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The MCPL Blog: Newsletter

Director's Report

Ralph Illick with US flag

December 19, 2019

With the holiday season upon us, I would like to share some exciting news for our library users around the county. You may have noticed that we are currently on hold with our interior upgrades, and there is now a plan for the county’s facilities team to complete the roof repairs in the spring. The repairs were attempted last year, but unanticipated structural issues prevented the completion of those repairs. Currently, Marathon County is looking at renewing the project in the spring, after which the interior enhancements will proceed. Also, I am pleased to report that the library’s board has formed a task force to review MCPL’s library system membership. Currently, we are members of the Wisconsin...

Facility Improvement Director's Report Newsletter Library Board

Find your next read with Novelist K-8!

NoveList K-8 screenshot

August 27, 2019

When you and your child finish reading a book or series, it can be difficult to decide what to read next. After all, new books are released every week and the vast amount of choices can be overwhelming. But one of our handy online resources can help give you some direction! Among MCPL’s many online resources is Novelist K-8, which is a reader’s advisory resource that will recommend books to read based on ones you’d read in the past, similar to how Netflix and other streaming services recommend content based on your viewing habits. Just like the Novelist resource for adults, Novelist K-8 allows users to search for a book by title, author or keyword search, and then recommends a handful of books that are...

Reading Recommendations Children Newsletter Online Resources Technology

Director’s Report

Ralph Illick with US flag

August 23, 2019

We are making good progress at MCPL with several important matters of interest.  The library’s new interior public furnishings are being designed by Engberg Anderson Architects, and we will add more information online for you once they complete those designs. The library’s foundation has agreed to grant substantial funding for the addition of new technology that will be used to enhance our STEM programming as part of this redesign, and we will be customizing our programs to best serve our communities.  We are hopeful that the ongoing roof repairs at MCPL Wausau will be completed during the coming months, but we may need to proceed with caution in order to limit any complications that might...

Director's Report Facility Improvement Friends Of The Library Newsletter

Become a friend of the library!

hands showing teamwork

August 21, 2019

The Friends of the Marathon County Public Library is a dedicated group of volunteers that helps MCPL in numerous ways, including organizing quarterly book sales, purchasing artwork that is made available for checkout and donating money to the library for programming, equipment and more. Any member of the public is welcome to join the Friends and volunteer their time with these endeavors (and more). Or, if you don’t have time to volunteer, you can become a “silent” member by paying the $10 membership fee, which allows you access to the quarterly book sales a full day before the general public! Friends memberships last one full year.  The next Friends of MCPL Book Sale will be November 7-10. For more...

Friends Of The Library Volunteering Book Sale Newsletter

Join our 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program!

Pic of new 1000BBK background taken by Taylor W.

August 20, 2019

By now, you’ve probably heard that a child’s brain grows to 80% of its adult size by the age of 3. Did you also know that young children who hear at least 1,000 books are more ready to read once they enter kindergarten?  If you want a fun and easy way to keep track of your child’s reading, help grow their brain, and earn incentives (like picture books and a book bag), join our 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program! 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is aimed at children from birth through preschool, and parents/caregivers can register their child for the program at any time. Upon registration, you will receive a book bag and a folder that contains a sticker sheet, a parent letter and a reading log...

Children Reading Recommendations Newsletter

Our Summer Program is for adults, too!

bin of slp prizes for adults

June 25, 2019

This summer, MCPL is celebrating “A Universe of Stories” with its summer library program! Adults can write short reviews of books that they read and earn rewards along the way.  Every adult will receive a reward for the first book review that they submit. Prizes they can choose from include books, water bottles, bumper stickers, USB drives, ear buds or tote bags. After their initial review, adults can claim a reward for every fifth book review they turn in. Reviews will be accepted and rewards will be given out through August 30, and rewards vary by location. For more information, contact your local MCPL, or visit!   

Newsletter Summer Library Program Adults now available with your library card! Library Edition screenshot

December 21, 2018

Starting last October, the Marathon County Public Library began offering access to to its patrons. Owned by, bills itself as the largest newspaper archive site on the Internet, providing its users with access to over 11,000 newspapers ranging from the 1700s through the 2000s, with new issues being added on a monthly basis. The decision to offer to library patrons was made earlier this year by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. The site will be used as a replacement for Access NewspaperARCHIVE, a similar resources that the DPI discontinued using earlier this year. is an online resource that many patrons have requested...

Newsletter Technology Genealogy Online Resources

Director’s Report

Ralph Illick with US flag

December 20, 2018

Good news! The much anticipated interior renovations are now only months away. Soon, we will review proposals from library design firms to refurbish our headquarters and branches. We want to give all of our locations a makeover, while also looking at potential technology upgrades to ensure the very best possible public service to our communities. The Planning and Visioning Project that was completed in 2016 will be used by the design firm as a guide to ensure that the upgrades are comprehensive and relevant. We are very fortunate that our Marathon County Public Library Foundation has agreed to help with this project, and we are all thrilled to see this new chapter at MCPL come to fruition. Also, soon you...

Director's Report Newsletter Facility Improvement

New technology classes in 2019!

woman on phone and laptop computer

December 19, 2018

Are you looking to become more savvy with your personal computer, iPhone or iPad? Is there something you want to sell on Craigslist, but you don’t know where to start? Beginning in January, MCPL Wausau will begin hosting a series of technology-related classes on an almost-weekly basis. Included in the lineup of classes are returning favorites, including Intro to Microsoft Excel, Intro to Libby & E-books, and Facebook Fundamentals. But new classes with a different focus will also be offered, including Intro to Microsoft Word and Resume Building, Basics of the iPhone and iPad, The Wide World of Google Resources and the Basics of Craigslist. Whether you want to get more comfortable with Google, buy and...

Newsletter Events Technology Computer Classes

Writing contest results!

hands writing in notebook

August 27, 2018

A Community Writing Competition open to all patrons of the Wisconsin Valley Library Service took place earlier this year, January through May. Judging of the entries by library staff commenced, and the winners were selected in June. There were just over 25 entries to consider in the three categories of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry, and the ages of participants ranged from 13 to 85. In the interest of sharing local writing with the community, winners’ entries were printed in the Record Review, a weekly newspaper that serves the areas around Athens, Edgar, Marathon, Stratford, and Spencer. The goal of the competition was to promote creative writing. It provided an incentive for writers to...

Writing Events Newsletter

Make a monkey hat!

monkey hat

August 24, 2018

This summer, several MCPL locations offered a Summer Craft Day, where kids and families could make a variety of crafts based on popular children’s songs to coincide with our Summer Library Program theme of “Libraries Rock!”  If you and your family missed this craft day, you can still make one of the crafts using a few things found around your home! Provided below are the instructions for making your very own monkey hat, in celebration of the song “Five Little Monkeys.”  Supplies:  2 pieces of brown construction paper  1 piece of tan construction paper 2 googly eyes glue  stapler black marker Cut one of the brown pieces of construction paper in half. Place the...

Newsletter Children Events

"Pennies for Animals" a success!

penny jar

August 22, 2018

This summer, the Marathon County Public Library once again encouraged kids and families to donate money to help animals in need with its Pennies for Animals program, which ran June 11-August 11. Throughout the summer, kids donated their spare change and other monetary donations, raising a total of $100! Along with donating money, kids could also vote for which animal-focused organization they wanted to receive the funds, and the winner of the vote was the Humane Society of Marathon County! MCPL wants to thank everyone who donated money -- and the animals want to thank you, too!

