Programa de Lectura de Veran
May 10, 2022 | Laura Lizardi

El verano se está acercando y también los programas de lectura de verano 2022 del Sistema de Bibliotecas del Condado de Orange, del cúal este año, el tema y inspiración es... Un Océano de... READ MORE

Mental Health Awareness Month - Q&A with Sumer Strawbree
May 4, 2022 | Caitlin Hill

Sumer Strawbree is a middle school student in Central Florida and the author and illustrator of two coloring books Black, Brown and Beautiful and Glow Up. She has a third book on the way called My Career Glow Up. We caught up with her for... READ MORE

Make a Splash at This Year’s Adult Summer Reading Events
May 2, 2022 | Andrea Jackson

Grab your friends and make a splash while attending this year’s Adult Summer Reading programs and events! There’s something for every fish, mermaid and shark to enjoy. The Oceans of Possibilities are bountiful... READ MORE

From the Interim Director, May 2022
May 1, 2022 | Steve Powell

It’s hard to believe, but it’s already time for registration to open for the library’s annual Summer Reading Program. This year’s program theme is Oceans of Possibilities, and we’re inviting everyone in the community... READ MORE

Mental Health Awareness Month - Q&A with Jessica Daly
May 1, 2022 | Andrea Jackson

Jessica Daly, faculty librarian and assistant professor with AdventHealth University, sat with us to discuss the importance of mental health awareness. In this interview, she opens up about her experience as both a caregiver and librarian,... READ MORE

National Bike Month - Q&A with Courtney Reynolds
April 25, 2022 | Scottie Campbell - Marketing Director - reThink Your Commute

May is National Bike Month, and OCLS will be hosting a series of webinars on commuting by bicycle presented by ... READ MORE

Adult Summer Reading is Back!
April 11, 2022 | Andrea Jackson

Join Orange County Library System on an adventure as we kick off Adult Summer Reading and the return of in-person programs! Registration begins May 2 and will create Oceans of Possibilities for participants.... READ MORE

From the Interim Director, April 2022
April 1, 2022 | Steve Powell

National Library Week is April 3–9, 2022. It’s a week to celebrate libraries and all the contributions they make to the community.

Aside from promoting reading and literacy, libraries impact communities in so many... READ MORE

Q&A with Adrianna Cuevas. Mayor Buddy’s Book Club – End of Book Party Wednesday, April 20, 4 p.m.
March 29, 2022 | Jessica Pinkowski

Adrianna Cuevas is a first-generation Cuban American originally from Miami, Florida. She is the award-winning author of several middle-grade novels for young readers including... READ MORE

From the Interim Director, March 2022
March 1, 2022 | Steve Powell

Last year, a member of our Youth Services staff was reaching out to local businesses to ask them if they’d be interested in supporting the library’s Summer Reading Program. We always receive a warm response from our local... READ MORE

Women’s History Month: Knitting Espionage - Grandma’s Knitting a Scarf. Or is She?
February 28, 2022 | Vanya Walker

Women’s contributions to the great wars of the 20th century stretch beyond keeping happy on the home front, nursing and factory work. Women of all ages knitted to facilitate... READ MORE

Pilar Winter Hill
February 1, 2022 | Caitlin Hill

At just 15 years old, Pilar Winter Hill is an accomplished violinist and children’s book author who is passionate about classical music and being a positive role model. She was first introduced to the violin at age 6, and she’s... READ MORE

Q&A with Renita Hunt
January 31, 2022 | Sarah Fisk

Renita Hunt is an empowerment speaker and marketing communications executive. Her robust corporate marketing career began as a library page at 14 years old. She holds an MBA from University of Phoenix and a BA in Public Relations from... READ MORE

From the Interim Director, February 2022
January 31, 2022 | Steve Powell

We’ve experienced a lot of change at Orange County Library System over the past two years. The pandemic forced us to rethink what it meant to be a library, how we serve our community and how to remain relevant during an unprecedented time. Now, we’re looking at a change in... READ MORE

COHS graduate on stage at their commencement ceremony holding their High School Diploma with graduation speaker.
January 24, 2022 | OCLS Community Relations Team

Orange County Library System is proud to present scholarship opportunities for adults to Career Online High School (COHS) with their residential library card. Geared toward adults who never... READ MORE

Zora Neale Hurston Events at Eatonville Branch to Take Place as Scheduled
January 21, 2022 | Erin Sullivan

Although the Association to Preserve Eatonville Community has announced that the Zora! Fest 2022 has been rescheduled due to concerns about COVID, Orange County Library System will host its... READ MORE

Farewell to Mary Anne Hodel - Director/CEO of Orange County Library System Retires After 20 Years of Service
January 21, 2022 | OCLS Staff

January 2022 marks the end of an important chapter in the story of Orange County Library System. After 20 years at the helm of the organization, Director/CEO Mary Anne Hodel retires after the January 13 board meeting.

