This Month at The Urbana Free Library

Vol. 43, No. 6 June 2018

Archived Newsletters | Calendar of Library Events | Library Calendar (PDF)

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Support the Foundation's Campaign

In November, the Urbana Free Library Foundation asked thousands of Library supporters to donate to our annual fund drive.

Our goals included the $88,000 it will cost to replace the unstable Library front porch decks, now closed to the public for safety reasons.  Another key goal was to raise money for landscaping the vacant lot at the northwest corner of Green and Race streets. The landscaping costs is yet to be determined.  So far, we have raised more than $60,000, the second largest amount raised in 13 years.

We’re asking you to please consider making a donation to help us reach our goals of rehabilitating the historic, century-old front porch and transforming the corner lot into a beautiful entryway to the Library.  Accomplishing these goals in 2018 would be especially appropriate; this year is the 100th anniversary of The Urbana Free Library’s construction at the current Race Street location.

The Library Foundation will play an increasingly important role in shaping the Library’s future. With the City of Urbana facing imminent budget reductions, the Foundation is stepping up to help fill the void.

The Foundation has committed this year to paying an estimated $164,000 to replace the Library’s aging chiller and compressor, which provide summer air conditioning. Last year, the Foundation paid $115,000 to purchase the corner lot. Many other capital projects will need to be addressed in coming years -- and we will need your help.

If you are interested in being publicly recognized for a substantial contribution, such as through naming rights, please contact us at (217) 531-7050 to discuss this opportunity. If you wish to donate online, go to

Thank you for your ongoing support of The Urbana Free Library.

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Reading Takes You Everywhere!
2018 Summer Reading Program for All Ages

For all ages • May 21 – August 31

Register online or at the Library

This summer, make time to read the books you love and win prizes just for reading! Read books of your choice (including eBooks and audiobooks) and attend fun programs. Get ready for Reading Takes You Everywhere!

The Summer Reading Program is generously supported by the Friends of The Urbana Free Library.


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Centennial Celebration!
100 Years of The Samuel T. Busey Library

Saturday, July 7 • 1:00 - 5:30 p.m.

Please join us to celebrate the Centennial Celebration of the Library's landmark building, which opened to the public in July 1918. It was built by Joseph W. Royer, with a $35,000 gift from Mary E. Busey, as a memorial to her husband, Samuel T. Busey.


  • Special exhibits - “Mary E. Busey’s Gift:  A Centennial Celebration of The Samuel T. Busey Library”
    McFarlane-Hood Reading Room; 1st and 2nd Floor Exhibit Cases
  • 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. - Games and activities from the early 1900s
    Co-sponsored by the Museum of the Grand Prairie. Lewis Auditorium
    All ages welcome!
  • 1:30 p.m. – Live music with the local Dixieland sextet Carl Johnson and the New Orleans Jazz Machine
    Busey Mills Reading Room
  • 2:30 p.m. - Remarks by special guests
    Busey Mills Reading Room
  • 3:00 p.m. – Enjoy cake and specialty drinks from the Cafe (while supplies last)
    Busey Mills Reading Room
  • 3:30 – 4:30 p.m. - Presentation by author Brian Adams, “A Library Building Second to None: A History of Urbana’s Samuel T. Busey Library”
    Lewis Auditorium


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Cunningham Township Garden

Exciting news! The Library and Cunningham Township have a new partnership: The Township is leasing the property at 203 West Green Street (between the Webber Building and the Township Building) from the Library for $1 a year for a community garden. The Cunningham Township Supervisor’s Office (CTSO) is a local government agency serving the lowest income households in Urbana through general assistance, homeless assistance, consolidated social service funding with the City of Urbana, and advocacy.

It was meaningful that Library Board President Chris Scherer and Mayor Diane Marlin attended the lease signing and attested for the Library and the Township on the lease.

The garden is open to Township program participants, as well as, local residents. It will provide fresh vegetables and flowers for low-income residents, act as a community workfare site for township participants, provide space for events, and educate the public about the services of the Township and role it plays in the health of the community. More information is available in the May Library Board packet.

The lease-signing was a lovely day, and we are looking forward to seeing the benefits this will have in our community. The Township is planning a garden launch party scheduled for Sunday, June 4, from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m. There will be free BBQ, and we will name the garden. Please feel invited. Donations of tools (shovels, rakes, hoes, pitchforks) can be made directly to the Township at 205 West Green Street, Urbana.

This initiative is possible because the Foundation purchased properties at the southwest corner of Race and Green Streets in 2013. The Teen Open Lab still maintains a bee and butterfly garden on the property and a Little Free Library, which is supported by donations given to the Friends of The Urbana Free Library and by residents who pick up and drop off books. Thank you to everyone who has supported the Library and community in so many ways!

