Author Archives: Trey Granger

Third “Airtime With an Author” Event Welcomes Donis Casey

Local author Donis Casey was the latest local author to entertain Friends of the Scottsdale Public Library members with an hour long talk about her mystery novels on Friday, May 7 at Arabian Library.

Conis Casey
Author Donis Casey signs copies of her book for Friends members

The event was held outdoors on the patio with limited attendance due to COVID-19, and Casey spoke about how she got started writing, why she chose the mystery genre, and how she develops her characters across a series of novels.

Her Alafair Tucker mysteries feature a woman (Tucker) with 10 children, and each book in the series spotlights one of the children in the middle of the mystery. While most are set in 1910s Oklahoma, The Wrong Hill to Die On takes place in Arizona. Each book in the series also features recipes at the end related to the novel’s topic.

“It’s very hard to fool mystery readers, because if you read a lot of mysteries they know all your tricks,” Casey told the crowd. “That’s the fun of being a mystery writer is you have to try to fool the reader with a misdirect or a surprise.”

Casey also discussed her newest series, the Bianca Dangerous Hollywood mysteries. Her latest novel in this series, Valentino Will Die, came out earlier this year.

Due to summer weather, our next “Airtime with an Author” event won’t take place until the fall. These events are exclusive to Friends members, so be sure to join today so you don’t miss out on great local author presentations.

Friends Recognized in New Display Honoring Scottsdale History

Friends of Scottsdale Public Library is proud to be recognized as one of 15 organizations selected for “Celebrate Scottsdale Organizations,” a display opening this summer to acknowledge non-profits bringing “a uniqueness to Scottsdale.”

The permanent display will open at the end of June next to the Scottsdale Heritage Connection in Civic Center Library. This display will debut during the 70th anniversary of the incorporation of Scottsdale in 1951.

Honored organizations will receive a 2 foot by 4 foot panel in the final display to showcase pictures, significant programs, and their mission statement. It will be available for public viewing during normal Library hours.

An independent five member Selection Committee chose the honorees with criteria including:

  • Non-profit status
  • 30 years of longevity providing services to Scottsdale and special communities
  • A major event, fundraisers, and local citizens as members and volunteers

Other chosen organizations include Scottsdale Boys and Girls Clubs, McDowell Sonoran Land Trust, Scottsdale Leadership, Scottsdale Arts, Scottsdale Community Partners, Scottsdale Railroad and Mechanical Society, Scottsdale Sister Cities Association, Scottsdale Historical Society, HonorHealth Auxiliary, Scottsdale Charros, Scottsdale Rotary Cub, Scottsdale Jaycees, Arabian Horse Association, and Scottsdale Area Chamber of Commerce.

There will also be approximately 45 additional organizations featured in the final display, but those names have not been announced. Stay tuned for pictures once construction is underway.

Friends Prioritize 2nd Grade Library Card Campaign for Arizona Gives Day

Today is Arizona Gives Day, and this year the Friends of Scottsdale Public Library is raising money for one of our signature programs: the 2nd Grade Library Card Campaign.

We’ve set a goal to raise $1,000, which will allow us to provide a free backpack to 400 Scottsdale second graders who sign up for their first library card.

Each year, Scottsdale Public Library staff work with schools in Scottsdale and Paradise Valley to promote the program to as many second graders as possible. During the 2019-2020 school year, 234 second graders signed up for their first card, with 6,058 subsequent checkouts.

This is the first year the Friends has participated in Arizona Gives Day since 2018, but we raised over $900 through the early giving period that began on March 16. While you can donate to the Friends year-round through Arizona Gives Day, donations received today make us eligible for bonus prizes.

We received some extra promotion for Arizona Gives Day this year through an article in the April edition of Scottsdale Independent.

If you’d like to help us reach our goal, simply visit https://www.azgives.org/scottsdalelibraryfriends and click the green Donate button.

Appaloosa Branch Offers Self-Service Branch Access

Starting March 15, Scottsdale Public Library (SPL) card holders can utilize the new Pony Express service to access the Appaloosa Library branch without staff present.