When she came to the library in 2002, Hodel says... READ MORE

Graphic featuring two children reading a book. Text box says, "#OCLSReads Early Childhood Literacy Calendars."
January 11, 2022 | OCLS Staff

Now available in English and Spanish! Our 2022 Early Learning Calendar includes twelve months of learning activities, book lists and nursery rhymes. One side has a calendar with a fun skills-building activity for every day of the month, and the other contains supplementary... READ MORE

ipad on a red blanket with a the cover of "A Time for Mercy" by Thomas Grisham pulled up.
January 7, 2022 | OCLS Community Relations Team

From your favorite fiction authors to Frozen II, Orange County Library System customers read a surprisingly diverse selection of titles, DVDs and CDs in 2021. Here were the most popular checkouts from across the system this year: 

 

Adult Fiction

... READ MORE
Zora Neale Hurston: The Storyteller and Her Town - Q&A with Author Rae Chesny
January 3, 2022 | Sara Brown

Award-winning social expert and author Rae Chesny will be joining us at Eatonville Branch to host a three-day event series called Zora Neale Hurston: The... READ MORE

Graphic that says, "Best Books of the Year, As Chosen by a 7 and 4-Year-Old" featuring the children reading in and next to a bookcase.
December 29, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

It’s not surprising that the children of a librarian are enormous readers. Am I required to bring them home at least two books each, every day I go to work? Yes. Do they tell me exactly which books they love, and which ones are a disappointment? Absolutely. Do they make use... READ MORE

Two parents and their three children enjoying an in-person event where they enjoyed face paining and were giving balloon animals.
December 27, 2021 | Laura Lizardi

El año nuevo 2022, será un año lleno de cambios, oportunidades y logros. Las bibliotecas del Condado de Orange harán cambios para que la comunidad tenga nuevas oportunidades y alcancen sus metas. En enero del 2022 las bibliotecas comenzarán con eventos y clases presenciales;... READ MORE

DIY Film Festival: Ruffing It
December 27, 2021 | Mike Donohue

Throughout January, Orange County Library System is hosting a diverse range of events celebrating Jack London’s adventure classic,... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: COVID-19
December 18, 2021 | Mike Donohue

The most important events in Orange County Library System history are often those that dramatically improve or expand library service:

The 2022 NEA Big Read is Jack London’s The Call of the Wild
December 7, 2021 | Silence Bourn

NEA Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and Midwest designed to broaden our understanding of our world, our communities and ourselves through the joy of sharing a good book. This year,... READ MORE

From the Director, December 2021
December 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

Our Local Wanderer program launched with a simple premise: Arts and culture are vital to the health and well-being of a thriving community, and everyone should... READ MORE

From the Director, January 2022
December 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

For almost two years now, we have been telling you about all of the ways you can take advantage of your library at home. From home delivery to live... READ MORE

DIY Film Festival: National Native American Heritage Month
November 17, 2021 | Mike Donohue

National Native American Heritage Month marks the perfect occasion to celebrate the sizable cultural contributions of Native and Indigenous actors, creators and storytellers to the history of American film.... READ MORE

Orange County Library System Offers Local Adults Scholarships to Earn Diploma Through Career Online High School
November 12, 2021 | Erin Sullivan

Orange County Library System is providing scholarships to adults in Orange County to earn a... READ MORE

From the Director, November 2021
November 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

It was this month 100 years ago that the first seeds of Orange County Library System were planted. A retired police inspector from Waverly, New York named Captain Charles... READ MORE

Make Your Own Candy Science Experiments!
October 18, 2021 | Patrick Green

Likely the most important development in the area of science remains the ability to make everyone’s favorite snack: candy. In this post, you will learn about three different types of candy that you can make from the comfort of your kitchen. Just be careful. These experiments... READ MORE

Duke Energy Foundation Grant - A Summer Success Story
October 15, 2021 | Matthew Blood

Overcoming the digital divide the gap between those with access to... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: What Happened to What Happened To Forrester?
October 11, 2021 | Mike Donohue

It’s a dark and stormy night and you’re but days away from finishing your library book. But, what’s this? Something stirs on the check-out receipt you’ve creased into a bookmark: It’s the dreaded due date!

