Bánh xèo: a One Book One Valley pairing at Bird & Jim Restaurant

Chef Thomas Newsted, who was born in Việt Nam, has prepared a special entree to celebrate One Book One Valley, available starting January 7. Show your Library Card for 10% off (this entree only). Here are details, and Chef Thomas’s story

Bánh xèo

Bánh xèo ([ɓǎjŋ̟ sɛ̂w]) is a Vietnamese Crepe made with rice flour. The crepe(s) are cooked with pork belly, shrimp and designed to be rolled in a leafy lettuce such as green or red leaf lettuce filled with herbs like mint, basil, ngo gai (an herb reminiscent of mint and cilantro). In our case, we will be using cilantro, thai basil, mint and shiso.  Accompanied by a dipping sauce made up of; fish sauce, sugar, lime juice, shredded daikon, shredded carrot and chili paste. We will serve 3 small crepes per order with all of the fixings on the side. This can be enjoyed with a fork and knife, but traditionally is hand-held – like pizza.

Chef Thomas’s story

Chef Thomas writes: “I wanted to highlight a dish that incorporates all the parts, that embraces my childhood, life experiences and colonial French influence for a better part of a decade. My life started in Việt Nam until the age of 7, where I arrived in Biloxi, Mississippi. After 1 year, I moved to Florida to live with my Father whom is from Washington State, my second mother, Nancy whom is from North Carolina and here I am figuring out how everyone consumes different styles of food learning all of the differences that go along with that experience. Through life’s progress, hospitality became my career and life’s work, mainly through hotels and restaurants. Then I married my wife, Marisol whom is from Acapulco, Mexico, continuing to dive into different cultures, expanding upon what had been a trend of experiences. So this dish through the cooking methods of pork belly, French influence with crepe making and by name, herbs, aromatics, presentation and sharing experience, I felt was the best fit for the library event, highlighting Việt Nam through all of its evolution and influences.”

Thank you to Bird & Jim Restaurant and Chef Thomas for this culinary and literary crossroads!

One Book One Valley: January 2022

CLICK HERE to register for any of the programs in the listings below.

Local Library Logistics: Final 2022 Budget

by David Hemphill, Board Treasurer, Estes Valley Public Library District

            The Estes Valley Library District governing board voted to adopt the library’s final budget for 2022 as part of last Monday’s monthly meeting of the Library Trustees. The budget is prepared by library staff with a commitment to honor the public’s priorities and to utilize their experience in the prudent use of public funds. Both the Budget and the accompanying Budget Message are available online. We encourage you to review them at estesvalleylibrary.org.

Library Board Treasurer David Hemphill

            Budget planning is also guided by a 10-year strategic funding plan. This plan helps better assure continuity of services within year-to-year revenue fluctuations. Surplus revenues are held in the Long-Term Operating Reserve to help meet future operating expenses. In addition, a minimum Capital Replacement Reserve has been designated for facility maintenance and improvement expenditures.

            By adopting the 2022 budget, the Estes Valley Library District Board of Trustees will provide for the accountability of the library’s operations and ensure that the budget priorities are aligned with the library’s Strategic Plan adopted in 2018. The 2022 budget includes funds to engage the public in a Community Needs Assessment to update the strategic plan and set future priorities. The library feels this is crucial as it adapts to the changing needs of library patrons and the community in response to the challenging environment of recent times.  

            The library is fortunate to have the outstanding support of the Estes Valley Library Friends & Foundation. Their fundraising includes the successful Cliffhanger Used Books located next to the post office. Their efforts will result in providing 13% of the Library District’s total projected revenue for 2022 ensuring vital support for the library’s strategic goals:

  • Focus on Early Literacy
  • Enable Lifelong Learning
  • Enable a Greater Sense of Community
  • Deliver Materials on a Personalized Basis
  • Grow Internally to Succeed Externally 

The Estes Valley Library strives to remain flexible to meet the community’s evolving needs by providing professional service, planning for future sustainability and being compliant with changing requirements of health regulations. The library is a cornerstone of the community’s intellectual freedom and a great place to learn, meet and explore, in person or virtually. It is an honor to support and donate to the Estes Valley Library. Contact the Library or the Friends & Foundation for questions or to learn how you can contribute.

This season … check out some holiday magic

Here’s a checklist of Library activities and collections to brighten this special season. Read and revel! Listen and imagine!

All aboard … The Polar Express

Enjoy readings of The Polar Express by local storytellers, on our YouTube channel. Settle in and watch with the whole family:

Check out holiday books, movies, and audio

Holiday books and movies for digital download — new to digital? Start here or give us a call

Visit the Library to see our table display of holiday books. And you’ll find a huge selection of picture books for kids.

Download holiday novelsmusiccrafts, or recipes.

Holiday Hours

The Library is closed on Friday and Saturday, December 24 and 25. Closing at 3 PM on Friday, December 31 and closed on Saturday, January 1. Open regular hours all other days this holiday season. Come browse for some holiday magic!

Cliffhanger Used Books

Open 10 AM to 4 PM daily. Shop for gently-used books, movies, and audio. Colorado-themed books are on sale in December: $2 hardcover and $1 paperback, plus tax.

Saturday, Nov. 27:

the Library is OPEN regular hours today from 10 AM to 5 PM.

