Month: June 2018

Public Libraries receive Music for Everyone Grant to enhance library programs for youth!

Music For Everyone

The Library System on behalf of public libraries throughout Lancaster County was awarded a grant from Music for Everyone Foundation in the amount of $1,216.00 that will be used to support the acquisition of percussion instruments to enhance library programs.  The musical instrument collection is available to all public youth librarians, Be Ready Rover program coordinator and the Bookmobile staff.  Libraries are hosting “Together We Are Music” events, and other music-oriented programming for youth and families this summer and in the future.

Library programs and library outreach supports children’s learning and creative needs by giving them access to materials (instruments) and opportunities. Using their imagination, children will learn about tempo and volume, creatively express themselves and perform in a non-judgmental atmosphere.

Music for Everyone Fun logoPercussion instruments made available through this grant funding include xylophones, egg shakers, rhythm sticks, log drums, hand drums, and band bongos.

Percussion InstrumentsThe instruments are a resource for year round programs and a welcome addition to supporting the role that a library has in the community–being accessible and fulfilling the needs and interests of residents of the county. In these library settings, coming together socially, a child will delight in making music with others.

Research shows there are many benefits to playing percussion instruments. For the youngest, music builds emergent literacy skills (i.e. phonological). Children develop better verbal memory and reading ability, along with better motor coordination, motor development (exercising hands, fingers, and arms), mood improvement, listening skills, taking turns, happiness in being creative, social skills, and more.

Renee Christiansen, youth services manager, acknowledges the value of the partnership that has been established with MFE over the years, “I applaud the success of Music for Everyone for bringing musical opportunities to many, so that in turn, organizations such as libraries can promote the creative development of our local youth.”

The Music for Everyone Foundation is committed to supporting music as a positive impact in the community by awarding grants to schools and community groups to support music programs. The foundation, through their grant program, is committed to easing the financial difficulties that music programs face due to funding cuts.  The MFE Foundation raises money through live music events, merchandising efforts and donations.  Since April 2006, MFE has awarded over $1.5 Million in grants, scholarships and direct program support to schools and community arts groups in Lancaster County.

For more information about the Music for Everyone program, go to:

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Columbia Public Library to showcase local craftsman’s custom work at Dedication Ceremony!

Columbia Public Library New LogoWhen officials of the Columbia Public Library launched the renovation and new addition of the library, they anticipated that the completed project would be a real treasure for the community. With the upcoming grand opening of the new library, their anticipation will be met with a great source of community pride. The grand opening of the new library will be Wednesday, August 1, while a special Dedication Ceremony is slated for Sunday, August 12, at 2:00 p.m. at the library location on 24 South Sixth Street, Columbia, PA 17512.

In today’s ever-changing world, a lot is happening in libraries. Libraries are no longer only the repositories of books, but rather act as gateways to information, education, and opportunity — and the Columbia Public Library is no exception.   Not only is the library undergoing a major expansion and renovation, but the Columbia Public Library as a whole is transforming itself into a community and technology hub.  The library is improving the community through access to books and technology that individuals might otherwise be unable to afford.  Libraries are continually expanding to include information in a variety of formats that meet community requests and needs. Libraries are not just about books; they also provide access to information beyond items that are checked out on a library card.   Library resources in the form of online access to databases and programming now define and expand what is available to the public.   In addition to books in a number of formats — including e-books, audiobooks, and online resources — there are a number of programs offered that appeal to all ages.

A local craftsman enhances the new library…

Just as librarians continue to master their trade, a local craftsman working on the renovated library hones his skills to provide the library with beautiful hand-crafted furniture.   During the upcoming events, the public will notice customized furniture made by local craftsman Greg Pilotti throughout the library.

Greg Pilotti, President
Greg Pilotti, President
GP Furniture Makers

Pilotti is president and owner of GP Furniture Makers and a graduate of Thaddeus Stevens School of Technology. Pilotti has been collaborating with Thaddeus Stevens by hiring skilled craftsmen since the opening of his business in 2013. He employs nine highly-skilled craftsmen — all graduates of Stevens Trade, which is an educational institution that specializes in trade education and apprenticeship. He is dedicated to preserving the art of furniture making as he applauds the tradesmen that he has employed.  He states that he “doesn’t hire — he recruits,” and he relies on Stevens Trade to help him recruit and fill positions.  In the process, he develops relationships that lead to keeping skilled craftsmen. He reflects, We are in a trade that’s a lost art…it’s often hard to find employees.  I rely on Stevens Trade to help me recruit and fill positions.  I continued to grow the business and develop skills to serve clients.  Today we operate in a large, well-equipped modern shop full of young energetic makers.  I believe that we are here to serve our clients to the fullest of our abilities and create a high-quality product.  By using modern technology and traditional techniques we are able to serve our clients and designers with both custom furniture and cabinetry.”

