Preview Shelf: January 2018

January 23, 2018

2017 here at CDPL

Jodie WilsonBy Jodie Wilson

2017 was an exciting year for the Crawfordsville District Public Library. We were able to make many improvements over the last year, including a major bandwidth upgrade to improve speeds for internet users, security enhancements, and general expansion of our technology infrastructure. All these changes mean faster, more reliable service for our patrons, and room for growth in the future.

While once nearly the sole measure of a library’s success, the number of items circulated in a year is now only one of many statistics used to gauge a library’s performance. Although CDPL checked out 141,837 items to the public over the course of 2017, down from 2016’s total, there are many growing numbers that also quantify the library’s value to the community.

During the course of 2017, the library provided a venue for 878 non-sponsored programs with a total attendance of 16,320 persons. The library sponsored and conducted another 970 programs on behalf of our local community, with a total attendance of 22,157 persons. CDPL set records this year for both the number of programs and attendance, as did the Carnegie Museum. The gate count for 2017 recorded 155,260 library visits.

As always, in 2017 our Children’s Department did a great job of providing opportunities for encouraging literacy development. The Children’s staff offer story times for families and children, outreach to preschools and local schools, extend library services to local home school students, create holiday-themed activities, manage a popular summer reading program for children and teens, and coordinate year-round book clubs. Our Circulation Department coordinates reading programs and book clubs for adults, as well.

A new offering for CDPL in 2017 was our Digital Drop-In. This program, offered from 4-6 p.m. on Wednesday, or by appointment, provides assistance for patrons who need help using technology, whether a smartphone, laptop, or desktop computer; or assistance using a specific program, or performing a certain electronic task. Staff can help patrons set up e-book accounts, learn word processing software, or how to use Facebook, for example.

Our library’s second floor public access internet workstations were used in 26,073 separate sessions over the course of 2017, and the number of hours logged beat 2016’s numbers by nearly 5%, with 19,451 hours spent on public workstations. An average of 763 patrons used the public computers each month in 2017, with an additional 315 patrons using the wireless internet each month.

Digital media services saw growth in virtually every service offered. Our newest offering, OverDrive, was available beginning in August, and saw strong numbers in the last four months of the year, providing access to 1121 e-books, e-audiobooks, and e-videos. Hoopla, a patron favorite, provided a total of 5,438 electronic collection items for CDPL patrons in 2017. The library also circulated 756 e-magazines through RB digital Zinio; and 1,377 audiobooks from OneClick Digital.

The most popular of all the collections in terms of usage was adult media. 26% of the items borrowed in 2017 were DVD, Blu-Ray, CD, or Book on CD, for a total circulation of 35,923 items. The most popular item of 2017? Disney’s Moana DVD, with a total of 113 circulations among the three copies the library owns!

We encourage our community to come see what’s going on at the library, and please sign up for Wowbrary, our weekly e-newsletter! You’ll see the newest purchases before they appear on the shelf, and you can place holds from the newsletter, ensuring you have a shorter wait. To enroll, please go to Have questions? Please call us at 362-2242 or explore our website for more information at We look forward to assisting you.

January 18, 2018

Winter Reading

By Suzie Baldwin

Hello, and Greetings from the Crawfordsville District Public Library. It is time for the Adult Winter Reading program fun to commence. The program (Winter is Bearable with Books) begins on January 15, 2018 and will run for a total of six weeks. Instead of reading a book every week the participants will be recording time read (which can be a newspaper, book, blog, or even reading to kids or grandkids). Once two hours of reading time has been reached we will enter the patron names for the opportunity to win a prize. Six weekly prizes will be awarded and a grand prize too (of course, we will also award books).

If you don’t have time to partake in the Adult Winter Reading Program, consider stopping by to see the beautiful woodwork pieces created by Ben Wilson in the Mary Bishop Art Gallery (located East of the Circulation Desk). There is also the amazing Lego replica of the Courthouse (which has Lego pieces from 10 foreign countries), and an informative display about soup since January is National Soup Month. Did you know? … Groucho Marx offered the following explanation for the title of the 1933 movie Duck Soup: “Take two turkeys, one goose, four cabbages (no duck) and mix them together. After one taste, you’ll duck soup the rest of your life.” Or did you know? Ten billion bowls of soup are eaten every year in the United States.

There are also numerous Adult programs being offered at the library. Come join the Deweys Do Book Club (2nd Monday of every month @ 6:30pm), or the Fantasy Book Club (1st Monday of every month @ 6:00pm – books are available at Circulation of what is being read for the month). Chess is played every Tuesday (6:30pm) on the 2nd floor of the library. Aside from our regularly-scheduled programs, the library is planning a Date Night Tango Lesson and Open Dance on Friday, February 16, and another Plant-Based Living group meeting is planned for March. On the library website you can check out our calendar or just call (or stop by) to keep current on upcoming events. There is a printed calendar at the Circulation desk and we will happily make a copy for you to take home to keep track of the programs. Also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to keep up with Library activities and information, and our e-newsletter, Wowbrary, showcases the newest library purchases so you can reserve those popular items quickly, minimizing your wait. Please sign up today at!