Newsletter Events

Director’s Report

Ralph Illick with US flag

August 20, 2018

As children head back to school and the summer days begin to wane, the Marathon County Public Library will be undergoing some much-needed changes! We will be replacing the carpeting in our main library Children’s Department after having endured a sudden break in a water supply line in the dark of night. This unfortunate event was managed and mitigated admirably by the Marathon County Facilities and Capital Management Department, and they have our gratitude for helping to make a potentially bad situation little more than an inconvenience.  We also will be replacing many of the library’s 22+ years old public furnishings. Our intention is to better use our available space, as well as improve your...

Newsletter Director's Report Facility Improvement

First LENA Start families graduate at MCPL Wausau!

:ENA Start Marathon County logo

July 3, 2018

Wisconsin’s first ever LENA Start sessions are complete! A wide range of Marathon County families participated in LENA Start, a program designed to measure how much verbal interaction a child hears in the first three years of his or her life. A total of 18 families graduated from the program this past May, making the first sessions of the program a success!  In order to graduate, parents had to attend nine parenting sessions where they learned how to talk with their child (as opposed to talking at them). The classes taught parents how to use more adult words, conversational turns, and less TV and electronic noise. In addition to attending classes, families also had to turn in eight audio recordings...

Children LENA Early Literacy Newsletter

Join our Summer Reading Club!

May 15, 2017

Join our Summer Reading Club to track your reading and other activities, and you’ll receive a reward at the end of summer!  Registration for all ages opens 5/30 at all MCPL locations and online at Children (Birth-Grade 5)  Calling all kids! We challenge you to read and perform acts of kindness this summer. Track your efforts on the reading log you’ll receive at registration. Show your log to library staff throughout the summer and turn it in by 8/12 to earn rewards! Teens (Grades 6-12) Hey, teens! This summer, we’re challenging you to read, explore and improve your community. Upon registration, you’ll receive a BINGO-style reading and activity log...

Newsletter Summer Library Program Children Teens

Make today your lucky day!

May 3, 2017

There’s no shortage of new releases at MCPL, with new items arriving on a weekly basis. While the waiting list for some highly-anticipated books, DVDs and CDs can be quite long, there is often another way you can check out these items without having to wait several weeks: the Lucky Day shelf!  Each MCPL location has a Lucky Day shelf near the circulation desk that is stocked with high-demand items, like James Patterson’s new novel “Black Box” or the DVD release of “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” Patrons cannot place a hold on these items, but rather must be lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time to see them on the shelf and check them out! Checkout periods for these items...

Newsletter Catalogs and Collections Reading Recommendations

Video games at the library!

Wii U

April 26, 2017

Earlier this year, we acquired a new Wii U gaming console for in-house use by children and tweens at MCPL Wausau! The Wii U was purchased using funds generously provided by the Friends of the Marathon County Public Library. Not only is this system more up-to-date than the standard Wii console that came before it, but it also allows youngsters to play a wider array of games, including titles for the standard console and ones made specifically for Wii U. Additionally, MCPL offers a wide array of video games for systems like the Wii, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Playstation 4, and more for checkout! These games can be requested from any of the nine MCPL locations and can be borrowed for 14 days at a time. For more...

Newsletter Video Games Children Tweens Friends Of The Library

National Library Week!

2017 National Library Week logo

April 1, 2017

With spring nearly here, the Marathon County Public Library is getting ready to celebrate National Library Week (NLW)! This year’s NLW will be held April 9-15 and all nine MCPL locations (as well as thousands of libraries across the country) will be participating with a variety of events for all ages! To go along with this year’s theme of “Libraries Transform,” kids can create traditional bookmarks all week long at our Wausau Headquarters and Rothschild, Spencer, and Stratford Branches. Our Mosinee Branch will also “Drop Everything and Read” on April 12 with a special event focused crafts related to characters created by children’s author Beverly Cleary, like Ramona Quimby! Adults can look forward to...

Newsletter National Library Week Events

Introducing Tech Time!

laptop tablet smartphone

March 4, 2017

Is one of the technological devices in your life causing you grief? Or did you recently get a new device and aren’t sure how to use it? Join us for the new Tech Time service at our Wausau Headquarters! Library staff will be available by appointment every week to help folks set up email accounts, save files digitally, learn Internet basics, get acquainted with their new tablet or laptop, learn how to set up and use certain social media accounts and more! (Staff cannot, however, install software unrelated to library services, run diagnostics, remove viruses or perform other technical support services.) Interested patrons can book Tech Time appointments every Wednesday from 2-4 p.m. Walk-ins are also...

Newsletter Computer Classes Technology

Make your own pipe cleaner pet!

pipe cleaner pets

February 28, 2017

Kids visited our Wausau Headquarters recently to celebrate a day off of school with some pet-themed activities and crafts. One of the crafts involved making “pipe cleaner pets” using just a few simple items. Folks who missed that event can still make a pet of their own by following the directions below! Supplies: Scissors, pipe cleaners, pencil, tape. Instructions: Wrap a pipe cleaner around the pen or pencil to form a spiral. Leave a straight, unwrapped section at each end of the pipe cleaner to act as the neck and the tail. Slide the pencil out and set it aside. Using a scissors, cut out one of the pet faces seen here. Tape it on the “neck” end of the pipe cleaner. Using another pipe...

Newsletter Children Arts and Crafts

Aquarium Repair Completed

yellow fish in the Phyllis Donner Aquarium

February 27, 2017

It’s a situation no aquarium owner wants to happen: a complete removal of all aquarium contents to make a repair. Yet that’s exactly what happened recently with the Phyllis Donner Aquarium at MCPL Wausau, though we’re happy to say the repairs were completed without the loss of any aquatic life. The aquarium was constructed in 2012 by Las Vegas-based Acrylic Tank Manufacturing (ATM), famous for their Animal Planet television show “Tanked.” In December, Darren Letner, owner of Tank Mates LLC in Wausau and the aquarium’s caretaker, noticed a few spots at the bottom of the aquarium where the seal holding in 650 gallons of saltwater was starting to deteriorate.  A plan was devised that required Letner to...

Newsletter Aquarium Children Facility Improvement

Director’s Report

Ralph Illick

January 9, 2017

I should take this opportunity to shoulder the blame for December’s polar vortex and extreme cold. Foolishly, I was complaining only two weeks earlier about being shortchanged by the temperate weather we had thus far enjoyed. Please know that I have learned my lesson, and will hereafter avoid any such future musings. With the onset of our much more recognizable seasonal weather, I hope you and yours enjoy a happy and healthy New Year. Here at MCPL, we are well underway with renovations in the basement garage and on the second floor. The new book sale room for the Friends of the Marathon County Public Library will be completed later in January, providing a new and dynamic space for the Friends to use...

Director's Report Facility Improvement Meeting Rooms Newsletter

New: Sensory Story Time!

January 4, 2017

Autism is one of the fastest-growing developmental disorders in the United States, affecting 1 in every 68 children, according to Autism Speaks, a nationwide nonprofit autism advocacy organization. Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) can be a broad diagnosis, encompassing folks with various levels of functioning. Common characteristics of ASD include difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors, with the most obvious signs becoming apparent around ages 2-3. MCPL will begin offering a brand-new 30-minute story time designed with children with ASD and Sensory Processing Disorder in mind, as well as typically-developing children and kids who may have difficulty...

