EMPOWER YOURSELF TO ACCESS MORE! SIGN UP FOR A LIBRARY CARD TODAY.

Library Card Sign-Up Month reminds students, families a library card is one of the most cost-effective back-to-school supplies available! IT’S FREE!

This September, Chester County Library and Henrietta Hankin Branch are joining the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries nationwide for Library Card Sign-Up Month. Whether you use a library card online or in person, it gives students the free tools to succeed in school and provides people of all ages and backgrounds the opportunities to pursue their dreams and be their best selves. From family Story Times and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics) programs to makerspaces and virtual homework help, libraries play an essential role in supporting the value of lifelong learning through education. Libraries offer free and fun educational resources and activities that bring families and communities together. Libraries have moved far beyond just being book repositories. They’re agile institutions serving real-life needs.

Did you know you can borrow family museum passes from the library for free? Visit an area zoo, museum, or garden – you just need a Chester County Library System card!

Taking a vacation, doing virtual school at home, or doing business on the road? The Chester County Library and Henrietta Hankin Branch Library also rent mobile hotspots which allow library cardholders to access unlimited, high-speed Internet service anywhere a T-Mobile signal can be received. Connect up to ten devices at a time, including desktops, laptops, tablets, smartphones, etc.

With a library card, the possibilities are endless. Borrow free books, CDS, DVDs, and download eBooks, and e-Audiobooks right from the comfort of your own home! We even have a large selection of videogames available to rent.

Throughout the school year, public librarians and library staff will assist parents and caregivers with saving hundreds of dollars on educational resources and services for students of all ages. A library card is one of the most cost-effective back-to-school supplies available!

For younger children, we offer early literacy resources to help them learn to read and encourage school readiness, and for teens and older students, we provide access to technology and digital tools (such as 3D printers, button makers, scanners, and audio-visual recording and editing equipment) as well as GED resources.

This year, Marley Dias, author, executive producer, and founder of #1000BlackGirlBooks is taking on a new role as honorary chair of Library Card Sign-Up Month. As honorary chair, Dias will remind the public that signing up for a library card provides access to technology, multimedia content, and educational programming that transforms lives and strengthens communities. “A library card is the ticket you need to travel across the globe. It allows you to experience stories that can connect you to diverse and empowering experiences,” said Dias.

Since 1987, Library Card Sign-up Month has been held each September to mark the beginning of the school year. During the month, the ALA and libraries unite in a national effort to ensure every child signs up for a library card. For more information about how to sign up for a library card, please visit Chester County Library or Henrietta Hankin Branch Library in person or online at chescolibraries.org.

National Novel Writing Month 101

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo.org) is just around the corner! Have you ever had a story idea you thought would make a great novel? Always wanted to write a memoir about something that happened in your life? Just like to write?

Join us to learn more about getting those words out this November. We’ll go over what NaNoWriMo is, what it isn’t, and how it can help your creativity. Whether you’ve never heard of NaNoWriMo before or have been a regular participant for the last 20 years, whether you want to handwrite or use all the latest software, this session is for you.

Chester County Library and the Henrietta Hankin Branch Library are hosting virtual preparation sessions and virtual writing sessions throughout the months of September, October, and November. Attend any and all events that work for you! See our full schedule and register here.

NaNoWriMo Schedule
NaNoWriMo 101 & Prep
Wednesday, 9/1, 3-4pm
Tuesday, 9/7, 10-11am
Monday, 9/13, 7-9pm
Monday, 10/4, 6:30-7:30pm
Monday, 10/11, 7-9pm
Monday, 10/25, 6:30-7:30pm

Kick-Off Party
Monday, 11/1, 7-9pm
Write In
Monday, 11/8, 7-9pm
Midway Party
Monday, 11/15, 7-9pm
Write In
Monday, 11/22, 7-9pm
Night of Drafting Daringly
Monday, 11/29, 7-9pm
Thank Goodness It’s Over Party
Monday, 12/6, 7-9pm

These are independent events managed by a community partner.
The NaNoWriMo name and logo are used by special permission.

Volunteer Tutors Needed to Teach Adult Learners

The Chester County OIC Adult Tutoring Program has a need for volunteers who are willing to work with adult students seeking to learn English as a second language, improve math skills, study for the GED exam, work on basic literacy, or study for the citizenship exam. A 4-year college degree is required to tutor, but a teaching background is not needed. Tutor training is offered online by the PA Department of Education. Tutors are asked to meet with their student 3 hours per week, usually done in two, 90 minute sessions. Tutor pairs are working virtually right now via Zoom, Facetime, WhatsApp or other platforms. Our program is based in the Chester County Library, in Exton, with whom we have a long partnership.

The Adult Tutoring office encourages anyone who is interested in volunteering to contact our office at 610-344-4013 or 610-344-4014 or send an email to drikess@cc-oic.org. The Chester County OIC website is ccoic.org. 

Virtual Newsstand Program September 13th!

Virtual Newsstand, Monday, September 13th 7-8PM. Learn how to access FREE popular newspapers and magazines from the comfort of your home!

