Friday, November 21, 2014

Art for Adults at Mentor Library

Aileene admires her handiwork during a jewelry-making session Monday at Mentor Library's Main Branch.
If you're older than 13, you may wonder why it's the kids who always seem to be getting crafty.

It's the children who get to make cornucopias or build lava lamps or splatter paint everywhere.

But there are plenty of chances for teens and adults to flex their artistic side at Mentor Library too.

Just in the last year, we've hosted free watercolor painting and inking classes.
Rita carefully threads her beads onto her necklace.
On Monday, the experts from Flux Metal Arts showed how to make beautiful custom earrings-and-bracelet sets. Some people made their jewelry as Christmas gifts. Others loved what they made too much to part with it.

(We need to pause here to thanks the Mentor Community Arts Commission. They sponsored the jewelry-making, watercolor and inking programs. We couldn't do this without them!)

If you missed Monday's program, there's another opportunity to get in touch with your artistic side this year.

On Monday, Dec. 8, at our Main Branch, Jenn Cline from the Ohio Paper Folders will teach a hands-on introduction to origami. See what you can do with just a few pieces of paper. Registration for the workshop begins Nov. 24.
Clare and John search for just the right beads to complete their bracelets.
For more photos from our jewelry-making workshop and other programs, visit Mentor Library's Facebook page.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Making cornucopias with Studio MPL

Eva begins by outlining the pumpkin in her cornucopia.
On Monday, Studio MPL—our art club for kids in first through fifth grade—made cornucopias of self-expression. They made collages from magazines to show what they were thankful for this year.

This continues their theme of self-expression. Last month, they used hair to depict their inner selves.
Remo colors the grapes in his cornucopia.
They've also made sun catchers, painted sunsets, weaved and even garnered inspiration from Jackson Pollock.

Studio MPL meets on the third Monday of each month.

Next month’s session will be Dec. 15 at our Main Branch. You can register for it here.

For more photos from our Studio MPL session, check out our Facebook page. For more information on programs and events for children, teens and adults at Mentor Public Library, visit
Natalie uses rounded geometric figures like spheres and ovals to sketch a turkey.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Thanks to the volunteers from St. Gabriel

Michael rolls a fresh layer of paint on the wall.
Volunteers from St. Gabriel Parish visited us this Saturday and painted a pair of our second-floor corridors.

We owe them our gratitude, just as we need to thank all of our volunteers.

No library is better than its community, and we are fortunate to live and work in a great place with wonderful people.
Mother-daughter team of Ina and Daiva give our upstairs corridor a fix-up.
For more photos of our helpful volunteers, visit Mentor Library's Facebook page.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Welcome to our newest Core Card partner

Brightwood Animal Hospital is our newest partner in the Core Card program.
You want to talk about value? Let's talk about the value of your Mentor Library card.

It gives you access to more than 200.000 books, movies and albums. And it also provides you with 24-hour access to our digital services, so you can download music, listen to audiobooks, stream video or read eBooks even when our branches are closed.

But, wait, there's more!

We've partnered with more than a dozen local businesses and organizations who provide you with discounts, just for having a Mentor Library card, as part of our Core Card program.

You can save money at everywhere from Awaken Yoga to Gallery One Art Gallery to Mentor Heisley Racquetball and Fitness Club. And now we've added our newest partner, Brightwood Animal Hospital.

Now, anyone with a Mentor Library card can save $5 on their first express grooming with Brightwood's groomer Chris White. Your pet will look prettier, you'll save money, and all you need is a library card.

Peruse the list of all of our Core Card partners and see how you can get more out of your library card.

Because, at Mentor Library, we want you to check out books, movies, music and your community.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

More music, more movies: We're doubling your Hoopla

If you use streaming services like Netflix, YouTube or Spotify, then you should love Hoopla.

It lets you stream more than 300,000 movies, TV episodes, audiobooks and music albums to your smartphones, tablets and computers. You can use it 24 hours a day, and it's as available as your nearest Internet connection or WiFi hotspot.

And, like all of our digital services, it's free if you have a Mentor Public Library card.

Until recently, you could stream up to five audiobooks, movies or albums per month. But that wasn't enough, so we're doubling it to 10!

That means you no longer have to pick between streaming the Frozen soundtrack, Ariana Grande's My Everything, What's Going On, or A Love Supreme; watching To Kill a Mockingbird, My Little Pony or Brewster's Millions; or listening to the audiobook versions of The Hunger Games, King Lear and Veronica Roth's Insurgent, .

You can do it all, and then try something new next month!

To use Hoopla, you need only download its app from the Apple or Android store.

If you prefer to stream onto your computer, you can visit and the site offers all the same videos, music and audiobooks as the app. The Hoopla web site is compatible with browsers Chrome, Safari, Firefox and Internet Explorer.

Once the app is downloaded (or you're on the Hoopla web site,) you only need to provide an email address and your library card number. Then you can browse and borrow from Hoopla’s extensive library and watch or listen wherever they are.

If any of that sounded confusing, MPL Librarian Mary Pelton made a video that walks you through the sign-up process.

On Hoopla, you can borrow a video for three days, a music album for seven and an audiobook for 21 days.

Using cloud computing, you can even borrow titles with your home computer, begin watching on a tablet and resume watching with your smartphone—anywhere there’s an Internet connection.

If you are going somewhere without an Internet connection, then you can download a title using the Hoopla app and watch or listen to it later. (For DRM reasons, downloading is only available on the app—not on Internet browsers.)

In addition to Hoopla, Mentor Public Library also offers several other digital services. You can stream independent films from festivals around the globe using IndieFlix, you can download mp3s using Freegal, borrow eBooks and eAudiobooks using OverDrive, learn another language with Transparent Language or borrow digital versions of magazines using Zinio.