Story Times Children Newsletter

Back-to-School Resources

student with backpack and smartphone

August 31, 2016

School is back in session, and with this comes all kinds of tests, projects and reports. What better place to gather research and study materials than your local library? In addition to books on everything from anthropology to Zentangle, MCPL has study guides for tests like the GED, ACT and LSAT that can be checked out. MCPL also has online resources for study purposes, including access to Explora, Britannica, LearningExpress and multiple databases via EBSCOhost. Need someone to administer proctored exams? MCPL has got you covered there, too, with trained staff members on-hand to set up and oversee your testing. Study rooms accommodating one to 10 people can also be reserved for private and group study...

Newsletter Children Teens

Director’s Report

Ralph Illick

August 31, 2016

We have so much going on at the Marathon County Public Library!We recently have learned that the third floor of the main library will not meet the code restrictions to allow for the Children’s Museum of Marathon County to reside there. A comprehensive engineering study confirmed that the amount of renovation required for the floor to meet codes for a museum would be exorbitant and unrealistic. This is most unfortunate, as we see a tremendous opportunity for partnering with the children’s museum to bring STEM programming to all the county’s residents. The children’s museum group will continue to seek a viable location for their project, and we will continue to support those efforts. We look forward to working...

Children Director's Report Facility Improvement Meeting Rooms Newsletter

Meet our new manager!

May 25, 2016

Hello! My name is Matthew Derpinghaus, and I’m the new Library Support Services Manager for the Marathon County Public Library. I oversee the areas of Circulation, Shelving, Support (new books, ILL, cataloging, etc.) and technology. Speaking of technology, did you know that the library commissioned me to purchase and install 138 new Dell computers? The computers were purchased because of the increasing need for patrons and staff alike to have speedier, more reliable machines. Along with purchasing the new hardware, I also acquired some new software to help with timing and printing. The new software, called CASSIE, simplifies the login and printing process. Although the initial session time has changed...

Newsletter Technology Library Staff

Summer Library Program starts May 31!

April 21, 2016

This year’s summer theme is “On Your Mark, Get Set... Read!” and combines fitness and health with our usual focus on reading and discovery! Summer Reading Club is an important part of our summer program, and we have great activities planned for children of all ages, plus teens and adults! Register at your local MCPL or online starting May 31 to receive a log to track your summer reading, healthful activities and other challenges. Your completed log may be returned to the library by August 27 for a reward! We have a full slate of events scheduled, including performers like children’s musician Tom Pease, magician Jim Mitchell, clowns Miller & Mike, juggler Dan Kirk, instrumentalist Bill Kehl, the Soda...

Summer Library Program Newsletter Children

Staff Book Reviews

open book

March 21, 2016

As you might guess, many of the library's staff are avid readers! If you'd like to read our opinions of a variety of books – from children's picture books to adult nonfiction – check out our regularly-updated Staff Reviews webpage, follow us at or subscribe to our Staff Reviews e-newsletter. Read Staff Reviews: (from the MCPL E-Newsletter)

Newsletter Books Reading Recommendations

Join the National Library Week celebration!

Libraries Transform

March 2, 2016

Have you experienced first-hand the transformative power of a library? It’s a big question, and one we hope many of you can answer with an emphatic “yes.” In April, library staff across the country – and the patrons we serve – will celebrate National Library Week. The theme of this year’s celebration is “Libraries Transform,” and our staff has been busy planning a wide range of programs and other activities, some related to that theme and others just for the fun of it. Sure, National Library Week is a chance for our library staff to pat ourselves on the back, and to accept more pats from our patrons (we love to hear how we’ve helped transform your lives for the better!) But it’s also a chance for us to...

National Library Week Newsletter Libraries

Staff Profile: Heather Bain

Heather Bain

February 25, 2016

Meet Heather Bain, Branch Assistant at MCPL Rothschild! Q:    What is the best part of your job? A:    The interactions I have with patrons of all ages. I love kids, so being able to lead story time and do some of the program planning has been great! Q:    What is your favorite movie quote? A:    If I had to choose: “Oh yes, the past can hurt. But you can either run from it, or learn from it.” Rafiki from “The Lion King.” Q:    What has been your favorite project at MCPL? A:    The programming and decorations at the Rothschild Branch. I love seeing patrons’ reactions when they see a new passive program or see...

Newsletter Library Staff

Director’s Report

Ralph Illick

December 15, 2015

As we reflect on the past year, we have so much to be thankful for and even more to look forward to here at MCPL. During the past several months, we have had the architectural firm Engberg Anderson working with us on planning and visioning the future of your library. This has been an exciting project that allowed us to listen to our public, our staff, and our partners in the community. I am very pleased with the results of their study, and I look forward to implementing many of their suggestions as our board prioritizes their findings. I am also especially pleased to report the partnership we are building with the Children’s Museum of Marathon County, a well-organized non-profit organization that has...

Newsletter Children Director's Report Facility Improvement

Creative events for adults!

colored pencils

December 15, 2015

Each month, library staff make efforts to provide hands-on craft activities for children at all nine MCPL locations. But in 2016, we’re planning to give adults more opportunities to get creative as well! In Wausau, this includes our monthly “Knit Night” and “Inside the Lines” coloring parties, as well as other, one-time craft activities. Many of our branches are offering craft events for adults as well, such as Hatley’s “Needle Arts Night,” Stratford’s  “Quilting in the Afternoon,” Spencer’s “Crocheting 101” and additional “Inside the Lines” events at Mosinee and Stratford. We will, of course, continue to offer craft events for kids, and we don’t expect anything at these adult craft events to be...

Newsletter Arts and Crafts Events

Staff Profile: Chad Dally

December 15, 2015

Meet Chad Dally, Library Specialist, event coordinator and adult event planner at MCPL Wausau! Q: What is the best part of your job? A: The variety of information sought by our patrons and connecting them with that info, and the freedom to try a wide range of adult programs. Q: What is your favorite movie quote? A: “Everyone knows Custer died at Little Bighorn. What this book presupposes is ... maybe he didn’t?” - Eli Cash (Owen Wilson), “The Royal Tenenbaums” Q: What is your favorite place to eat? A: At home with my wife, and The Delta Diner in Delta, WI. Q: What has been your favorite project at MCPL? A: The 2014 double-feature screening of “The Lumberjack,” a 1914 silent film shot in Wausau...

Newsletter Library Staff

Full S.T.E.A.M. ahead!

girl looking through magnifying glass

July 24, 2014

Beginning this fall, together with our usual literacy offerings, we are incorporating more S.T.E.A.M. into our children’s programs! What’s S.T.E.A.M.?  It is an approach to education that focuses on science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics by providing kids with lots of hands-on activities and experiments. Each program will be designed to engage the imagination and stimulate the curiosity of our future computer programmers, scientists, mathematicians, artists and engineers. S.T.E.A.M. Exploration Stations are planned for preschool children (ages 3-5) at 10:30am on the second Wednesday and the following Saturday of each month at our Wausau headquarters. Occasionally, other Preschool...

Newsletter Early Literacy Children

Reference services

July 24, 2014

As summer winds down and your thoughts turn to more studious matters (whether you’re going back to school or starting a new project), don’t forget the library offers these useful resources!Online databasesYour library card gives you online access to product reviews and comparisons from Consumer Reports, stock reports from Value Line, foreign language learning tools from Mango Languages, repair manuals from the Auto Repair Reference Center, and many other helpful research databases. Visit any of our locations and use one of our public computers or connect to our free Wi-Fi to access these databases at You can also access most of these databases from home.Genealogy...