Columbia Public Library’s Executive Director, Lisa Greybill, is excited about the opportunities the new library offers to the community. “Many residents already visit the library on a regular basis and I hope that our expansion will draw in even more. Our new meeting room and terrace are an excellent venue for programming and community gatherings. Our new furnishings, including those made by Mr. Pilotti and his craftsmen, provide practicality, beauty and comfort to an inviting interior.”

The Columbia Public Library would like to thank all of the contractors and donors who have helped make the newly renovated library a reality. Anyone interested in supporting the library, can make a tax deductible donation online at, by mail at 24 South Sixth Street, Columbia, PA 17512, or in person when the library re-opens. For more information or discuss how you can help, call 717-575-9032 or

GP Furniture Makers: 

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Visiting Author to share Italian Culture!


David James Connors, author of Romancing Through Italy

Visiting Author to share Italian Culture!
Must-see program if you have a romance with Italy or are planning a trip there!

The Lancaster Italian Cultural Society is pleased to host writer and avid traveler, Robert James Connors, author of Romancing Through Italy at the Manheim Township Public Library, 595 Granite Run Road, Lancaster, PA 17601 on Tuesday, July 3 at 5:30 pm.  The event, which is part of the author’s national speaking tour, is free and open to the public.

The pervasive effect of Italian culture on our modern world, as well as the attractions Italy offers to visitors, will be highlighted during this program.  Millions of Italian immigrants helped to shape American culture, and today more than 17 million self-identify as Italian-Americans.

Connors is a frequent public speaker and the author of Romancing Through Italy, an Romancing Through Italy by David James Connorsintimate account of his twenty years spent exploring that Mediterranean nation. His Italian visits over the years have certainly created a romance with Italy, he states “Italy is both the cradle and nursemaid of Western civilization. That small nation contributed the lion’s share of our culture.”  How could that happen?  Connors delights in sharing these clues with his audiences, “I enjoy meeting my readers, and sharing these remarkable stories—Italy is one of the world’s most popular travel destinations, partly because of its enormous impact on our modern culture. The travel tips are free, too!”




5:30 pm ~ Pre-Social (light snacks)
6:00 —7:00 pm ~ Author Presentation and Q&A
Author presentation will be followed by a Post-Social Time & Book Signing

 About the Author…
Robert James Connors is an award-winning writer and journalist, experienced public speaker, and author of more than 1,000 human-interest, feature, and news stories during a career spanning 40 years.    Now a dedicated traveler, he is a contributor to publications covering topics ranging from environment to classical music and history. Connors is a former Florida County Commissioner, and has served as an invited guest speaker (in both English and Italian) at military commemorative events in Italy, recognizing the service of American veterans of World War II in the Liberation of Italy from the Nazi/Fascists.  In addition to his travels and writing, he serves as President of the Lake Wales Museum Association.  For more information, visit:

Lancaster Italian Culture Society Logo

Registration requested, but not required.  To register, go to:

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Newcomers and Neighbors of Lancaster Club raises $1,250.00 for Public Libraries!

The Newcomers and Neighbors of Lancaster Club check presentation for Public Libraries of Lancaster County

Members of the Board of Newcomers and Neighbors of Lancaster County present, as part of their community service project, a check for $1,250 to Renee Christiansen, the Youth Services Manager of the Library Service of Lancaster County, for the Local Public Libraries of Lancaster County to purchase new children’s books.  Pictured from left to right are: Josie Smith, Co-chairperson of Community Service, Elaine Long, President of the organization, Christiansen, and Cheryl Waack, Co-chairperson of Community Services.


The Library System of Lancaster County is pleased to announce that The Newcomers and Neighbors of Lancaster Club raised $1,250 to benefit the Public Libraries of Lancaster County. The community group chooses two groups or organizations each year to support. This year they chose the Public Libraries of Lancaster County as recipient of their fundraising efforts. Funds are to be used for the purchase of children’s books, as specified by the Club. All books purchased with the funds will be recognized with a bookplate honoring The Newcomers and Neighbors of Lancaster for their support.

Renee Christiansen, Youth Services Manager for the Library System, acknowledges the generosity of the group on behalf of the public libraries, “It’s wonderful that they selected the Local Public Libraries this year!”

About the Club

Newcomers and Neighbors Club of Lancaster was originally founded as Welcome Wagon of Lancaster East in June 1968. It was reorganized as Newcomers and Neighbors Club of Lancaster in June 1998. The club is a nonprofit social organization of women whose purpose is to extend a friendly and neighborly hand to new and longer term residents of Lancaster County by introducing them to others and starting them on a new social life in their communities and to promote an interest in our towns. The club offers the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of special interest groups, such as a book club, card groups, and knitting and to visit area attractions in the company of other club members. Additionally, the club offers local community service and volunteer opportunities as needs arise during the year. Membership, established by payment of annual dues, is open to all women residents of Lancaster County regardless of their length of residency. General meetings of the member (dinners or luncheons in area restaurants) are held monthly, September through June.


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