LSTA 2016 Results


The results of the most recent Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) competitive grant round have been released and two SELCO libraries are among the recipients.  Congratulations to Albert Lea Public Library and Austin Public Library.

Albert Lea Public Library – $72,505 for Check Out the Internet @ ALPL
Albert Lea Public Library (ALPL) will bridge Freeborn County’s digital access gap with a mobile technology lending program. Grant funds will capitalize on a popular pilot project by adding 60 Wi-Fi hotspots and 25 iPad Airs to its circulating collection. In partnership with Albert Lea Community Education, ALPL will present classes and hands-on demonstrations of the mobile technology to Adult Basic Education students.

Austin Public Library – $43,064 for Austin Area Science Fair Mentoring Project Expansion
Austin Public Library (APL) will take a pivotal role in expanding the Austin Area Science Fair Mentoring Project, a successful community initiative that pairs local STEM professionals with third and fourth grade science fair participants. In doing so, APL aims to increase science literacy and students’ interest in STEM careers. The project will double the number of mentor-student pairs, increase science fair participation and success rates, and connect science fair participants with the library’s mobile technology and high-quality STEM resources.

Hennepin County Library (HCL) is the other public library with a successful application.  It was awarded $58,513 for its Strengthening Families Affected by Incarceration project.  The balance of the $544,843 in 2016 LSTA funds was awarded to five school districts.  Click here for a list of all eight grant recipients and the project abstracts.

Be part of the 2017 Winter Author Tour!

Doug OhmanEach year SELCO works with local libraries to build regional author tours around Minnesota Book Award (MNBA) finalists and winners, either with a multiple or single author tour.  For Winter 2017, we will be featuring regional favorite Doug Ohman between February and April.  An avid speaker, storyteller, and photographer, Doug has deep roots in Minnesota and has been a part of the creation of eight books featuring his photography.  Prairie, Lake, Forest: Minnesota’s State Parks was a 2011 MNBA Finalist and Barns of Minnesota was a Finalist in 2006.  

Ohman has captured the varied essence of the state and has created several photographic series on such subjects as cabins, barns, and schoolhouses.  He also delves into Minnesota’s history by offering programs on The New Deal in Minnesota and the state’s role in the Civil War.  All in all, there are 17 different programs from which a library could choose.  We’re looking to plan the tour for dates between February 18 – April 28, 2017 (no availability on April 1).

Applications to be a part of the 2017 Winter Author tour will be accepted from August 1-31.  Click HERE to apply today!

This project is made possible with money from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund and the people of Minnesota for Library Legacy activities.

Ten Pigs Trunk Shows Wrap!

Today was the final day of Once Upon a Reader trunk shows in SELCO. Author/illustrator Derek Anderson traveled the region, reading, singing and playing with children in an energetic show based around his book, Ten Pigs: An Epic Bath Adventure.

Library staff throughout the region did a great job promoting the shows, and after six days and 12 trunk shows in 11 communities, Derek said he thoroughly enjoyed his time in southeast Minnesota.  The hundreds of children, caregivers and parents who participated in the high-energy trunk show agreed. Aimed at pre-K children and their families, this statewide one-book program  promotes Minnesota children’s literature and encourages families to Talk, Sing, Read, Write and Play together – five practices critical to early literacy skills development.

Additional resources for libraries and parents are free and downloadable at .

Ten Pigs Coming to SELCO!

10 Pigs 2016

Derek Anderson and his TEN PIGS are busy getting ready for the Once Upon a Reader Trunk Shows coming to SELCO libraries! They’re rehearsing their parts, gathering props, stocking up on bubble bath and loading the bathtub for 12 Trunk Shows.  Visit a library and join the fun!

Check the list for a library near you.


Date Time Location
Tuesday, June 21, 2016 10:30a Austin Public Library
Tuesday, June 21, 2016 2:00p Albert Lea Public Library
Wednesday, June 22, 2016 10:30a Red Wing Public Library
Wednesday, June 22, 2016 2:00p Lake City Public Library
Thursday, June 23, 2016 10:00a Winona Public Library
Thursday, June 23, 2016 3:00p Hokah Public Library
Tuesday, June 28, 2016 10:00a Owatonna Public Library
Tuesday, June 28, 2016 2:00p Buckham Memorial Library (Faribault, MN)
Wednesday, June 29, 2016 10:00a Dodge Center Public Library
Wednesday, June 29, 2016 2:00p Spring Valley Public Library
Thursday, June 30, 2016 10:00a Rochester Public Library
Thursday, June 30, 2016 1:00p Rochester Public Library

Story Stroll Order Deadline

Ten Pigs round imageSunday, January 31 will be the last day to place orders for Once Upon a Reader storytime kits, story strolls, and play kits – for those libraries that want materials included in the first round of fulfillment and delivery. All orders received between January 6 and January 31 will be processed during the month of February (and in hand before the commencement of Derek Anderson’s first trunk shows). All orders received between Monday, February 1 and Thursday, March 31 will be fulfilled during the month of April. Regions and libraries may hold off and place orders after the January mark, if that works best for regional planning.

