Thursday, September 18, 2014

Lost in Central Park?

When visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which I often do, I usually walk through Central Park. Until I read Seeing Central Park: The Official Guide to the World's Greatest Urban Park by Sara Cedar Miller (which NMPL doesn't own, but which is available through interlibrary loan), I would almost always get lost. Fortunately I learned from this book how to find my way:

"Almost every lamppost in Central Park has an embossed label that displays a four-digit number. The first two numbers indicate the closest cross street in Manhattan, and the second two numbers are oriented to either the east or west side of the Park (odd numbers are closer to the west side, and even numbers are closer to the east side). For example, lamppost number 7314 indicates that the closest cross street to you is 73rd Street, and the 14 indicates that you are standing near the east side of the Park. The labels on lampposts located from 100th to 110th Streets still have four digits, but they drop the first digit (number one). Thus, lamppost 0107 is nearest 101st Street (01), and the 07 indicates that you are closer to the west side."

We do, however, own another wonderful book by Ms. Miller about Central Park, Central Park, an American Masterpiece.

Enjoy your visit!
Molly Uskudarli
Public Services Page

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Connecticut Job Search

There was an interesting discussion recently on Where We Live on WNPR about how working in Connecticut has changed over time. 

For those that didn't catch it, a main point made by Joe Carbone, guest speaker and CEO of The WorkPlace, was that companies now see hiring as the last resort when looking to fulfill one of their needs, with technology often seen as a plausible alternative. 

This, paired with the amount of competition in the job market translates to job seekers needing to focus on what "added value" they can bring to the company, which is different to how job searches have been in the past. It's no longer just about whether you can do the job, it's about how you can bring them more than anything or anyone else can. All of this can be overwhelming for people looking for work, but for New Milford Library patrons, we have a new service to help people put their best face forward when applying to jobs. 

You can now get your resume and cover letters professionally reviewed for free with a New Milford Library card.

Free templates to update the look of your resume are also available, and live chat with job coaches online 7 days a week from 2:00 pm to 11:00 pm. There's more information in the flyer below.

Click here to launch JobNow.
Erin Johnson
Digital Literacy Associate

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Self-checkout is here!

We're proud to announce the arrival of the library’s first self-checkout station. Located on the left-hand side of the circulation desk near the rear entrance doors, this TechLogic equipment enables our patrons to check out their own materials in just four quick steps.

Erin Johnson, Digital Literacy Associate, uses the library's
new self-checkout station at the circulation desk.
The unique combo station includes dual back-to-back monitors, one a touchscreen facing and used by the patron, the second facing and used by the library staff. That dual-monitor design enables staff to assist patrons without leaving the circulation desk, which is necessary with free-standing self-check kiosks. Patrons scan their library card and then choose English or Spanish instructions. At this point they'll see a list of all the items that they currently have checked out. Next they scan each of the library items they wish to check out; and when the transaction is finished, they may print a date-due receipt.


We’re very excited about this new self-check equipment; and we know that after one or two uses, anyone who wants to will be able to use it easily. It will cut down on the wait time for checking items out when the circulation desk is especially busy, and it will allow Public Services staff members to help patrons in other ways.
Come in soon and give this first-of-its-kind-in-Connecticut self-check a try!

Mark P. Hasskarl
Library Director

Friday, August 22, 2014

"The New York State Thruway's closed, man!"

If you recognize that quotation from Arlo Guthrie (It wasn't true, by the way), then you might also know that Friday, August 15 marked the 45th anniversary of the first day of the most famous rock festival of all, Woodstock. Officially known as "The Woodstock Music & Art Fair - An Aquarian Exposition: 3 Days of Peace & Music," it was held at Max Yasgur's 600-acre dairy farm in the Catskills near the hamlet of White Lake in the town of Bethel, New York, from August 15 to 18, 1969. The festival featured 32 acts who performed for 400,000 people over the course of its four days.

Many of the performers, although not all (some because of technical problems with the audio recording and/or filming; Creedence Clearwater Revival, the first major act to sign, was always annoyed that they weren't included either on the CD or in the movie until the expanded 40th-anniversary DVD), are featured in the CD set and in Michael Wadleigh's Oscar-winning documentary. Famous acts, such as Jefferson Airplane, The Who, Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, the aforementioned CCRSly and the Family Stone, and The Band, shared the stage with newer artists, some of whose careers were just starting, such as Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, or took off after their appearance, such as Santana, Joe Cocker, and Ten Years After.

