Biography Section

Chris Brennan

Chris started here as a Circulation sub and is now a permanent part-time member of staff. He came to us from work in other libraries in the area and has been here since May 2019. He processes our periodicals (magazines and newspapers) and our brand new video game collection (including VR stuff!). He recently dyed his hair bright red, so you can’t miss him in the building or at curbside! 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 

Chris: I’ve always found working at libraries is very rewarding for me. I like the opportunity to provide a public service–accessibility to the arts. Specifically here, I like that the staff is always encouraged to find their own niche. It’s a welcoming atmosphere that lets people find things to do! 

Elissa: Best or favorite part of your job?

Chris: Before the pandemic I really liked doing the DVD displays because it was cool to share my favorite movies and to work in other collections like soundtracks and books that were adapted into movies. It was neat to see patrons stop and interact with the displays. These days, the same aspects of the job that have always drawn me: being able to help the public find cool things to fill their time with. 

Elissa: What is the most misunderstood aspect of your job?/What do people get wrong about your job? 

Chris: I think people can sometimes fall into thinking that everyone at a desk is a librarian. I don’t have those skills. It takes a lot of people to keep the wheels spinning. I think people would be surprised that it takes a lot of roles to keep a library functioning: pages who get the books on the shelf, building monitors to make sure we’re all following the rules. 

Elissa: How do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 

Chris: Adaptability and resilience of the system through the whole pandemic has been encouraging. Pretty much everyone is floundering and figuring out what to do with their business or job, but from my perspective libraries got it together pretty quickly with curbside and other services. And being able to shout out our digital stuff more. 

Elissa: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer? 

Chris: I don’t use them very much. I respect eBooks but I’m more of a print kind of a guy. I have found some cool comics on Hoopla, they definitely have some quality stuff. If I’m talking comics, I’m always going to go back to The Sandman series by Neil Gaiman. 

Elissa: Best book you’ve ever read? 

Chris: I’m terrible at picking favorites. I guess I’d probably The Nature of Things by Lucretius. This really big work of poetry that was written to demonstrate epicureanism. It’s about an ancient Roman talking about atomic theory. Epicurus was, like a lot of thinkers of his time, but philosopher is a broad word. Plato and Aristotle were doing a lot of things with math and science and telling us how we should live our life–so it was all tied together for them. So for Epicurus, when atomic theory was emerging as a big school of thought, he took that concept and looked at the universe through that lens and tried to see what that said about human experience. And I could easily go into a rabbit hole discussing it. The way of looking at the world and science can affect how you look at yourself and others. It can make you feel small and also like part of something large. I’ve read The Nature of Things all the way through twice. But it’s divided into six parts so I’ve read some parts more than that. He gets more into physical science towards the end of the book, but I appreciate more the philosophical, which is at the beginning. 

Elissa: What do you love about Ferndale as a community/city?

Chris: I don’t live in Ferndale but I do always enjoy coming here. I love the inclusive attitude that’s at the core of the City’s spirit. Coming through here in June when everyone has Pride flags up, including churches, is great. I like the creative attitude that permeates things. It allows a lot of cool stuff to flourish. 

Elissa: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine? Anything from the collection been getting you through? 

Chris: Mostly just lots of movie marathons with my boyfriend. If I’m not doing that, I’m playing games. I got a VR headset so I’ve been playing with that. Otherwise the usual, checking out new music, which our collection helps out with. Playing the piano badly, writing stories. 

Elissa: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?

Chris: I miss the peace that we took for granted. The state of the world has always been far from perfect and likely always will be. There’s just a palpable anxiety around everything these days. I’m looking forward to seeing my family, to go out in public, etc. without that weight on my shoulders. I’m looking forward to a better “regular” that results from all of this. 

Elissa: Any pets?

Chris: Sadly no. I grew up always having a lot, but haven’t had the means right now since I’m renting. But I’d love to have a cat or a dog around again. Or both. 

Elissa: Are you a cat or dog person? You must decide. 

Chris: They have different appeals. I think cats are–I think I relate better to cats but I think dogs make me feel better. I don’t think you can force a decision from me.

Elissa: What’s the best advice you ever received? 

Chris: It’s a song lyric so technically not advice. It’s something that’s stuck with me: “I know that I can’t be the cure to what ails you/But know that I stand beneath if that cure should fail you.” It’s from a band called Small Wonder. I just like it because you can’t fix people’s problems most of the time but you can be there at least. 

Elissa: If you were stuck on an island, what would you take with you? 

Chris: Insulin, a satellite phone, and a survivor guidebook. I’m not trying to be on an island forever. 

Elissa: If I gave you $100, what would you spend it on?  

Chris: I’d probably save it for one of the bandcamp Friday events, when all the purchases go directly to the artists because touring musicians are really struggling. 

Elissa: Top three bands?

Chris: I’m always changing my list but I guess three reliables would be: Modest Mouse, Garbage, and Marina and the Diamonds. (We own some albums from all of these groups in the FADL collection.) 

Elissa: Favorite song to sing at karaoke?

Chris: “Bohemian Rhapsody” is the classic. You can’t worry about being good if you’re doing opera. 

Elissa: Chocolate or vanilla?

Chris: Vanilla. 

Elissa: Rollercoaster or merry-go-round?

Chris: I guess merry-go-round. 

Chris: Would ferris wheel change your mind? 

Elissa: I would probably choose that one then. 

Elissa: Beach or woods? 

Chris: Woods. 

Elissa: Favorite season? 

Chris: Winter. 

You can catch Chris when he’s on curbside duty (remember, you can’t miss the hair). If you have video game suggestions, he’s open to them. Say hi next time you’re around the curbside table! 

As part of the Biography Section, we invite other staff members to give their kudos to Chris. Here is what they had to say: 

Ed: Chris has given me some good suggestions for additions to our film collection.  He was doing bang up job of putting together displays.  I like working the curb with him because he has such a calm demeanor.

Marigold: Chris is so quiet and efficient. He’s always working on something, whether it’s curbside or the list. He also has absolutely incredible hair!

Jenny: Chris is funny, original, hard-working, and unflappable. He is always looking for more things to do and has great ideas. I appreciate that he’s able to give input and share procedures from also working at the Royal Oak library. Thank you Chris!

Kerrie: I appreciate Chris’ willingness to jump into any task, and he always asks if I need help with the delivery. He’s a quick learner and did very well processing the new video game collection. Currently missing his creative displays. 

Tricia: I loved seeing the displays that Chris would put together, especially the holiday “present” display. I remember Jordan talking about how one young family unwittingly took home his non-family-friendly selection. I rarely worked with Chris, even before Covid changed the schedules so drastically, but I really appreciate that he is so diligent and committed to being great at what he does.

Jeff: Chris dives in and gets to work! And does exceptional work! He took on the movie displays = exceptionally! And has transitioned those curations into virtual iterations. He also picked up the Video Games & Magazine processing in a snap. All with just an affable and positive manner–always glad to see him at work & glad to have him on the team at FADL.

Kelly: Chris is chill in a way that I think calms everyone around him. He pays attention, asks questions, and does his best to get things right. He’s taken on a few projects that I don’t have time for but that are vital to making this library and the whole library system a more ordered place. I’m grateful for his presence!

Darlene: Chris has a great way with patrons. I’m often impressed when I hear him interacting with patron’s at the circulation desk. He’s calm, cool, collected, and eager to solve programs and answer questions. I also enjoy his movie displays!

Maggie: A considerate colleague who is detail-oriented in his job, Chris is a pleasure to work with and generally, just a really nice person.

Kathleen: I agree with Marigold that Chris has great hair!  I am also very happy he took over processing the magazines from Jeff, and that I finally have gotten to see him the few times since returning to work that our schedules overlapped.  It was great to work with Jeff on magazines as long as we did, and I look forward to enjoying it now with Chris.

Michelle: I always enjoy working curbside with Chris. He has a fantastic, dry sense of humor. He’s also meticulous in his work and has a great manner with the public. 

Susan: I enjoy working with Chris.  He’s jumped in to help if I need to find something while patrons are on the phone or while pulling the send list, and he is always calm with whatever he’s doing.  We’ve even talked a little about learning French.  

Jordan: The more I get to know Chris the more I like him.  He’s thoughtful, in every sense of the word.

Jasmine: I have also thoroughly enjoyed the displays that Chris has done, especially the Groundhog Day one! His hair is pretty amazing, but it’s this one act of kindness, in particular, that I hope to always remember. I was having car trouble and needed to have my car towed from the parking lot. Unfortunately, the way my car was parked made it a challenge for the tow driver to get it on the truck. He needed some assistance. I didn’t know what to do, but the driver asked me if I was willing to ask one of my co-workers to help. I asked Chris, preparing myself to hear him say no, but he said yes. He was so very gracious about the whole thing, and came out to help push my car onto the tow truck. Chris is very much a gentleman.

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Biography Section

Shelby Simpson

Shelby is a lifelong Ferndalian. She’s lived here all of her 24 years. She’s currently a library page and brings much style and pizzazz to the building. 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 

Shelby: The quietness. I can just come in and put stuff away while still enjoying the company of my coworkers. 

Elissa: Best or favorite part of your job?

Shelby: Being surrounded by the books–there are so many stories and knowledge just waiting to be read/discovered! 