Genealogy Meeting Rooms Newsletter Online Resources

Four libraries increase summer hours

clock face

April 4, 2014

Responding to patron demand and other factors, the Marathon County Public Library Board of Trustees recently increased operating hours at four MCPL locations. The Board in March approved additional weekend hours at the Wausau Headquarters and Hatley, Marathon and Rothschild branches. The changes mean the locations’ winter hours are now in effect year-round, and include:   Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and closed Sunday at the three branches (previously closed all weekend). Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at the Wausau Headquarters (previously open 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and closed Sunday). An increase from four hours to 20 hours of operation at MCPL locations on...

Libraries Newsletter Government Information Library Board Facility Improvement

Beyond the printed page

woman typing on laptop with smartphone

March 25, 2014

Although 2014 is well underway, we’d like to not only take a brief look back at 2013, but also put the past in the context of our future here at the Marathon County Public Library (MCPL). We’re happy to say that more than 3,000 new people became registered patrons of our libraries in 2013. We welcome all of you, and we want you to know that we’ll do whatever we can to make your library experience as positive and fulfilling as possible. Nearly every day, we help patrons use Wisconsin’s Digital Library (aka OverDrive) for electronic books and audiobooks. We’ve fully embraced the electronic format of reading material, and more than 10,000 titles were added to this catalog in 2013. Supply has followed demand...

E-books Newsletter Online Resources

Celebrate National Library Week!

March 25, 2014

National Library Week (NLW) is upon us, and it’s more than a chance to celebrate all that your library means to you (although we are grateful for your appreciation). This year’s NLW theme is “Lives Change @ Your Library,” and we’ve scheduled a number of events through the week, which runs April 13 to April 19. From something as simple as obtaining a passport to hearing about environmentally friendly travel to Randy Peterson’s “Big Dreams Begin with Books,” we have programs that could change your life. We know that’s a bold statement, but part of our mission is to provide materials, programming and assistance that make a big difference in the lives of our patrons and in our communities. Maybe we’ve...

Newsletter National Library Week Events

Director’s notes

Ralph Illick

January 20, 2014

We’ve had a very busy year here at the library, and it has been a pleasure for all of us at MCPL to serve the community. As we move into 2014, I want to wish everyone a happy and safe winter season with friends and family. I would like to personally thank all of those who work here, as well as the countless volunteers, members of the Friends of the Marathon County Public Library, and the MCPL Foundation for their tireless efforts to make this library such a wonderful asset to Marathon County. This fall we asked you to help us to better serve you by answering a survey about the services we provide. Those responses have given us great input for furthering our mission to connect people with information, ideas...

Newsletter Director's Report Facility Improvement

Is this your lucky day?

stack of books by flowers

January 20, 2014

Patrons of the Marathon County Public Library have a chance to get lucky and check out hotly anticipated new releases of books, music and movies with no waiting list! MCPL Wausau recently started a "Lucky Day" shelf on which we put one or more copies of popular new releases. These are items that can't be reserved; once they are on the shelf, they are up for grabs. Are you one of the hundreds who request James Patterson's or Janet Evanovich's newest novels? Keep an eye on the first-come, first-served Lucky Day shelf, and you may not have to wait. And, with some patrons finding that lucky copy, the wait for other patrons on a book or DVD request list should be reduced. Call 715-261-7200 for more...

Books Newsletter Reading Recommendations

Parenting series

family at the beach

January 20, 2014

Starting in February, several Marathon County Public Library locations will host programs aimed at promoting positive parenting skills, Internet safety and encouraging quality family time. Our MCPL Parenting Series begins with a presentation by Aaron Ruff of the Marathon County Health Department about The Real Happy Hour, a multi-agency effort to share resources and ideas that promote and encourage families to spend quality time together. Other programs cover safety, both online and at home. The “Raising Safe Kids” program, held at both the Rothschild and Wausau MCPL locations and presented by staff from Marathon County Social Services, covers personal and traffic safety, and tips on how to stay safe...

Children Newsletter Events

Technology skills for beginners!

November 18, 2013

There’s still time to register our free, basic computer classes. Space is limited, so call your local MCPL today! iPad Basics / Mon., 11/25/13, 10:30am – 12:00pm @ MCPL Hatley Facebook Basics / Mon., 12/2/13, 10:30am – 12:30pm @ MCPL Wausau Intermediate iPad / Wed., 12/4/13, 6:00pm – 7:00pm @ MCPL Edgar iPad Basics / Mon., 12/9/13, 10:00am – 12:00pm @ MCPL Wausau iPad Basics / Tue., 12/10/13, 1:00pm – 2:30pm @ MCPL Stratford Word Processing Basics / Wed., 12/18/13, 6:00pm – 7:00pm @ MCPL Edgar Email Basics /...

Newsletter Technology Computer Classes

December marks one year for the Phyllis Donner Aquarium!

Blue tang

November 18, 2013

In December, MCPL Wausau celebrates the first anniversary of its 650-gallon, saltwater aquarium filled with tropical fish and other sea creatures. The aquarium officially opened on Dec. 5, and was funded through a generous donation from the estate of Phyllis Donner. Las Vegas-based aquarium company Acrylic Tank Manufacturing built the aquarium, which is home to dozens of fish, crustaceans, coral and other aquatic life typically seen solely through the lens of a scuba mask. Over the past year, some fish have more than doubled in size, and several species of coral have taken hold and started to create reefs. Darren Letner of Wausau maintains the aquarium and said he’s happy to see so many fish flourishing...

Aquarium Children Facility Improvement Newsletter

White Rose Exhibition coming to MCPL Wausau

White Rose members

November 18, 2013

In January, The Marathon County Public Library Wausau Headquarters will host a traveling historical exhibit about the White Rose, a student resistance group in Germany who rebelled against the Nazis. Through photos and text, the exhibit tells the story of how the students and one of their professors quietly produced a series of leaflets that urged others in Germany to rise up against the tyranny of the regime. The White Rose group risked certain arrest – and possible death – to produce the anti-Nazi propaganda that was covertly distributed throughout Munich, Hamburg and beyond. In 1943, several members of the group – including siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl, who helped form the group – were caught. After...

Events Newsletter

Get comfortable with computers!

September 23, 2013

This fall, many MCPL locations will be offering free basic computer, Internet and software classes taught by University of Wisconsin-Marathon County technology tutors. Contact your local library to register: Computer Basics / Thu., 10/3, 1-2:30pm @ MCPL Stratford Computer Basics / Mon., 10/7, 10am @ MCPL Wausau iPad Basics / Thu., 10/10, 1-2:30pm @ MCPL Stratford Internet Basics / Mon., 10/14, 10am @ MCPL Wausau Computer Basics / Mon., 10/14, 4:30pm @ MCPL Athens Intermediate iPad / Thu., 10/17, 1pm @ MCPL Stratford Email Basics / Mon., 10/21, 10am-12pm @ MCPL Wausau iPad Basics / Mon., 10/21, 4:30-6:30pm @ MCPL Athens Digital Photo Basics / Mon., 10/28, 10am-...