Appaloosa PatronThis branch has been closed since March 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions, although all SPL branches offer drive-thru service for checking out materials.

Pony Express will allow cardholders in good standing to utilize public computers, browse items, and conduct normal SPL business in a safe and monitored environment.

You can currently register for Pony Express access by visiting the Appaloosa drive-thru service with a valid photo ID on Monday to Thursday from 10am to 6pm and Friday to Saturday from 1pm to 5pm.

To ensure safety, patrons must wear face coverings and keep a distance of six feet between each other while in the building. Hand sanitation stations will be available. For those needing assistance, they can dial the SPL help line at 480-312-READ (7323).

Pony Express accounts will need to be renewed annually, but registered users are able to bring guests under the age of 18.

UPDATE: Check out SPL Director Kira Peters’ interview with Arizona Horizons regarding this program.

Anne A. Wilson Shares Writing Journey with Friends Members

The second “Airtime with an Author” event welcomed Phoenix native Anne A. Wilson to address Friends members at Appaloosa Library on February 24.

Anne A. Wilson

Author Anne A. Wilson speaks with Friends members about her novel “Hover”

Wilson is an adventure fiction writer that gained inspiration from her time as a helicopter pilot for the US Navy.

Her hour long talk offered a unique perspective in that when she was a cadet at the US Naval Academy, it was less than 10 percent female.

Growing up with a math and science background, she maintained a journal during her time in the Navy that helped hone her writing skills and provide background research.

Anne’s two novels, Hover and Clear to Lift, both feature female protagonists that are Navy helicopter pilots. While the two books are unrelated, she is open to the idea of developing a series.

In addition to providing a background of her writing process and how she got started (see video below), Anne entertained the crowd with tales of her most notable rescues, including during the 1997 Lake Tahoe Basin flood.

“Airtime with an Author” events are exclusive to Friends members and hosted several times each year. Due to COVID-19, these events have thus far limited attendance to 15 people with mandatory mask wearing and an outdoor setting.

In November 2020, the Friends welcomed Scottsdale’s Karen Odden for the inaugural session. Stay tuned for details regarding the next Airtime with an Author event.

Friends Participate in Birdies for Charity

The “Greatest Show on Grass” will help raise money for Scottsdale Public Library this year, as Friends of Scottsdale Public Library (FSPL) will benefit from every birdie scored at the Waste Management Phoenix Open from February 1-7.

FSPL is participating in Birdies for Charity, sponsored by Thunderbirds Charities. Donors can pledge a fixed amount (as low as $.01) for each birdie achieved at the Phoenix Open, and 100 percent of the FSPL donors’ proceeds will benefit the Library.

Golfer

A golfer tees off at the famous 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale.

The Phoenix Open, despite the name, is played at TPC Scottsdale and is usually one of the most popular events on the PGA Tour. This year will have limited attendance due to COVID-19, so this is the next best way to get involved while supporting a great cause.

To join in on the fun, visit https://tinyurl.com/birdies2021 and click the Donate Now button. There are two options to pledge, either per birdie or a fixed amount (minimum $20).

As one of the higher scoring events on tour, it’s expected there will be 1,200 to 1,800 birdies scored at this year’s Phoenix Open. A pledge of $.01 with 1,500 birdies would result in a $15 donation.

All pledges must be received by 5pm on Sunday, February 7, 2021. Please share this information with your friends and golf lovers, as Thunderbirds will match a percentage of funds once we reach total donations of $500.

If you would prefer not to donate online, you can fill out and mail in this pledge form to:

Friends of the Scottsdale Public Library
PO Box 71
Scottsdale, AZ 85252

Author Karen Odden Entertains Friends Members at Exclusive Event

Karen Odden

Author Karen Odden addresses Friends members

The Friends welcomed best-selling mystery author Karen Odden to speak with a limited audience of Friends members at Appaloosa Library on Wednesday, November 18.

This event begins a recurring series called “Airtime with an Author,” where Friends members are treated to intimate conversations with authors.

Odden, a Scottsdale resident, spoke to the audience about her adventures in writing Victorian mysteries. This includes her most recent release, A Trace of Deceit.