Elissa: What is the most misunderstood aspect of your job?/What do people get wrong about your job? 

Shelby: That our only job is to put stuff away. But since we’re always putting stuff away, I’m always reading the book jackets and so I have really good book recommendations. 

Elissa: How do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 

Shelby: I like that our library, along with others, are doing curbside pickups, so we’re still making ourselves available to the public and community. I feel like providing and lending out Wi-Fi hotspots for those who need them also is a really great thing, especially in this time when everyone is at home working or going to school. 

Elissa: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer? 

Shelby: I like Libby the best and use it more, but I like saying “Hoopla” the most. 

Elissa: Best book you’ve ever read? …in the last six months?

Shelby: Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens or The Alice Network by Kate Quinn. 

Elissa: What do you love about Ferndale as a community/city?

Shelby: I love how inclusive we are as well as laidback and open to different ideas, events, festivals, etc. I think we’re a really helping community too – we look out for our neighbors and other strangers in the community. Everyone offers their help, ideas, or assistance when the people/community needs it, and I think that’s a really hard thing to come across. 

Elissa: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine? Anything from the collection been getting you through? 

Shelby: I think I’m in a book slump, so I haven’t read as much, but I’m currently watching Schitt’s Creek and Outlander. I also try to explore as much as I can while staying COVID safe. Lots of hikes outdoors and driving to new places! Plus this is a really good time for flight deals so I’m looking into those, and planning future trips for when things clear up. 

Elissa: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?

Shelby: I miss people being able to see the expressions underneath my mask. I’ll smile at people and then I realize they can’t see me. I miss the normalcy of coughing too and not having to explain that I’m not sick or worry about people giving me looks. Also the issue of traveling somewhere now and worrying about passing it on to someone. I would love to go see a movie at a movie theater and just be able to have large crowds together again. Not super touchy crowds but where I can sit on a blanket next to another group and not have to worry about anything. And I want my passport to work again! I’m really sad I haven’t been able to travel as much as I’d like. 

Elissa: Did you have to cancel any trips?

Shelby: I was supposed to go to Hocking Hills State Park in April, New Orleans in June, my family reunion in July, and Ireland in September. Holland Tulip Time and the Howell Hot Air Balloon festivals were also cancelled… 

Elissa: Any pets?

Shelby: I have two dogs. One at my mom’s house named Nala and one at my dad’s house named Stafford. 

Elissa: What’s the best advice you ever received? 

Shelby: Don’t ever half-ass anything; always give your best. 

Elissa: If you were stuck on an island, what would you take with you? 

Shelby: I would take my boyfriend Keith and maybe my mom and dog. I feel like if I brought a book I would only read it once…so I would take a camera and a lighter too. Definitely chapstick and a hat too!

Elissa: If I gave you $100, what would you spend it on?  

Shelby: Camping equipment or a plane ticket. 

Elissa: Favorite song to sing at karaoke?

Shelby: I’ve actually never sang karaoke… 

Elissa: Chocolate or vanilla?

Shelby: Chocolate. 

Elissa: Rollercoaster or merry-go-round?

Shelby: Rollercoaster. 

Elissa: Beach or woods? 

Shelby: Woods. 

Elissa: Favorite season? 

Shelby: The in-between of summer and fall because the mosquitoes aren’t bad and it’s really good hiking and camping weather. 

Elissa: Is there anything else you want the people to know about you? 

Shelby: I’ve never had the chickenpox and I think I’m really funny. Probably more than I actually am. 

You have Shelby to thank for the ease of finding your materials on the shelves. She isn’t on curbside, but you may find her out in the wilderness hiking somewhere! 

As part of the Biography Section, we invite other staff members to give their kudos to Shelby. Here is what they had to say: 

Ed: I like Shelby’s goofy sense of fun. I’ve enjoyed the Valentines that she distributes. 

Marigold: Shelby is so fun to talk to! I always look forward to when our shifts overlap, and we get to joke around. She never fails to make me laugh!

Jeff: Shelby’s easygoing, charismatic, and has a great sense of humor! Also a great sense of adventure! 

Jenny: Shelby has a really dry sense of humor that always makes me laugh. I love that even though she works for Oakland County now, she still likes to come in and shelve for us a couple times a week just to still be part of the library. Thanks Shelby!

Kerrie: Shelby is hilarious! I wish we worked together more so I could hear her entertaining stories and jokes more often. 

Darlene: I got to interview Shelby when she first started with us. She is all about giving back to the community and being an active member of the city of Ferndale. I really like that about her. I like that she’s always going on nature adventures. We also get to talk about bullet journals together! I look forward to seeing where life takes her! 

Maggie: Loved the thoughtful Valentines that Shelby passed out last February. Always pleasant to work with, I appreciate having Shelby on our team!

Jasmine: I have also enjoyed the personalized notes that Shelby has written and given to me on Valentine’s Day because it’s a really kind gesture that has caused me to smile. I find her to be very free-spirited and daring. I also love her eclectic sense of style.

Kelly: Shelby is fun to be around! She loves true crime like me, so it’s nice to know if I start talking about a creepy case, there will be one person around who won’t freak out. 😛

Shelby shelves quickly and accurately and even made an illustrated guide to the locations of certain collections when we moved them last year.

Tricia: Shelby has a lot of fun when she’s working, but she is also so fast and accurate at shelving. I know that if I’m scheduled to work after her, my work will be light because she’ll finish everything before she leaves!

Susan: I like that she gave us valentines last year.  It was a fun unexpected surprise.

Jordan: Shelby’s hilarious and consistently brings a great attitude to work.

Kathleen: Unique Shelby looked so different to me after not seeing her for so many months, I didn’t recognize her until I got up close …. but of course, not closer than allowed!  We had a great talk about kidney dialysis, which I never expected.  Thanks, Shelby!

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Biography Section

Mumtaz Shabazz

Mumtaz is one of our pages, who began her time in the library as a library teen! She used to come and hang out with her friends and do homework here at the library, as well as attending Anime Club, prior to her time as an employee. She just graduated from University High here in Ferndale! 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 

Mumtaz: I get the first pick of books or movies that I want. I also like when the patrons are here to help them out. I really enjoy that–it makes me feel good. I also love the little kids in the kid’s section who look up at me. 

Elissa: What is the most misunderstood aspect of your job?/What do people get wrong about your job? 

Mumtaz: Some people might assume that it’s easy. It’s a little bit trickier than what you might think, to put things in order and think through the alphabet. I feel dumb when people ask me to help me with something and I can’t help them! 

Elissa: Do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 

Mumtaz: I like that we are offering curbside, I feel like that’s the best way libraries have adapted. I don’t think it’s great to open up all the way, but it is what it is. 

Elissa: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer? 

Mumtaz: This is a broad one, but (which has many databases that help you find articles, pictures, novels, essays, etc.) that helps you do research. really helped me in my junior and senior years of high school for research projects. There are so many projects when we had to do thorough research and find more than one resource, beyond just books. 

Elissa: I happen to know that recently you stayed up until 5am reading a book. It must have been good. Can you tell me about it? 

Mumtaz: Recently I read two books that I stayed up late to read. Goddess and the Machine by Lori Beth Johnson. It was her first novel and I was completely sucked in from the first page. It’s kind of fantasy and set in the future where technology is magic. So this girl wakes up 1000 years after she was supposed to because she was in a cryochamber. She has to figure out what happened to her and she’s completely in the world she didn’t expect because she was only supposed to wake up 100 years later. And the second book is called Sisters of Sword and Song by Rebecca Ross. That book (laughs)…after reading it, I am a complete emotional wreck but I loved it. IT was a Greek mythology-based story, which was my first time reading something like that. I loved the bond that the two sisters had.

Elissa: What do you love about Ferndale as a community/city?

Mumtaz: Oh my goodness. I love how everyone in Ferndale is so nice, woke, accepting, and friendly. It feels like a safe community vibe, like no one is going to discriminate against you. Like you could wear an outfit that somewhere else, someone might say, “That’s a really peculiar outfit.” But here, someone would say, “What a cool outfit!” It’s like my second hometown. 

Elissa: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine? Anything from the collection been getting you through? As I ask this, clearly we’ve answered the second question. 

Mumtaz: (Laughs.) Definitely been doing some reading. I’ve been trying to work on digital art. I’m not that good at it, but I’ve got to start somewhere. I’ve also been binge-watching a LOT of shows. 

Elissa: Any shows in particular that you want to shout out?

Mumtaz: Ok, on Netflix, there’s a show called Trinkets. I’ve also been watching Glow Up, and I’ve been watching RuPaul’s Drag Race on Hulu. And I’ve been watching a ton of anime as well. 

Elissa: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?

Mumtaz: I miss everything. I really do miss everything. I think I really miss school. Evne though I graduated, it got cut off so suddenly (check out Mumtaz as a podcast guest on episode ). I used to be so busy with school, work, student council, ACT camp, I was on NHS, and then I did the Midnight Golf program. And I had dual-enrollment with Wayne State, where I had an apprenticeship separate from that class where I got to go to Ferndale Elementary and help to teach a third grade class. I only got to a couple of times and had a few more scheduled before quarantine happened–I missed those kids. I went from going 24/7 to doing nothing and that’s stressful! 

Elissa: Any pets?