Whether you want to have fun participating in the Adult Winter Reading Program (be in a book club, play chess, maybe learn to dance), just want to make a copy, peruse the newest released DVD’s, or check out a book, then CDPL is the place for you during the fluctuating temperatures of good ‘ole Indiana. Stop by for a visit and our staff would love to assist you with locating the perfect entertainment for you. Until next time, READ, READ, READ!

January 11, 2018

By Dianne Combs, Reference & Local History Assistant

“How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?” ―Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Does that quote just get your detecting juices flowing? Are you a Sherlockian? Love a riddle? Want to wear tweed and smoke a pipe? Have you been “SHER_LOCKED?” Hasten to the CDPL and find more Sherlock than you knew was possible! Not only do we have two complete works by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle on the shelves, but we have numerous adaptations, anthologies, annotated works, and online ebooks, audiobooks, and videos for days! With the most recent BBC adaptation starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman, Sherlock Holmes’ popularity has been extended to new viewers. Of course, CDPL owns the DVDs for this most recent iteration as well.

“The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes,” edited by Leslie S. Klinger, a world-renowned Holmes expert, will help your reading be enhanced by side notes, explanations, original illustrations from around the world, and a huge index of selected sources for further research. The first novel to be annotated is “A Study in Scarlet,” first published in 1887 in the “Beeton’s Christmas Annual.” It gave the public its first view of the fantastical life of the world’s greatest detective. The book continues on with “The Sign of Four,” “The Hound of the Baskervilles,” and “The Valley of Fear.” These are considered Doyle’s four novels about the great detective. In “The Sign of Four,” young Mary Morstan shows up at 221B Baker Street with a tantalizing story of pearls, a dead father, and a letter instructing her to show up at a certain theater with friends. Soon, a wooden legged man, a pygmy, and a dead man appear to Holmes and Watson, and the game is afoot! Also, during this story, we find a budding romance growing between Miss Morstan and the ever faithful Dr. Watson.

“The Hound of the Baskervilles” begins with the mysterious death of Sir Charles Baskerville by a legendary ghost hound. This is one of those enthralling, late Victorian stories with strange warnings, mysterious clues, and a long list of suspects. There is a foggy moor, an eerie estate home, a family curse, and Lestrade, the London policeman who always seems to be there. Does it get more deliciously spine-tingling than that? This novel was considered at the time, 1902, to be one of the best-selling novels in the new century.

“The Sherlock Holmes Book–Big Ideas Simply Explained,”(823.8) a DK book, is another wonderfully annotated book that moves beyond the novels to the short stories of Sir Doyle. This is more of a history book of the stories, with publishing histories, illustrations, explanations, and numerous photos from movies of the stories. Very colorful, and more of a read-alongside book for the short stories. I could see this being a great reference to bring our twenty-first century minds back to the murky world of Sherlock.

Along with our extensive Holmes’ book and DVD collections, check out our online resources — Overdrive and Hoopla — for many, many more stories, movies, e-books and audiobooks that will take you back in time to meet with one of the greatest detecting minds in the world: Sherlock Holmes.

January 4, 2018

Written by Craig Lefteroff, Assistant Department Head, Reference & Local History Department

One of our finest traditions is the New Year’s resolution. Although it’s usually no fun to lift more weights at the gym or say no to extra cake, the idea of becoming a better, stronger person in the new year is an appealing one. And no matter what you’re resolving to do in 2018, your Crawfordsville library has free resources to help you successfully achieve it.

Let’s start with diet and exercise. The library has a large collection of diet books, including titles like The DASH Diet Weight Loss Solution, The New Mediterranean Diet Cookbook, and The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom. If you’re aiming to change your diet in 2018, you might also enjoy our books on vegetarian cooking (Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker is a good pick), or find collections of recipes that don’t require salt, sugar, or gluten. We have plenty of exercise books available as well—whether you choose Yoga for Wimps, The Biggest Loser Boot Camp, or The Complete Guide to Walking, you’ll find what you need to get started. Many other books on all subjects are available through library e-content services Hoopla and OverDrive.

If you’re planning to cut back on smoking or alcohol in 2018, the library has books that will help you kick those habits. Titles like Recover to Live treat addiction in a general fashion and we also have books that focus more narrowly on specific problems. We also offer free access to Consumer Health Complete, a database that includes up-to-date articles on health issues, via Inspire, so you can be sure you’re getting the newest information on how to quit. You can also read magazines such as Men’s Fitness and Yoga Journal at no cost on Consumer Health Complete!

Resolutions don’t always have to involve cutting back or giving up. The library has many tools that can help you learn new skills, such as playing a musical instrument or speaking a new language. The library’s Rocket Languages databases offers instruction for more than ten different languages, including sign language. Or resolve to save money by fixing your own car—we provide access to Chilton Reference, an electronic database with easy instructions and plenty of images. We also offer a full slate of programs that give you opportunities to spend more time with friends or family. January’s offerings include our program on plant-based living on the 9th and a Golden Girls-themed coloring and cheesecake event on the 19th. As always, please drop by the library or contact us for more information on any of our resources and events. No matter what you’re doing to improve yourself and make it a happier new year, the library can help you make your resolutions a reality!