Newsletter Technology Computer Classes

"Exploration Station" offers hands-on learning!

girl looking through magnifying glass

September 23, 2013

The library wants to help preschoolers get a jump on learning with its monthly Exploration Station classes. Preschool-age children and their caregivers can work together on interactive activities designed to build skills in reading, math, science and writing on the second Wednesday of each month, 10:30–11:30 a.m., at the library’s Wausau Headquarters. There is no cost to participate, but class sizes are limited. To register or for more information, call 715-261-7220. Math / Oct. 9 & Feb. 12 Science / Nov. 13 & Mar. 12 Reading / Dec. 11 & April 9 Writing / Jan. 8   (from the MCPL Newsletter, Sept.-Nov., 2013)

Newsletter Children

"Pushback" against drug abuse in Marathon County

September 23, 2013

Over the past three years, drug abuse has become a major problem in Marathon County. The library has partnered with the Marathon County Alcohol & Other Drug (AOD) Partnership to host an educational series to raise awareness of the scope of the problem and how each us can play a part in the solution. Sessions will be offered at the Marathon County Public Library’s Wausau Headquarters in the Wausau Room (third floor). Interested parties can attend either the daytime sessions, Wednesdays from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., or evening sessions, Tuesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. What’s Hot Now? / Oct. 8 & 9 — Learn about current drug trends that are affecting young adults in Marathon County. I Think We...

Newsletter Health Resources Events

Write the Great American Novel

September 23, 2013

Has a life of reading inspired you to write? Do have family or life experiences you always thought would make for an interesting book? In October, the library will offer a series of events and activities to help aspiring writers make the leap from reader to writer. Nationally-known writing coach Judy Bridges, author of “Shut Up & Write,” will be in Wausau with tips to get started on works of fiction or nonfiction. We’ll also bring in local and regional authors to discuss their writing methods and their paths to getting published. In November, it’s time to write! Various MCPL locations will set aside study rooms and other space as part of National Novel Writing Month, an initiative that encourages...

Writing Newsletter

Tablets, E-readers, E-books, Laptops…

assorted e-readers

July 22, 2013

...are available for checkout at your local MCPL!  Tablets and laptops are available for in-house use for up to two hours. Tablets are only available at the Wausau library and include iPad and Android-based devices. The laptops are all Windows 7 PCs. E-readers are available for 14-day checkout and  include NOOKs and Kindles. E-books are available via our partnership with Wisconsin’s Digital Library (aka OverDrive). More than 53,000 fiction and nonfiction titles are available. We also can provide you with checkout and download instructions for any device.  When it comes to helping you experience new technologies, MCPL has you covered! (from the MCPL...

Wisconsin's Digital Library E-books Newsletter

Update: Summer Library Program

July 22, 2013

There’s still time to participate! Summer events continue throughout August, featuring engaging, informative presentations and activities for all ages. Upcoming events include movie nights, workshops, crafts and a pool party!  Also, adults and teens still have time to vote in our Literary Smackdown competition to pick the most influential book in Marathon County: Reading logs for children and teens will be accepted through Aug. 24. Prizes are available throughout the summer for completing each excavation dig! (from the MCPL Newsletter, Jul-Sep., 2013)

Children Newsletter Summer Library Program

Recent Books and Older Gems

July 22, 2013

MCPL is starting a new feature comparing older books with recent releases. Look for these reviews in our newsletter and at For this installment, staffer Amy Ryan looks to the garden for recommendations. "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" by Barbara Kingsolver For one year, Kingsolver and her family vowed to eat only the food they grew on their family farm in Virginia or could buy from local sources. This humorous and inspirational memoir tells the story of that year -- month by month, vegetable by vegetable, animal by animal. It’s a book I try to read every spring as I plan my own vegetable gardens. — Check it out: vegetable miracle   "Growing a Farmer...

Reading Recommendations Newsletter Books

Update: Story Times

child and parent reading a book

July 22, 2013

Enjoy learning with your children through stories, songs and literature-based activities! Several story times were discontinued for the summer and will resume on the dates given below. Also, Wausau's "Sweet Dreams" story time and Rothschild's Friday story time will be discontinued soon. Recurring weekly: Family Story Time (all ages) MCPL Wausau — Sat., 10:30am [Resumes 9/21/13] MCPL Athens — Tue., 10am MCPL Edgar — Thu.,  9:30am [Resumes 9/19/13] MCPL Hatley — Tue., 10:30am MCPL Marathon City —Thu., 10:30am [Resumes 9/12/13] MCPL Mosinee — Wed., 10am [Resumes 9/11/13] MCPL Rothschild -- Tue., 10:30am MCPL Rothschild -- Fri., 10:30am [Ends 7/26/13]...

Children Story Times Newsletter

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

1000 Books Before Kindergarten logo

July 22, 2013

The Marathon County Public Library is challenging parents to read more books aloud with their children! The "1,000 Books Before Kindergarten" initiative is meant to introduce children to a wide range of literature, encourage families to spend quality time together and promote pre-literacy and learning so children enter school ready to read, listen and learn. Although 1,000 books sounds like a huge number, consider this: If you read one book a day, you could finish in less than three years. Ten books per week? Less than two years. We’ll give you more tips and suggestions, too. Families who register will receive a folder with a sheet to record each 100 books, a garden sheet, and instructions. Incentives...

Newsletter Children Book Clubs

New websites worth considering

May 29, 2013

The Marathon County Public Library is pleased to include two new, free historical websites to our collection of online resources aimed at connecting our patrons with a wide range of information. The Digital Public Library of America pulls together millions of items – photographs, manuscripts, books, sound recordings and more – from libraries, archives and museums across the country. Visitors can search by terms, category or year. Looking for a 1880s map of the Upper Peninsula, or a photograph of Billie Holliday? You can find both and much, much more on the DPLA site, We also added the Oyez Project, a public, multimedia database of Supreme Court proceedings. The creators of the project...

Websites Technology Newsletter

New meeting room and study rooms

MCPL Wausau's second floor Meeting Room

May 29, 2013

MCPL Wausau is opening two new study rooms with room for six and 10 people, as well as a meeting room for 20 to 22 people. The study rooms are available for two hours at a time. The meeting room schedule is more flexible. We hope college students, non-profit groups and others will use these spaces for educational purposes – office hours or use of the room for entertainment is not allowed – and Wi-Fi and teleconferencing is available.Our eight branch locations also have study or meeting spaces available, either within their walls or within the municipal buildings in which the libraries are housed. These rooms, varying in size, offer our communities a secluded space when a coffee shop is a little too busy or you...

Facility Improvement Meeting Rooms Newsletter Small Business

Summer packed with programs!

May 29, 2013

Marathon County Public Library locations across the county will be full of "underground"-themed activities for children, teens and adults during our 2013 Summer Library Program! Children can "Dig Into Reading" and do their choices of suggested activities to complete an archeological-themed reading log. Reading books is part of it, but kids also are encouraged to attend library events and work on reading-based activities. In addition to art parties, a scavenger hunt, movie nights and a teen night at the aquarium, teenagers can take part in our "Beneath the Surface" summer-long program. It may take a little work – read 15 books and complete five activities to receive a reward – but you get to choose the...

Newsletter Summer Library Program

MCPL’s current, future efforts

bar graph chart

March 9, 2013

A recent survey from the Pew Research Center found adults still love to hold a library book, but also want libraries to keep up with technology and provide a comfortable environment – all priorities for Marathon County Public Library staff as well. The Pew study, released in January, found the overwhelming highest use of libraries – 73 percent – is borrowing print books. With more than 250,000 print books in our system, we gladly facilitate that unique feeling of cracking open a good book. Yet we also know – and the Pew survey backs it up – that our patrons expect greater access than ever before to electronic books and audio books. In 2012, we tripled the number of e-books available to about 54,000...

