Blog

Online: Free Legal Consultations for Immigrants: August 4

Talk to a Board of Immigration Appeals accredited representative from World Relief DuPage/Aurora for free for half an hour on immigrant related issues (including citizenship) on August 4, 2020. There are six time slots. By appointment only. Click on the time that you want to register. All one-on-one meetings will be over a secure virtual platform. You will be sent instructions to join the meeting the day before, or the morning of, the appointment. If you have questions, please call 630-887-8760 and ask for Joe Popowitch.

This Week in the Prairie Patch: July 5-11

Early evening is a great time to visit the Prairie Patch.

Now that the library is open, no visit is complete without a walk through the Prairie Patch. The sunny weather and our awesome watering team have worked together to help make all of the plants explode in growth. We have several visible summer squashes growing, lots of tomatoes with blossoms, flowers on the butterfly bush, and fresh herbs like dill, chives, mint and chamomile. See last week's post for a map of the garden.

Also, we have several Kids + Teens programs scheduled in the Prairie Patch, including a Mud Kitchen, STEM in the Prairie Patch, Birdwatchers Meetup and Water Balloon Olympics. Click here for schedules and registration information.

Sensory Garden:

Our newest sensory garden features include listening for a wind chime, touching the lambs' ear and looking at the tall yellow hollyhock.

Weekly Garden Giveaways: We hope to start these soon!

Book Recommendations:

Fiction:

Firefly July: A Year of Very Short Poems

A Lullaby of Summer Things

The Shell Seekers

Non Fiction:

Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London's Ottolenghi

Born to be wild : Hundreds of Free Nature Activities for Families


Seed Library:

It isn't too late to plant your own garden! If you are interested in getting seeds from our Seed Library, email Natalie Williams: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Volunteering:

If you are interested in helping us in the garden this summer, please contact Natalie Williams about volunteering: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Celebrating Carl Reiner

The legendary comedian, actor, writer, director, and producer, Carl Reiner, passed away on June 29 at the age of 98. His career scanned seven decades. Carl Reiner is best known for The Dick Van Dyke Show. In 1959 he created the pilot for a TV series, Man of the House, which became The Dick Van Dyke Show. He won five Emmy Awards for writing and producing the show. It was on television for five years and then went into syndication for many generations to enjoy.

In the 1950s Carl Reiner acted in Your Show of Shows and acted and started his writing career with Caesar's Hour starring Sid Caesar. In 1960 he teamed up with Mel Brooks and their routine "The 2000 Year Old Man" was a huge success. They won a Grammy Award for the album based on this routine.

Some of his memorable movies were Ocean's Eleven, The Russians are Coming! The Russians are Coming!, The Jerk, The End, Oh, God!, The Thrill of it All, All of Me, and Toy Story 4.

Carl Reiner won many awards and honors. In 1960 he was given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Also, he was inducted into the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences' Hall of Fame in 1999. In 2000 Carl was awarded the Mark Twain for American Humor at the Kennedy Center. The Directors Guild of America awarded the talented director with the Honorary Life Member Award. Carl and his son, Rob Reiner, became the first father-son duo to have their footprints and handprints added to a concrete slab at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in 2017.

Watch The Dick Van Dyke Show on Hoopla. Listen to Carl Reiner and Mel Brooks' 2000 Year Old Man routines on Hoopla.


This Week in the Prairie Patch June 28-July4

Interested in knowing what we're growing? The map to the left features what's planted in each bed.

Sensory Garden:

Want a sneak peek for what to 'see' in the next Sensory Garden tour? Look for the beautiful and big yellow hollyhock growing in the perennial bed near Bea's Garden. 

Weekly Garden Giveaways: We will hopefully start these in mid July. 

Book Recommendations:

The Garden of Abdul Gasazi

Enchanted gardening : growing miniature gardens, fairy gardens, and more

Container and fragrant gardens: how to enliven spaces with containers and make the most of scented plants

Roses without chemicals: 150 disease-free varieties that will change the way you grow roses

  • Seed Library:

It isn't too late to plant your own garden! If you are interested in getting seeds from our Seed Library, email Natalie Williams: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Volunteering:

If you are interested in helping us in the garden this summer, please contact Natalie Williams about volunteering: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 



Honoring Carlos Ruiz Zafón, Spanish Novelist

Bestselling novelist, Carlos Ruiz Zafón, passed away on June 19 at the age of 55. "The Shadow of the Wind", a gothic mystery, written in 2001 sold millions of copies worldwide, and became the first of a four-book series, The Cemetery of Forgotten Books. Previously he successfully wrote young adult books for 10 years. His books are published in 45 countries and translated into more than 40 different languages, making him the most read Spanish author after Miguel de Cervantes.

In an essay on his website, Mr. Ruiz Zafón explained: "I have written for young readers, for the movies, for so-called adults; but mostly for people who like to read and to plunge into a good story. I do not write for myself, but for other people. Real people. For you." He concluded, "I became a writer, a teller of tales, because otherwise I would have died, or worse."

