The City of Glendale’s library system was awarded three grants federally funded through the Arizona Secretary of State’s office that they will use to provide new programming for seniors, backpacks filled with educational hiking materials that residents can check out and a heroes-themed book collection for the new Heroes Regional Park Branch Library, which will open in the spring of 2019.

“It’s rare that a library will get two awards, and we went three for three,” shared Chief librarian, Michael Beck at the September Advisory Board meeting. Here’s how the staff is planning to use the $56,000 grant money:

Hiking Backpacks: The largest grant, for $24,500, was for Discovery and Exploration Backpacks containing trails and educational books and tools meant to be taken on hiking trails. The grant will fund forty waterproof backpacks across the city’s four libraries as well as some programming related to the backpacks. Each library will have 10 backpacks with five different themes — two to each theme. Two of the five themes will be geared toward children while three are geared toward adults. They will not be available until January or February. Each pack will have trail guides supplied by Glendale’s Parks and Recreation department.

Programming for Seniors:Glendale received $12,900 in grant funds toward programming for seniors, ages 55 and older. This program will bring in professional artists and educators to teach craft classes. Ms. Fletcher-Spear said she would often look on Pinterest to learn crafts she felt confident she can teach to a class. One popular craft among Glendale libraries that the grant will fund is canvas painting, which Ms. Fletcher-Spear noted is expensive. At least 38 programs are planned across the city’s four libraries. Classes will be spread across daytime, evenings and weekends.

‘Heroes’ collection:Glendale’s newest library is receiving a unique book collection, thanks to an $18,600 grant awarded to the city. The theme of the “Heroes” collection for the Heroes Branch Library, at the corner of 83rd Avenue and Bethany Home Road, is “Find a hero, be your own hero.” The first two parts of the three-part collection will be geared toward the first half of the theme: a graphic novel collection, filled largely with tales of super heroes, and a biography collection will aim to help readers of all ages discover heroes real and fictional. The third part of the collection will be a collection of vocational books, aimed to help readers “be their own heroes” by working toward the career they want. The collection will also feature an online database called JobNow. It is a new service from Brainfuse, a website that provides HelpNow, an online tutoring service that is currently available at Glendale libraries.

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