from the archive


Category: Library


A meal to build a dream on


I am a natural introvert, and I honestly don’t cook very much on normal days; still, sometimes I dream of lavish dinner parties, themed summertime cocktail gatherings, tea parties, and picnics. I do occasionally gather with some aunts and cousins for tea parties, and I once had a Lord of the Rings movie marathon where […]


The magic of coincidence


I’ve never been a big believer in coincidences. While something may seem accidental or random, I’ve always enjoyed the idea that there may be a little bit of magic behind it. Most of us have many interests and pursuits and lives, so to speak, and it can be helpful to keep them neatly wrapped in […]


Exploring AANHPI Heritage Month


May is Asian American and Native Hawaiian / Pacific Islander Heritage Month. This month offers an opportunity to explore the stories and perspectives of Asian and Native Hawaiian / Pacific Islander Americans (AANHPI). The library aims to include such topics in programming and content throughout the year, and this month serves as a chance to focus […]


Get drawn in by a graphic novel


Graphic novels and comics are fantastic storytelling mediums. With your library card, you can access thousands of digital graphic novels, comics, and manga through ComicsPlus, Hoopla, and our other eLibrary platforms. With rich visuals to accompany the text, the graphic format invites readers to exercise visual literacy skills and broaden their thinking. Illustrations also provide […]


Money matters


clear glass jar with coins and a plant

April is Financial Literacy Month. With tax season nearly in the rearview mirror, don’t let the topic of personal finance slip into the dark recesses of your mind. There are plenty of free resources available with and without your library card to help you navigate your journey. One of the latest additions to our collection […]


Connect and enjoy


The library’s mission is to engage, inspire, educate and unite everyone in our diverse community. We want to help you learn, work, and be entertained through all of our resources: books, movies, music, and now our expanded Library of Things. These non-traditional items can be checked out and used at home or on the go […]


April top 5 for under 5


We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources, and new books in the library collection for children up to five years old and their families. Outdoor Storytime Outdoor Storytime is back. Beginning April 5, join Youth Services staff every Tuesday morning at 10:30 a.m. on the courtyard lawn […]


PEFF: 16th year, 16 films


We’re looking forward to the Princeton Environmental Film Festival, coming up this year April 1-10. The 16th annual festival features 16 films that explore environmental sustainability from a variety of angles and perspectives. All of the films will be available to stream online through the Eventive platform. Nine of them will also be screened at […]


Exploring women’s history


In 2017, Smithsonian Magazine released an article interpreting a National Women’s History Museum study on the representation of women in school social studies standards in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Building on the study, the magazine found that the standards mentioned three men for every one woman—of which 55% were named only once. Domestic […]


The art around us


According to the Oxford English Dictionary, art is a “skill; its display, application, or expression.” And, it is all around us. We see it in the pages of books, on street corners and the sides of buses, on display in buildings and homes, and even create it ourselves.  Libraries themselves are havens for art and […]


March top 5 for under 5


We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children up to five years old and their families. Celebrate Women’s History Month: Picture Books March is Women’s History Month. Check out this Youth Services staff-curated list of picture books for young […]


Rescued by library magic


“Stop! Stop it! Stop!” Last summer these sounds echoed from the backseat of my car whenever I took a local drive with my two kids, ages six and nine at the time. Suddenly they seemed unable to go on a 20-minute car ride anywhere without bickering, fighting, and generally annoying each other to the max. […]


Making a difference


On a recent walk with my dog, we were exploring a new path when we came upon a small grove of pine trees. It was impossible to resist walking into it. Immediately, it felt like I was transported to childhood days when I would spend a decent amount of time staring up at the underbelly […]


February top 5 for under 5


We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children up to five years old and their families. Black History Month Books for Little Kids February is Black History Month. Check out this Youth Services staff-curated list of picture books for […]


Five on a theme: the choices we make


A person walking has a choice of two paths

I had a conversation recently with some of my colleagues about our college experiences, sharing how our initial plans for majors and careers changed in the realities of adult life, and the things we can’t believe we didn’t know when making potentially life-altering choices. More than once, someone said “if I could make the choice […]


Community partner spotlight: Eating For Your Health


To extend our community outreach, the library partners with the many municipal, non-profit, and business organizations that make Princeton such an extraordinary town. This month, we spoke with Marion Renson, executive director of Eating For Your Health (formerly The Suppers Program). The library has worked with this group for several years to help our community […]