You watched helplessly for weeks as the date crept slowly, but... READ MORE

Celebración de la Herencia Hispana
October 6, 2021 | Laura Lizardi

Este mes estamos celebrando la Herencia Hispana y las bibliotecas del Condado Orange presentan varios eventos educativos y culturales para nuestra comunidad, que van desde cómo hacer un buen... READ MORE

Q&A with Horror Author Grady Hendrix
October 4, 2021 | Brian Haynes

New York Times bestselling author Grady Hendrix has dabbled in nonfiction, screenwriting, film criticism and founding film festivals. His novels include ... READ MORE

From the Director, October 2021
October 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

When this pandemic first started, I remember having conversations about how we could best serve customers, even though we couldn’t invite them to gather in our buildings for storytimes, author talks and computer classes. Our team hustled to find the right tools to convert... READ MORE

DIY Film Fest: Baseball
September 10, 2021 | Mike Donohue

Chart baseball’s evolution from English bat-and-ball game to America’s national pastime in America’s Game: The History of Baseball, a new exhibition now on display at Orlando Public Library.

Then, sit back... READ MORE

Text: Got Your Card? September is National Library Card Sign-up Month. Picture: An African American family smiling as they receive their library cards.
September 9, 2021 | Wayne Middleton

Every September, Orange County Library System joins public libraries throughout the country to celebrate National Library Card Sign-up Month. This event is the perfect... READ MORE

From the Director, September 2021
September 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

In our August issue, you may have noticed that we announced a gradual return to in-person events starting in September. That announcement was made before the rapid rise in coronavirus cases in Florida. Out of caution and concern for the safety of our customers and staff, the... READ MORE

Emergency Rental Assistance Program Office Hours Available at Library Branches 
August 16, 2021 | Erin Sullivan

Orange County Library System is hosting Orange County Emergency Rental Assistance  Program  “office hours” from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at select library branches for the remainder of August. Orange County... READ MORE

Overnight Science Experiments to Try at Home!
August 16, 2021 | Patrick Green

Due in no small part to the slow organic processes of our natural world, some scientific experiments demand more than the prescribed 30 to 40 minutes of a library event. Some require much more time to occur. Listed below are instructions on how to perform three awesome... READ MORE

Lake Nona & Horizon West Library Developments Announcement
August 13, 2021 | OCLS Staff

Orange County Library System’s Board of Trustees, the City of Orlando and Orange County have agreed to pursue a plan to work together to build new library branches in Horizon West and Lake Nona. Both communities have been requesting that the library build new branches to... READ MORE

Five Shonen Jump Manga Recommendations!
August 9, 2021 | Patrick Green

With Demon Slayer: The Movie – Mugen Train (2020) sweeping the Japanese and... READ MORE

Bringing Readers Together Through Mayor Buddy’s Book Club
August 4, 2021 | Silence Bourn

Throughout the year, Orange County Library System,... READ MORE

From the Director, August 2021
August 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

Nothing goes hand-in-hand better than schools and libraries – two institutions dedicated to learning, growth and development. That’s why, every August, we like to feature back-to-school events designed to help parents and kids... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: West Oaks Branch and Genealogy Center
July 30, 2021 | Mike Donohue

On August 8, 2001, West Oaks Branch opened its doors for the very first time. Twenty years later, the branch continues to provide integral library services to the residents of Ocoee and Western Orange County... READ MORE

International Year of Peace and Trust: I Am Malala
July 12, 2021 | Scottie Campbell
Q&A with a Manatee Conservationist
July 9, 2021 | Marianne Vitale

Photo Credit: Save the Manatee Club

 

We Floridians love manatees and, since the theme for the Summer Reading Program this year is Tales & Tails, you can participate in several manatee-focused... READ MORE

DIY Film Fest: Explore Florida
July 7, 2021 | Mike Donohue

In July, Orange County Library System will host Explore Florida, a series of events which survey Florida’s rich history and cultural traditions. In concert with this series, we’ve selected a number of films – all of which are available for free through the library’s... READ MORE

Q&A with Sunshine State Author Deborah Hopkins
July 5, 2021 | Jessica Pinkowski

Deborah Hopkinson is the award-winning author of more than 60 books for young readers including picture books, middle grade... READ MORE

From the Director, July 2021
July 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

There’s nothing that brings a library to life like the smiles we see on the faces of children and families who come to our live events. We haven’t been able to see those smiles in person in nearly a year and a half, as we’ve held nearly all of our events and programs online... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Remembering Glenn F. Miller (1937–1996)
June 14, 2021 | Mike Donohue

On November 1, 1970, Library Director Clara Wendel retired having served 27 years as head of Orange County Library System. She was succeeded by... READ MORE

Q&A with a Sloth Conservationist. Photo Credit: Justin Mott/Kindred Guardians Project
June 9, 2021 | Marianne Vitale

Monique Pool is the founder of Green Heritage Fund Suriname. The foundation’s mission is to move all Surinamers to make wise decisions for the sustainable use of natural resources. This month, Monique will share... READ MORE