Libraries Newsletter

Celebrate National Library Week April 13-20

March 9, 2013

The American Library Association this year wants to celebrate libraries’ community efforts with their National Library Week theme, "Communities Matter @ Your Library." Throughout the week, we’ll host special events at all branches, including food drives, Internet safety tips for teens, scavenger hunts and: Monday, April 15: The United Way will present a program entitled “Heart Smart” at 6:30pm at the Wausau Headquarters Tuesday, April 16: Take a tour of the Hatley Community Garden located behind the library, plant a few seeds and taste veggies you could grow at home, from 10:30-11:30am at MCPL Hatley Wednesday, April 17: Marathon County Historical Society librarian Gary Gisselman will...

Newsletter Libraries

Times are a’changing on the second floor!

March 9, 2013

Library patrons may have noticed some changes on the second floor of the Wausau Headquarters. These changes reflect the library’s drive to present the most up-to-date collection possible and also offer an inviting atmosphere to library users.The library recently began a system-wide project to reduce the number of outdated, worn-out or otherwise unneeded books. Some of those titles were sold during the Friends of the Marathon County Public Library’s book sales, while others were recycled or resold.We’re sad to lose some items that were with us for so long, but we also want to be realistic about the current and future wants and needs of library patrons. That means offering not only the most current information...

Facility Improvement Newsletter

Ongoing Changes at MCPL Locations

books in concentric circles

January 23, 2013

In 2012, patrons of the Marathon County Public Library saw changes at all MCPL locations. Those changes and others will continue into the New Year. Public libraries need to change with the times to stay relevant, vital and attractive. Sharp-eyed patrons may have noticed many outdated and no-longer-popular books have been removed from the nonfiction and fiction collections of all MCPL locations. New titles are being purchased to update these collections. More public seating — particularly, laptop-friendly seating — soon will be added at MCPL Wausau to make it a more inviting destination. The new 650-gallon saltwater aquarium in the Wausau Headquarters’ children’s department has proven to be a must-see...

Newsletter Facility Improvement

Subscribe to the MCPL Newsletter!

MCPL E-newsletter QR code

January 23, 2013

Register your email address to receive the MCPL Newsletter every other month, plus the library’s monthly Upcoming Events newsletter! To subscribe, visit or scan the QR code attached to this article with your tablet or smart phone. (from the MCPL Newsletter, January - March, 2013)


Updates: Friends of the Library

January 23, 2013

The location of the book sale room is still in limbo and will depend on Library planning for the future. As part of that planning, several board members and the library director toured libraries in Janesville and Madison to see their facilities for book sales. Our November book sale netted more than $9,000. In regards to financial support for Library programs, we continue to fund the Summer Library Program, book discussion kits, free copies of Book Pages and activities. We recently agreed to fund a portion of the Wausau aquarium maintenance costs and an annual volunteer recognition program. Lately, we have completed taking over administrative duties previously performed by library staff. To accomplish...


Sierra: Our New Library Catalog!

Sierra logo

January 23, 2013

On January 9, 2013, the Marathon County Public Library transitioned to new library catalog software as part of an upgrade coordinated by the Wisconsin Valley Library Service. The new software looks different from what patrons are used to, but has many more features that will help patrons more easily find the materials they need. The new software, known as “Sierra,” offers simplified searching options that allow patrons to search for an author, subject or title from the same search box, much like how Google works. Patrons also do not need to know exact spellings of author names or titles to find books; Sierra offers search suggestions that will help patrons find exactly what they’re looking for. Sierra also...

Newsletter Technology

Holiday Story Time Breaks

boy reading book on grass

November 19, 2012

To accommodate the upcoming holidays, there will be short breaks in our regular story time schedule over the next few months, as follows:  last meetsresumes Wausau12/151/2 Athens12/181/8 Edgar12/201/10 Hatley12/181/8 Marathon City12/201/10 Mosinee12/19 **1/9 Rothschild12/21 *1/4 Spencer12/191/16 Stratford12/191/9 * The Rothschild story time on 12/28 will still meet. ** Also, the Mosinee story time on 11/21 won’t meet (from the MCPL Newsletter, Nov. 2012-Jan. 2013) {{2013-01-01}}

Children Story Times Newsletter

Books for a Homemade Holiday!

November 16, 2012

Looking for a simple idea for a homemade gift? A new cookie recipe? A creative way to decorate your home? We have books for that. Check out some of these titles from our collection. Christmas All Through the House by Gooseberry Patch   Betty Crocker Christmas Cookbook   A Hanukkah Holiday Cookbook by Emily Raabe   Yule by Dorothy Morrison   A Kwanzaa Holiday Cookbook by Emily Raabe   (from the MCPL Newsletter, Nov. 2012-Jan. 2013)  

Newsletter Food Books

Online Resources: Gifts That Keep on Giving!

girl using a computer

November 16, 2012

Did you know your library card gives you free access to Consumer Reports, a trusted source of ratings and reviews of appliances, electronics, cars and other products? When buying gifts for family and friends, why not consult Consumer Reports and check if your selections are likely to please?   Tuning up your car to endure another of Wisconsin’s winters? Your library card gives you free access to the Auto Repair Reference Center which contains maintenance and repair topics, schematics and service bulletins for most passenger vehicles from the 50s to the present.   From genealogy to hobbies & crafts, investments to computer tutorials, more great...

Newsletter Online Resources

Buying an E-reader or Tablet?

man reading e-reader

November 16, 2012

E-readers and tablets are among the most-wished-for gifts this holiday season. Don’t forget that your library card can connect these devices to thousands of free e-books and audio books thanks to Wisconsin’s Digital Library (a.k.a. “OverDrive”)! Choosing which device will best suit your needs can be challenging, and while we can’t tell you which is “the best,” we can describe the different borrowing experiences for most devices and refer you to product review sources to help you reach a decision. Just call 715-261-7230, email us or visit, and we’ll help you get started. There also is an online device compatibility guide at

Newsletter E-books Technology

Director's Report

November 16, 2012

So ends another beautiful Central Wisconsin summer. We at the Marathon County Public Library want to wish everyone a safe, warm winter and holiday season. We will continue to offer a wide range of programming for all ages at all of our locations, so be sure to regularly check our website for updates as you continue your journey of lifelong learning. We are in the process of modernizing our branch locations and updating the collection throughout the organization. If you are looking for items that you do not see available, please let a staff member know so that we can get you what you need. Remember that we have various resources located throughout the county,...

Director's Report Newsletter Facility Improvement

Friends of the Library: Updates

September 18, 2012

Keeping you informed about the activities of the Friends:   A book sale will be held November 1-4 on the third floor of the library’s Wausau Headquarters. The first day of the sale is for Friends members only, but you can join at the door. The Friends will be funding various Library activities in the coming months, including teen projects, a volunteer recognition program and a portion of the maintenance for the saltwater aquarium soon to be constructed in the Children’s Department in Wausau. We always need help on committees and people to serve on the Friends Board. Please contact the library if you are willing. We welcome you. (from the...


Check out MCPL's new app!

September 18, 2012

Access the catalog and resources from your mobile device.   Smart phone and tablet users can finally download a free mobile application and browse the library’s collection on the go!   Search for books, ebooks, DVDs, CDs and video games; request and renew items; browse our newest titles; locate our branch libraries and check out current events. You also can follow our blogs, Facebook and Twitter streams or contact us.   Compatible devices include: Apple’s iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch Google Android-based smart phones and tablets Kindle Fire tablets Once you download the app, enter your library card number and PIN for...