Tales and tails


As writers, we are consistently drawing inspiration from and making connections to the events in our lives. Everyday interactions and momentous occasions can cause a ripple effect, leading us down a new path of adventure and wonderment. Over the past year or two, I’ve gotten married, earned a Master’s degree, purchased my first home and […]


January top 5 for under 5


Owl Babies Events

We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children up to five years old and their families. Owl Babies StoryWalk “Owl Babies” written by Martin Waddell and illustrated by Patrick Benson celebrates its 30th year of publication in 2022. Take […]


The first anniversary of the Jan. 6 insurrection


On Jan. 6, 2021, supporters of then President Donald J. Trump attacked the U.S. Capitol in an effort to overturn the presidential election won by current President Joseph R. Biden. The vitriol and violence displayed by the rioters unfolded on live television. People across the country and beyond watched as the mob, which included members […]


Opening moves


From my perspective, public libraries and chess have always been intertwined. When I was a young child, my father, who loved reading, took me to our local public library on Saturday mornings to explore the stacks. I think that initiated my lifelong love of books and sparked my natural curiosity. When I was about 11 […]


Community partner spotlight: Princeton Artist Directory


To extend our community outreach, the library partners with the many municipal, non-profit, and business organizations that make Princeton such an extraordinary town. This month, we spoke with Mary Waltham and Mik Bökelmann of the Princeton Artist Directory (PAD). Janie Hermann, manager of adult programming at the library, recounts that in the early days of […]


Whistle for me


Earlier this week, I found myself mesmerized by a video recording of Bernadette Peters singing “Anyone Can Whistle” I hadn’t seen before, and for the first time I  understood how quietly devastating it is. “What’s hard comes easy. What’s natural comes hard …” There are parts of life that we think should be so easy, […]


December top 5 for under 5


We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children ages up to five years old and their families. Storytime! With the arrival of colder weather, in-person storytime returns indoors in the library beginning Thursday, Dec. 2 at 10:30 a.m. and […]


Paying attention


A map of North and South America emphasizing the Rockies and the Andes

I’m currently listening to the audiobook of John Green’s rather delightful The Anthropocene Reviewed, in which he reviews and rates aspects of our human experience, from our capacity for wonder, to whispering, to CNN, to Canada geese. In his introduction, he quotes his friend, author Amy Krouse Rosenthal: “For anyone trying to discern what to […]


Community partner spotlight: Arm In Arm


For more than 42 years, Arm In Arm (formerly Crisis Ministry of Mercer County) has been working hard to connect people to essential resources. We recently spoke with Maureen Hunt, chief development officer for Arm In Arm. How long has Arm In Arm been active in Princeton? Arm In Arm has been active in Princeton […]


Exploring Native American history and culture


November marks National Native American Heritage Month, also called American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month. This month offers an opportunity to explore the history and culture of Indigenous peoples with ties to the land now occupied by the United States. The library aims to integrate topics related to Indigenous peoples into programming throughout the […]


November top 5 for under 5


We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children up to 5 years old and their families. Native American Heritage Month Picture Books Celebrate Native American Heritage Month this November with this selection of picture books for young children that […]


Master of information


Some call us wizards or the keepers of knowledge. Superheroes, geniuses, guides and human search engines – we’ve heard it all. I recently earned my master’s degree and, when it came in the mail, it read “Master of Information.” This got me thinking, what makes us, librarians, the masters of information? Yes, the years of […]


Community partner spotlight: US1 Poets/Delaware Valley Poets


Book Cover

The library’s relationship with DVP/US 1 Poets, an organization formed by the recent merger of two poet collectives, demonstrates the collaborative, creative spirit we value when working with community partners. Through the regular Poets at the Library program, which features two readers and an open mic, DVP/US 1 Poets has connected the library with readers from near and […]


Read me another


How often as a parent or caregiver have you heard the refrain, “Read it again! “or “Read me another!” from your child?  Reading a favorite book aloud over and over (and over!) with your child is one of the key building blocks of early literacy – and develops and expands your child’s language, vocabulary and […]


October top 5 for under 5


We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children up to five years old and their families. Fall Fest at Princeton Shopping Center On Oct. 16, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m, the library and Princeton Shopping Center are partnering […]


Books unite us


Award-winning author Laurie Halse Anderson, writer of oft-challenged novels that speak to the modern experiences of young adults, once described censorship as “the child of fear, and the father of ignorance.” These words resonate with librarians always, though particularly loudly at this time of year, as Sept. 26 marks the beginning of Banned Books Week, […]