Celeste Choate, Executive Director

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La Línea Helpline @ The Urbana Free Library

Monday, June 4, 11, 18, and 25 • 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.
For all ages • Study Rooms (Second Floor)

  • Free and confidential consultation
  • Available for anyone
  • Referrals for healthcare, legal assistance, education, and more
  • Translation and interpretation
  • Advocacy and counseling

La Línea is based at the University YMCA and receives support from many community organizations. You can visit the main office Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. -  5:00 p.m. at 1001 South Wright Street, Champaign, or call at 217-417-5897.

Co-sponsored by The Urbana Free Library and the New American Welcome Center - UIUC YMCA.

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Summer Reading Program Teen Craft with the FabLab - Screen Printing!

Friday, 8 • 3:00 - 5:00 p.m.
For all ages • Lewis Auditorium (Ground Floor)

Join the FabLab and Teen librarians to learn screen printing! We'll explore everything from traditional block prints to new methods that utilize digital technology. Bring an old t-shirt if you'd like to print on it and be ready to get ink on your hands!

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Children's Summer Programs at The Urbana Free Library

Make It Mondays
Every Monday, All day

Lasso Up a Good Read with Miniature Horses
Monday, June 4 • 4:15 - 5:00 p.m.

Bees Take You Everywhere!
Thursday, June 7 • 11:00 a.m. - Noon

Babies' Lap Time
Saturday, June 9 • 11:00 - 11:30 a.m.

Brazilian Story Time
Saturday, June 9 • 2:00 - 2:45 p.m.

Paws to Read!
Monday, June 11 • 4:15 - 5:00 p.m.

Wee Love Music
Wednesday, June 13 • 6:00 - 6:30 p.m.

Hula Party
Thursday, June 14 • 11:00 - 11:45 a.m.

Crafty Story Time
Saturday, June 16 • 11:00 - 11:30 a.m.

Why Knot?
Saturday, June 16 • 1:00 - 1:45 p.m.

Baby and Me Yoga Series
Sunday, June 17 • 1:30 - 2:00 p.m.

Celebrating Dads!
Sunday, June 17 • 3:00 - 3:30 p.m.

Young Artists Workshops
Sunday, June 17 • 3:00 - 3:45 p.m.

Ben’s Bells
Saturday, June 23 • 1:30 - 2:15 p.m.

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Basic Cemetery Restoration Workshop

Saturday, June 23 • 10:00 a.m. - Noon
Lewis Auditorium (Ground Floor) • For adults

John Heider, a professional gravestone conservator, will teach and guide individuals on how to properly care for Illinois cemeteries and their historic grave markers. You will gain valuable knowledge on documenting a cemetery, safe cleaning practices, probing for unmarked graves, and repairing and resetting certain types of grave markers.

This is a two-part workshop. Part one is required and will take place Saturday, June 23, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. in the Lewis Auditorium at The Urbana Free Library. Part two is cemetery field work and participants will sign up for either Saturday, June 23, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m., or Sunday, June 24, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. at Roselawn Cemetery.

The workshop is limited to twenty (20) participants. The workshop is FREE, however REGISTRATION is required. Contact the Archives at 217-3670-4025 or

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Sculpture Workshop with Durango Mendoza

Saturday, June 30 • 2:00 - 3:30 p.m.
Lewis Auditorium (Ground Floor)
For ages 12 through adult • Registration required*

As part of the Artist of the Corridor series, featured artist Durango Mendoza will present a sculpture workshop. Register for this free guided workshop where participants can create "assemblages" or sculptures made out of found materials pieced together to tell a story. Participants who create sculptures are invited to display them at the artist’s reception which follows the workshop. Registration opens June 16 at 9:00 a.m. and closes on June 30 at 1:00 p.m.

Co-sponsored by the Urbana Public Arts Program.

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Artist of the Corridor: Durango Mendoza

Saturday, June 30 • 4:00 - 5:00 p.m.
Lewis Auditorium (Ground Floor) • For all ages

Join Artist of the Corridor featured artist Durango Mendoza for an artist talk and closing reception with refreshments and a chance to mingle with the artist. Ways of Seeing is a collection of photography from Durango Mendoza, a photographer, assemblage artist, sculptor, and writer. He is a member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation of Oklahoma.

Artist of the Corridor is a dual-site exhibition with artworks displayed at the City of Urbana and The Urbana Free Library. This program is co-sponsored by the Urbana Public Arts Program.

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Read at the Market with The Urbana Free Library

Saturday, May 26 • 8:00 a.m. - Noon

Read at the Market is back! On the fourth Saturday of each month (May through October) from 8:00 a.m. to noon, Library staff will appear at Urbana's Market at the Square--the #1 Must-See Farmer's Market in Illinois!

At Read at the Market, you can enjoy a story on the Magic Reading Carpet, sign up for the Summer Reading Program, and learn about programs, services, and what is new and exciting at the Library. You also can browse through a selection of books (and check one out) and pick up a free Read at the Market balloon. This summer, we'll see you at the Library AND the Market at the Square.

This season's Read at the Market dates are June 23, July 28, August 25, September 22, and October 27.

Read at the Market is sponsored by The Urbana Free Library in collaboration with the Market at the Square.

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