The Story of Pride
June 4, 2021 | Scottie Campbell

In the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, the Stonewall Inn in the... READ MORE

Fè timoun ou yo aprann pandan tout vakans ete a avèk Pwogram Lekti Ete a
June 2, 2021 | Jennifer Schock & Claude Tido

Byento Lekòl pral fèmen, epi elèv yo pral jwi vakans ete yo. Pandan ke vakans ete a se yon bon moman pou yo pran plezi ak detann, konsa tou li kapab fè yo pèdi sa yo te aprann pandan lane lekòl la. Ki pi bon fason pou ede pitit ou yo kenbe ladrès akademik ak konesans yo te... READ MORE

From the Director, June 2021
May 31, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

June is here, and that means that our annual Summer Reading Program is about to kick into high gear, with hundreds of events, programs, camps and classes for kids and adults. Just like last year, all programs are virtual, so you can... READ MORE

Powering Bright Minds
May 24, 2021 | Luis Rivera

Orange County Library System (OCLS) is one of 23 organizations in Florida to receive a grant from the Duke Energy Foundation, which provides philanthropic support to communities where... READ MORE

Orange County Library System Wins Library of the Year Award
May 21, 2021 | Erin Sullivan

Orange County Library System (OCLS) has been named the 2021 Library of the Year by the Florida Library Association, a statewide organization that promotes excellence in Florida libraries. The honor recognizes OCLS and its staff for... READ MORE

#OCLSReads Books for Summer
May 21, 2021 | Chris Neumann and Ruben Cortes and Latoya Richards-Mozell

It seemed just a few weeks ago that we were all counting down to say goodbye to 2020 – with hopes that 2021 might be the balm to soothe the scars of a hard year – and here we are staring at a new season on the horizon. 2021 has already had its ups and downs, but it’s safe to... READ MORE

#OCLSReads: Teen Books for Summer 2021
May 19, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

Every year we make a recommended summer reading list for teens, and this year is no different! Get your summer started off right with these recommended tales!

 

... READ MORE

#OCLSReads: Early Learning Books for Summer 2021
May 17, 2021 | Stacy Lawson

The 2021 Early Learning Summer Reading List is now available! This booklist covers a lot of ground, serving parents of children ages 0-5—a wide range of abilities! One thing all young children have in common is their hunger for learning. Capitalizing on the opportunity to... READ MORE

Q&A with Emily Coughlan, Albin Polasek Museum Curator
May 7, 2021 | Josh Shidel

For the readers who haven’t had a chance to visit the Polasek Museum how would you describe it?

Founded in 1961, the Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens preserves the over 200 piece collection of world-renowned... READ MORE

DIY Film Festival: Rescue and Survival Movies
May 5, 2021 | Mike Donohue

On May 22, Orlando Science Center will open their newest exhibition, Rescue. Visitors can learn about the work of emergency rescue teams including rescue techniques, the details surrounding emergency situations and the various life-saving... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Art!
April 30, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

Let’s read, sing, and make some art! These activities are based on Every Child Ready to Read, which helps our friends learn pre-reading skills. We'll cover Reading, Writing, Talking, Singing and Playing.

 

TALKING... READ MORE

From the Director, May 2021
April 29, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

It was only a year ago that Orange County Library System released a statement letting our community know that our library system stands for equality, inclusion and compassion for... READ MORE

Top Five Most Spoken Languages in Orlando
April 19, 2021 | Patrick Green

After a whole year of COVID-19 quarantine, you have no doubt mastered several different hobbies, or became an expert in the field of online programs. It won’t be too long before you’ll be free to unleash... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Gardening!
April 16, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

This week, in part of our celebration of the book Lab Girl, we’re going to learn flowers and gardening!  So, get out your shovel, and let’s dig in! These activities are based on... READ MORE

DIY Film Festival: National Poetry Month
April 7, 2021 | Mike Donohue

Celebrate Poetry Month with films from our digital section.
Or request them through free home delivery, 
There’s quite a large selection.
Either way works 
For they’re just some of the perks 
Of Orange County Library System’s movie collection.