The library also has five books about Woodstock, including one by Michael Lang, one of the festival's co-founders.
So whether you were there, wanted to be there, or weren't even born yet, there's plenty of good music and great stories about this defining moment of rock music and the 1960's counterculture..
Mark P. Hasskarl
Library Director
(who wasn't there but had hoped to go until he saw the news stories Friday night)

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

IRS Withholding Calculator

If you got a larger refund or owed more tax than you expected when you filed your tax return, you may need to change the amount of tax taken out of your paycheck. The IRS Withholding Calculator tool can help you complete a new Form W-4: Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate to give to your employer.

Read more here:
Joan McManus
Library Bookkeeper

Are Slow ILLs Making You Ill?

Are you wondering why the interlibrary loan (ILL) request you placed is taking a long time?

There could be different reasons for this. Requests for new materials owned by us might have a long waiting list. Your request might also be on order or in processing. If it’s a request for something new that we don’t own, it’s not being sent because other libraries don’t send out their new materials; this would cause your hold to sit until libraries change their status to no longer new. If you would like to request something new that we don’t own, or if you’re not sure that we own it, fill out a white request form at the Circulation Desk. We will consider purchasing it. (New Milford Public Library can only purchase new materials for New Milford residents.)

Have you requested a DVD, music CD, or recorded book not owned by us? Some other libraries don’t send out their media, causing your request to sit. If you’re not sure if we own the item you would like to request, fill out a white request form or visit the Reference Department. They will look for libraries that will fill your ILL request. (This service is available to everyone. You don’t have to be a New Milford resident to request ILLs.)

Another possible reason why your request is not being filled is the item might be lost or missing from this library or the library where the hold was attached. If that happens, we can look for another library that can fill your request.

We have a monthly computer-generated report that shows us unfilled two-month-old ILL requests that we examine for the reason why you haven’t received your request, but that’s a long time to wait. Feel free to call the Reference Desk at 860-355-1191 x207 if you would like to check the status of your ILL request.

Cathy McGrath
Public Services Associate

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Who’s Who in the Library: Meet Joan McManus

NMPL’s bookkeeper, Joan McManus, grew up in the Bronx; and during high school, she met her husband Mike working at a library! She was a page, and he worked at the circulation desk. She is the oldest of four, with a sister and two brothers who all still live in the CT/NY area. She enjoyed growing up in her neighborhood playing jump rope with friends and having their own “kid world” without adults watching over their playtime.
Joan majored in psychology in college, then worked at an investment banking firm on Wall Street in the HR department administering retirement plans; she appreciated the diverse population of the Wall Street area. In 1977, Joan and Mike, a computer programmer, moved to Malverne, Long Island, and had six kids. Perfectionist first-born Marie, 30, is a lawyer and lives in Philadelphia with her husband. Athletic Mike, 27, is traveling in Barcelona. Funny, quiet Kevin, 24, is studying to be an architect. Tom, 21, is a confident computer guy who works at Best Buy and loves to give advice. And Liz and Catherine are 17-year-old twins entering their senior year who share everything and love finding new music together.

In 2003, Mike’s job was transferred to Westchester; the family of eight needed a bigger house, so they moved to Brookfield. Joan has worked as the bookkeeper at NMPL for nine years. It is the fourth library she has worked in, including two locations of the New York Public Library and one Long Island. She processes the invoices to pay the library’s many vendors and keeps all the financial records. She also does freelance bookkeeping and tax preparation.

One of Joan’s interests is languages. She has studied Spanish, Italian, and Latin. Her grandmother spoke Italian, and Joan has visited her relatives in Italy. They live near Mt. Etna, and Joan saw the volcano erupting from their house and also flying over it! She has also been teaching herself the didgeridoo, an Australian aboriginal instrument for the last six months. Ask her about it—she’d love to explain her unique hobby to you!

Joan’s philosophy is to “dare to be true to yourself.” We are certainly glad she has shared her true self with us at the library!

Her book picks are: The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking by Oliver Burkeman, and any book by Mary Gordon or Joyce Maynard.
Amy Berkun
Children's Services Associate &
Reference/Information Services Associate