Odden spoke for an hour about her experience as a mystery writer, her love of the Victorian era, and her passion for character development. She also autographed copies of her books.

Odden’s first book, the USA Today Bestseller A Lady in the Smoke, won the 2017 New Mexico-Arizona award for eBook Fiction. Her second book, A Dangerous Duet, won the New Mexico-Arizona book award for Historical Fiction in 2019.

Odden Book Signing

Author Karen Odden autographs books for Friends members

The Friends encountered difficulty staging events this year due to COVID-19. As a result, this event had attendance restricted to 15 people, mandatory mask wearing, and an outdoor setting on the patio at Appaloosa.

We look forward to hosting future “Airtime with an Author” events in the coming months. If you’d like to participate (and receive other benefits), you’ll need to become a member of the Friends.

Friends Sponsor 2020 Summer Reading Program

The Friends of the Scottsdale Public Library is proud to support this year’s Scottsdale Public Library Summer Reading Program (SRP), which will run from June 1 through August 1, 2020.

Designed to encourage literacy at all ages, kids, teens, and adults log each minute they read over two months online to earn points. The goal is to read at least 20 minutes each day to build a lifelong reading habit.

There will also be reading challenges and library programs with secret codes.

Many of the events will be held virtually this year due to the COVID-19 virus. These include yoga storytimes, Shark Week family storytime, a series with McDowell Sonoran Preserve, craft programs, and trivia games for teens and adults.

Kids can pick up a bilingual gameboard at Civic Center Library through the drive thru windows at the Appaloosa, Arabian and Mustang branches or curbside from Civic Center starting May 26, or at service desks when the Library reopens in early June. You can also download and print the gameboard through the SRP website.

Participants who complete the program will receive completion prize packets during August, while supplies last. The Friends contributed towards the purchase of this year’s prizes, which will include books, journals, stickers, and water bottles.

Former Friends’ President Receives 2020 Governor’s Heritage Heritage Honor Preservation Award

The Friends of the Scottsdale Public Library is proud to announce that former Board President Joan Fudala is receiving one of this year’s Governor’s Heritage Honor Preservation Awards, to be awarded virtually in June.

The awards are given annually since 1982 by the Arizona Preservation Foundation and State Historic Preservation Office to recognize outstanding achievements in preserving Arizona’s historic resources. They are awarded at the Arizona Historic Preservation Conference, which n 2018 took place in Scottsdale.

Fudala is also a member of the Scottsdale History Hall of Fame, and has authored numerous books on the history of Scottsdale. She served as President of the Friends’ Board from 2003 to 2004, and received a Spirit of Literacy Award from the Friends in 2014.

Recently, Fudala was a pivotal member of the Scottsdale Heritage Connection (SHC) campaign committee from 2017 to 2019. This group completed a $500,000 capital campaign to build the SHC space in Civic Center Library that permanently houses the written and visual history of Scottsdale for research and documentation purposes.

You can learn more about the Governor’s Heritage Honor Preservation Awards and see a list of current and former winners at the Arizona Preservation Foundation website.

Scottsdale Libraries to Go Fine-Free Starting July 1

Scottsdale City Council voted on Tuesday, April 7 to stop charging late fines on overdue Scottsdale Public Library materials effective July 1, 2020.

Scottsdale joins over 300 cities that will no longer charge late fines to Library patrons, although members will still be financially responsible for any lost or damaged items. The Friends would like to thank the Scottsdale Library Board for its efforts on researching and proposing this initiative in coordination with the Library.

In January 2019, the American Library Association (ALA) passed a resolution that urged libraries to scrutinize their fines programs and strengthen their funding support so they are not dependent on fines as a source of revenue.

ALA found that blocking library cards due to unpaid fines was a form of social inequity. Currently in Scottsdale, over 7,600 library cards are blocked, with a majority of the blocked cards from addresses south of Camelback Road.

The Friends supports the fine-free resolution and submitted an official comment to City Council in favor.

If you would like to help supplement some of the lost revenue from Scottsdale Public Library fines, please consider a Friends membership. All money raised from your tax-deductible donation supports Library events and programs.