SLIPPERY ROCK – School is out, but learning continues at places like Slippery Rock Community Library.
Jacob Simmons, 13, of Harrisville, was using one of the computers on Wednesday afternoon to learn French.
He decided to give it a try after a relative spent time in France, and he said he’s enjoying Mango Languages, one of many programs available through the library’s eResources offerings.
“And I like the new building,” he said.
The library opened its new building Sept. 1 at 465 N. Main St. in Slippery Rock, It was quite the expansion compared to the small room the organization used at the park’s rec center.
Nearly a year later, Director Karen Pierce is still excited to be able to offer more programs, resources and materials for patrons of all ages.
“We’ve got so many awesome things happening,” she said.
The library recently graduated its second group of amateur ham radio operators; the next session will be held in September.
Several digital skills workshops were held in May thanks to a “Grow with Google” grant, and the library continues to offer additional sessions for adults from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Wednesday on topics like cyber security, resume-building, and using Google programs.
There are how-to videos that can be used with or without an instructor.
“It’s like a ‘help desk’ sort of thing,” said Rob Fagley, library assistant.
More children’s books are on the way – Fagley helped secure a grant from the Pilcrow Foundation that will cover $1,200 worth of books, Pierce said.
It is a matching grant, and the Friends of the Library group is holding a raffle to collect the rest of the funds. Raffle tickets are $1, and the drawing for a collection of kitchen items and a cooler will be held at 10 a.m. July 1.
The Friends also held a plant sale to benefit the library, which has a new website. It’s easier to navigate and udpdate, and the eResources feature is a valuable tool, said Bob Crafton, president of the library board.
There are test prep materials, Pennsylvania employment information, local event calendars, scholarship applications, and more. A Butler County library membership is needed for some of the programs.
At the heart of Pierce’s current to-do list is the summer reading program, which is open to kids and adults and includes prizes. There’s still time to register, and she looks forward to this year’s program; the theme is “A Universe of Stories.”
The goal for the summer reading group is to read 238,900 pages; that’s the number of miles between the earth and the moon.
“Kids are ‘reading rockets.’ We’re going to power up to the moon,” she said.
Outside the library, Pierce is preparing to plant a Monarch Watch Waystation. Through a grant, the library will receive milkweed plugs and other plants that will attract caterpillars and butterflies.
“Then people can come and watch for the butterflies,” she said.
In other library news:
• Story time is held from 10 to 11 a.m. Tuesday at the library, and Thursday at the Harrisville borough building;
• Geri-Fit Senior Strength Training Classes are held from 11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. on Mondays and Thursdays;
• The library sells discount cards for area businesses, with the library receiving $5 of the the $10 purchase.
• Pierce is also planning the next Rock-Con event, which will be held Nov. 1 through 3 at Camp Bucoco, Slippery Rock. There will be role-playing, tabletop and card games, cosplay, vendors, food and more.
Slippery Rock Community Library is at 465 N. Main St., Slippery Rock. New expanded hours are 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday. Info: Call 724-738-9179 or visit www.slipperyrocklibrary.com or find “Slippery Rock Community Library” on Facebook.