Request for Qualifications – Energy Efficiency Project

The Bethany Library Association (BLA) is seeking to engage an Architectural /Engineering Consulting team to provide architectural design and mechanical & electrical engineering services associated with the preparation of plans, specifications and bidding documents for energy efficiency improvements at the Clark Memorial Library in Bethany, CT. Please click on this link and the Request for Qualifications will open in a new window:a-e-rfq-clark-lib_120816-1.

In order to receive addendum and other information regarding this RFQ, if any, interested firms should email with the firm name and contact person.

Donald W. Smith, Jr., P.E.
Consulting Engineer
56 Greenwood Cr.
Seymour, CT 06483
(203) 888-4904


Adult and teen visionaries wanted!

The Bethany Library Association is recruiting new members to join us as we grow a thoughtful learning and knowledge center for Bethany.  Our library’s mission is to Engage. Connect. Grow. It is the purpose of the Bethany Library Association to strategically govern the library in manner which will serve the community as a whole.   
The Bethany Library Association was founded in 1930 as a non-profit organization made up of Bethany townspeople for the purpose of acquiring and circulating books and other holdings as a service to Bethany residents. As a private nonprofit the Association operates and maintains the Clark Memorial Library  as the public library for the Bethany.  The Association receives annual grants from the town of Bethany and the state of Connecticut while also raising its own operational income from donations through an annual drive and other development initiatives.
Noyes Clark donated the Clark Memorial Library in 1936. In 1995, a major addition was built that more than tripled the size of the original building. The building project was made possible by the donations of hundreds of Bethany’s generous citizens, businesses, and organizations. In its objective to provide Bethany residents with information, educational, and recreational literary materials, the library strives to provide relevant technology and programming to encourage life long learning.
Members of the Bethany Library Association share the responsibilities of:
  • Planning for the future of the Library, setting long-term strategic direction and goals.
  • Approving and monitoring the Library’s annual budget, and ongoing fiscal health.
  • Conducting the annual fundraising drive to support the library.
  • Acting as an advocate for the Library and a liaison to the public, organizations, and public officials.
  • Overseeing the maintenance of land and buildings for library purposes.
  • Studying the needs and interests of the community and ensuring they are addressed when considering library services and policies.
The Bethany Library Association does have renewable term limits of two year terms, renewable up to three consecutive times.  Our monthly meeting is held every fourth Tuesday at 7:30 pm.  All members serve on two of our three standing committees, as well.  Members may choose from Governance, Development, and Building and Grounds.  These committees do have meetings as well.  Additionally all members are expected to attend major library events and to donate to our annual drive.
The most important qualification to serve on the Bethany Library Association is to have a passion for the power of the public library to transform lives and communities.


Changes to Interlibrary Loans

After Saturday June 26 patrons will notice a difference when requesting interlibrary loans.  This is because the statewide catalog known as Request will no longer be available.  The Interlibrary Loan page will still be available on iConn and we will still work with other libraries to get patron requests filled.  Remember as a member of the Libraries Online/LION Consortium we already have direct access to over 30 libraries for all sorts of library items.  Begin searching for a desired item on our  catalog and then the LION catalog.
Why is this happening and how long will it last?  Due to a reduction in funding of nearly $100,000 in this fiscal year and in each of the next two fiscal years, the State Librarian decided to discontinue the current statewide catalog and interlibrary loan service (reQuest) on July 1, 2015. The State Library’s Division of Library Development is working with Bibliomation, a regional library network in Connecticut, to implement a new system by the Fall of 2015.
So while we wait for the new catalog to come online, patrons will be directed to one of the below directories to search for an item that is not available through LION.  Here’s a listing of those directories.  They will be hyperlinked on the iConn Interlibrary Loan page after July 1, 2015. We will provide an online form for patrons to submit interlibrary loan requests.  This form will be on our catalog page of the website.  And, of course, patrons are welcome to visit or call the library to submit requests.  Our number is 203 393-2103.

Shared Connecticut Library Catalogs

Individual Connecticut Library Catalogs:

Alphabetical by library name:

Other Library Catalogs:


Love Libraries? Help!