Mumtaz: I used to have a cat named Rebecca. She was really sweet and a fat cat, too. But we lost her and I miss her. 

Elissa: What’s the best advice you ever received? 

Mumtaz: I have received a lot of good advice within my small speckle of time on this planet. I’ve been told, don’t count the days, make the days count. I don’t necessarily live by that yet but I want to. 

Elissa: If you were stuck on an island, what would you take with you?

Mumtaz: Some friends, some food, some books. Of course more things than that, some shelter. And you know, just have a really large party and read, maybe take some TV. 

Elissa: If I gave you $100, what would you spend it on?  

Mumtaz: Assuming that I wouldn’t save it, cus I need all the extra money I can get for college. But I’d probably spend it on food or clothes. Or save until Black Friday/Cyber Monday. 

Elissa: Top three bands?

Mumtaz: I listen to all types of music. I guess one of my favorite genres is lo-fi. I subscribe to this channel on youtube called Avien Cloud. It speaks to me. I guess this genre from one of my favorite songs is future bass. 

Elissa: Chocolate or vanilla?

Mumtaz: Vanilla. 

Elissa: Beach or woods? 

Mumtaz: Ooooooh, I’m going to go with woods. I can’t swim so there’s no point in me going to the beach. 

Elissa: Favorite season? 

Mumtaz: It’s between Spring and Autumn. Autumn because the leaves are really pretty but it’s cold. Spring because everything comes into bloom and summer is right around the corner. 

Because we’re closed to the public, you won’t be able to catch Mumtaz but know that she is part of our team of pages that are making library materials accessible.

When we open back up to the public (or if you’ve been here before), you’ll recognize Mumtaz from the photos for Black History Month that are hanging in the front hallway, where Mumtaz is portraying none other than Angela Davis. (Mumtaz here says that she shared the photos with her grandma, who cried when she saw them.) Mumtaz plans to continue working and start community college in the winter. 

As part of the Biography Section, we invite other staff members to give their kudos to Mumtaz. Here is what they had to say: 

Jordan: When we first met Mumtaz a few years ago, I think we all recognized how mature, motivated, and intelligent she was.  She was definitely one of our favorite teens, even though we aren’t supposed to have favorites.  Super grateful that we get to work with her now!

Jeff: Mumtaz is the coolest! She’s an excellent page and a diligent worker, but she’s also super easygoing and friendly. She was amazing as a panelist on the teen podcast episode, and I think she loves coffee almost as much as I do! 

Maggie: This was Mumtaz’ senior year in high school. Despite the alternate reality of the pandemic and all the ways that manifested itself for kids, Mumtaz handled it with grace. I have so much admiration for her level head and maturity. I have always found her to be genuine and thoughtful. I know these delays will not stop her from doing great things with her life. We will all smile and say that we knew her “when”.

Jenny: I love that Mumtaz enjoyed this library so much as a patron that she wanted to come work with us! She is so friendly and thoughtful to everyone, and I’m glad that she could still fit us into her schedule after she graduated from high school. Mumtaz is a busy college student now so she often has a lot to juggle but she does it well. Thank you Mumtaz for all of your hard work, we’re lucky to have you on the team!

Susan: Mumtaz is great! I like chatting with her when she’s here.  She works hard here as well as working really hard at school with so many different things happening. Thanks for being friendly and always smiling 🙂

Kerrie: I enjoyed having Mumtaz as a patron so I was excited to have her on board as staff! I don’t know how she juggles so many classes and extracurricular activities in addition to the job, but she’s great at it! 

Marigold: Mumtaz is always so fun to work with! I love talking to her about school and future plans. I also admire her hard work and dedication, an example of this being her effort to organize the board books, which has made shelving so much easier. I really enjoy having her as a fellow page!

Amber: I’m always delighted to see Mumtaz. We always manage to make each other laugh, even with just a quick glance. I think we share the same random and goofy sense of humor! I also appreciate how seriously she takes her job, and how much effort she puts into doing her best at everything she does. She’s wise beyond her years, incredibly smart and thoughtful, and it’s refreshing to work with someone who has such positive energy. 

Kelly: Every time I walk by the photos I took of Mumtaz several years ago I’m so happy we got to work together on that project! I was delighted to bring her on board as a page and it’s been great to watch her learn and grow not only in her library position but as a young woman, too.

Tricia: I really enjoy working with Mumtaz! Although I rarely see her now, I really enjoy talking with her and hearing her perspective. She seems to make everyone happier when she is around!

Jasmine: Mumtaz Shabazz has left such an impression on me. When I first started working part-time at the library in 2018, she was one of the first teens I met. I was nervous because I knew that I needed to establish a relationship with the teens first in order to deliver programming to them, and I didn’t know where to start! I thought if I could at least learn their names and engage them in conversation that was something. I won’t ever forget walking up to her and asking her her name. When she told me, I said it was pretty and I asked her what it meant, to which she responded, it means perfect, but I’m not perfect. And, oh how we laughed!!! I knew then she was very special. 

Her honesty, transparency, vulnerability, and incredible work ethic have shaped her to be such an invaluable person. She’s not afraid to uniquely be herself and to stand out from the crowd. She inspires me. Pizza & Politics happened largely because of her. I asked her to connect me with the social studies teacher at her high school, and when the other high school learned about it they wanted the program there too. She’s extremely loyal and talented. She is also very insightful, having come to me several times to advise me of her suggestions concerning items in the collections I oversee, and each time I’ve found her to be right. My fondness of her knows no end.

Michelle: Mumtaz has a great vibe about her. She’s always positive-even when she’s working on very little sleep! She has a deep and eclectic taste in books. Just an all-around wonderful person to work with.

Kathleen: Mumtaz is really sweet.

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Biography Section

Jasmine Parker

Jasmine is a Youth Services Librarian who started at Ferndale as a substitute in 2017. She became a full time librarian in 2018 and has been rocking it out since. Frequently found taking selfies in the youth office, Jasmine’s laugh is contagious and can be heard even with the door closed, bringing joy to those around her. 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 

Jasmine: The community. I love that they love being here. They enjoy us being involved in their family and playing somewhat of a role in the lives of their children–helping shape their early literacy development. I love getting to do all this programming that the community is very receptive to. 

Elissa: What do you love about Ferndale as a community/city?

Jasmine: I just love that Ferndale is overall so accepting. Long before I worked here, I used to hang out with my friends here. My mom is an avid Honda customer and she used to go to the Honda dealership here in Ferndale and we spent a lot of time here for oil changes. I now go to that Honda place and Ferndale just feels like home. It feels like childhood. There’s some nostalgia here for me. I remember feeling so accepted here. When I was a little older, I used to go to the club Boogie Fever and Como’s for pizza because they had the best pizza. Ferndale is such a cool spot to hang out in. And now I work here so I feel like I’ve come full circle. 

Elissa: Best or favorite part of your job?

Jasmine: It’s kind of hard…the shy, reserved side of me would say ordering books, the collection development. But the fun and spontaneous side of me would say interacting with the public. 

Elissa: What is the most misunderstood aspect of your job?/What do people get wrong about your job? 

Jasmine: That we sit and read books all day. My mentor once told me that the brain is a muscle, so when I go home and I’m tired, people think, “oh you’ve been around books all day.” But I’ve been thinking. Thinking and planning about programming, about community partnerships–it’s so much more than books. 

Elissa: How do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 

Jasmine: I think libraries have stepped up to embrace virtual learning, which is not something that perhaps some of them were doing prior to the pandemic. I love that we’ve found ways to cater to our public, especially with our activity kits, and virtual learning–through Zoom, being able to offer stuff for people to do despite not being able to meet in person. 

Elissa: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer? 

Jasmine: Novelist. It is the one that I’ve recommended the most especially when it comes to readers’ advisory. Especially for patrons when they’ve read complete series and they don’t know where to go, and then Novelist pops into my head to help find new stuff to read. I also like to walk people through how to use our databases because I don’t encounter that a lot as a youth librarian. It’s nice to do a little bit of instruction because it’s not part of my everyday job duties. 

Elissa: Best book you’ve ever read? 

Jasmine: One that definitely was my favorite within the last six months was Foul is Fair by Hannah Capin. It’s a modern day retelling of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. It was something I was fortunate to bring home during the pandemic. When I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down. The leading character is a teenager of color and she is sexually assaulted but she refuses to go down without a fight. With her best friends, she exacts her revenge on the young men who assaulted her. It’s definitely not for the faint of heart and there’s a lot of mature language. I love that she wasn’t a coward or a damsel in distress and she was like, “you’re going to pay.” One of the things I really, really loved about that book is that the author gives the woman who’s been assaulted a voice, that she’s not solely a victim. That people who have been assaulted don’t just have sadness, but there’s more.  I love the fierce strength that the character had. 


Elissa: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine?

Jasmine: (Laughs.) Co-parenting a 3-year-old! #threenager. Potty training. Trying not to go insane. It’s been really hard sharing my home with work. Home used to be home, used to be my sanctuary away from the world, sharing it has been hard, but I finally feel like I’m in a good place. My son has been going back to school full time, which has been helpful, so I’m trying to find a balance between working at home and working at work. 

Elissa: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?

Jasmine: What I miss most about regular life…I miss being able to go rollerskating. I miss being able to go to the movies. I look forward to, once this is over, going rollerskating and to the movies again. 

