...una biblioteca es un gabinete mágico en el cual hay muchos espíritus hechizados. Despiertan cuando los llamamos; mientras no abrimos un libro, ese libro, literalmente, es un volumen, es una cosa entre las cosas.      - Emerson

Public Libraries Using Spanish


On the first day of September of 1957, in Havana, the newborn Gloria Fajardo let out her first tuneful cry.  A few years passed; she met and married a guy named Emilio Estefan, and you've heard the rest.  But maybe you haven't seen the child-written bios of her at

September is a big deal in the Americas, from Mexico with its celebration-laden Fiestas Patrias on down through Guatemala, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, Chile, and Brazil.  All mark their independence this month, making September a great time for library displays and programs recognizing homelands and heritage of the Spanish- (and, oh right, Portuguese-) speaking world.

Please be aware: The server that brings you SOL and PLUS web pages will be down more than it's up this Thursday and Friday for some heavy-duty annual maintenance.
SOL 30 Contents:

August 30, 2000
1. REFORMA Conference Photo Album
2. Shelf Labels in Spanish
3. The SOL Poll: Do You Want Attachments?
4. PLUS Site Invites Your Gaze

5. Nancy French Wants YOU to Have a 'Latino Holidays' Calendar
6. Meet Joan Reddy of South Dakota
7. Let's Stuff Amy Kinard's Thinking Cap




Scenes from RNC2: A photo journal
by Antonio Arroyo

1. Antonio Arroyo gives you RNC2 in pictures

From: Antonio Arroyo

Hola Flaco,
How have you been? I hope everything is well with you.

It seems that the Reformanet listserv is out of order and I would like to inform the people who attended the REFORMA National Conference II that I have started a Photo Journal. I took some 150 photos at the conference and I am going to put them on the web eventually. But right now, those interested to check out the web page may do so at:

I have about 20 photos in this web page so far. Also, for your information, I don't know if you had a chance to view the web page I put together of the X Foro [2000 Cross-border library conference in Albuquerque]. You may view it at:

Please let me know how you like these photo journals.
I hope you have a wonderful day!


Antonio Arroyo

2. Spanish-language shelf labels
From: Teresa Pacheco

Hi Bruce - Following are the shelf labels we use here - might be helpful for Vicki and others. We use some words that are probably not the best Spanish, but that are terms which are commonly used in our area for items such as audiobooks - we call them "audiocintas" or "libros en grabacion". We call Reference books "libros de referencia" instead of "libros de consulta" because it looks more like the English and we hope is facilitating access for native Spanish-speakers as well as staff, and other patrons who might be used to the term "Reference Books."  We use "Bestsellers" as well as "Westerns" for the same reason - more commonly used among speakers of Spanish in our area. What is the opinion of others on the list about this?


Teresa Pacheco
Computer Services Asst.
Hall County Library
127 Main St., NW
Gainesville, GA 30501


3. Is Flaco's fear of attachments sound, or just soooo typical?
Teresa sent the list above as a formatted Word attachment.  We both wondered if y'all would want to receive attachments from SOL.  I am reluctant to pass them along, not only for hygienic reasons but because some of you might not be equipped to open them.

Seems to me a reasonable compromise might be to mount such contributions on the PLUS website (see below).  What do you prefer?  Please let me know.


4. Visiting hours for the PLUS site
That revamped Public Libraries Using Spanish website at is  about two-thirds done, so your constructive criticism is welcomed.  We're awfully curious, for one thing, to hear how it looks on your browser.  A few of the choices on the navigation bar will still take you down Highway 404, but look for that to change in the days to come.  Keep in mind that the server will be mostly out of action tomorrow and Friday.

5. A good way to meet Nancy French is to buy her calendar
I am Nancy French, Reader Services Department Head at the Sahara West Library of the Las Vegas-Clark Co. Library District in Las Vegas, Nevada. Also, I am currently serving as President of the REFORMA, Nevada Chapter. Our chapter currently has for sale 16 month calendars featuring artwork of Nevada school children highlighting Latino holidays.  A bargain at $10.00 plus $1.50 postage and handling.  Sept. 2000-December 2001.
    I majored in Spanish in college and then did nothing with it for 30 years.  I took a refresher course a few years ago.   I have gone to Guadalajara three times to purchase materials in Spanish for our district.  In my previous position, I presented bilingual story programs to children, and managed a satellite facility with mostly Spanish speaking patrons, along with helping with Spanish materials collection development for both children and adults.
    I remain committed to improving library services to the Spanish speaking patrons.  I am thrilled to find this website, and am really impressed with the first couple of messages.  Thanks for the great information you compile and share.

6. Meet Joan Reddy, Siouxland Libraries
I am a new subscriber to the list. I am Assistant Director of the Siouxland Libraries, a county-city library that serves about 150,000 people. Our population is changing and there are many more Spanish-speakers in our town. I am purchasing Spanish language materials (also Russian, Arabic, etc.) My native and only language is English. I am interested in learning from other librarians.

Joan Reddy
Siouxland Libraries
201 N. Main Ave.
Sioux Falls, SD 57104
[Flaco advises all visitors to Joan's state to not miss the
World's Only Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD. If you can't
get there just now, try for
the live webcam view. I'm not joshing: I love this place!]

7. Meet Amy Kinard and help her arrange a new library
Hola.  I am new to this discussion group y me llamo Amy Kinard, y estoy empleado con Jackson County Library Services, Medford, Oregon.  I have now exhausted my Spanish skills.  We have a small budget for Spanish materials, and I purchase books, language tapes, music CD's, and magazines for adults.

We do not have an outreach program for adults, but we serve daycare homes of Spanish speaking families.  We are fortunate to have fluent Spanish speakers for that service.  Our library has also sponsored two series of very effective Spanish language classes for library staff with basic Spanish skills. Classes were held in the library before opening two times a week for 8 weeks.  Our teacher concentrated on library vocabulary and situations, and we practiced with Spanish Internet sites as well.  It broke the ice for many of us, and while we are still not fluent, we are definitely more friendly in Spanish.  The classes had 6-8 people each session.  Muy bueno.

Like Vicki Novak, I  would like to run a question by the list:  how best to situate the Spanish language materials.

We have passed a bond measure to build a new library and in the new building we want to arrange the Spanish collection to best suit non-English speaking patrons.  Our Spanish collection is currently divided between two floors for the adult and
children's departments.  Within the adult department, materials are further divided.  Books and audios are in one area and magazines and fotonovelas are in another area.  (This follows the general arrangement of the English materials.)  In the new library we will be on three floors, again dividing children's and adult departments.  I don't want to create a "separate but equal" area by putting all Spanish materials (adult and children's together) but it might help families.  Or we could  put adult Spanish books, audios, and magazines together, but then Spanish speakers would never get out into other areas of the library.

When does a "comfort zone" create an isolated island?
   Any words of advice are most welcome and will be put into my thinking cap.  Our city is about 60,000 pop. and the Hispanic population is maybe 10% of that (?) but they are not big library users.  We are also the hub city for a large rural area.
Muchas gracias por el consejo.

Amy Kinard
Jackson County Library Services
Reference Dept.
413 W. Main St., Medford, Or. 97501
(541) 774-6418


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