... READ MORE
Girl Scouts of Citrus - Library Love Patch
April 2, 2021 | Caitlin Hill

This April, Girl Scouts of Citrus Council and nonmembers can earn a Library Love patch with Orange County Library System by completing a self-lead program. The objective of Library... READ MORE

From the Director, April 2021
April 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

We have a lot to celebrate this spring. First of all, there’s the ever-widening availability of COVID-19 vaccines to those who want them. As of this writing, the state has made the vaccine available to people 50 and over, and Orange County has taken the additional step of... READ MORE

Bestselling Author Angie Thomas Opens OBF
March 31, 2021 | Sarah Fisk

Angie Thomas’s debut novel, The Hate U Give, has been on the New York Times... READ MORE

International Year of Peace and Trust: The Good Neighbor: The Life And Work Of Fred Rogers
March 31, 2021 | Scottie Campbell

In September of 2019, the United Nations adopted a resolution to designate 2021 as the International Year of Peace & Trust. The UN’s resolution “underlined that the International Year constitutes a means of... READ MORE

Q&A with Chris Grabenstein - Home Sweet Motel - One Book, One Community - Shelf Centered
March 26, 2021 | Scottie Campbell & Mike Donohue

One Book, One Community encourages communities to come together through the reading and discussion of a common book. This year, Orlando Sentinel selected ... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Airplanes!
March 26, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

In honor of Women’s History Month, each Preschool Fun blog post this month will tie in with a famous woman! Today we’ll learn about... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Monkeys and Jane Goodall!
March 19, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

In honor of Women’s History Month, each preschool fun blog post this month will tie in with a famous woman! Today we’ll start with Jane Goodall... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Sorosis Women's Club
March 15, 2021 | Mike Donohue

In 1893, 10 Orlando women gathered to organize a study and social group. They named their group the Sorosis Club, after the Latin word for sisterhood, and shortly thereafter began meeting regularly at... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Sesame Street!
March 12, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

Can you tell me how to get to Sesame Street? This week, inspired by the library’s weekly... READ MORE

Hope Jahren's Lab Girl is This Year's Big Read
March 3, 2021 | Stephanie Lum

The NEA Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts designed to broaden our understanding of our world, our communities and ourselves through the joy of sharing a... READ MORE

From the Director, March 2021
March 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

March marks one year since the pandemic truly hit home for us. On March 18, 2020, our libraries temporarily closed to the public so we could figure out how to keep our staff and customers safe. We had no idea at that time that our buildings would be closed for six weeks, and... READ MORE

International Year of Peace and Trust: The Dog Who Lost His Bark
February 28, 2021 | Scottie Campbell

In September of 2019, the United Nations adopted a resolution to designate 2021 as the International Year of Peace & Trust. The UN’s resolution “underlined that the International Year constitutes a means of... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Bears!
February 26, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

I’m so excited I can bear-ly take it! For today’s theme is ... bears! These activities are based on Every Child Ready to Read, which helps our friends learn pre-reading skills. We'll cover Reading, Writing, Talking, Singing and... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Love!
February 12, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

You know who I love? All of you! Let’s celebrate LOVE this week! These activities are based on Every Child Ready to Read, which helps our friends learn pre-reading skills. We'll cover Reading, Writing, Talking, Singing and... READ MORE

Books About Love for Preschoolers
February 8, 2021 | Lauren Mathur
DIY Film Festival: Valentine's Day
February 5, 2021 | Mike Donohue
 
“The sight of lovers feedeth those in love”
5 Questions with Beverly Jenkins
February 3, 2021 | Scottie Campbell

Beverly Jenkins is a bestselling author of historical and contemporary romance novels, most often focusing on 19th Century African American life. She has received multiple awards including the 2017... READ MORE

Window World of Central Florida Donates $50,000 to Support OCLS Summer Reading Program
February 1, 2021 | Erin Sullivan

Window World of Central Florida, a locally owned provider of window and door replacement based in Orlando, ... READ MORE

From the Director, February 2021
February 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

One positive thing that has come out of this pandemic has been some new opportunities available to us due to our extensive use of virtual programming. Orange County Library System used to be an entirely in-person operation –... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Snow!
January 29, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

It rarely snows in Florida, but that doesn’t mean we can’t pretend! These activities are based on Every Child Ready to Read, which helps our friends learn pre-reading skills. We'll cover Reading, Writing, Talking, Singing and... READ MORE

Six Facts About Braille for Braille Literacy Month 
January 20, 2021 | Luis Rivera

January is Braille Literacy Month, which also honors Louie Braille (born on January 4, 1809), creator of the braille system. Braille created... READ MORE

Barbershop Books Fosters Reading Among Young Black Boys
January 18, 2021 | Scottie Campbell

Alvin Irby was getting a haircut when inspiration struck. One of his students was also at the barbershop, clearly bored. “He should be practicing his reading,” Alvin thought to himself. That thought led to Barbershop Books.

... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Captain Albertson's Gift
January 15, 2021 | Mike Donohue

One hundred years ago, a private citizen donated his personal library to the City of Orlando. The rest is history.