Elissa: Any pets?

Jasmine: Yes. We have a labradoodle. His name is Rocky. We just got him! 

Elissa: We will definitely need pictures. 

Jasmine: He reminds me of Marley from the movie Marley and Me, which is not a good sign when you think about all the things Marley got into. He’s very sweet and loves our son. He also has the most stinky breath in the world. (Laughs.) 

Elissa: What’s the best advice you ever received? 

Jasmine: Thinking back on it, at the time I didn’t understand it, one of my mentors when I graduated from grad school, when I was overwhelmed with new work duties, he said to me, “A boat can’t move forward without making waves.” I think that sometimes the only way to grow is to accept what comes with that growth. Sometimes it’s painful and hard but in the end, it’ll work out for the good. Confrontation isn’t always bad, and sometimes you cannot grow without it.

Elissa: If you were stuck on an island, what would you take with you? 

Jasmine: I would take my headphones and my phone so I could have music. 

Elissa: If I gave you $100, what would you spend it on?  

Jasmine: Taking full advantage of my Amazon Prime membership and ordering up some ish! That would include shoes, books, hair accessories, I can’t stay off Prime. 

Elissa: Top three musicians?

Jasmine: I love rap. I really love hip-hop. I love words. My top fave is a Christian rapper named Lecrae. I also really love Jay-Z’s music. 

Elissa: New or old?

Jasmine: That’s a good question. Both, but I like the Black album, the Blueprint 3. “Death of Autotune,” which are his older albums. I love Selena but I also love old Madonna, not so much her newer music. I’ve been to two Madonna concerts. Once in Chicago with my mom for her Confession tour. I remember seeing her and completely playing myself and crying and saying, “Oh Madonna, I love you.” The other time was at Ford Field for her Hard Candy tour. She gave an amazing performance both times. 

Elissa: Favorite song to sing at karaoke?

Jasmine: Britney Spears. Years ago, there was this karaoke bar, called Ponykeg. Some friends and I went and they played “I’m a Slave 4 U” and I had on these pleather pants and was wearing a long wig. (Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaassssssssssssss). I was getting up and down with the song! Vocally, it was meh, but the moves. They. were. cold.  My boyfriend at the time told me that this old man in the corner couldn’t take his eyes off me the whole time. I cringed at hearing how the old geezer was watching me, but laughed at all the fun I had from going out there and doing my thang!

Elissa: Best book-to-movie adaptation?

Jasmine: I would say Mystic River by Dennis Lehane. I loved that Clint Eastwood directed it. I think he does such a phenomenal job directing. Sean Penn stars in it, and I think it was nominated for some Oscars. I think that Clint was able to bring out a lot of stuff from the book, which doesn’t always happen. 

Elissa: Chocolate or vanilla?

Jasmine: Chocolate. 

Elissa: Rollercoaster or merry-go-round?

Jasmine: Rollercoaster. 

Elissa: Do you have a favorite?

Jasmine: Millennium Force, Cedar Point. That’s another thing I can’t wait to do once the pandemic is over. 

Elissa: Beach or woods? 

Jasmine: Woods. 

Elissa: Favorite season? 

Jasmine: Fall!!! 

Elissa: Is there anything I should have asked you that I didn’t? 

Jasmine: I want people to know that I really enjoy serving the public and I hope that that comes across in how I do my job. That it’s fun and not an obligation or burden. I feel so blessed to do the work that we do. It’s a competitive job market with two library schools in our state, and I never take it for granted that I have a job as a librarian. 

Since we’re closed to the public, you will most likely find Jasmine on curbside duty, bringing out your much-needed materials. Or you can also find her on the youth Facebook page and teen IG page, where she regularly posts live and recorded storytimes, dancing fun, and general cheer. 

As part of the Biography Section, we invite other staff members to give their kudos to Jasmine. Here is what they had to say: 

Ed: Jasmine certainly has a lot of positive energy.

Jordan: Jasmine is full of ideas, is a team player, and has done great work with our teen patrons and teen collections.  Her laughter could clear a cloudy day.

Jeff: Jasmine is always bringing enthusiasm and positive waves into the building, and she has a passion for her work that is inspiring. 

Kelly: I love talking to Jasmine! She is thoughtful, respectful of others, and really, really fun! I love seeing her outreach work!

Maggie: I admire Jasmine’s willingness to extend herself and try new things. Her play to bring attention to mental illness, and her tutorial on Domestic Violence come to mind. Jasmine inspires me.

Kerrie: Jasmine is always bright and positive and it’s nice how she greets everyone by name every day. As it’s been already mentioned, she has great ideas, and she’s amazing with kids with patrons. I also appreciate her inclusiveness with LGBT+ book clubs and her awesomely curated teen selections. 

Amber: Jasmine is a breath of fresh air. I really appreciate how she walks into a room, individually acknowledges and greets everyone present. I can tell she was raised right! She’s always professional, positive, and on point. She goes out of her way to lift people up with a simple compliment, an offer to help, or just a smile. I love her carefully selected choices for our teen collection, and her enthusiasm for working with our youth. She has a special way of interacting with all of our patrons, whether they’re toddlers, preteens, teenagers, or adults. Working with her is always easy and pleasant.  

Marigold: Jasmine is so sweet! She’s always helpful and willing to talk. She is also so creative! I love all her programs, and I am so excited to watch her play!

Darlene: I love hearing Jasmine’s laugh filter through the backroom. It always makes me smile. I also really enjoy her Instagram series #WellnessWednesday! I love hearing about the things she’s trying and I think it’s very inspiring. 

Jenny: Jasmine is friendly, kind, and always looking for new ideas. She works hard to find ways to engage with the teens and her enthusiasm shines through. She has a great sense of humor and brings a lot of fun to the library. Thanks Jasmine!

Michelle: Jasmine is so joyous, but always sincere and direct in her communication. She does an awesome job reaching teens, who are not always an easy group to program for. I know at least one tween who is eager for her Animaniacs program to begin again. 🙂  

Susan: The first time I met Jasmine was at one of our end of the year parties back when she was subbing for us and wasn’t here as often. I remember talking with her and thinking it would be nice if she were here more often and we could work together.  When she joined the youth staff permanently a little while after that, I remember hearing her read “Pete the Cat and his School Shoes” during a story time and I thought: wow, that’s the best read aloud story time I have ever heard!  It sounded very fun. She was reading it with so much enthusiasm and joy, I could tell she was loving it and so were the kids!  Then I found out she has experience in theater and dramatic arts and then I understood how well children’s librarianship and theater can fit.  She is in charge of the young adult collection now, and she does a wonderful job with it, she has a deep understanding of not only the books for young adults, but how they fit into the lives of young adults. 

I’m always really happy that she has taken over that collection- I ordered for it for a long time, but she is the best person to be in charge of it now.  We had a good time talking about the collection when I showed her some sources for ordering and reading reviews etc. and she continues to build an excellent collection which has something for everyone.  She does a fantastic job with programming and events for teens especially Anime club, and always seems ready to try new things for the younger story times like her bilingual English-Spanish story time.  She is a really good listener and friend overall.  

Tricia: I love hearing Jasmine’s laughter in the distance while I shelve books. We have also talked about many topics, from library science to parenting. She always has a kind word or a compliment for me

Kathleen: Jasmine is beautiful inside and out.  She’s interested and interesting, an amazing laugher.  She gives the tightest hugs ever.  Her work is impressive.  She’s creative and talented.  We are lucky to have her at FADL.

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Biography Section

Maggie Weddell

Maggie is a part-time Adult Reference librarian who has been with FADL since August 2019. Originally from Michigan, Maggie lived in the DC area for ten years before returning to Michigan “a half mile from where [they] started.” Maggie orders Sci-Fi/Fantasy, so let her know if there’s something you want added to the collection! 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 

Maggie: I like how everybody is so customer-service focused in terms of everything–that’s always the first priority. All of us see ourselves as a public servant–that’s what I like about FADL. Not necessarily just customer service, but as public servants. We really look at what our community wants, what are their needs, preferences, and interests and we try to meet that. 

Elissa: Best or favorite part of your job?

Maggie: Getting whatever information or resources people are seeking to them. 

Elissa: What is the most misunderstood aspect of your job?/What do people get wrong about your job? 

Maggie: The breadth of the resources we deal with and the impact that technology has had on that. Technology is such a big part of what we do and how we help people and what we try to impart to people. And I feel like the pandemic has brought that all home. 

Elissa: How do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 

Maggie: Libraries were on the right track to begin with. We had already shifted in a digital direction. Libraries and the world will continue in that direction, and libraries will do all they can to assist the public. It comes down to improving digital literacy: updating certifications online, filling out job applications, creating a resume and cover letter, applying for their library card online, or using the catalog to find materials for research or pleasure. Real life applications.

Now, instead of a textual book being the only option we have, we also might have an audiobook  or an ebook to read on a Kindle. So some people see it that the collection has gotten smaller, but they need to look a little closer because what’s really happened is that the resources have expanded in a digital capacity. I see it as more convenient. If I’m in Florida and I finish my print book, then I can download a book or a magazine. 

Elissa: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer? 