You also have access to dozens of databases with information on topics from auto repair to local history to case law.

And—once more, with feeling—all of these services are free with a Mentor Public Library card.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Learn the languages of the world for free with Mentor Library

Quiere hablar español? या हिन्दी? أو العربية؟? 日本語または? Oder Deutsch?

Or maybe you just want to know what that last paragraph meant.

If you want to learn another language but don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars on classes, books or software, try Transparent Language for free from Mentor Public Library.

Transparent Language offers a simple, intuitive way to learn the basics of more than 80 different languages—pretty much any language you can think of, everything from Albanian to Zulu. And—not to put too fine a point on it—if you have a Mentor Public Library card, it’s completely free.

Transparent Language offers dozens of language lessons, which can help you negotiate everyday conversations, as well as vocabulary lists, proficiency tests, and pronunciation and conversation practice for each language.

And language is more than just knowing words and grammar, so Transparent Language includes culture blogs to add variety and depth to your learning experience. There are even interactive games for each language to help you practice.

There’s even an online community with more than 1.5 million people, all helping one another learn.

Transparent Language is also great for people who are learning English. It offers 24 English-as-a-second-language courses, including ones for people who speak Chinese, Czech, Hindi, Polish, Spanish, Tagalog, Vietnamese and more.

It’s easy to sign up for Transparent Language too. You just need an email address and a library card. (If you’ve signed up for Zinio or IndieFlix—which are great services if you love reading magazines of watching independent films, respectively—then you’re already registered for Transparent Language.)

So whether you’re visiting France or just want to learn Urdu, check out Transparent Language. It’s just one of the dozens of useful databases available from Mentor Public Library.

Monday, November 10, 2014

The best films and documentaries for commemorating Veterans Day

Thank you for your service.
First and foremost, thank you to our veterans from all branches of the military.

We cannot not do what we do unless we are first safe, and you are the ones who have kept us safe.

Secondly, all of Mentor Library's branches will be closed this Veteran's Day. But, with our digital services, you still have access to all sorts of movies, books, audiobooks and music even when the library's buildings are closed.

Also, IndieFlix and Hoopla have several films and documentaries that are appropriate reminders of what Veteran's Day is all about. You can stream the videos to your computer, tablet or phone for free if you have a Mentor Library card.

From IndieFlix:

1) Hooligans at War (67 min) Ages 18+

A compelling documentary that follows the United States Hooligan Platoon inside their day-to-day lives fighting in war-torn Afghanistan.

2) Coming Home (14 min) Ages 13+

This moving personal documentary was made by Vietnam War veteran Herb Sennett. I learned that if I am not able to help the people in another land, I can sure help the people around me, Herb says. Coming Home features his recollections of that time, his impressions of Vietnam and its people, and the legacy it left on his life.

3) The Negro Soldier (43 min) Ages 13+

A documentary focusing on the contributions to the American war effort by African-American soldiers.

4) Who Will Stand (112 min) Ages 13+

This feature documentary takes a close look at what happens to 21st century veterans when they return home: the joy of reconnecting with loved ones, the pain of dealing with lingering wounds.

5) Finnigan's War (54 min) Ages 13+

To commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Korean War, actor/filmmaker Conor Timmis sets out on a yearlong journey to honor his late grandfather and the heroes of America's forgotten war.

6) A War to End All Wars (120 min) Ages 13+

Fascinating and unique tales from World War I, narrated by UK broadcaster Robin Thompson.

From Hoopla:

7) Where Soldiers Come From (91 min) Not Rated

This documentary follows three young men from Michigan's Upper Peninsula as they receive their basic training and are sent to Afghanistan, patrolling roadways looking for improvised explosive devices. The film charts their evolving attitudes about the war and American foreign policy as they see how it works up close, as well as their sometimes tense relationships with their families, who aren't certain the young men will ever come home.

8) A Perfect Soldier (56 min) Not Rated

An extraordinary and inspiring documentary about one man's journey from child soldier to international hero. A Perfect Soldier tells the story of Aki Ra, who as a young boy was taken by the Khmer Rouge and forced to plant hundreds of landmines in the Cambodian countryside. As an adult, he has devoted his life to removing them, one landmine at a time. In 2010, he was named one of CNN's Top 10 Heroes of the Year.

9) Ken Burns: The War (seven episodes, each 120 min) TV14

Ken Burns' seven-part documentary series directed and produced by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, explores the history and horror of the Second World War from an American perspective by following the fortunes of so-called ordinary men and women who become caught up in one of the greatest cataclysms in human history. Six years in the making, this epic 14-hour film focuses on the stories of citizens from four geographically distributed American towns—Waterbury, Connecticut; Mobile, Alabama; Sacramento, California; and the tiny farming town of Luverne, Minnesota.

10) The Winning of World War II: The Road to Victory (16 episodes, each 60 min) Not Rated

Join General John Eisenhower as he retraces World War II. From the rise of Hitler to the historic battles and the eventual involvement of U.S. forces, witness the Allies' road to victory. Then, discover the top commanders who made this victory possible.

11) Crusade in the Pacific (26 episodes, each 30 min) TVPG

Experience the epic television documentary event that chronicles all the bloody land, sea and air battles for the Pacific, produced by the legendary March Of Time newsreel unit and featuring never-before-seen footage from the archives of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines, as well as film captured from the Japanese government.

Here's a link to all of Mentor Library's digital services, all of which are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Also, if you're not sure how to use them, we've created videos explaining how to access Hoopla and IndieFlix. Both services are free, as long as you have a Mentor Public Library card.