Love libraries? Keep reading, we need your help.
April hosts National Library Week, April 12 – 18. However, this year the mood is not one of celebration but one of worry. The proposed budget for the state will eliminate 30% of the funding provided to the state library. This cut would deeply affect the services of the Clark Memorial Library, as well as the way you use any Connecticut library. The service known as Connecticard will be eliminated. This is the program of library reciprocity. Right now library card holders can use any library in the state. When a non-resident uses another library, that library receives a dime per item checked out. This is an incentive for libraries to share their collections. Smaller libraries and towns greatly benefit because we cannot purchase every item a patron might want to use, and the yearly payment goes directly back into book purchases. Patrons benefit because you are free to use any library and have greater access to materials that you want to borrow from anywhere in the state.
Also, the service known as the Connecticut Library Consortium will lose more than half of its funding and will be de-authorized. This touches Clark Memorial Library because the membership of this consortium consists of over 800 libraries. The Consortium negotiates vendor contracts for all participating libraries. Some of these savings are up 72% off the list price. The Consortium also runs professional development workshops and round tables to keep librarians growing just as fast library users’ needs grow. Without the Consortium our new website would not have been completed in-house, saving us at least $6,000 a year. The Consortium manages and runs the circuit which provides us with our DVDs and keeps us with a refreshed DVD collection. With all the savings the Consortium provides us, the library saved $19, 341.60 last year.
Finally state grants to libraries will be eliminated altogether. These are grants which help to fund programs and advance library improvements. Just last year Clark Memorial Library was in contention for a grant. Though it did not come through, knowing that there is money to help develop and grow libraries inspires investment in Clark Memorial Library.
Love libraries? Help save these services which keep us running smoothly. Write to your state representatives and consider rallying with us at Hartford on Wednesday, April 15 from noon to 1 p.m.

Big Read for big readers in the virtual world

Patrons are invited to download the critically acclaimed e-book Shakespeare Saved My Life: Ten Years in Solitary with the Bard by Laura Bates through Overdrive, our provider for e-books and audio books. There are no holds on the book as Overdrive is making multiple copies available and guarantees that anyone who wants to read this inspirational book will have access to it.

Big Library Read is an international program that gives libraries and library patrons unlimited simultaneous access to a popular title during the program dates, creating a virtual, global eBook club. Interested patrons will be able borrow Shakespeare Saved My Life using a valid library card, and read on all major computers and devices, including iPhone, iPad, Nook, Android phones and tablets, and Kindle [U.S. Libraries] without worrying about wait lists or holds. Titles will automatically expire at the end of the lending period, and best of all, there are no late fees!

The Big Library Read program is made possible through a partnership between OverDrive, the leading supplier of eBooks and more to libraries, and Sourcebooks, publisher of Laura Bates’ autobiography. To borrow the eBook version of Shakespeare Saved My Life as part of Big Library Read, patrons can visit [].

About the book

Shakespeare professor and prison volunteer Laura Bates thought she had seen it all. That is, until she decided to teach Shakespeare in a place the bard had never been before — supermax solitary confinement. In this unwelcoming place, surrounded by inmates known as the worst of the worst, is Larry Newton. A convicted murderer with several escape attempts under his belt and a brilliantly agile mind on his shoulders, Larry was trying to break out of prison at the same time Laura was fighting to get her program started behind bars.

Thus begins the most unlikely of friendships, one bonded by Shakespeare and lasting years—a friendship that, in the end, would save more than one life.

About the author

Laura Bates

Laura Bates has a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in Comparative Literature, with a focus on Shakespeare studies. She is Professor of English at Indiana State University, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on Shakespeare. For more than twenty-five years she has also taught in prison. She created the world’s first Shakespeare program in supermax—the long-term solitary confinement unit. Her work has been featured in local and national media, including two segments on MSNBC-TV’s Lock Up. She is the author of “Shakespeare Saved My Life: Ten Years in Solitary with the Bard” (Sourcebooks, 2013).