Choosing gratitude

As the holidays approach and we reach the end of the year, many of us will take stock of our blessings, those things that enrich us and give our lives meaning and joy. It’s been a year since the library district measure failed, and in that year I have learned more about gratitude than any other time in my life. On my list of blessings, shortly after family and good health, is something I treasure dearly — an open public library.

From career workshops to children’s storytimes, the winter months at the library are full of programs and services to keep you active and warm. For local aspiring authors, these last few days of November mean the end of National Novel Writing Month and the promise of a completed novel. During NaNoWriMo, authors are challenged to write 50,000 words in the month of November. This final week, writers can attend the last write-in at the Grants Pass branch on Wednesday, November 25 from 4:30 to 6:30 pm.

In December, the Illinois Valley branch presents a local author festival. The Second Annual Local Author Holiday Book Reading and Sale is scheduled for Wednesday, December 9 at 6 pm. All local authors are welcome to join. Click to contact Illinois Valley Branch Manager Roberta Lee to sign up.

Also in December, Rogue Roasters is hosting a Yellow Envelope Drive kick-off concert featuring the acoustic stylings of Les Stroud (aka Survivorman) Saturday, December 5 from 10 am to noon. Fifteen percent of sales will go to benefit the library. I encourage folks to stop by Rogue Roasters to enjoy a cup of coffee and help us raise the $175,000 needed to keep our libraries open by December 31.

If you need a yellow envelope, look for yours in the December 2 edition of the Grants Pass Daily Courier and Country Weekly. Yellow envelopes are also available at KAJO/KLDR and the Daily Courier offices, as well as all four branches of Josephine Community Libraries in Grants Pass, Williams, Wolf Creek, and Illinois Valley.

Our library’s success is the result of thousands of people working together, and I’m thankful for each and every person who continues to make the commitment to keep our libraries open, no matter what.

Thank you to the 360 volunteers who work 500 hours a week.

Thank you to our 2,238 donors.

Thank you to the business sponsors.

Thank you for our in-kind donors.

Thank you to our grant funders.

Thank you to the dedicated staff.

And, thank you to our patrons.

May your Thanksgiving be full of gratitude and good books.


KateLaskyHeadshotKate Lasky has been the executive director of Josephine Community Libraries, Inc. since 2010. She holds a master’s in education and serves on the Oregon Library Association Legislative and Development Committee. In April this year, she was honored by the Oregon Library Association with the Ole award which annually recognizes an Oregon public library employee who has displayed exceptional effort and excellence.