On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence.  Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Roger Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston comprised the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration. Jefferson wrote most of the document, while John Hancock, the President of the Second Continental Congress, was the first signer. If you are interested in this time period of our history, there are many nonfiction books available at the Berne Public Library.

Movie night canceled

There will be no Family Movie Night this month because of the holiday but the library will be open on Saturday, July 5. The library will also open two hours earlier on Thursdays during July and August.  

Read to a dog

Many people will be wearing red, white, and blue on the 4th.  If you have seen a dog with a red and blue bandanna in the library, then you have seen Ariel with her handler Amber Pitcher.  Ariel is a therapy dog who loves having children read to her. Sign up at the library for a 15-minute session with Ariel between 4 and 6 p.m., on Monday, July 7.


The summer reading program at the library is in full swing.  Register at the library or on-line at bernepubliclibrary.org.  There is a program for every age.  Although it is not necessary to register for SRP events, children are asked to sign up for SRP to record their reading minutes. Those who meet the library's goal will receive gift bags and a free trip to MiSci.

Story time

The science of colors is the focus of the SRP Wee Read Story time on Tuesday, July 8.  Preschool children and their caregivers are invited to join Kathy at 11 a.m.  Stories, activities, and a craft are all part of the fun with red, white, and blue.

Writing program

Can you write as well as Thomas Jefferson?  Try your hand at writing your memories of past Independence Days.  Share your composition during the Memoir Writing Program on Tuesday, July 8, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.  MaryJo McKeon facilitates and drop-ins are welcome.


Fireworks are often displayed on the 4th of July.  Report, another name for the bang, can be heard for miles. During the SRP on Thursday, July 10, children ages five to 12 will be investigating sounds. This Fizz, Boom, Read program begins at 11 a.m.  Sounds good.

Board meets

The library’s board of trustees meets on Thursday, July 10, at 6:30 p.m., for training on long-term planning. The open meeting will follow at around 7:30 p.m.  The public is invited to the meeting portion where the board discusses library business.  

Teen event

This month's teen event is a Mad Scientist Party. All teens interested in trying experiments are invited to attend the SRP on Friday, July 11, at 6:30 p.m.  Beware, some combinations may go boom.  

SRP for adults

Scientifically Engaging is the bi-weekly theme for SRP adults.  Choose a book from those set aside at the library or choose your own book to read.  Write a book review for each book read between June 29 and July 12 to be entered in a contest for a prize. It's interesting to see which books are enjoyed by our compatriots.  

Freedom to read and write is a great part of being American.  Happy Independence Day.

School has ended and that means more time for fun at the Berne Public Library. In case you haven't heard, the 2014 national theme for the summer reading program (SRP) is science. The SRP is a great way to keep in touch with friends, prevent summer learning loss, read great books, and enjoy special programs. Sign up at the library or online as soon as possible. There is something for every age group.

Reusing discarded objects

Upcycle means to reuse discarded objects or material, in such a way, as to create a product of a higher quality or value than the original. Upcycling is our first adult SRP on Sunday, June 29, at 7 p.m. Pick up ideas for reducing the trash flow and take home an upcycled project. Possibilities include herbs in a sack, a book planter, a storage jar, or a T-shirt rug. All interested adults are invited to attend.

Reading program kickoff

The Family SRP kickoff is on Monday, June 30, at the senior center, 1360 Helderberg Trail, Berne.  Starting at 6:30 p.m., Ms. Butterfly, aka Carol Ann Margolis, will perform an interactive program. Crafts, activities, and refreshments will all be a part of this entertaining program. Help us kick off the summer in style by attending with friends and family.

Preschool read

Fizz, Boom, Read for Wee Readers takes place on Tuesdays at 11 a.m.  Preschool children and their caregivers are invited to join Ms. Kathy on July 1 to learn about dinosaurs.  

Robot fun

Middle Readers, ages five to 12, will meet on Thursdays at 11 a.m.  Fun with Robots is the program for July 3.  Plan on making a robot hand with Ms. Kathy.

Friends meetings

The Friends of the Berne Library will not be meeting in July. The next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, August 6, at 7:30 p.m. The group will need help with the Music in the Park programs, which begin July 23.  Volunteer by contacting the library.

Summer programs

As parents arrange to keep their children engaged over the summer, look to the library. All programs are free of charge unless indicated otherwise.  More information is available on our website at www.bernepubliclibrary.org or by calling the library at 872-1246.

Congratulations to all the Berne-Knox-Westerlo graduates.  If you are interested in seeing who graduated this year, a 2014 yearbook is available to peruse while you are at the library.

Summer officially begins this weekend and the Berne Public Library is ready.  The best parts of summer are the exciting activities planned at the library. The Summer Reading Program known as SRP begins June 28. While encouraging reading, the weekly events will focus on hands-on activities that promote science.  It promises to be a lot of fun. Sign up online or at the library.  

Lego League

To celebrate the season, participants in Lego League are invited to create summer scenes with the library's Legos.  Children ages five to 12 should meet at the library at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 21.  Projects will be put on display in the library.

Read to a dog

Research shows that children feel more comfortable reading aloud when they read to a dog.  Amber is bringing her therapy dog, Ariel, to the library on Monday, June 23, from 4 to 6 p.m. Sign up for a time slot by calling the library at 872-1246.

