New Li­brar­ian Joins Staff To Lead Escalon Branch

Escalon Times - - FRONT PAGE - By MARG JACK­SON mjack­son@escalon­times.com

A ca­reer in ed­u­ca­tion didn’t bring the sat­is­fac­tion Bri­anna An­der­son thought it would … but it did bring her to Escalon.

The new Escalon Branch Li­brar­ian made the move to Escalon from her pre­vi­ous post as a li­brary as­sis­tant in Lathrop, ar­riv­ing here a few weeks ago.

“This is my first li­brary gig,” she said of ac­cept­ing the post of head li­brar­ian. “It’s amaz­ing and nerve wrack­ing; I have a lot of new things to learn.”

When she first started her ca­reer, An­der­son worked in the teach­ing field. She got her teach­ing cre­den­tial and worked in Santa Cruz but soon dis­cov­ered that it wasn’t her true pas­sion.

“I loved the li­brary as a kid,” she ex­plained. “You’re sort of a teacher and you are help­ing the pub­lic, com­mu­ni­cat­ing with the cit­i­zens.”

Af­ter leav­ing the teach­ing field she con­tin­ued her school­ing in the li­brary field and then started sub­bing for the Stock­ton-San Joaquin Li­brary Sys­tem.

“I started out as a part-time sub, I was on call and I worked ev­ery­where,” An­der­son noted.

The part-time work even­tu­ally evolved into a full-time po­si­tion and she has spent the last year and a half as a li­brary as­sis­tant in Lathrop. When the op­por­tu­nity arose for a li­brar­ian in Escalon, she seized the chance to ap­ply.

“My brain is get­ting stretched in so many new di­rec­tions,” she said, not­ing that she is learn­ing as she goes and hopes to bring some “pos­i­tive changes” to the lo­cal li­brary branch.

She re­cently han­dled a Thurs­day morn­ing story time for kids and said she of­ten did that in Lathrop, so it was a com­fort­able task to fill in for li­brary as­sis­tant Amanda Clif­ford, who typ­i­cally hosts the story time ses­sions.

An­der­son said she has also put a new sur­vey out in the li­brary, seek­ing in­put from res­i­dents about what they like about the branch cur­rently and what other ser­vices and/or pro­grams they would like to see of­fered.

“All the staff mem­bers here are so won­der­ful,” An­der­son added of feel­ing at home quickly in her new sur­round­ings. “And the com­mu­nity has been very wel­com­ing.”

A cou­ple of ar­eas that An­der­son wants to ad­dress are build­ing up the teen and adult pro­grams. There are plenty of ac­tiv­i­ties aimed at the younger kids, she said, but she hopes to bring more pro­grams for the older li­brary users are well.

“I’m ask­ing them what they would take time out of their day to come see,” she ex­plained.

The li­brary does have a va­ri­ety of stan­dard pro­grams, from Thurs­day morn­ing story time for kids to the Thurs­day af­ter­noon Mak­erspace for teens. Pro­grams such as Sen­si­ble Yoga each Mon­day and Wed­nes­day at 5:30 p.m. and a Knit­ting group that meets Tues­days at 1 p.m. are also of­fered through the li­brary but An­der­son wants to see more.

She urged all ages to get in­volved with the on­go­ing Sum­mer Read­ing Club, which fea­tures spe­cial pro­grams and prizes for all age lev­els based on the num­ber of books read.

Next Wed­nes­day, July 18, a ‘Make Your Own Mara­cas’ pro­gram is sched­uled for 1:30 p.m. as part of the Sum­mer Read­ing Pro­gram and Mu­si­cal Robot is a spe­cial fea­ture sched­uled for Fri­day, July 27 at 3 p.m.

The new Escalon-Farm­ing­ton Gar­den Club meets at the li­brary on the first Thurs­day at 1 p.m. and the Scot­tish Club monthly meet­ing is hosted there the sec­ond Thurs­day of the month at 6 p.m.

Also, the Escalon Cham­ber of Com­merce has its monthly meet­ings there on the sec­ond Tues­day of the month at 6 p.m. and the Oak Val­ley Art So­ci­ety meets each third Satur­day of the month at 10 a.m.

All that is good, keep­ing the li­brary a vi­able part of the com­mu­nity, and An­der­son is hop­ing

that res­i­dents’ com­ments on the sur­vey will help the lo­cal branch be even more re­spon­sive.

The Escalon Li­brary is at 1540 Sec­ond St., and hours are Mon­days 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Tues­days 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.; Wed­nes­days 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Thurs­days 10 a.m. to noon and 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Fri­days noon to 5 p.m.; Satur­days 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“I’m very grate­ful to have this op­por­tu­nity,” An­der­son said.

MARG JACK­SON/THE TIMES

Set­ting up a dis­play in the chil­dren’s sec­tion at the Escalon Li­brary, new li­brar­ian Bri­anna An­der­son has made the move to Escalon from Lathrop.

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