Maggie: RBDigital for magazines. I love the magazine called Cooking! I like that magazine because it has so many different layers of information and presentations of information–they have tutorials, little videos, utensils and tool reviews. It’s a really rich look at how to do a cookbook. 

Elissa: Best book you’ve ever read? 

Maggie: I read  A Gentleman from Moscow recently. It was beautifully written. When I have to to stop, slow down and savor a paragraph–that’s the hallmark of a good book to me. 

Elissa: What do you love about Ferndale as a community/city?

Maggie: I love the commitment to social responsibility. They not only talk the talk but they walk the walk. 

Elissa: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine? Anything from the collection been getting you through? 

Maggie: We have two large dogs who love long walks, exploring parks and trails with us. I  helped people in our lives and community who were not virtually connected to their library. I got my mom and others set up with Zoom, helped others with Hoopla and Libby. For me, having or finding purpose makes all the difference. Coming back to work and having a purpose helped. 

Elissa: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?

Maggie: I miss being in a crowd or being at an art fair or a concert. I miss my in-person yoga class. The camaraderie, those conversations before and after class. It’s another form of community. Our neighborhood is very social and so I see my neighbors but not as often as I did. I miss my community outside of my neighborhood. It’s important to find ways to continue to connect with your village. That’s what being back at work filled for me. 

Elissa: Here’s the point where I would normally ask if you have any pets, but you’ve already mentioned two large dogs. What are their names? 

Maggie: Scout and Rory. They’re Golden Retrievers. 

Elissa: What’s the best advice you ever received? 

Maggie: I was working as a page at a library in Fairfax, VA and I was having lunch in the lunchroom with the Director. I was talking about going back to get my Master’s in Library Science. She looked at me, smiled, and said, “What else are you doing with your life?” She told me that she had basically gone through the same journey. I was taken aback at first but then I thought about it, and thought, “Yeah, here I am like 50 years old and I had put my career aside to raise my kids. It’s time to take it back.” 

Elissa: If you were stuck on an island, what would you take with you? 

Maggie: Sunscreen. A blender. [Laughs.] 

Elissa: A blender?! 

Maggie: Because you’d have access to all this tropical fruit and you’d have to make smoothies! Wait! What about electricity? I did have a cordless blender at one point though…

Elissa: If I gave you $100, what would you spend it on?  

Maggie: I like it when donors give us books to hand out to the community, so I would give it to a library to give out socially relevant books to the community! 

Elissa: Favorite song to sing at karaoke?

Maggie: I almost always have a song going through my head. I hear songs! It’s a real thing. Currently it would be something by Bryan Ferry of Roxy Music.

Elissa: Chocolate or vanilla?

Maggie: I cannot pick. I love them equally. 

Elissa: Beach or woods? 

Maggie: Beach. 

Elissa: Favorite season? 

Maggie: Summer. 

You can catch Maggie when she’s on the curbside rotation, or again, if you’re digging something from the sci-fi/fantasy collection, let her know! We’re happy to have Maggie on staff! 

As part of the Biography Section, we invite other staff members to give their kudos to Maggie. Here is what they had to say: 

Jeff: Maggie is so friendly and so helpful. I love her enthusiasm and reverence for the role of librarians everywhere! And she’s doing an excellent job of curating our Sci-Fi and Fantasy novels! 

Marigold: Maggie is very organized and efficient in her work. She also has great recommendations about news, history, and political resources. I always enjoy our conversations!

Amber: Maggie always walks in with a positive and upbeat attitude. I love how she’s so friendly, conversational, and enthusiastic. She always makes me hungry talking about all the recipes she’s experimenting with, and the cool restaurants she visits during her travels. I appreciate her eagerness to help get things done around the library.

Abigail: Maggie is always super positive and eager to please! She goes above and beyond to help patrons with anything they may need. She’s always there to help not only patrons but the library team as well. It’s really fun to talk with her about literally everything, especially food. I get the best dinner ideas from her!

Ed: Maggie has a wide variety of interests and a lot of creative energy.  She’s very customer service oriented.  She’s a good ambassador for our online resources.

Kerrie: Every time I talk to Maggie, there’s a new restaurant or food I need to try. She’s also very patron/customer service driven. 

Jordan: Maggie reminded (corrected) me that McClellan was the Union Commander at Antietam, not Burnside!   In that vein, Maggie knows a lot about a lot of stuff and even recommended some cool places to see on my recent vacation.

Kathleen: I am grateful that Maggie works at the library.  I always enjoy listening to whatever she wants to talk about.

Jenny: Maggie always stays positive and engaged. She has a true curiosity about the world and is always looking to learn more. She enjoys talking to people which is a great trait for customer service. Thank you Maggie!

Darlene: I love Maggie’s enthusiasm. She doesn’t give up easily and is always looking for the whole answer to questions from patrons. I enjoy chatting with her about her creative projects and talking restaurants too. I’d also like to echo what Ed said about our online resources. She’s always making sure patrons are up to speed and taking advantage of our resources. 

Jasmine: Maggie is such a gracious soul. She’s brought in items from home at least a couple of times, and each time I’ve been able to pick up something! Recently, she was donating some children’s books and asked if I might want some. including a cool pop-up book. The smile that book alone has brought to my son’s face is immeasurable…I just know my family stands to be blessed from her acts of kindness for many years to come. Whenever Maggie takes the time to ask about my family, I know she’s asking because she cares, and I truly appreciate that she listens intently. 

Kelly: Maggie always works hard to make sure patrons get what they need. She is doing a great job with Sci-Fi (a collection dear to my heart)! She’s quick to laugh and is bursting with enthusiasm.

Tricia: Maggie is always reading or researching something interesting and she’s enthusiastic about sharing what she knows. We have had many fun conversations about so many different topics! She’s also given me helpful advice to help me along my MLIS journey, which is greatly appreciated.

Michelle: Maggie is passionate about being a librarian and getting things right. She always sees ways to make things more efficient. I am excited to see her host her first program this month doing what she loves: cooking and talking about food.

Susan: Maggie has so much enthusiasm for being a librarian in general and for learning how to become better at the job.  She is a very hard worker.  She loves talking to everyone and really wants to make sure our patrons get the best customer experience and the most out of our library resources that they can.  She’s made some great Hoopla collections, knows lots about Novelist, in addition to discovering and curating our Sci-Fi collection.  She’s really getting it into shape since she’s weeding it now.  I also appreciate that she recommends audio and ebooks for me to add to the collection and definitely uses Libby.  We have fun talking about all kinds of subjects when we work together.  I’m inspired to try some recipes that she’s found in her Ina Garten cookbook that she’s using for the cookbook club.

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Biography Section

Tricia Venzke 

Tricia is a longtime user of Ferndale Library who is now an employee. She began working here as a page in July 2019 and has also been in library school since this past winter. She is known around these parts for her cool, thrifted outfits, fun hair, and generally pleasant demeanor. Right now, Tricia is interested in going into archival work because she’s interested in “old things.” 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 

Tricia: It’s very peaceful. I have three kids who are currently all doing virtual school so it’s nice to come to work to get away from the craziness. I like the people I work with–they’re super nice and helpful, especially with library school. It’s been really great to be able to talk through things or else I might’ve lost my nerve. 

Elissa: Best or favorite part of your job? 

Tricia: I get to pick books before they go on the shelves and take them home to read them. I love to see what other people are reading–the weird and obscure things that people pull off the shelves to read. I get to look at them, too. 

Elissa: What is the most misunderstood aspect of your job?/What do people get wrong about your job? 

Tricia: Sometimes I don’t have all the answers. Like when we are open to the public and patrons are in here. It’s easier for them to approach me because I’m out and about and not sitting at the reference desk. I usually refer them back to reference if it’s not a simple question. I can see they need the help of a librarian and I like to refer them to that service. 

Elissa: How do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 

Tricia: I think that libraries have really been leading the way in this because they tend to do everything very thoughtfully. I think that they have come up with some thoughtful ways to make sure that patrons are being served. It’s not always perfect or what the patrons need right now, but it’s doing what we can within these very strange parameters. 

Elissa: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer? 

Tricia: I’m really enjoying Libby because I finally figured out how to put it on my Kindle. I had just run out of books so I said, “I have to figure this out!” Admittedly, I don’t really use the electronic resources that often, but I do mean to delve a bit more. 

Elissa: E-books or e-audiobooks?

Tricia: Mostly e-books. 

Elissa: Best book you’ve ever read? 

Tricia: I’m partial to Jane Eyre. Because it covers a lot of bases: it has a horror thing, a romance thing, women’s, and it has a kid’s section. 

Elissa: Have you seen any of the movie adaptations of it? 

Tricia: The most recent one I’ve seen is one from 2011. 

Elissa: What do you love about Ferndale as a community/city?

Tricia: I really like how tight knit the community is. I like that my kids can walk around downtown and I know that they’ll see someone and I’ll hear about it. It’s nice that others are keeping their eyes out for them. I like it when my friends call and say, “Oh, I saw your kids!” And even though it’s a small community, it’s pretty progressive and it’s an urban community as well. 

Elissa: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine? Anything from the collection been getting you through? 

Tricia: We did go on one socially distanced vacation on the Erie Canal. It was on a houseboat. We were taught to operate the boat. And then you’re just on your own, driving down the Erie Canal, discovering whatever you can find. We ended up in Seneca Falls at the Women’s Rights National Park on the anniversary of the 19th amendment being added to the Constitution. [The houseboat rental company] gives you bikes and a little grill and you bring all of your own food. It was a lot of fun. 