Read or listen to Carlos Ruiz Zafón's books on Overdrive. Also, ebooks and audiobooks are available immediately on Hoopla.


July Programming for Littles!

We are excited to offer one new outdoor program in July!
Join Miss Megan for our Mud Kitchen sensory play in the Prairie Patch. Mudpies, potions and other creative, messy play areas will be available for families to rotate through. This program is designed for ages 2 - 4, but siblings are welcome!
Register for one of the 4 available groups to participate in a weekly time of exploration while maintaining social distancing.
Group A meets Tuesdays at 9:30a.m.
Group B meets Tuesdays at 10:30a.m.
Group C meets Thursdays at 9:30a.m.
Group D meets Thursdays at 10:30a.m.

The rest of our programming for July will remain the same as it was for June, meeting with our littlest patrons live on Zoom.

Follow the links below for more information about the programs and to register.
You only need to register once per program, and you will be set for the whole month.

If you want to hear stories and sing songs, check out....
Family Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Tuesdays at 9:30 a.m.

If you like to move and groove, check out...
Rollick & Roll LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.

If you like to tinker and learn, check out...
Stories + STEAM LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesday evenings at 5:30 p.m.

If you've got a baby 17 months or younger, check out...
Baby Book Bees Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Thursdays, at 9:30 a.m.

And as always, you can find a little bit of everything on-demand at any time on our YouTube page!

*Make sure to register 24-hours in advance so that we can send you a Zoom invite. If you want to register after that window closes, just contact Miss Lexy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


This Week in the Prairie Patch: June 21-27

Peace Pole welcoming visitors to the Prairie Patch.

Celebrate Pollinator Week with us! Bea's Garden is a lovely spot to enjoy a variety of perennial plants and has several insect hotels placed so you can observe them. Look for the garden at the north end of the Prairie Patch, and don't miss the new 'Welcome' Peace Pole in a shade bed nearby.

Is your garden a haven for pollinators? Register it with Journey North's Pollinator Patch program to support efforts to protect the annual migrations of animals like monarchs and hummingbirds. Learn more here.

Do you have a child interested in science and nature? Sign up for the following online pollinator-themed programs:

Thursday June 25, 9:30 am

Wednesday June 24, 5:30

Friday June 26, 2-3 pm

Sensory Garden:

Have you explored the Sensory Garden yet? Our next rotation will be placed in early July. If you haven't walked through yet, now is your chance! Indicated by blue signs placed throughout the garden, the current experiences are: Touch: Hosta, Taste: Mint, See: Allium, Hear: Birds, Smell: Chives.

Weekly Garden Giveaways: 

We will hopefully start these in July depending on local health guidelines.

Book Recommendations:

Monarch Butterflies Matter

Attracting Native Pollinators

Vegetables Illustrated: an inspiring guide with 700+ kitchen-tested recipes

Seed Library:

It isn't too late to plant your own garden! If you are interested in getting seeds from our Seed Library, email Natalie Williams: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Volunteering:

If you are interested in helping us in the garden this summer, please contact Natalie Williams about volunteering: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Honoring Jean Kennedy Smith

Jean Kennedy Smith, former U.S. Ambassador to Ireland and last surviving JFK sibling, passed away on June 28 at the age of 92. In 1993 she was named ambassador to Dublin by President Bill Clinton and played a major role in the Northern Ireland peace process. Also, she founded Very Special Arts which provides arts and education opportunities for people with disabilities, especially children and youth. In 2011, U.S. President Barack Obama awarded Jean Kennedy Smith the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor for her work with people with disabilities.

Jean Ann Kennedy was born in Brookline, Massachusetts the eighth of nine children and the youngest daughter of Joseph P. and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy. She married Stephen E. Smith, a New York financier in 1956 who passed away in 1990. They had four children, Kym, Amanda, Stephen Jr., and William.

She published a memoir. The Nine of Us,in 2016 in which she remarked that her childhood seemed "unexceptional". Visit Hoopla and read the ebook or listen to the audiobook.


Online Genealogy Meeting - Irish Ancestry

Learn tips and tricks for researching your Irish ancestry during our Genealogy Group program via Zoom Thursday, June 25, 1 p.m.

Register at least 24 hours in advance.

IPPL cardholders still have free access to our library's edition of Ancestry from home at any time. Go to swanlibraries.net/ancestry/ and sign in with your card to get started.



Donate and recycle

The school year has wrapped up and you have leftover supplies. What can you do? As of yesterday, SCARCE, the wonderful environmental education organization, began accepting many materials for reuse through their tools-for-schools program. In addition to educational supplies, SCARCE recycles many other items. Check their acceptable items list and procedures here

If SCARCE can't take certain materials, search for other options. Spend some time exploring their website; this organization provides many resources and services, including a calendar of recycling and shredding events.




Craft the Zoo!

We know you miss the LittleShop activities, but you can receive them via email this summer!

