fund any expedition anywhere, it would be to Europa). One of Greg Mone’s and Bill Nye’s first interactions was surfing, where Bill kept talking about the science of waves etc. etc. People can eat three burritos for lunch on Antartica and then…

ALA Midwinter 2018

Wrapping up my 1st Midwinter #alamw18

And… it’s a wrap! My first Midwinter experience is officially done! It’s been a super quick five days in Denver. I have had some highs– Bill Morris Seminar, talking storytime, attending my first council session, and many more; and some lows– icy streets, SNOW, way overpacked bags.But all in all, it was a wonderful and illuminating experience to attend the infamous Midwinter Conference. My takeaways: ~Midwinter is mostly meetings and there is not much program– but it is a chance to really get to know committees and what they do. There are also lots of OPEN meetings where you can just drop in and hear about a division or round table. ~Attendance is a lot lower at Midwinter– according to Council documents we were about a thousand people less than last year in Atlanta… and while that may be disappointing to vendors, it is a great opportunity to network! You see…

ALA Midwinter 2018

Youth Media Awards #alamw18

There are not many reasons to get up at 7 am on a Conference day when your first meeting isn’t until 10 am, but then, not every morning is the Youth Media Awards! For those of you not there… allow me to paint a picture. Denver is cold– and the streets remain a bit icy, but yet hoards of library people are up and about– you wouldn’t need to consult your Scheduler, just follow the herd of people to a packed room. The room was abuzz with people chatting about their favorite books of the year and the excitement over what books might win! I had to search for my friend and my saved seat, but it was nearly impossible with all of the excited people. Once I found her, we started discussing predictions and just general excitement over what was to come! Every year I read the results as they…

ALA Midwinter 2018

Namaste, Library Peeps : Getting My Zen On at #alamw2018

One of the coolest amenities at ALA Midwinter 2018 was the Yoga / Meditation Room. I hope many of you had a chance to stop in for a moment, or two, or …. just hang out and be present for a while.     For the past few conferences, ALA has been sponsoring the yoga / meditation room. Since I am moderately obsessed with yoga (although I’m not sure if that is a very “yogi” thing to say) I stopped by Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and got in some abbreviated practice. Even if you don’t have a yoga practice, being able to sit down and collect your thoughts and just BE for 10 minutes or so can be beneficial to both your mental and physical health. I found the room here in Denver to be an oasis of calm.  Dim lights, soothing music, mats and meditation cushions as well as…

ALA Midwinter 2018

Cheering for #alayma

THE highlight of the #alamw18 conference for me is sitting in the audience at the announcements of the American Library Association’s Youth Media Awards. Just to give you a little flavor, here was the line when I got to the convention center 30 minutes before the program was scheduled to start: This photo does not accurately portray the number of twists and turns and line segments there were so that people could still actually walk in the convention center. Once inside, it’s a magical wonderland filled with people who LOVE youth books.   I hope that you got to tune in for the live broadcast of the awards. In case you didn’t, ilovelibraries.org has the full list of winners and honorees. I love that there were so many diverse and #ownvoices authors represented throughout the awards and many winners and honor books from small presses. It was a great year…

ALA Midwinter 2018

Learning, Connecting, and Having fun at ALA Midwinter 2018: It’s Been a Whirlwind #alamw18

It’s been a whirlwind, indeed. Although I’ve attended several Midwinter meetings over the years, this one has been especially fruitful. The sheer pace of meetings and activities has had me dashing all weekend. That’s my excuse for not posting sooner. I arrived from Chicagoland early Thursday afternoon; I managed to avoid the blizzard back home.While my coworkers had a snow day, we were enjoying 60 degree weather here in Denver. On Friday I attended the Bill Morris Seminar, the highlight of my conference experience so far. As part of the 2018 cohort, I came away with an expanded skill set for children’s literature and media evaluation. And I met some truly amazing people in the process. Immediately after that, I attended the inspiring opening session where activists Patrisse Cullars and Marley Dias discussed what inspired them to rise up and take action. Later that evening I joined up with the…

ALA Midwinter 2018

Local library love #alamw18

Conferences are so busy– and they keep you engaged for crazy long hours– that it is easy to forget that you are in a new city! I am always trying to be better at exploring the local scene when I travel to conferences– and this year is especially hard for me because I am right next to the Conference Center, and I hate the snow! But one thing I absolutely love and try to do is to see a local library in the city I am visiting. I love looking at the children’s rooms and collections and how they market and manage their spaces. Some of the cutest things from Denver Public Library main branch: This adorable play mailbox! I wanted to write my own letter and leave it! Or this little easel that allows young artists to practice- who may not be ready to stay seated- or able to…