Elissa: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?

Tricia: My husband and I talk about this a lot. He misses going out, and I miss just interacting with people in the same way I used to. I feel like the way we interact with people is forever changed, like we’re never going to be able to get close to someone without asking permission. It’s weird to go grocery shopping and people are too close and to realize that everyone has a different interpretation of boundaries. I’ll never look at someone sneezing the same way. I’m looking forward to seeing my oldest daughter dance, and signing my kids up for activities again, getting them out of the house, going to museums without making appointments. 

Elissa: Any pets?

Tricia: We have three cats named Tallulah, Autumn, and Dumpling. 

Elissa: What’s the best advice you ever received? 

Tricia: It’s probably my mom telling me to get out of bed! Or, “Get over him!” Or, “Go to school!” 

Elissa: If you were stuck on an island, what would you take with you? 

Tricia: Hmmm…is there a water source?

Elissa: Sure.

Tricia: I would definitely take books or probably more likely my Kindle because it’s more portable but then I’d have to charge it…there’s a lot of creature comforts that I like but I probably don’t need. I’d probably want a bottle or two of wine. 

Elissa: Favorite song to sing at karaoke? 

Tricia: I don’t have a favorite song. It’s one of the hugest dilemmas of my life is to find that song. I have gone out with people who just have a song, but I don’t have a song! What should my song be?! That song will define me in a way and maybe I avoid it because I don’t want to be defined in that way. I feel like it is the great dilemma of my life. 

Elissa: Chocolate or vanilla?

Tricia: This one’s hard, too. I like both. It depends on the mood, I’d say. Sometimes vanilla’s very soothing, but you always put a little vanilla into chocolate…

Elissa: Beach or woods? 

Tricia: Woods. 

Elissa: Favorite season? 

Tricia: Fall. 

Elissa: Is there anything I should have asked you that I didn’t? 

Tricia: I’m vegetarian and I check out a lot of our vegetarian cookbooks. So if you’re looking for a book, I might have it! 

Elissa: What’s your favorite cookbook? 

Tricia: I have a go-to chef who writes books. Isa Chandra Moskowitz. She was the first vegan cookbook author who made real desserts. Like it was just, “Eat something delicious!”  

Since we’re closed to the public, you won’t cross paths with Tricia, but you have her to thank as part of the team that puts your returned materials away and makes them easy to find! If you’re a Ferndale Schools parent, you might recognize Tricia because her three kiddos cover a range of grades in the school system. If you have a sweet vegan recipe to share, hit us up on Facebook. 

As part of the Biography Section, we invite other staff members to give their kudos to Tricia. Here is what they had to say: 

Jasmine: Trish comes fashionably correct always!!! From her hair, to her outfit she’s for sure got a lock on the fashion game. Outside of that, her gentle and kind spirit make her a special person to know.

Michelle: Trish is a truly wonderful human being. She’s been super helpful processing books at the elementary (and now middle school) libraries. She’s resourceful, thoughtful, and observant. I’m so glad she works here.

Jordan: Trish is an efficient page, a generally superb human, has a lovely family, and I’m grateful that we get to work with her.

Amber: Trish is a kind and pleasant face at the library. She’s always on top of her work and pays so much attention to detail, spotting small errors that could have been easily overlooked. She takes pride in her work and always seems happy to be here. We are certainly happy to have her!

Maggie: I love it that Trish is working on her degree in LIS and we get to be a part of that! Trish’s warmth and friendliness made me feel instantly at ease when I first started at FADL.

Kelly: I love it that Trish is working on her degree in LIS and we get to be a part of that! Trish’s warmth and friendliness made me feel instantly at ease when I first started at FADL.

Kerrie: Trish is very nice as well as super patient. Her attention to detail is also much appreciated! 

Marigold: Tricia is always so kind and wonderful to talk to! I love having her as a fellow page.

Jeff: Trish is terrific, efficient, and always brings positive energy into the building! Plus, she is exceptionally enthusiastic to try whatever bookface idea I might have 🙂 

Susan: It’s always nice working with Trish.  She has both calming and positive vibes and you can tell she is happy working with all of us.  She is also interesting to talk to- sometimes we talk about ballet since she has a daughter who is a dancer, and this summer I found out she did a socially distant vacation on a houseboat- what a creative escape!  When we worked the same shift when we used to be open until 8 she would sometimes wait for me at the end of the day and I appreciate that too.  Glad to have you as part of the team, Trish 🙂

Darlene: Really like getting to know Trish! We’ve had some fun conversations about library school. I think she’s going to make a great librarian one day! 

Kathleen: We rarely have seen each other since the shut down, but Tricia is always pleasant, and I LOVED her flapper outfit for our last in-service fun murder mystery, and her acting!

Jenny: Trish is patient, kind, diligent, and really dedicated to libraries. As a library science student, she’s interested in all the things we do and I love talking to her about her classes and future trends in the profession. 

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Biography Section

Marigold Bray 

Marigold is fourth in line of the Bray family who have all worked at Ferndale Library over the years. She has worked here since early 2019. She is known around the library for her constantly-changing, vibrantly-colored hair (changed today at time of interview), and her fun pattern mixing of her leggings and other clothes. 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 

Marigold: I love the people. My coworkers are all really amazing, very patient with me which is nice. When we’re open it’s nice to be around people and to help them find books. 

Elissa: Best or favorite part of your job? 

Marigold: Realistically, I do like shelving because I get to explore all the shelves and find books you never knew existed. 

Elissa: Are there ever times where you’re putting away a book and you’re intrigued by the title or cover?

Marigold: Recently I found one called Everything I Want to Do is Illegal. The title is eye-catching, but I think it’s actually about the farming industry. 

Elissa: What is the most misunderstood aspect of your job?/What do people get wrong about your job? 

Marigold: I guess something that some people might assume is that all we do is shelve. Because we do have to do shifting or looking for lost books, or shelf-reading, keeping the library organized to keep the library operating efficiently. 

Elissa: How do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 

Marigold: I don’t know what other libraries are doing but for Ferndale we’ve adapted really well–curbside is a big hit, the public appreciates it a lot, and even continuing with programs as much as we can is amazing. People have really liked the craft bags we’ve done. I got to help Darlene to put together the tie-dye masks, which were gone in a day. 

Elissa: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer?

Marigold: Hoopla. I usually use it to read graphic novels. Giant Days is one of my favorites, which actually just ended. It was really long-running–I think there were like 50-some individual issues and like 15 collections. 

Elissa: So you’ve grown up in Ferndale. What do you love about Ferndale as a community/city?

Marigold: We aren’t a big part of the community but the library is always something we’ve attended, even when it was being renovated. My brothers used to go to the movie nights. And I’m homeschooled so we used to do homework here. So all of those services. 

Elissa: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine? Anything from the collection been getting you through? 

Marigold: I’ve been drawing a lot. And skating. And I’ve been in school the entire time. The first two are what I’ve been doing for fun. 

Elissa: So I know you do roller derby, have you been doing that for skating? 

Marigold: The derby league actually got shut down in March, so I’ve just been skating around Ferndale. I go to the skate park. It does get really busy. 

Elissa: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?

Marigold: The one thing I’ve been missing is roller derby, since that’s my main activity and where most of my friends are. I’m looking forward to hanging out with people again in any capacity. 

Elissa: Any pets?

Marigold: Personally, I have a rabbit named Mabel and two sugar gliders named Sherlock and Watson. 

Elissa: Other pets in the house?

Marigold: There are a lot of pets in the house. There’s a bird, a dog, a ferret, and a snapping turtle. 

Elissa: What’s the best advice you ever received? 

Marigold: I don’t know if the best but some advice I’ve tried to stick to is to think before you talk. You never know what other people are going through and I stop to think about if what I’m going to say is rude or insensitive to their situation. 

Elissa: If you were stuck on an island, what would you take with you?

Marigold: Am I trying to get off the island or trying to live there? If I was trying to get off, I’d go with a celebrity so people would want to look for the celebrity. But if I had to live on it, I guess I would probably take Mabel because I think she would protect me. She’s quite vicious. She just ate through my computer cord yesterday. I would take a shipping crate so I could build a house out of it. And a packet of seeds so I could tyr to grow something. 

Elissa: Best book-to-movie adaptation?

Marigold: I don’t know if it exactly counts but I just watched the Robery Downey Jr. Sherlock Holmes movies and I thought they were adapted really well. 

Elissa: Chocolate or vanilla?

Marigold: Vanilla. 

Elissa: Beach or woods? 

Marigold: Woods. 

Elissa: Favorite season? 

Marigold: Autumn. 

You have Marigold to thank for your items at FADL being so easy to find because she’s an awesome shelver. When the library opens up to the public once again, you’ll definitely recognize her by her brightly colored hair and pleasant demeanor. Marigold is studying to be an early childhood educator with a focus on LGBTQ+ education for children and teens.

As part of the Biography Section, we invite other staff members

to give their kudos to Marigold. Here is what they had to say: 

Gabby: I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather have carrying on the family legacy, as it were.

