Guest Blogger

ALSC on the Road in Idaho

Skye: Greetings from the land of famous potatoes! Just two weeks ago, energetic and passionate librarians from all across Idaho descended upon Boise for the annual Idaho Library Association Conference. The theme this year was “Libraries Leading the Way,” and what better way to kick it all off than with an early morning keynote address that challenged listeners to adapt and grow in the areas of character development, contextual awareness and competence, since no organization can rise above the capabilities of its leaders.

From lively sessions focused on innovative STEAM programs, to an entertaining and informative guerrilla storytime, to a legislative panel that affirmed the vitality of the library in early childhood learning – there was much at this year’s ILA Conference to excite, challenge, and inspire.

Storytime Parachute
Energetic Youth Services Librarians sharing their parachute knowledge!

What made the conference extra-special, though, was the presence of the ALSC Roadshow booth. Since it is true that an organization is only as strong as its leaders, I am grateful to have had ALSC leaders with the foresight and wisdom to bring the ALSC booth to this year’s ILA Conference. Being a first-time volunteer at the booth was a great way to meet fellow ALSC members, a great way to share the benefits of ALSC membership with those who were not yet members, and a great way to work together to create a better future for children through libraries. Since Gretchen was the one responsible for bringing the ALSC booth to ILA, I’ll turn it over to her to describe the process!

Gretchen: I was already familiar with the ALSC Roadshow and when Dan (Bostrom) told me that Idaho only had 16 members in the state it seemed obvious that having a booth at the conference was a place to start! It was SO EASY to do. I filled out the form, connected with the few members in Idaho over email, Dan sent some handouts to have at the table, and then all that was left to do was to show up and set up! I even cut off my address on older Children & Libraries issues so people could see the excellent journal ALSC members receive.

We set up a schedule in advance to try to get volunteers arranged in time blocks, but once we got there I realized that wasn’t going to work. We just came over during breaks so we could still attend the conference sessions. In times dedicated to networking on the schedule, we’d head over to the booth. By crowdsourcing “staffing” the booth with fellow members, we had much better coverage throughout the whole conference. Unlike some of the other vendors, many conference attendees knew us so they would stop to chat and we had the chance to make sure they know about the Día resources and Babies Need Words posters as well as other other fabulous ALSC programs and initiatives. We encouraged Trustees and Directors who stopped by to make sure someone from their library is a member to get the maximum value of the professional development and support that ALSC offers.

ILA 2015 Roadshow
Enthusiastic ALSC members: Gretchen Caserotti, Skye Corey, Laura Abbott, Stephanie Bailey-White, and Megan Egbert.

Having a booth at our state association conference was an easy and fun way to meet the other members in the state and to help raise awareness of ALSC programs and initiatives. We definitely would like to do it again next year and hope it results in adding a few new members to our roster!

Photos courtesy of guest blogger.

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Skye Corey
Photo courtesy of the author

Today’s guest blogger is Skye Corey. Skye is a Youth Services Librarian at the Meridian Library District in Meridian, ID. You can reach her at scorey@mld.org

Please note that as a guest post, the views expressed here do not represent the official position of ALA or ALSC.

If you’d like to write a guest post for the ALSC Blog, please contact Mary Voors, ALSC Blog manager, at alscblog@gmail.com.

2 comments

  1. Andrew Medlar

    Thanks so much for this fantastic post, Skye & Gretchen, and to Laura, Stephanie, Megan, and everyone else for sharing ALSC love in the Gem State! Welcome, new Idaho members!

  2. Pingback: Join the ALSC Roadshow! - ALSC Blog

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