The year 1921 was an important one for Orlando: Before Disney World had made Central Florida a landmark tourist destination, Orlando was an up-and-coming... READ MORE

The Book Nerd Community Thrives on Instagram
January 13, 2021 | Scottie Campbell

One of the benefits of social media is being able to find people with the same interest as you, and, let’s face it, reading can often feel like a solitary habit. Type “bookstagram” into the search bar on Instagram and you’ll... READ MORE

Best Books Of The Year, as Chosen by a 3 and 6 Year Old
January 8, 2021 | Lauren Mathur

I have two very opinionated readers. The eldest, L, has helped me make these lists the past two years. The youngest, M, is now joining the blogging game and is excited to share her favorite books that were published in 2020.

As noted in previous years, these are... READ MORE

Top 10 Circulating Titles of 2020
January 7, 2021 | Mike Donohue

From modern classics, to the latest in popular fiction, Orange County Library System customers read a surprisingly diverse selection of titles in 2020. Here... READ MORE

From the Director, January 2021
January 1, 2021 | Mary Anne Hodel

To say that 2020 was a tumultuous year would be a gross understatement, so I think it’s only natural that most of us are hoping for a fresh start in 2021. While the pandemic continues to impact our lives as we ring in this new year, I hope you won’t let that dampen your... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Snowmen!
December 31, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Do you want to build a snowman? I do! Let’s go have some fun!

These activities are based on Every Child Ready to Read, which helps our friends learn pre-reading skills. We'll cover Reading, Writing, Talking, Singing and... READ MORE

International Year of Peace and Trust
December 31, 2020 | Scottie Campbell

In September of 2019, the United Nations adopted a resolution to designate 2021 as the International Year of Peace & Trust. The UN’s resolution “underlined that the International Year constitutes a means of... READ MORE

#OCLSReads: 2021 Early Childhood Literacy Calendars
December 28, 2020 | OCLS Staff

Now available! Our 2021 Early Learning Calendar, which includes twelve months of learning activities, book lists and nursery rhymes. One side has a calendar with a fun skills-building activity for every day of the month, and the other contains supplementary content like... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Penguins!
December 11, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

This week let’s waddle like a penguin! These activities are based on Every Child Ready to Read, which helps our friends learn pre-reading skills. We'll cover Reading, Writing, Talking, Singing and Playing.

 

... READ MORE

Your Guide to Random Fandom Week
December 2, 2020 | Carey Major

Starting on Sunday, December 6, Orange County Library System will be hosting a weeklong set of virtual events as part of Random Fandom Week, where we will celebrate our favorite fandoms. You’re probably asking yourself, “What... READ MORE

From the Director, December 2020
November 30, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

What gets you out of bed in the morning? For some people, it’s seeing friends or going to restaurants. For others, it’s family or a favorite hobby. 

For some, though, it’s a simple love of something light and fun, and maybe even seemingly trivial, that brings a smile... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Turkey!
November 24, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

This we’re going to gobble, gobble, gobble, and wobble, wobble, wobble as we talk turkey! These activities are based on Every Child Ready to Read, which helps our friends learn pre-reading skills. We'll cover Reading, Writing,... READ MORE

DIY Film Festival
November 20, 2020 | Scottie Campbell

We’re proud of Orlando City for clinching an MLS playoffs spot for the first time in our young club’s history. Understandably, we have soccer on the mind, so we’ve put together a diverse... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Pumpkins!
November 20, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

You know what I love? Pumpkins! Pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, pumpkin decorating – everything pumpkin! Let’s celebrate pumpkins this week!

These activities are based on Every Child Ready to Read, which helps our friends learn pre-reading skills. We'll cover Reading,... READ MORE

Great Short Story Collections to Keep You Occupied
November 16, 2020 | Patrick Green

In a variety of contexts, storytellers are obligated to provide readers, or audiences, with engrossing tales of struggle, love, tragedy, comedy and horror. Some storytellers write these stories within the span of 400 pages while other writers choose to write these same types... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Bookmobile
November 11, 2020 | Mike Donohue

On November 22 1949, Orlando Public Library, in partnership with Sorosis Club of Orlando, unveiled Orange County’s first mobile library: A $6,000 Studebaker bus uniquely equipped to deliver library services to the outlying areas of... READ MORE

Native American Heritage Month: Cory Osceola
November 9, 2020 | Whitney Broadway

This photo of Cory Osceola comes from a postcard sold at the Musa Isle Indian Village in Miami around 1929. Musa Isle was the first Seminole tourist camp, founded in 1907. At this time, the Seminole people were struggling to make ends meet in a natural environment that was... READ MORE

For Your Thanksgiving Table
November 4, 2020 | Jocelyn Bryant

Chef Joycelyn Bryant, a frequent OCLS presenter, shares her recipes for two Thanksgiving favorites. You can join Chef Jocelyn for a live online cooking demonstration on Saturday, November 14, 4 p.m. where she will... READ MORE

From the Director, November 2020
November 2, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

November is a month for reflection. It’s a time when our thoughts turn inward, to focus on the goodness in our lives. It’s a time to be with our friends and our families to share food and conversation. It’s a time for togetherness and a time to give thanks. 

