This Month on Martine

News from the White Plains Public Library
If you’re a library user, then you’ve seen some of the upheavals going on here at 100 Martine: walls going up, walls going down, collections—and staff members!—being relocated. We know it’s been a trial, and we thank you for your patience. But while renovating without moving to a different location creates headaches for all of us, it also saves funds—funds we have been able to invest into the Hub, our adult library on the first floor.

The good news is that last week we got the non-fiction collection back, as we reopened the central core of the first floor. What’s different? Well if you look up, you’ll see new lighting and a new ceiling. Hiding behind these are miles of brand new (and leak proof) pipes—not sexy, but necessary when you’re housing over 300,000 books. There are beautiful new, grand tables for writing the Great American Novel or studying for the LSATs; new furnishings in the study rooms; plenty of outlets; and amped up WiFi. The new books are back in their rightful place spread face out at the entrance to the Hub.

Over the next few weeks look for the arrival of comfortable seating as well as signage to help you navigate the floor. But where’s the café? Hang in there. We hope to be serving lattes, cappuccinos, or a cup of good old Joe by early fall.

Brian Kenney

Library Director

Five Questions for Sophie

Sophie is a registered therapy dog who volunteers as part of the Trove’s program “Who Let the Dogs In?” This weekly program gives children a chance to read aloud in a relaxed and non-judgmental atmosphere. It’s especially helpful with reluctant readers as well as students learning English—but everyone enjoys reading to Sophie! Sophie, now 14, along with her human companion Lynette Scherzer, has been volunteering twice a month for the past six years. We caught up with Sophie during her last visit.

What made you think of becoming a reading dog?
Before she retired, Lynette was a piano teacher. And she noticed how good I was with kids—while they waited for their lesson, I didn’t mind them petting me, even my ears! So Lynette thought that I might have a career as a therapy dog.

Can any dog become a therapy dog?
It takes a certain personality; you need to be calm but alert, and not excitable. I also went through several days of training and testing to be sure you are healthy, have the rights skills and temperament. This isn’t for any dog off the street—I’m certified!

So what do you do?
Let me tell you: learning to read is not so easy.  So I’m here to make it a little more fun. Kids come and read to me for about 15 or 20 minutes. I don’t judge, laugh, or criticize. I’m a good listener. And just look at this face—I’m a whole lot less intimidating that any adult. Lynette stays in the room, but the kids hardly notice her. They’re so excited to see me.

You seem to like the work.
It’s great to make a difference. They say kids that read to animals improve their reading levels while boosting their confidence and providing a sense of accomplishment.

Any favorite books?
I try not to have favorites. Although between you and me, enough with the bears! So many books about bears, and the truth is that bears are not really that nice. I prefer non-fiction. It’s good to learn something new. 

Book Talk…All Month Long

The health benefits of reading are myriad—ranging from lowering stress and decreasing depression to improving memory and making you more empathic . In fact, reading seems to do everything except make you thin (if it did, we’d be up to a book a day.)

But what makes the experience of reading even better is to share a book with others. Researchers have demonstrated that adults learn more when they have an opportunity to share their reading experiences with other readers—sometimes a different perspective can deepen understanding. Or we connect something in a book with experiences we have already had, creating new knowledge in the process.  

Which is why we offer many, different opportunities for book discussions every month. On May 2 and May 16 Slow Reading will discuss the short stories of Katherine Mansfield and Leo Tolstoy; this group really studies works in detail. On May 17, Book ‘Em, A M
ystery Book Group will share The Black Dahlia by James Ellroy, a gritty sojourn into 1940s Los Angeles. And on May 18 the Short Story Discussion will discuss “Lady’s Dream” by Tobias Wolff and “That in Aleppo Once…”
by Vladimir Nabokov—both from the collection Love Stories edited by Diana Secker Tesdell.

For more information, stop by or call the reference desk.

An Update on the Hub Campaign

The White Plains Library Foundation has secured more than three-quarters of its $500,000 fundraising goal for the Hub, our new adult area. Thanks to donations of all sizes and a unique public-private partnership, the first floor renovation is well on its way to completion in the fall. We could not have made it this far without broad support from library patrons, the City of White Plains, civic leaders, local businesses, community partners -- and the visionary anonymous philanthropists who donated $1 million to ensure the launch of this project.

But...we're still fundraising and need additional gifts to get to the finish line of this important capital campaign.  It's not too late to add your name to the roster of Hub donors and help strengthen the Library for years to come. To learn more about the permanent donor plaque, naming opportunities, and other ways to support the Hub, please call the Foundation at 914-422-1495 or visit:

Calling all Makers!

Are you a college student or recent graduate who is a maker, a DIY enthusiast, an artist, or interested in new and emerging technologies? If you also enjoy working with teens, and are interested in the Maker movement, then consider becoming a Maker Corps Member and lead a summer of making in The Edge, our library for teens.

The White Plains Public Library—in partnership with White Plains firm Argus Information and Advisory Services—has been accepted to be a Maker Corps site this summer. Maker Corps is an online professional development program that provides training and a community of support to youth-serving organizations as they design and implemWe will be hiring two Maker Corps Members, who will be expected to work from 15 to 20 hours a week. If this sounds like you click here to apply by May 15th.
ent summer maker education programming.
This means that all summer long The Edge will be holding STEM-related workshops and mini-camps for students who will be entering grades 7-12 in the fall.
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