Finding common ground, one conversation at a time

by Joanna Stensland, Library Administration & HR Assistant

Picture this scenario: two people are on opposing sides of an issue. Each is fully convinced they’re right. They forcefully state their convictions. But neither is truly listening to the other. Maybe you’ve seen it with individuals or organizations, stuck in stalemate and antagonism. In today’s frequently polarized climate, how do we even begin to talk with those with whom we disagree? 

Joanna Stensland

Fortunately, there is a pathway into communication that connects us: it’s called Estes Valley Community Conversations (EVCC), a collaboration between Estes Valley Restorative Justice Partnership and the Estes Valley Library. The mission: to improve public communication, promote active community problem-solving and elevate conversations in the Estes Valley. This means that when, as a community, we are faced with difficult issues, we can engage, collaboratively and productively. The vision of EVCC: a kind community based on respect and collaborative problem-solving. 

So how is Estes Valley Community Conversations pursuing this mission and vision? EVCC provides space for everyone to have a voice, learning with–and from–each other. EVCC provides a framework for dialogue and building understanding. By examining critical topics and issues, these community conversations create a restorative environment where everyone listens and everyone feels they are being heard. 

EVCC is using two successful models for effective dialogue. One is Living Room Conversations, where each participant has a chance to listen and be heard, on a range of topics. Several conversations just happened as part of Conflict Resolution Month. The next conversation explores the idea and concepts of Restorative Justice, on November 16 at 4 pm (sign up at estesvalleylibrary.org).

Another model is Public Deliberation. In these conversations, participants discuss “wicked problems”: issues where competing values are so strong, solutions seem impossible. Through the Public Deliberation process, new awareness emerges for all, with high potential for better decision-making and solutions.

Anyone interested in learning more–and helping guide future Public Deliberation events–is encouraged to attend a two-part training on Friday, November 5 and 12, from 8 am to noon each day. Find out more and apply through EVRJP at www.estes.org/restorativejustice. To find out more about the Estes Valley Community Conversations program and partnership, go to www.estes.org/communityconversations. These efforts may not change the world. But locally, and together, we can create the kind of community we all want to live in.

All-New Youth Events

Game night, after-school art, hands-on Maker projects, Book vs. Movie — and much more. Ages 6 through 17.

[ Find out more ]

Find out more
October is Conflict Resolution Month

Programs to celebrate collaboration, problem-solving,
civility, and meaningful conversations



Celebrating Library Love in 2021

On Friday, October 1 at 6 PM, we celebrate an essential group of people: the library lovers who are our donors and caring supporters. Join us for the annual meeting of the Estes Valley Library Friends & Foundation, open to current members, as well as new members who sign up in September.

Current members of the Library Friends & Foundation: click here to sign up for October 1. Not yet a current member? It’s easy to make your annual or recurring gift online through this link.

Library Friends & Foundation memberships provide a margin of excellence that enables the library to be a center of learning and creativity, a source of joy, and a champion of youth and early literacy. As part of this year’s Annual Meeting, we welcome Dr. Harley Rotbart, author of No Regrets Living: 7 Keys to a Life of Wonder and Contentment.

No Regrets Living is a proactive, 7-step plan to help us better appreciate what we have in our lives, and take greater pride in what we’ve done with our lives—without spending precious time and energy wishing things had turned out differently. The book leads us to see the world through a lens of appreciation for the magnificence around us, which in turn helps us accommodate those not-so-magnificent moments in our lives.

Woven into the timeless message of the book are especially timely observations on the COVID-19 pandemic from Dr. Rotbart’s expert perspective as an infectious diseases physician, including coping mechanisms and paths for going forward as individuals and as a society.

Once signed up, we’ll keep you posted on details regarding the location.

Questions? Email Sarah Walsh at swalsh@estesvalleylibrary.org

College Readiness: it begins with a plan

Thinking about college can feel overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be. If you’re a young person exploring your future—or know someone who is—you can ease the anxiety by creating a plan, with some help from a local expert. With a bit of advance preparation, you’ll be more likely to find that perfect school and set yourself up for success each step of the way.

During this back-to-school season, the Library is once again hosting a series of programs and one-on-one appointment times for anyone considering college—parents and grandparents are invited too!

One-on-one appointments are now available for sign-up. Click Here to find available times. Each session is one hour, using the online Zoom platform.

In addition, students and families can sign up for any of the upcoming workshops, each focused on a special component of the college planning process. Next workshop is:

Financial Aid — Sunday, January 23

Did you know that there are more than 4000 different colleges and universities out there? Students can narrow down their preferred schools by creating a personal checklist of what is most important. Location? Choice of majors? Large or small campus? Extracurricular activities they might enjoy? It’s different for everyone.

All appointments and workshops are led by retired college administrator Kaye Orten, who brings her years of experience in the selection, application and admissions processes to benefit local students and their families. Orten has helped the Library develop and refine its college planning workshops over the last 5 years.

Additional dates to remember are October 19 through 21, this year’s free college application days to Colorado’s public universities and colleges, along with many private ones in the state.

Important Resources you can access here:

Watch a College Planning Video with local expert Kaye Orten

College COVID-19 Impacts

College General Planning Calendar

College Comparison Worksheet

College Planning Websites

College planning can—and should—be exciting. We’re happy to help our local young people find their pathways to confidence, success and happiness.