For many... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Autumn!
October 30, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Put on your jacket, because it’s Autumn! Let’s celebrate with fall-themed stories and songs!

QUESTIONS:

  • Can you name all the seasons?
  • What happens in Autumn? (Leaves change color, it gets a little cooler outside, Halloween...)
  • Do you... READ MORE
Preschool Fun: Space!
October 23, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Let’s journey into outer space this week!

QUESTIONS:

  • Do you want to go to outer space? 
  • How should we get there? 
  • What do you think we’ll see?

READ:

Any book on space, planets, or aliens that you may have! Or you... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Halloween!
October 16, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

What do birds say on Halloween? Trick or Tweet! That’s right, it’s Halloween time, so this month our preschool fun will be a bit...spooky!

QUESTIONS:

  • What does a ghost say? 
  • What do we carve for Halloween? 
  • What do you want to dress up... READ MORE
Halloween at Home
October 14, 2020 | Cynthia Velasco

If you’re like me, and many other parents, you might be wondering how to keep the excitement and fright alive during Halloween this year for your child, while observing the guidelines... READ MORE

What Does Hispanic Heritage Month Mean to You?
October 12, 2020 | Luis Rivera

In 1968, President Johnson commemorated the first Hispanic Heritage Week to honor the cultures and contributions of Latin Americans in our country. Twenty years... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Hispanic Heritage!
October 9, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Hola! September 15–October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month, so let’s celebrate! Vamonos!

QUESTIONS:

  • What is Hispanic Heritage Month? A time when we recognize all the awesome things Hispanic Americans... READ MORE
Great Movie Soundtracks of the Last 15 Years
October 7, 2020 | Patrick Green

A great score can elevate a whole movie to heavenly heights if given to the audience at the right moments. Soundtracks, on the other hand, impress moviegoers with recognizable music, or unrecognized music that everyone really ought to recognize. From classical compositions to... READ MORE

Thriving in the Misinformation Chaos
October 7, 2020 | Brendan Kalish

Misinformation has been with us as long as the written word, but it has become a very hot topic in the last few years. Inaccurate medical information can even be deadly during a global public health crisis. The library profession’s traditional response is to promote... READ MORE

DIY Film Festival: Author Biopics
October 5, 2020 | Mike Donohue

Learn about the lives of some of 20th century’s greatest writers with these compelling biopics, available for free from Orange County Library System on DVD and our digital streaming platforms.

 

... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Wash Your Hands!
October 2, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

There are gross germs everywhere! Let’s wash our hands to stay healthy.

QUESTIONS:

  • Why do we wash our hands? 
  • What are germs? 
  • How do we wash our hands?

 

LEARN:

What are germs? Germs are tiny organisms... READ MORE

From the Director, October 2020
October 1, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

The pandemic has changed the way we do just about everything, from work to school to leisure activities. Now, as we’re about to enter the holiday season, it’s changing how we celebrate special occasions. Halloween is upon us, and the CDC made recommendations against sending... READ MORE

10 Bookish Instagram Accounts You Should Be Following
September 30, 2020 | Luis Rivera

It’s safe to say social media has become a big part of our daily routine in the past few months. These platforms have helped keep us connected with each other in beautifully, creative way.  One of our favorite social platforms, Instagram... READ MORE

6 Latinx Authors to Read During Hispanic Heritage Month
September 14, 2020 | Ruben Cortes and Nathaly Ruiz

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, we gathered just a few of the most meaningful books written by Latinx authors we’ve read in our lifetimes. This is an ideal time to pick up a new-to-you book and explore the varied... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: A Library Card Retrospective
September 9, 2020 | Mike Donohue

For Orange County Library System’s nearly 100-year history, your library card has been the key to unlocking a world of free resources. To celebrate National Library Card Sign-Up Month, we are looking... READ MORE

Zooming with Kelly
September 5, 2020 | Scottie Campbell

This month we continue our Big Read celebration of ... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Bugs!
September 4, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

What’s more exciting than bugs? Let’s celebrate our creepy crawly friends today!