Did you know you can access hundreds of magazines and newspapers for free using the library’s digital subscriptions? Join us to learn more about how to access popular periodicals from home. You’ll learn how to access magazines like People, The New Yorker, Real Simple, and National Geographic, as well as newspapers like The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Washington Post, and more.

Register here for this virtual program: https://ccls.libcal.com/event/8137437

Registration is required. Registration will close 3 hours prior to the scheduled start time of the event. A Zoom link will be emailed to registrants 2 hours before the program starts. Make sure to check the email address you registered with to receive the link. You do not need a Zoom account to attend the virtual program.

Virtual Story Times at the Henrietta Hankin Library

The Henrietta Hankin Branch Library has finalized our Youth Services program schedule for September! All children’s programming will continue to be held virtually through Zoom. Story times will begin the week of September 12th and run through the week of October 15th.

Baby and Toddler Story Time (Ages 0-36 months) – Tuesdays at 10 am

Family Story Time (Ages 0-6 years old) – Tuesdays at 1 pm

Story Time for Preschoolers (Ages 3-4 years old) – Wednesdays at 10 am

Story Time for Pre K-K (Ages 4-6 years old) – Wednesdays at 1 pm

We will also have Mother-Daughter Book Club on Monday, September 20th at 6:30 pm for those 9 years-old and up accompanied by a favorite female grown-up.

Registration is required for all programming and you can find our event calendar here to sign up!

First Day of School Book Suggestions

‘Back to School’ time can be a very exciting time for young children with school supply shopping, new clothes and the anticipation of making new friends and moving up a grade level. But it can also leave kids overwhelmed, anxious and uncertain. Our Youth Services Librarians are here to help with easing into the transition for kids and their families by curating a book list of “First Day at School” titles. This list includes books that can be found in our collection that staff have determined to be particularly appropriate for a specific age level, grade, or topic.

Happy Reading and have a great school year!

Virtual Program: September Adult Book Groups

We are holding our existing adult book groups as virtual programs. Please see our September titles and dates below. These groups are all being held online via Zoom.  We are requiring registration for these online book groups in order to send out the Zoom meeting information. Click on the date below to register. Information on our adult book groups can also be found on our website: http://bit.ly/chescolibs-bookgroups

Page Turners Book Group
Thursday, September 9, 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Moloka’i by Alan Brennert 

Evening Book Group
Monday, September 13, 7:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
The Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry

Whodunits Book Group
Wednesday, September 15, 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Furious Hours by Casey Cep

Afternoon Book Group
Wednesday, September 15, 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson

Comics Unbound Group
Monday, September 20, 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Invisible Differences by Julie Dachez

Registration is required for all book groups. Registration will close at least 2 hours prior to the scheduled start time of the book group. A Zoom link will be emailed to registrants 2 hours before the book group starts.  Make sure to check the email address you registered with to receive the link.  You do not need a Zoom account to attend the virtual book group.

These programs support the PA Forward Civic and Social Literacy Initiative.

CCLS/CCL Board Meeting

Due to the easing of COVID restrictions, the Board of Trustees of the Chester County Library System/Chester County Library will now be hosting their monthly board meeting as a hybrid offering. If you have always wanted to attend a meeting but haven’t had the time, this is your opportunity. Please click on this link at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, August 17, to join the Chester County Library System Board Meeting virtually; or attend in person at Chester County Library, 450 Exton Square Parkway, PA 19341. The Chester County Library Board Meeting will immediately follow.

If you are a person with a disability and wish to attend this meeting and require an auxiliary aid, service, or other accommodation to observe or participate in the proceedings, please call Chester County Library’s Administration Office at 610-344-5600 to discuss how we may best accommodate your needs.

Free DVD and Audiobook Checkouts Starting Sunday, August 1st!

Beginning in the month of August, the Chester County Library and Henrietta Hankin Branch will no longer be charging rental fees for certain items in our Multimedia collection.

All of the DVDs in our collection can be checked out for free starting Sunday, August 1st, which means you can watch as many of your favorite movies and shows as you want without spending a cent! As before, movies are available for one-week loans, TV series for two-week loans. And even our most popular new releases, a three-day loan, are totally free! But it’s not just movies — this change applies to many other items in the collection as well.

Our Binge Boxes are mini movie collections, usually between 4 to 6 DVDs, set around a theme (see our list of Binge Boxes here!). These are great for vacations, parties, or cozy nights in, and will be available for free one-week loans.

Audiobooks will also be free to check out! These include all of our books on CD as well as our collection of Playaways — small, portable players that you can listen to with headphones or an AUX cord in your car. These are great for long car trips or workouts and, like all of our audiobooks, are available for three-week loans.

Our collection of Great Courses — full-length, in-depth courses taught by award-winning professors; will be free as well to checkout with your library card! They come in both audio and video formats, and can be taken out for a three-week loan. Browse our Great Courses here!

This huge selection of exciting materials will be available at no cost to you — so if there is any part of the collection you’d like to explore, August is the time to start! For any questions concerning this change, please call the Multimedia department at Chester County Library at 610-344-5667 or the Henrietta Hankin Branch at 610-334-4191.