We're going to "craft the zoo," making eight animal projects over the next several weeks. All you'll need are paper, scissors, glue, and crayons or markers.

Each project will also be sent with a catalog link to find materials for learning more about all of these favorite zoo animals. IPPL cardholders can request these materials for curbside pickup.

To be added to the LittleShop at Home list, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Activities are designed for ages 7 and under.

If you signed up for LittleShop at Home projects for May, you are already included for Craft the Zoo emails.


This Week in the Prairie Patch: June 14-20

Did you know the Prairie Patch is Monarch Waystation? We have certified we have created a habitat that helps preserve the species and support the butterfly's amazing migration every year. Click here to learn more about the Monarch Way Station program.

Another great resource to help support Monarch habitats and migration is with Journey North, a citizen scientist program that helps track the migrations of a variety of species including monarchs and hummingbirdsClick here to learn more about Journey North's Monarch tracking program and how you can participate as a citizen scientist.

Sensory Garden: The globe alliums are near the end of their blooming but 'look' for the hollyhock to bloom soon in the same bed. Have you gotten a chance to 'taste' the mint yet? We have two types of mint growing in the same bed, one has a darker stem, the other a green similar to the leaves. One is definitely a sharper mint flavor. Which one do you like best?

Weekly Garden Giveaways: We will hopefully start these in July depending on local health guidelines.

Book Recommendations:

Non-Fiction

Butterfly Gardening: The North American Butterfly Association Guide

Vegetable Gardening Wisdom: Daily Advice and Inspiration for Getting the Most from Your Garden

Fiction

Up in the Garden Down in the Dirt

Kitchens of the Great Midwest

Seed Library:

It isn't too late to plant your own garden! If you are interested in getting seeds from our Seed Library, email Natalie Williams: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Volunteering:

If you are interested in helping us in the garden this summer, please contact Natalie Williams about volunteering: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Honoring Bonnie Pointer

Bonnie Pointer, a founding member of the Pointer Sisters, passed away on June 8 at the age of 69. Bonnie and her sisters grew up singing in the choir at their father's Oakland church. Bonnie and June Pointer formed The Pointers in 1969 which evolved into The Pointer Sisters when their older sister, Anita, joined the group. Bonnie was a singer and songwriter who embraced elements of soul, pop and jazz. Bonnie and Anita wrote the group's country hit, "Fairytale," in 1974, which crossed over to become a Top 20 pop hit and won the group their first Grammy for Best Country Vocal by a Duo or Group. Anita and Bonnie also were nominated for Best Country Song at the same ceremony. The group performed "Fairytale" at the Grand Ole Opry making them the first African-American vocal group to appear there. Three years later, Bonnie and Anita wrote "Bring Your Sweet Stuff Home To Me" with Stevie Wonder, and recorded it with him for The Pointer Sisters' album, Having A Party.

Bonnie Pointer left the group in 1977 to pursue a solo career. Her biggest successes were on the dance charts. When Bonnie signed with Motown Records in 1978, "Heaven Must Have Sent You" was among the tracks chosen for her first album there. The entire project was produced by Berry Gordy and Jeffrey Bowen whom she married in 1978, but later divorced. It became a major hit when released as the second single from her first album, Bonnie Pointer. The album featured Bonnie's version of another Motown classic, "When I'm Gone," as well as new material composed by Jeffrey Bowen and Donald Baldwin. Pointer released another album, If the Price Is Right, in 1984, but then largely stepped away from recording, except for Like a Picasso released in 2011. She also occasionally reunited with her sisters to perform.

Listen to some of Bonnie Pointer's solo performances or the Pointer Sisters music on Hoopla. 

Don't Miss Out! Interactive Programming for Littles

We are having so much fun engaging with our littlest patrons on Zoom! Our live, interactive programs create a more personal way to connect with you even if we can't be together in person just yet.

Check out the programs we are holding throughout the month of June below. We'd love to have you join us!

Follow the links below for more information about the programs and to register.
You only need to register once per program, and you will be set for the whole month.

If you want to hear stories and sing songs, check out....
Family Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Tuesdays at 9:30 a.m.

If you like to move and groove, check out...
Rollick & Roll LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.

If you like to tinker and learn, check out...
Stories + STEAM LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesday evenings at 5:30 p.m.

If you've got a baby 17 months or younger, check out...
Baby Book Bees Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Thursdays, at 9:30 a.m.

And as always, you can find a little bit of everything on-demand at any time on our YouTube page!

*Make sure to register 24-hours in advance so that we can send you a Zoom invite. If you want to register after that window closes, just contact Miss Lexy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



Census Follow Up Calls Are Underway

Follow-up calls ensure that everyone is counted, counted only once, and counted in the right place.

If you get a call from (844) 809-7717, it is not a scam. It is the US Census with a question about some part of their self-response.

If you don't pick up, you can call them back at the same number. For those concerned about spoofed calls, this is the safe way to handle incoming calls. 

Learn more from the official Census page.