Welcoming community


Sept. 10-19 marks Welcoming Week, an initiative begun by Welcoming America, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that leads a movement of inclusive communities becoming more prosperous by ensuring everyone belongs. In 2016, the municipality of Princeton joined this initiative as a Welcoming Town, and each year the Department of Human Services teams up with the library […]


Twenty years since 9/11


This year marks the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, when terrorists hijacked four airplanes and turned them into missiles aimed at major U.S. landmarks. The attacks resulted in the deaths of nearly 3,000 people and continue to shape our world. The library has developed programs and resources to recognize this year’s anniversary. In assembling […]


September top 5 for under 5


We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children up to 5 years old and their families. 1000 Books Before Kindergarten Take the library’s 1000 Books Before Kindergarten pledge and instill the foundation for a lifelong love of reading with […]


Big books, small books, old books, new books


When I was a little girl, my grandfather gave me a copy of Richard Henry Dana, Jr.’s “Two Years Before the Mast.” This wasn’t his favorite book, in fact, he had never read it. Its sole purpose was to put a smile on my face when I saw the singular word written across the spine, […]


Community partner spotlight: Princeton Adult School


To extend our community outreach, the library partners with the many municipal, non-profit, and business organizations that make Princeton such an extraordinary town. This month, we spoke with Anne Brener, executive director of Princeton Adult School. As the library’s community engagement coordinator, and a former member of the board of Princeton Adult School, I can […]


Book anatomy


Some time ago I noticed a diagram of pieces of a book pinned up next to a colleague’s desk. She had found it via an online image search and kept it because in our line of work being able to refer to specific pieces of a book can be useful. For example, we may need […]


August top 5 for under 5


We invite you to check out this month’s PPL Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children up to five years old and their families. Summer Nights Series: Raya and the Last Dragon Presented in partnership with Princeton Shopping Center, this Summer Reading wrap-up event begins with an […]


Let reading color your world this summer


Celebrate the official start of summer at the library by joining our annual Summer Reading program, beginning June 15. Open to readers of all ages, we invite you to reflect, investigate and interact with the world around you and see how “Reading Colors Your World.” Children and teens who log at least 20 days of […]


Looking where you step


Looking down

On a January weekend when the day was too unexpectedly beautiful not to get a bit of sand in our shoes, my little family set off to find somewhere we had never been in our quarantine state of New Jersey. The path we took was largely unplanned and our destination unset. After recent days spent […]


Native American Heritage Month


Local Autumn scene

As we move into November and tune personal thoughts to our 2020 harvest celebrations, this month we also commemorate the heritage and history of the native peoples of North America. We’re featuring a selection of poetry, memoirs, history, and fiction from our collections, as well as related links to elibrary resources  and Indigenous People’s Day […]


Held together with thread


vintage sewing patterns and a Singer sewing machine from 1950s

Many of us now have the opportunity to explore new hobbies or get back in touch with old ones. Sewing clothes has been a creative and tactile outlet for me for quite some time. There’s complex thinking and problem solving involved when coaxing one piece into the correct position with another, and then getting everything […]


Library works


Virtual Princeton Public Library is open. While our building is off-limits for the community and staff, the business of the library moves along, with staff planning online events, curating digital collections, providing research assistance, and recommending reads. We aim to stay connected. In these homebound days, work is done on time we carve out of […]


Navigating COVID-19 uncertainty


photo of a woman thinking and looking at a laptop screen

When there is a lot of uncertainty in the world, it can be challenging to know where to turn or how to recognize that what you are reading, seeing, or hearing is accurate. Find comfort in knowing that the library is a trusted source to help you navigate through and connect to high-quality information. This […]


So many library books, so little time


If you’re anything like me, you sometimes get a little over-ambitious when it comes to checking out books from the library. You’re browsing the catalog, trying to find a new cookbook to bring home, and before you know it, you’ve put ten different things on hold–five cookbooks, a beautiful children’s graphic novel, a non-fiction book […]


A universe of sci-fi films


If you’ve been to the library at all in the past couple of months, you will have noticed the plethora of space-themed paraphernalia decorating our shelves, particularly on the children’s floor. Thanks to this year’s summer reading theme, “A Universe of Stories”—a nationwide theme selected by the Collaborative Summer Library Program—we at the Princeton Public […]

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