Jeff: Marigold is SO cool…, but also so modest about how cool she actually is! She has great taste in books, especially graphic novels, and she’s very creative! When she’s not studying or reading, she’s illustrating and roller-blading–(if we weren’t quarantined for safety, she’d actually also be in a roller derby right now, so how cool is THAT!?) 

Darlene: Marigold is a quiet force! She rolls in, full of color, and gets the job done! Her many patterned leggings and hair styles make me smile. 

Aby: She’s my Bunny Buddy! Her Bun is so cute!!! She also always has amazing hair and outfits!! Like all the time! Truly an inspiration! Marigold is also super sweet and a hard worker. She breezes in and seems to make all the books to be put up disappear. 

Tricia: I love Marigold’s fearless sense of fashion! I also look up to her as a page role model – she is so good at what she does, getting books on the shelves quickly and making the library look neat and organized.

Amber: Marigold is such a rare, lovely young soul. She’s very quiet, but always polite and will greet you with a smile. It’s always fun to see what cool clothes and hair she’s going to show up with. When it comes to her work though, she does not play around! She’s so focused, and I swear she makes hundreds of returned books disappear, and reappear in their rightful places within seconds. 

Kerrie: As it’s already been said many times, Marigold has awesome and fun fashion and hair that really stands out. Despite that, I sometimes don’t even realize she’s here because she’s so quick in getting everything done, like some sort of book ninja. I also appreciate her flexibility with scheduling! 

Jasmine: Marigold is a soft-spoken giant. She created both of the illustrations used at some point for our teen Anime club. I also love that she’ll occasionally stop by to ask me about book recommendations and listen to me talk/vent about teen programming. She’s a great listener.

Michelle: I want to be as cool as Marigold when I grow up. She hipped me to a great shop to get rollerskates, and has great tips and advice for rollerskating. It’s always a delight to see her!

Kelly: Marigold is hardworking, and never afraid to ask questions. She takes correction (which is quite rare) well and always asks for clarification so that she knows what’s expected of her. She’s bad***, and a fashion inspiration, to boot.

Susan: Marigold always puts all the books, movies  etc. away like magic, and cheerfully.  She is very thoughtful and helpful.  It’s always nice to chat with her when she is here.  I’ve learned about Roller Derby from her and I know she’s a talented artist both from her anime drawings and art that she’s contributed to the 222 Nine book.  I can also tell she has artistic vibes from her multicolor hair, I’m always impressed by how often she changes it.  Also, the other day I found out she’s interested in working with preschool and kindergarten kids which is a great things to do, and she’ll know lots of great kids books because of this job 🙂

Kathleen: I rarely get to see Marigold, only when I’m about to leave and she’s just arrived, but I appreciate and enjoy seeing her and sharing greetings.

Jenny: Kerrie’s title of “book ninja” is perfect. Marigold is a quiet force until you talk to her and then you learn so many interesting things from her. She works quickly and accurately and she really cares about making the library a better place. Thank you Marigold!

Maggie: Marigold makes me feel good about the future. She knows who she is and celebrates it with her happy colors. We discuss current events and she does her own research to learn more about what is happening around her. Marigold may be reserved but her eyes are wide open. As a colleague, Marigold is professional and thorough. It’s a pleasure to work with her!

Jordan: Marigold is super detail oriented, is never afraid to ask questions, and is a general pleasure to work with.

Ed: Marigold has always had a wide variety of interests. When I used to process the incoming holds, she always had something cool coming in.


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Biography Section

Aby Hale

Aby is one of our circulation specialists who has worked for FADL since 2017. She is known around the building for her overflowing basket of snacks, fun knitting and crocheting projects, and her general fun demeanor. 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 

Aby: I like working here because it’s a library and I love books. I also really love this library and Ferndale–everyone is great and the community is awesome and people like taking part in the programs that we have. People enjoy working here and working with the community and our favorite thing is to throw programs for them–there’s always something going on. 

Elissa: Best or favorite part of your job? 

Aby: When we were open to the public, I really liked seeing the kids come in and walking past, and then seeing them walking out looking all proud with their stack of books. I would do exactly the same thing when I was a kid.  

Elissa: How do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 

Aby: Libraries are doing really good with contactless pickup with curbside. We started offering more online resources, we upped how many items people can check out with Hoopla, we got Kanopy. I like the fact that libraries in general are taking it into stride, be it looking up information and calling them back or just doing things over the phone or digitally. 

Elissa: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer? 

Aby: At the moment, it’s Hoopla because they have a lot of audiobooks for the YA series I’m into right now. 

Elissa: What’s the series?

Aby: Right now I’m finishing up Dread Nation, the second one is Deathless Divide. 

Elissa: Best book you’ve ever read? 

Aby: (Laughs and scoffs.) 

Elissa: How about in the last six months?

Aby: I reread a lot of stuff, I think the best one was Brisinger by Christopher Paolini. 

Elissa: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine? Anything from the collection been getting you through? 

Aby: The movie collection on Kanopy definitely helped my family a lot cus my dad would always want me to bring home movies and we’d watch them together. And I’ve gotten into Sci-Fi and Fantasy more during quarantine so getting the books digitally off of Libby was a huge help because I didn’t have to wait for them to come in or pay money off of Amazon. 

Elissa: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?

Aby: I miss hanging out with my friends and seeing them in person. When it’s safe to, I had these big plans but I just want to have my friends over for a bonfire and to sit right next to them or hug them. I never thought I would miss human contact so much. 

Elissa: Yes, but you are about to get married! What’s up with that? 

Aby: So we got engaged in May. It was very small and we decided that since we don’t know when covid is going to allow us a big wedding, we decided to get married in October. Typical amount of stress with a wedding but there’s also so much I don’t have to worry about because of covid. I’ve also gotten him to read in the last few months. I’m turning him into a bookworm slowly! 

Elissa: Any pets?

Aby: (Laughs.) Three bunnies named Parsley, Rasputin, and Mr. T. And then we have a guinea pig named Tibbles. And then we have a cat named Grande. She was a stray that my friend literally plucked off the street. 

Elissa: What’s the best advice you ever received? 

Aby: I’ve gotten so much advice from people about being married so I have something for that! Recently someone told me that when we’re married, when that door closes it’s just us so don’t worry about anybody else being in your relationships, anyone else’s opinions because at the end of the day it’s just you and your husband. It kind of applies to when you’re single because at the end of the day, it’s just you and what makes you happy. 

Elissa: If you were stuck on an island, what would you take with you? 

Aby: How many items?

Elissa: Five. 

Aby: Good, limit me here. I would take my first aid kit cus I’m a klutz, I would take a knife, a fishing hook (I’m going to be ready), let’s see, I’m reading a book of Shakespeare’s poetry so I’d take that, and my journal. 

Elissa: If I gave you $100, what would you spend it on?  

Aby: Either hay for the bunnies or I’d spend it on a KitchenAid mixer. I just want the hand one though. 

Elissa: Chocolate or vanilla?

Aby: Chocolate. 

Elissa: Beach or woods? 

Aby: Woods. 

Elissa: Favorite season? 

Aby: Fall. I’m excited. 

The entire staff is wishing Aby well on her upcoming nuptials and managing a household of so many little animals. Since we are not open to the public, you’ll most likely find Aby working the curbside service, answering the phone and texts and bringing your items outside. 

As part of the Biography Section, we invite other staff members to give their kudos to Aby. Here is what they had to say: 

Jasmine: Aby, I love her joy over things especially Anime and crocheting. She has been tremendously helpful with teaching more about both subjects and she’s also super friendly about it.

Jeff: On a personal note, Aby is into so many of the same realms of pop-culture as I am, and that absolutely makes our workday chats that much more invigorating; but that speaks to how cultured and well-read Aby is! Aside from just being super cool, she’s also a smart, hard-working, versatile staff member here at the Ferndale Library and we’re lucky to have her on board! 

Michelle: I love the masks Aby made me! She is a woman of many talents and interests, and is so easy to work with.

Kelly: Aby is so fun to talk to! She’s open and caring. I especially appreciate her input at meetings. She always seems to ask a question I didn’t think of or tell us about a unique scenario that changes my perspective.

Kerrie: Aby’s fun to talk to and extremely talented in all of her (numerous) creative pursuits! I hate winter but I do look forward to wearing my cat-ear hat again. And hey, I didn’t kill the succulent she made me yet! 

Amber: Aby literally gives me life when I’m at work. If I’m having a bad day, she cheers me up instantly with her fun, goofy, and loveable personality. We can talk about tea, bunnies, books, and cute clothes forever. As a coworker, Aby is super supportive and I can count on her to back me up. She never hesitates to step in and help if she sees me with a heavy workload. She’s great at problem-solving and coming up with new and creative ideas. Many, many talents! She’s exactly what we need on our team here at the library. 

Darlene: I love Aby’s energy and enthusiasm. She dives right into, enjoys what she does, and likes helping people. I enjoy learning about all of her interests from knitting/crochet, to baking, and beyond. She’s a positive and fun person and she makes work a fun place to be! 

Maggie: Aby is always happy to lend a hand as well as a great resource. Most recently we have benefitted from her recommendation of a Bug Zapper to defend ourselves from the Yellow Jackets in our backyard

Jenny: Aby always makes me smile because she has such a positive energy. I love the way that she always goes the extra mile to help both patrons and her coworkers. When she has an interest in something, whether it’s crafts or baking or anything else, she shares it and inspires others. Although the disparity between our pop culture references usually makes me feel older, the joy she shares always makes me feel younger at heart.