Story time

Author and illustrator Eric Carle turns 85 on June 25. His collage technique for illustrating children's books is known for being bright and cheerful. Preschool children and their caregivers are invited to investigate the creations of Eric Carle during story time on Tuesday, June 24, at 11 a.m.  The focus will be on Carle's most celebrated book, The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Memoir writing

Do you have a favorite memory of summer?  The Memoir Writing program is on Tuesday, June 24, at 6:30 p.m.  Bring a story to share with the group.  Drop-ins are always welcome at this class facilitated by MaryJo McKeon.  

Science program

The first science program of the summer is scheduled for Wednesday, June 25, at 3 p.m..  Sam from the Thatcher Park Nature Center will join Kathy at the library to explore dinosaurs with kids ages five and six. Each participant in the program will receive a free book Boy Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs by Kathleen Kudlinski. Register by calling the library at 872-1246 or e-mailing Kathy@bernepubliclibrary.org. Unless otherwise stated, all library programs are free of charge.

Trustee of the year

The library is proud to announce that the Upper Hudson Library System awarded Nancy Lendrum the 2013 Trustee of the Year at their annual dinner on June 11.  Her outstanding contributions to the planning, designing, and overseeing of the Berne Public Library building project earned her this recognition. Congratulations Nancy.

Knox book

The Knox Historical Society has reissued the book Knox, New York, Sesquicentennial. The Society donated two copies to the library for use by our patrons. If you would like your own copy at a cost of $10, contact Donna Gwin at 872-2161.

"Summer: Hair gets lighter. Skin gets darker. Water gets warmer. Drinks get colder. Music gets louder. Nights get longer. Life gets better." by Unknown.

A woman and her granddaughter came to the Berne Public Library last week. They are on a quest to visit all twenty-nine libraries in the Upper Hudson Library System.  At each library they borrow books. This is easy because their library cards are good at any public library in Albany and Rensselaer counties. The items can be returned at any UHLS library because of the courier system. What a wonderful way to see the area while emphasizing the importance of reading.  

Teen night

Teens can feel comfortable in a library, especially when it is closed. Teens take over the library on Friday, June 13, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.  Join in on the fun with Tag, the teen advisory group. Plan on some unusual competitions at this month's event.  

Knit Wits

After celebrating Father's Day, those who knit or crochet are invited to the library for Knit Wits. The group meets on Sunday, June 15, at 7 p.m. Work on your own project while enjoying conversations with other adults.

Preschool program

The first day of summer will be here next Saturday.  Preschool children and their caregivers are invited to the library on Tuesday, June 17, at 11 a.m. to hear stories about this season. The program includes activities and a craft. 

Summer reading program

Of course, the best part of summer is the summer reading program at the library.  This year the topic is science, and includes a lot of hands-on fun. Our first special event is Wednesday, June 25, at 3 p.m.  Children ages five or six are invited to investigate dinosaurs and make fossils.  Free books on dinosaurs will be distributed during this program. The book is called Boy, Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs.  Please register at the library by calling 872-1246 or e-mail Kathy@bernepubliclibrary.org

Happy Father's Day to all those great dads who make sure visits to the library are a part of their family's routine. 

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town of Berne covers 64.8 square miles while the town of Knox includes 41.9 square miles. Since the Berne Public Library is located in the southwest corner of Berne, it is easy to see why stopping by may not be convenient. The staff prefers face to face interactions but they are not necessary.

Library services

There is a way to use the free services at the library without having to travel.  All you need is access to the Internet.  Visit our website www.bernepubliclibrary.org, and click on Find ebooks and audiobooks in the right side column.  That link will take you to the Upper Hudson Library System OverDrive site where you can browse for titles. Use your library card to download e-books or e-audiobooks to your computer, iPods, iPads, Nooks, Kindles, smartphones, and more.

No high speed Internet access at your house?  That makes it worth a trip to the library to use the computers or WiFi.  No library card? Register for a free card at the library. Limited knowledge of e-devices?  Sign up for a one-on-one session with the library staff at 1 p.m., on Tuesdays or 5 p.m., on Thursdays.

Family night

Enjoy a family night out in the Hilltowns. This month’s movie at the library is an animation including pirates and fairies. The film is rated G and begins at 6:30 p.m., on Friday, June 6.  The movie is projected onto a large screen in the community room.  Admission is free and refreshments will be served.

Game night

If you need a break from electronic devices, join other adults on Sunday, June 8 for some old-fashioned fun.  Game night starts at 7 p.m., and involves board games such as Clue, Scrabble, and Settlers of Catan.

Father’s Day

Father’s Day is next Sunday.  Preschool children are invited to the library on Tuesday, June 10 to celebrate dads.  Join Kathy at 11 a.m. for stories and activities that develop literacy skills in a fun way.  This week’s craft will be a present to give a father.  

Memoir writing group

Interested in writing down memories of Dad to share with your family and community.  The memoir writing group meets on Tuesday, June 10, at 6:30 p.m.  All interested adults are invited to attend.  Bring a story to share.

Board meets

The library board of trustees will meet on Thursday, June 12, at 6:30 p.m., to discuss library business.  This is an open meeting and community members are encouraged to attend.  


Teens should grab a friend, and head to the library on Friday, June 13.  TAG (teen advisory group) takes over the library from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. with fun activities and competitions. Hope to see you there.