Technology Newsletter

Enter our Scary Story Contest!

birds in a spooky tree

September 18, 2012

A creative writing contest and workshop for grades 6-12. Teens throughout Marathon County are invited to submit their best original spine-chilling tales to be featured on the MCPL website! Winning entries will be featured in the 2013 edition of "Pixels & Pages," the library's annual magazine of teen creative writing and art, and excerpts two entries will be published in the October 18th issue of the City Pages!   Stories may be submitted online at (Stories should be at most 1,500 words, original and not published elsewhere.)   Plus, teens can attend our Scary Story Writing Workshop (Sat., 10/13, 2:00pm @ MCPL...

Newsletter Teens Writing

Check out the Tween Scene!

Tween Scene at MCPL Wausau

September 18, 2012

A special area with books, computers and resources for kids in grades 3-5.   With the ongoing success of TeenZone and further improvements in the Children’s Department, the Wausau library is developing an area and programming for members of an age group who often feel left out: tweens.   Tweens are in that awkward time of life when they are no longer just children, but not quite teenagers. We’ve defined them as ‘children in third, fourth or fifth grade.’   The Tween Scene features colorful artwork, a carefully selected collection of books, computers, funky furniture and a gaming station. Our goal is to provide a safe and engaging place for...

Newsletter Children Facility Improvement

Volunteer at the Library!

July 9, 2012

There are many ways to volunteer at the library, such as shelving books, helping at events, creating displays, selecting and delivering books for homebound patrons, and more! Our volunteer positions are flexible enough to fit your schedule and preferences. No long-term commitment is required, but you must fill out an interest survey and an application. These forms are available at any MCPL location or online. For more information, please call 715-261-7200 or visit (from the MCPL Newsletter, July-Sept. 2012)

Newsletter Volunteering

Summer Program Update

July 9, 2012

There’s still time to participate! Reading tickets will be accepted through August 18th. Tickets are entered in drawings for prizes throughout the summer, a greatway to encourage your child’s reading habits! Summer events continue throughout August, featuring great performers, informative presentations and activities for all ages. Visit for details! (from the MCPL Newsletter, July-Sept. 2012) {{2012-08-18}}  


Update: Story Times

child reading a book

July 9, 2012

Several locations ended their story times in May. The dates these story times will resume are noted below. Ongoing story times are also included. For the most up-to-date information throughout the year, visit Family Story Time (all ages) · MCPL Wausau - Sat., 10:30am (starts 9/22) · MCPL Athens - Tue., 10:00am (starts 9/18) · MCPL Edgar - Thu., 9:30am (starts 9/13) · MCPL Hatley - Tue., 10:30am (ongoing) · MCPL Marathon City - Thu., 10:00am (starts 9/13) · MCPL Mosinee - Wed., 10:00am (starts 9/12) · MCPL Rothschild - Wed., 10:30am (ongoing) · MCPL Spencer - Wed., 10:00am (starts 9/5/12) · MCPL Stratford - Wed., 10:...

Newsletter Children

Big Changes for the Friends of the Library

July 9, 2012

Things are changing for the Friends. The takeover of administrative duties formerly performed by library staff has largely been completed thanks to hard-working committee members. We still face decisions regarding how to handle our Wausau book sales because of possible changes to the third floor space. In that regard, several board members and the director made a trip to Janesville and Madison to investigate their book sale facilities. As to book sales, the May sale raised $6,473. There will be no book sale in August, and the November sale is in question due to space issues. We continue to raise significant revenue from our relationship with Giggil, a company that buys our surplus inventory. The Membership...

Newsletter Book Sale Friends Of The Library

Learn a New Language!

Mango Languages logo

July 9, 2012

Mango Languages is an online language-learning system available to you for free with your MCPL library card! Dozens of the world’s most  common languages are included. For access, visit (from the MCPL Newsletter, July-Sept. 2012)

Newsletter Language Learning Technology

Tablets, E-readers, Laptops...

man using tablet

July 9, 2012

...are available for checkout at your local MCPL! Tablets and laptops are available for in-house checkout for up to two hours. Tablets are only available at the Wausau library and include Apple’s iPad and Android-based devices. Laptops are all Windows 7 PCs. E-readers are available for 14-day checkout and  include NOOK from Barnes & Noble and Kindle from For details, visit When it comes to helping you experience new technologies, MCPL has you covered! (from the MCPL Newsletter, July-Sept. 2012)   

Newsletter E-books

Summer Greetings from Your Library!

May 22, 2012

It’s that time of year again! While we are all making our plans to enjoy a beautiful Wisconsin summer, I invite everyone to visit the library for plenty of fun learning adventures!   We will be continuing our ever-popular Summer Reading Program at all nine MCPL locations, featuring events and reading encouragement for children (through 5th grade) and teens (grades 6-12).   It’s easy to get started with summer activities such as travel, home repair and remodeling, outdoor sports and recreation, or reading a paperback novel. Just check out the resources at your local library!   Don’t forget that we have many online tools to make your life easier. For...

Newsletter Summer Library Program

Help Us Discover New Books!

lady reading a book

May 22, 2012

As part of our efforts to keep our collections up-to-date and complete, we invite you to submit a Purchase Suggestion form whenever you discover we don’t own a specific item or items of a particular topic or genre. Purchase suggestions may be made in person or online at Your input is always appreciated, and if we buy the item you’ve suggested, we will set it aside and contact you when it’s ready to pick up at the MCPL location of your choice! (from the MCPL Newsletter, May-July 2012)

Newsletter Reading Recommendations

The Best Books of 2011

book with pages curled into the shape of a heart

January 10, 2012

In case you missed them, here are 20 of the most highly-reviewed and popular books of 2011! We’ve compiled the “Best Books” lists of the New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly, NPR, Barnes & Noble, Kirkus Reviews, and, and listed the top books here for your consideration. Use the links below or contact us to request any of these books today!   The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach -- A baseball star at a small college near Lake Michigan launches a routine throw that goes disastrously off course and inadvertently changes the lives of five people, including the college president, a gay teammate, and the president's daughter.            ...

Books Newsletter Reading Recommendations

Summer Library Program 2011

May 25, 2011

There’s a little something for everyone during our Summer Library Program (SLP), including music, arts and crafts, storytimes, our Summer Reading Club, and other great events and activities for the whole family!   Summer Reading Club (5/5-8/20) — Participants of any age may submit Reading Tickets for books read during the summer, or for attending library events. Children under 12 receive a free gift bag when they turn in their first ticket! At the end of the summer, all tickets will be entered in drawings for prizes donated by local organizations! Teen Reading Rewards (5/5-8/20) — Teens who have completed grades 6-12 may participate in their own Reading Club for cool prizes, monthly...

Summer Library Program Newsletter

News from the Friends

woman holding books

May 25, 2011

Since late January I have been president of the Friends of the Library board, succeeding Barbara Ritchie whose term had expired. Her outstanding and dedicated service will be a hard act to follow. The Friends will continue to carry out our mission, which is to support and promote the MCPL system through financial support and volunteer activities. The majority of the funds used for financial support are raised through the four annual book sales and enable us to fund library projects not covered by budget, such as summer reading programs, special performances, book discussion kits, worker rewards, art works for checkout, and other Library needs. Our February book sale raised $6,626. Recently, we have worked...