Susan: Aby is always friendly and willing to help out everyone.  Whether it’s working hard to process the audio books and all of Darlene’s fiction or doing curbside she’s ready for anything.  Keep up the good work 🙂

Gabrielle: Aby is one of the friendliest and most creative people I know. I love how she is not afraid to stick up for herself and speak her mind but is genuinely warm and engaging. Her hard work and dedication are invaluable, and I am grateful to have her on the library team.

Tricia: Aby has great energy! She really makes the work environment fun for everyone around her. I also love hearing stories about her bunnies.

Marigold: Aby is always so cheerful, helpful, and fun to talk to! I love having her as a coworker! Also, she has very cute rabbits.

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Biography Section

Kelly Bennett

Kelly Bennett

Kelly is the Head of Circulation and has worked for FADL since 1998. She orders for the music collection, she is a jiu jitsu practitioner, and she is also a pretty darn good amateur baker. 

Elissa: What do you love about working at FADL? 
Kelly: I really like that no matter what your position is, there are opportunities for your ideas and passions to be integrated into your work. We’ve had pages participate in programs and developing programs, and it’s pretty rare for a non-librarian to be a selector for a collection so I feel privileged that I get to purchase music and (soon to come) video games. 

E: Best or favorite part of your job? 
K: Two things: I really like working with a patron to resolve an issue, especially when the patron starts out angry or upset and just kind of doing the investigative work to figure out what happened with their account. 

E: Because you’re Head of Circulation, you help to settle patron fines and lost items, etc., right?
K: Working with the patron is key. It’s really nice when you can make a situation better for somebody and get them access back when they thought you were going to play hardball with them. 

E: You said there were two things you liked?
K: With the concerts I help with, there’s usually a moment about ten minutes in when the band has started playing and the audience is there and I look away from my camera or phone and I look at the people enjoying a thing I helped to make happen. There have been times that I’ve literally been brought to tears because there are people dancing, clapping. It’s especially rewarding when you have a patron you’d never imagine would come to the program or that they’d enjoy it. It makes my heart swell. 

E: What do people get wrong about your job?
K: I think a lot of people assume that I’m the meanie that’s going to come and put their foot down (especially from the patron side). A lot of people ask for the manager and I don’t think they expect to have somebody listen to what they have to say and try to work it out for the best for both parties. 

E: How do you see libraries adapting to the current situation? What do you like about what libraries are offering? 
K: I think some of the things we assumed were the way we had to do things–a lot of that is falling away. I think a lot of libraries resisted doing online library card applications because they thought it would be really time-consuming for staff to process those applications, but because of the pandemic, as soon as we realized patrons couldn’t come in but that we wanted them to be able to access these online resources we’ve offered, we set to work on an online library card application. And it’s been a breeze! I also think there will be lots of libraries that won’t charge fines when we get back to normal because it’s what patrons will expect at this point. So a new kind of leniency on patrons I think is a good thing. Something I’ve always said is that the library is super important to us because it’s our job but for our patrons it’s not even 20th on the list which doesn’t mean they don’t value us but it’s just not at the forefront of their mind everyday. So if they check out 25 children’s books and life gets in the way, we don’t want to cut off their access if they don’t bring the items back. 

E: What’s your favorite digital resource we offer? 
K: I think there’s a difference between favorite and the one I use the most. The one I use the most is Libby, although I do use Hoopla. I’m an avid audiobook listener–it’s the only way I read. But I think my favorite is Novelist+. This needs the most promoting because it’s amazing. 

E: Why?
K: Novelist+ is like a therapist for your reading because it uses language and tools to show you what you’re actually thinking about books. 

E: Because you listen to a lot of audiobooks, what do you look for in a narrator?
K: British. And someone who is expressive. Someone who sounds like the story means something to them. Beware, authors are not always the best readers of their own books. No to the Thomas Harris version of the Silence of the Lambs. 

E: There’s something about the subtleties of voice narrators
K: Yes, the Game of Thrones narrator is great at that. 

E: What do you love about Ferndale as a community/city?
K: It’s weird here. And I like that. Over the years, I’ve met lots and lots of people from this community that have kind of changed my idea of what a progressive community looks like. And I think Ferndale has like different strata of people. So if you don’t work in Ferndale or live in Ferndale you might assume everyone is crunchy granola white people with homeschooled children, but you’ll meet a lot of POC, people with lots of money, not a lot of money. But I think the thing that makes them Ferndalians is this kind of sense of like we’re going to do it our way. 

E: What have you been doing to stay occupied during quarantine? 
K: Oh god. Well I can tell you what I haven’t been doing. I’ve only managed to read one audiobook this entire time. And that was Between the World and Me, which was only three and half hours long! But I’ve been trying new recipes. I even did part of an EdX course on science and cooking. Oh yeah, jiu jitsu in my house with my boyfriend (sorry, neighbors!). 

E: Has anything from the collection been getting you through? 
K: Consumer Reports. 

E: You go on it for fun?
K: No! I bought an air fryer and some headphones. So I used it to make a good choice about what I bought. And cookbooks from the collection. 

E: What do you miss most about “regular” life? What are you looking forward to doing again once it’s safe?
K: Retail therapy. 

E: Where?
K: Target. I’ve been in stores but it doesn’t feel the same. Back to jiu jitsu would be nice, and travel. 

E: Where to?
K: I don’t know. Exploring little towns within a few hours’ drive from here. 

E: Any pets?
K: One of the bummer things during the pandemic is I lost my 17-year-old cat Zoot. It was a blessing in a way because I could be with her more than when I was at work, but it was tough. 

E: What’s the best advice you ever received? 
K: It’s a quote I had on a magnet that I got from the DIA. It’s a quote from George Eliot:  “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.” It’s a good reminder that it’s never too late. 

E: If I gave you $100, what would you spend it on?  
K: (Laughs.) Oh my, let me think. If I could safely get a manicure and pedicure I would go do that. 

E: Chocolate or vanilla? 
K: Chocolate. 

E: Beach or woods? 
K: Beach. I wouldn’t have said beach until a few years ago and I guess I’m like in touch enough with myself to know how I feel when I sit down at the beach. I know it makes me feel relaxed, in touch with something big. 

E: Favorite season? 
K: Summer.

E: Is there anything I should have asked you that I didn’t? 
K: Don’t worry if you startle me, I’m not going to judo-throw you. I’ve had lots of people think that about me, like our former director. 

Since the library is currently closed for patron browsing, you’ll most likely catch Kelly via phone when she’s working the curbside room, or via email if you have an account problem, but remember, she won’t be mean and she won’t judo-throw you through the computer. Be sure to look for new CDs every week and if you have suggestions for that collection, you can always email her at And when things are able to open back up again, whenever that will be, you must check out Kelly’s Chocolate Stout Cupcakes that she makes every year for the Bake Sale. 

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More Than Just Books

We are upgrading to a new website, soon. So, this will potentially be the last post of this blog. We want to thank you for reading!!!

When the library is reopened and services recommence, you can rest assured that your reading needs will still be met, and that our staff will continue to find creative ways to keep our community connected. Library staff across the country, and even the world, have been saying for years that “…we’re more than just books.And that’s true, of course! 


In fact, “we’re more than just books” is the underlying sentiment woven into every effort that we put in to promoting services and programs that are otherwise auxiliary to the shelves with printed, bound pages organized in alphabetic order or classified by subjects. The gravity of saying that we’re “more than books,” which was heretofore probably interpreted as a cosmetic PR slogan, can and will be demonstrated substantially, more substantially than ever, by libraries everywhere in the year ahead. 

The library can, should, and hopefully always has been more than books, and instead more about making an impression, broadening perspectives, enhancing lives, creating opportunities for connections, and nurturing a lifelong love for reading and learning. We hope that what you take home with you from the library that is more than a book, and instead, a memory… Or, a new perspective. We strive each year to cultivate the prospects for creating a cherished memory–of the time you spent here.

If not a memory, maybe it’s an insight, whether it’s gained from something that was fun and educational through a program we hosted, a storytime led by librarians, a lecture, or community conversation led by an artist, a specialist, an author, or a local politician. Or, maybe it was a new skill you learned from a hands-on crafting event or perhaps an online training course. 

In the time leading up to this world-changing moment in history, we had already focused on our ability to host compelling, fun, and educational events here inside the library, for a live audience. But that doesn’t go away–it’s just that we’ll get creative and go ‘virtual’ for a little while…We’ll be facilitating video versions of our programming in the months ahead, delivering to you the same quality of compelling topics, presenters, crafts, and storytimes that would have otherwise been featured at events hosted inside the library as in-person gatherings. 

The modern library is not fundamentally limited to being defined by a physical collection of books. The modern library is its staff, its patrons, and it is its community. Every staff member of your Ferndale Library appreciates how foundational it is for us to be delivering a dynamic spectrum of services to the people of our city, be it through digital content, online databases, the tried-and-true knowledge-base and research of our Reference Librarians, the early literacy development of our Youth Services, the congenial/helpful Circulation Specialists, and all of the inventive topics and content of our programming.

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