“That’s part of how we keep the library alive.” Dolores said as she explained the process of bringing in new library materials and weeding out old ones.

“Keeping the library alive.” Dolores  I’d never thought of it that way. But as I learn more about the library, I see it  more and more as a living thing. Quite appropriately, as the Library Manager, Dolores seems to me a true nurturer, guardian, and caretaker of the library—a “gardener of knowledge,” you might say.

I have no doubt that people who know her better see this even more, and not just with books, but with people as well. Dolores is quick to stop and ask how you are doing, or reference an inside joke, or serenade you with her latest rewrite of a Beatles classic. Her positivity, care for people, attention to detail, and ready humor make her a welcome presence to patrons and library staff alike.

Dolores comes from Collins, Iowa. When I asked her what brought her to Siloam Springs she said, “We sold our snow blower in Minnesota so had to move south.” She continued, “Seriously, my husband retired from his first job, we had family in this area, and we wanted to move to a different town.” Dolores says the Siloam Springs Library was a “natural fit” because, “I love learning, books and helping people learn and discover things.”

Dolores & Leah
Dolores poses with staff member Leah to promote our summer program: “Are you Smarter than a Librarian.”

This passion came up  throughout our interview as Dolores shared her joy in watching patrons and staff make new discoveries. For example, early on in her Siloam Springs Library career, she helped another staff member host a cricket match on the library lawn. She had a blast helping kids learn a new skill, experience a different culture, and have a lot of fun at the same time.  Dolores loves working with children and has always found a way to work with them whether at church or at work.

When asked where she would like to see the library in ten years, Dolores painted a picture of an educational, recreational, informational, and social center for our community. “All four of these areas work together.” She explained, “they enrich each other.” In this library, information is readily available,  all forms of media are shared and discussed, the joy of learning is nurtured, and people have lots of fun playing games and enjoying library programs.

Of course I had to ask a few “just-for-fun” questions…

What are you reading right now? I just got done reading “Reading with Patrick: A Teacher, a Student, and a Life-Changing Friendship” by Michelle Kuo.

Pumpkin Decoupage Fun
Dolores captured the fun in pictures at Valerie’s Pumpkin Decoupage Program earlier this month.

Favorite meal? Steak, pizza, chicken Kung Pao, spaghetti. It would be easier to tell you my not so favorite foods. Beets, corned beef, and anchovy pizza. Fish and pizza don’t go together for me.

Favorite quote? “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” -Dr. Seuss

Favorite color? Green, orange, purple

You have a free Saturday with no responsibilities, what is your ideal day? Relax at home in the morning, do something later in the day such as attend a ball game, spend time with friends, explore the area and eat at a great restaurant (not fast food!)

Dolores: Library Manager, knowledge-gardener, direction-setter, learning advocate, sports fan, song (re)writer…the list goes on. I hope this post has been a small introduction for those who haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Dolores, and for those that know her well, just another reminder of how thankful we are to have her as a part of our community.

Mike Pahsetopah Performs

‘Til next time,


P.S. Mark your calendar for family fun on Saturday, November 4th! Actor, dancer and Native American cultural educator, Mike Pahsetopah is giving a performance you won’t want to miss! Stay tuned for more details here and on our Facebook page.


It’s Pumpkin Time!

What is a fruit and weighs 2,624.6 pounds?

Why–the world’s heaviest pumpkin, of course! You didn’t misread that number, Mathias Willemijns, of Belgium, grew a pumpkin that weighed well over one ton according to Guinness World Records. Don’t believe me? Just ask The Great Pumpkin Commonwealth. They’ll confirm the facts.

Edited Pumpkin Image
This is a “decoupaged” pumpkin. So cute, right?!

On a lighter note, we’ve got big pumpkin plans of our own right here at the library! Librarian and crafter extraordinaire, Ms. Valerie, is hosting a Pumpkin decoupage event for you and your family to enjoy on Saturday, October 7th. Create your pumpkin masterpiece from 10:00-12:00 in  Library Meeting Room B. We’ve only got 50 pumpkins, so scarf down those Saturday morning pancakes early and head over to the library!

 And if a pumpkin that could house a cow doesn’t get you into the autumn spirit, try these pumpkin facts on for size:

  • Pumpkins for dinner?? If you lived in North America before Columbus sailed the ocean blue, chances are that pumpkin would be a pantry staple. North Americans grew pumpkins waaaaaaay before Thanksgiving was even a thing!


  • The first pumpkin pie. Picture this: you hollow out your pumpkin, but instead of carving a scary Jack O’ Lantern face, you fill it up with milk, honey, maybe a little ginger, and you put it on a nice, low fire to “bake”–Voila! The first pumpkin pie! Your mouth isn’t watering? Well, a lot has improved since the 1800s, and pumpkin pie is certainly one of them.


  • Do you want fries with that? The biggest pumpkin festival (it’s in Circleville, Ohio if you want to visit this year), offers many tantalizing pumpkin treats including… pumpkin burgers. We’ve definitely come a long way from those early pumpkin crops. 

Get those creative juices flowing and join us for a stupendously squash-filled spree at the Siloam Springs Library!

Till next time,


P.S. This isn’t our only family event on a Saturday. Keep an eye on our calendar to stay in the loop about future fun!

P.P.S. Thanks to Tory Avery’s article on and Alexandra Gonzalez’s post on her website for furnishing the fun pumpkin facts in this post!

Why a Blog?

We’re Starting a Blog!

As of this summer, the Siloam Springs Public Library had 12,663 members (people with library cards). Siloam Springs has a population of about 16,448. Although many of our patrons come from outside the city limits, it’s safe to say that the majority of people in town are connected to the library in some way. 10,333 people walked in and out of the library doors in July alone this year.

So, what does this have to do with a blog?

The library lives and breathes because of the people who use it. That’s how new ideas are introduced, how materials are chosen, and how book clubs, game nights, and storytimes are born. And while it’s impossible to sit down as a cozy group of 10,333 people, it is quite possible for all of us to read the same blog. We hope this blog will become a place to…

  • Be informed. Did you know you can take classes on everything from cooking to astronomy to military history through Universal Class on the library’s website? Did you know we show a movie (with popcorn!) every Monday for families? Have you heard about our digital collections accessible on your phone, computer, or tablet? Do you need meeting space? We’ve got it! The library has these and many more resources to offer. We don’t want you to miss out any longer!


  • Be personal. Yes, despite popular belief, librarians are people too. You might experience us as somewhat reserved, rule-enforcing, you-have-a-20-cent-fine type people from across the front desk, but we really care about people! We care about you, and we’d like to introduce ourselves and let you in on a little of what makes us tick.


  • Be inspired. The library belongs to all of us, so jump in there and make it your own! Maximize its resources and think of what you have to bring to the table! Do you have passion for gardening, foreign language or scientific discovery? Ask about starting a club or program! Did your family have a laugh at our “Are you Smarter than a Librarian” trivia night? Share a picture! Come be a part of shaping the library and the community.


Thanks for being a part of the library, and thanks for joining us on this new adventure. We are looking forward to sharing and shaping the library together.