SELCO and each region participating in Once Upon a Reader will be receiving one free, complete set of Once Upon a Reader materials (a storytime kit, story stroll, and play kit). These will be delivered to regional library offices via Minitex along with kits ordered in round one.

For more information email David Katz, Once Upon A Reader Coordinator or contact the SELCO Legacy Team.

Once Upon a Reader – 2016 Season Launch!

OUR Logo - ColorAs we kick off the New Year, the Council of Regional Public Library System Administrators (CRPLSA) is pleased to commence season two of Once Upon a Reader. Aimed at pre-K children and their families, this statewide one-book program  promotes Minnesota children’s literature and encourages families to Talk, Sing, Read, Write and Play together – five practices critical to early literacy skills development.

A panel of youth services librarians from across the state selected Ten Pigs: An Epic Bath Adventure, by Minnesota author/illustrator Derek Anderson, as the focus of this year’s program. “Anderson combines humor with simple, straightforward rhymes to successfully convey basic counting concepts,” praises School Library Journal. “Because of its big, vivid illustrations and rhythmic, sprightly rhymes, [Ten Pigs] is ideal for sharing with a group as a read-aloud.”

CRPLSA launched Once Upon a Reader’s inaugural season in 2014, with funding from Minnesota’s Legacy Amendment Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund. This year’s season will be observed from March to October and include a diverse mix of tie-in activities, enabling libraries of all sizes and in all corners of the state to participate in the program.

Beginning this spring, Derek Anderson will travel across the state entertaining and educating kids in each participating regional library system with his “Ten Pigs Trunk Show.” During this portable one-man show, the author will read the book aloud, lead a reenactment, sketch, sing, and more. Visit, or click HERE, to see when Derek will be in a community near you.

Additional Once Upon a Reader activity materials are offered through the program’s website. Available for purchase are a waterproof and reusable Story Stroll, sign-sized book pages that allow you to display the Ten Pigs story outside a library or along a path; an Epic Storytime Kit, which includes your own copy of Ten Pigs, four other bath time and barnyard tales, and tie-in crafts; and a 15-piece Ten Pigs Play Kit for libraries to circulate among families and care providers.

Free and downloadable resources include a Ten Pigs scavenger hunt, matching game, drawing activity, bubble adventure, and more!

As Once Upon a Reader ramps up in earnest, library staff are encouraged to join with peers across the state in OUR Resource Share, a Facebook group devoted to the sharing of Once Upon a Reader photos and stories, programming ideas, and resource suggestions. In addition to keeping the conversation going, this Facebook resource allows members to share and download documents where helpful.

Community Collaboration Grants – Round II now available!

Amendment LogoThe Legacy Review Committee met in November and approved five Community Collaboration Grants for full funding.  Congratulations to Cannon Falls, Kasson, Lanesboro, Owatonna, and Winona Public Libraries!

With our budget for the year, there is still approximately $20,000 left for a second round of Community Collaboration Grant applications.  The application is now open.  Applications are due Wednesday, March 23, 2016 at 5:00pm.  Approved projects can start after April 22, 2016.
For more information, please see SELCO’s Community Collaboration Page.  If you have any questions, please contact Amy Nelson, Legacy Coordinator at or call the SELCO office at 1.800.992.5061.

Once Upon a Reader selects a new book for season two!

OUR Logo - ColorThe Council of Regional Public Library System Administrators (CRPLSA) is pleased to announce the second season of Once Upon a Reader, a statewide one-­book program.  The program, which focuses on children aged 0-­6, will highlight the importance of reading and sharing books with children. The program is funded through the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Library Legacy Fund.

The book selected for the 2016-­2017 Once Upon a Reader program is Ten Pigs: An Epic Bath Adventure.  The book is written and illustrated by Minnesota resident, Derek Anderson. The program will feature original music by local singer/songwriter, Tom Lieberman.

Once Upon a Reader was launched at the Minnesota Library Association Conference, October 8-9 in Saint Paul.  The new season is scheduled to begin in March of 2016 with Trunk Show visits from Derek Anderson hosted by libraries throughout Minnesota.

A special feature of the program will be the distribution of over 14,000 copies of Ten Pigs to every Head Start student in the state, along with curriculum guidelines.  Libraries are encouraged to partner with their local Head Start programs as part of Once Upon a Reader.

Once Upon a Reader will be coordinated by Library Strategies, a consulting group of The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library.  For more information, contact Once Upon a Reader Coordinator David Katz:


Now Available – 2016-17 Vetted Performers

Continuing in the tradition of providing a simple “turnkey” program approach for community offerings, SELCO is proud to announce that the 2016-17 Catalog of Vetted Performers are now available to be booked! Following feedback from librarians within our region, the SELCO staff worked diligently to recruit and expand upon our previous offerings. The new catalog features 20 performers and manages to keep some of the favorites and introduces a new crop of richly talented professionals and organizations to its holdings.

Each SELCO/SELS member library is able to book three performers throughout the fiscal year (ending June 30, 2016). From yo-yo Masters to magicians to History Players to animals to musicians and more, libraries will be able to find something in here to suit patrons of all ages. To learn more about how to book a Vetted Performer, please click HERE, or contact

This project was made possible with money from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund and the people of Minnesota for Library Legacy activities.

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