Branch Profile: MCPL Athens

May 25, 2011

It's springtime! Gardeners have been waiting for the warm weather to get outside and work in the soil that has been buried beneath this year's heavy blanket of snow. Now would be a good time to visit the Athens Library for an excellent selection of gardening books. We have all you need from planning, to planting, weeding, pruning, controlling insects and pests, and harvesting.  Make the library your first stop for outdoor projects. (Find it in the Library Catalog: Gardening Books) While you are here, check out the bird books.  With spring comes the return of many of our songbirds or birds that are just passing through on their way farther north. We have many books to help you identifying that...


Technology Evolution at the Library

3M digital book sorter

May 25, 2011

Since 2006, the Marathon County Public Library has experienced a 32.6% increase in materials being checked out, while simultaneously absorbing a 17.3% dcrease in staffing. With the increased amount of check out, we needed to quickly become more efficient in order to provide the same quality of service. Subsequently, we purchased 6 self-checkout machines in 2006 and began gently nudging our customers to use them. In August of 2006, only 3% o materials were checked out using these machines. Today, 70% o library materials are checked out at the Wausau Headquarters using self-checkout. We could not have moved forward without the great support of our customers and their willingness to accept this change. With...

Newsletter Technology

New Book Discussion Kits

book discussion kit

May 9, 2011

Thanks to the Friends of the Library and your donations, we've put together over a dozen new book discussion kits! These kits contain several copies of the same title, plus discussion questions, so you can easily host your own book club. For these latest additions, see the list below. For the complete list, visit and look for the "view book discussion kits" link. Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay Sundays at Tiffany's by James Patterson Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins Antonia Saw the Oryx First by Maria Thomas The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell Fly Away Home by Jennifer Weiner Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky Truck...

Book Clubs Newsletter

The Best Books of 2010

book heart

February 7, 2011

In case you missed them, here are just a few of the most popular books of 2010! We’ve compiled the “Best Books” lists of the New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly, NPR, Barnes & Noble, and, and listed the top books here for your consideration. Use the links below or contact us to request any of these books today!   FICTION:      NONFICTION:     

Newsletter Books

Recently Expanded: OverDrive Ebook & Audiobook Collection

woman reading e-reader

November 17, 2010

In early October, nearly four-hundred new items were added to the Overdrive collection, including many new and popular titles in ebook and audiobook formats, perfect for your e-reader, mp3 player, or other mobile devices! To check device compatibility and browse the OverDrive collection, visit: Plus! Over 15,000 “Public Domain” Ebooks—classic or older works no longer copyrighted—are now available, thanks to Project Gutenberg! Visit the link above and click “Public Domain Ebooks.” For these ebooks, no login is required, and there are no borrowing limits! (from the MCPL Newsletter, Autumn 2010)

Newsletter Audiobooks E-books

Start Your Own Book Discussion

group of people in a discussion

November 17, 2010

Can you think of a few friends who like to read good books? If the answer is “yes,” then you already have all you need to start your own book discussion group! Here are a few questions & answers to help you get started: How big should your book group be? Decide this first because it will make a difference where your group will meet! Usually, it is easiest to coordinate groups of 3-5 people, plus discussions tend to be more informal and less intimidating than larger groups. Where would your group meet? Some groups meet at each other’s homes, while others meet at their local church, school, or public library. MCPL has meeting rooms that you may schedule for this purpose. How often will you group...


New York Times Best Sellers!

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo book cover

November 17, 2010

Do you follow the New York Times best seller lists? So do we! What’s more, we’d like to make it easier for you to find and borrow these hot new books from the library! Visit and click on the “NY Times” tab for direct links to our Library Catalog (V-Cat) for the top five best-selling books in multiple categories! (from the MCPL Newsletter, Autumn 2010)

Newsletter Books Reading Recommendations

Teen Publishing Project | Deadline: 12/31/2010

teen writing

November 17, 2010

Teens are invited to submit their poetry, stories, essays, and artwork for publication on our website and the chance to be included in our second annual magazine! We’ve received dozens of entries to date, but we want more! General Guidelines: (complete rules: Include your full name (only first name, last initial will be published), grade, school, address, phone, title of your entry, and category (poem, story, visual) Entrants must be in 6-12th grade at time of entry. Entrants must be residents of Marathon County, WI. Entries must be newly-created original work of the entrant, must not infringe upon copyright laws. Entries must not have been previously...

Teens Writing Newsletter

2011 Wausau Book Sales

November 17, 2010

Mark your calendars! Visit the Friends of the Library book sales for new and gently used books, paperbacks, puzzles, software, videos, CD's, audio books and record albums! Most items are only 50¢! FEBRUARY 2011 Thu.,    2/3, 5-8pm | Members-Only Sale * Fri.,    2/4, 9:30am-4:30pm Sat.,    2/5, 9:30am-4:30pm Sun.,    2/6, 1-4pm | Bag Sale! / $5 per bag APRIL 2011 Thu,    4/28, 5-8pm | Members-Only Sale * Fri.,     4/29, 9:30am-4:30pm Sat.,     4/30, 9:30am-4:30pm Sun.,    5/01, 1-4pm | Bag Sale! / $5 per bag AUGUST 2011 (TBA... watch future newsletters or...

Newsletter Book Sale

Branch Profile: MCPL Stratford

MCPL Stratford Branch

November 17, 2010

Welcome to the Stratford Branch Library! Located at 400 North Fourth Avenue in Stratford, we are conveniently located, close to the schools. Our 3,000 square-foot facility offers a large selection of materials, resources and programs. High speed internet service, Wi-Fi access, fax machine and a copier machine are available for public use. A community room is also available for special events and meetings. We offer a weekly Family Storytime on Wednesday mornings at 10:15 am. Our Book Club meets monthly the third Monday of the month at 1:00 pm. Our next featured books are, for November, Eve’s Daughters by Lynn Austin, and for December, Christmas Secret by Anne Perry. Starting the New Year in January, we will...

Libraries Newsletter

Movie Nights (& Days) @ MCPL!

movie film and popcorn

November 17, 2010

Movies have captivated us since the 1894 presentation of Dickson Greeting using Edison’s modern Kinetoscope! Movies entertain, evoke tears of laughter and sorrow, shock and disgust us. Scrolling forward, high-tech theatre seats now pitch, shake and roll viewers for high resolution action thrillers such as Christopher Nolan’s Inception. Movie venues have also changed. Where we once queued-up to buy tickets for mass viewing in drafty theatres, technology now enables the privacy to enjoy your favorite flicks via video rental, cable, satellite, Netflix, YouTube and iPod. To this list of viewing venues you may now add… your public library! Through the recent purchase of a movie license, the Marathon County...

Movies Newsletter

Join the Friends of the Library!

painting artwork

November 17, 2010

Festival of the Arts in Wausau is an exciting time. Just a few months ago, the downtown area was brimming with potters, painters, paper-makers and more. Rich colors and textures filled booths lining the sides of 3rd Street and the Square. Now some of those very works of art are hanging on the walls of the Marathon County Public Library for you to take home and enjoy. How did that happen? Because the Friends of Marathon County Public Library provided funding. The Friends of MCPL is a volunteer organization. Our purpose is to support the library by promoting and improving library services in Marathon County. To the Friends, supporting the library means providing circulating artwork. And much more. Friends...

Libraries Arts and Crafts Newsletter