Archive for the 'News' Category

Scrabble Program at Bach Rescheduled

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

Tonight’s adult Scrabble game program at the Bach Branch has been rescheduled to next Thursday, Feb. 20, at 6:30 pm.

We apologize for any inconvenience and look forward to seeing our Scrabble players on Feb. 20!

Valentine’s Day Concert

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

Albany violinist Jessica Belflower performs a free concert for us on Friday, Feb. 14, at 5 pm at the Delaware Branch.

Belflower has performed with the Albany Symphony, Bolshoi Ballet Company, and Andrea Bocelli, just to name a few.

Join us for this special Valentine’s Day musical performance!

Valentine’s Day Craft Activities

Friday, February 7th, 2014

It’s almost Valentine’s Day! Do you have a present for that special someone? It’s not too late to make a small homemade gift for your sweetheart. Check out these free Valentine craft programs:


*Quilling Valentines Program Rescheduled to Feb. 12 (Wed) at 6 pm due to instructor’s illness

Quilling Valentines*

Feb. 10 (Mon) at 6 pm — Pine Hills Branch

Learn how to make a lovely paper Valentine using the quilling (paper curling) technique. Participants must be at least 16-years-old. Registration is required: 482-7911 x230.


Valentine’s Day Puzzle Cards

Feb. 11 (Tues) at 3:45 pm — Howe Branch

Make a Valentine and then cut it into a puzzle for your special someone to put together. For children of all ages. No registration required.


Origami Valentines

Feb. 14 (Fri) at 3 pm — North Albany Branch

We’ll teach your youngsters how to make Valentine’s using the ancient paper folding technique. This session is for children of all ages. No registration needed. We provide the supplies and lessons, you provide the creativity.


Very Valentine Craft

Feb. 14 (Fri) at 4 pm — Arbor Hill/West Hill Branch

We’ve got the supplies you need to make a cool Valentine. Enjoy a sweet treat too. For children ages 5-12. No registration necessary.



Student Aid Form Help on Monday at Main

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

Is anyone in your family preparing to go to college and struggling to fill out the financial aid FAFSA form? Visit the Main Library on Monday, Feb. 10, from 4 to 6 pm and get assistance with the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) application.

Representatives from the NYS Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC) will be on hand to guide you through the application process and help you complete the form. An online checklist will help you prepare for the workshop.

The FAFSA form is required when applying for Pell grants, Stafford loans, Parent PLUS loans, and federal work-study. In addition, many colleges and universities require a FAFSA to qualify for scholarships, grants, or other aid that they offer. Funds from individual colleges are not always based on financial need.

For more information about the FAFSA workshop at the Main Library, and to register, please contact NYS HESC at or 473-7198.


Teens Explore World of STEMpunk!

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

The Main Library is hosting weekly STEMpunk! sessions for youngsters ages 11 through 17 starting Feb. 5 and running through Feb. 26.

Tools, wires, gears, and circuit boards: any of these and more could be included in the weekly STEMpunk tinkering sessions. Participants explore a different project in engineering, computer programming, chemistry, or physics each week during the free workshops. Join us for the fun!

STEMpunk! at the Main Library (Children’s Room on the second floor)

Feb. 5, 12, 19, 26 (Wed) at 6:30 to 8 pm

Delayed Opening Today

Friday, January 31st, 2014

ALL Albany Public Library locations are opening at NOON today — Wednesday, Feb. 5 — due to inclement weather. Please check back here for any changes.


Book Donation Drop Boxes at Main and Delaware

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

Gently used books cluttering up your bookshelves at home? Please consider donating your old books to APL through our partnership with Better World Books.

Two APL locations — the Main Library on Washington Avenue and the Delaware Branch on Delaware Avenue — have the Better World Books bright green book donation bins in their parking lots.

Better World Books collects the donated books and sells them online or donates them to non-profit literacy partners throughout the world, including Books for Africa and the National Center for Families Learning. The company recycles any books that are deemed unsuitable for sale or use by literacy partners.

Albany Public Library, and the Library’s Foundation, receive a portion of the proceeds from the online sales of books donated at our Better World Books collection bins. Thank you for your donations!

Free Income Tax Preparation Services at APL

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Albany Public Library (APL) should be your first stop for income tax assistance and resources this tax season.

On select days from Feb. 1 through April 9, APL will provide free federal income tax preparation services for people with an annual household income limit of $52,000. During February, assistance can be found at three APL locations—Main Library, Arbor Hill/West Hill Branch, and Delaware Branch. During March and April, assistance will be provided at the Main Library only.


The income tax preparation services are provided by APL’s partners—volunteers from the Internal Revenue Service Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program and the AARP Tax-Aide program. For more information about the free tax services available at APL, please call the Main Library Reference Department at 427-4303.


APL’s tax program provides a valuable service to the community. Last year alone, more than 1,400 people had their taxes prepared for free at Albany Public Library resulting in more than $2 million in refunds back to the community.


Here is the schedule of free income tax assistance programs available at APL:



Saturdays from Feb. 1 through April 12

10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Main Library at 161 Washington Avenue

Assistance is on a walk-in basis only. No appointments or reservations will be taken. (Note that the Main Library will be closed on March 15, and there will be no tax help that day.)



Wednesdays from Feb. 5 through April 8

Hours vary, by appointment only

Main Library at 161 Washington Avenue

Assistance is available by appointment only. Call the United Way 2-1-1- hotline to schedule an appointment.


Mondays and Fridays from Feb. 3 through Feb. 28

12 pm to 4 pm, by appointment only

Arbor Hill/West Hill Branch at 148 Henry Johnson Boulevard

Assistance is available by appointment only. Call the United Way 2-1-1 hotline to set up an appointment.


Tuesdays and Thursdays from Feb. 4 through Feb. 27

12 pm to 4 pm, by appointment only

Delaware Branch at 331 Delaware Avenue

Assistance is available by appointment only. Call the United Way 2-1-1 hotline to set up an appointment.


All appointments for income tax services at APL are being scheduled through the United Way 2-1-1 hotline. Simply dial 211 on any phone to be connected to an operator who can set up an appointment at the library. The alternate phone number for the hotline is: 888-366-3211.


In addition to the tax preparation services, most Albany Public Library locations stock basic federal and New York State income tax forms for individual tax filers. Librarians are helpful in connecting people to information that will help answer their tax questions. And, the library’s website has a special section dedicated to tax information:

Local History Room Changes Hours

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

The Pruyn Collection of Albany History at APL will be available for public use during different service hours starting on Monday, Jan. 27. The vast collection of books, pamphlets, clippings, newspapers, photograph, city directories, and census records is located in the Local History Room on the second floor of the Main Library at 161 Washington Avenue.

The new Local History Room hours are:

  • Mondays from 4 to 7 pm – Every week
  • Wednesdays from 9 am to 1 pm – First and third Wednesday of each month
  • Fridays from 2 to 5 pm – Every week
  • Saturdays from 1:30 to 5 pm – Second and fourth Saturday of each month

In addition, City Historian Tony Opalka will be available on the second and fourth Saturday of the month from 2 to 4 pm to assist the public with their local history research.

For more information about the Pruyn Collection at Albany Public Library, please call Local History Librarian Ellen Gamache at 427-4327.

APL Executive Director Announces Retirement Later this Year

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

Albany Public Library Executive Director Carol Nersinger has announced that she will retire from APL after close to five years.

Nersinger will stay on at APL until a replacement is selected in order to sustain momentum of strategic initiatives and ensure a smooth transition. The library’s Board of Trustees will conduct a national search for a new executive director.

During Nersinger’s tenure at APL, she oversaw the opening of five new and renovated branch libraries in the Arbor Hill/West Hill, New Scotland, Delaware, South End, and Pine Hills neighborhoods. Several of the buildings won design awards and the whole project was lauded as a valuable community resource. She spearheaded a project to make collections in the branches more usable and accessible to patrons by instituting a Dewey-free classification system, a move that is considered cutting-edge in the library industry. Nersinger embraced technology by expanding the collection of digital books and materials, hiring the area’s first eLibrarian, creating a mobile app giving users 24/7 access to APL, as well as green-lighting a complete website overhaul to better meet library users where they are. She also led a comprehensive project to develop a new strategic plan that will guide the library as it embarks on initiatives to provide children with the knowledge to become lifelong learners, deliver employability resources and skills development to adults, and connect people with information and experiences that enrich their lives.

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