QUESTIONS

  • What do bugs look like?
  • Do you like bugs?
  • Do they crawl? Do they fly?
  • How many legs do they have? (Obviously there are different answers... READ MORE
I Love My Library Card
September 2, 2020 | Amy Sweezey

I grew up in the 1980s, before the internet existed. There were no smartphones or video streaming services. I couldn’t watch Netflix or text my friends. I had to entertain myself in other ways, especially in the summer when school was on break. Sure, there was a lot of... READ MORE

From the Director, September 2020
September 1, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

Believe it or not, September marks six months since our worlds were turned upside down by COVID-19. For Orange County Library System, that means six months since we’ve had no in-person... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Fruit!
August 21, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

This week, we’re celebrating fruit, and what better way to start than with a joke? What fruit is green and square? A lemon in disguise! Ha ha! With that, let’s get started.

LEARN

Fruits are healthy foods that you can eat! They grow on a plant, and contain... READ MORE

Open Hour with a Librarian
August 19, 2020 | Cynthia Velasco

In the early days of the pandemic, when the library made the difficult choice to close its doors and offer services remotely, we received a lot of comments on social media from customers who were also struggling with how to navigate life in quarantine. A common theme that... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: A Visit from Helen Thomas
August 17, 2020 | Mike Donohue

This month, Orange County Library System welcomes Kelly Link, author of... READ MORE

Short Stories Can Be Big Reads
August 17, 2020 | Scottie Campbell

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has encouraged communities across the country to read through their Big Read program. Showcasing a diverse range of books... READ MORE

Learning at Home
August 12, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

As the new school year looms, parents have an important decision to make: what’s the best (and safest) learning environment for their child? Orange County Public Schools has offered three models: face to face, their new LaunchEd virtual... READ MORE

Reaching Out: A Community Resource Fair
August 10, 2020 | Wayne Middleton

Now, more than ever, understanding how to navigate social services and assistance programs is vital. Even in the best of circumstances, figuring out how to connect with organizations that can help with accessing unemployment benefits, healthcare resources, food subsidy, and... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Fairies!
August 7, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Since we’re continuing to celebrate all types of magical creatures this summer, let’s continue this week with fairies!

Let’s start with some questions:

  • What does a fairy look like?
  • Are fairies big or little?
  • Are they kind?
  • Can... READ MORE
From the Director, August 2020
August 1, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

In June, Orange County Library System published a statement on our website opposing hatred, racism and intolerance. The post was made after protests erupted around the nation,... READ MORE

Fun Riddles and Brainteasers to Wrap Your Mind Around
July 29, 2020 | Patrick Green

Typically when someone asks another person a riddle, they are left with dire consequences should they fail to answer correctly. You get eaten if a sphinx asks you and you fail. If Gollum from J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit asks you and you fail, you’ll get eaten as well... READ MORE

Q&A with Chef Yamira
July 27, 2020 | Marianne Vitale

Yamira Lee Johnson is the head chef and founder of Breaking Bread with Mira and a certified holistic life coach. Through a long standing partnership with Orange County Library System she has hosted several... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Children’s Library
July 22, 2020 | Mike Donohue

In July of 1998, work began on a project to relocate the Children’s Library from its original location in the basement of Orlando Public Library, to the east wing of the first floor. The move – which was overseen by then Library Director Dorothy Field – was part of a... READ MORE

Tom on Podcasts
July 19, 2020 | Scottie Campbell

Tom Jelneck is the CEO of On Target Digital Marketing, a Maitland-based national marketing agency specializing in content creation, with an intriguing side hustle as Chief Coffee Brewer for his company... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Unicorns!
July 17, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Since it’s a fantastical summer at Orange County Library System, let’s talk about unicorns this week!

  • Let’s start with some questions:
  • What does a unicorn look like?
  • What does a unicorn sound like?
  • Are unicorns big or little? 
  • ... READ MORE
Five Great Graphic Novels for Teens and Adults
July 13, 2020 | Patrick Green

There exists an unwanted stigma around graphic novels. They are too dark and gritty, some say. The format of this art style does not match with the serious tone of dark narratives, some say. Graphic novels are just comic books with blood, language, and mature themes, some say... READ MORE

Enjoying Orlando Safely
July 10, 2020 | Danielle Haight-Mueller

If you are like me, you are out of content to stream, tired of sitting at home and bored of cleaning your house. We all want to remain safe but have an ardent desire to go out and return to a bit of normalcy! Thankfully, there are some local Orlando spots that want that for... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Dragons!
July 3, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Since it’s a magical and mythological summer at Orange County Library System, let’s talk about dragons this week!

Let’s start with some questions: 

  • What does a dragon look like?
  • What does a dragon sound like?
  • Are dragons big or little? ... READ MORE
From the Director, July 2020
July 1, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

Every year, leading up to June, Orange County Library System makes a big push to let everyone know about our Summer Reading Program for children. There’s good reason for that – we spend so much time and effort crafting educational, fun... READ MORE

#OCLSReads Books for Summer
June 30, 2020 | Chris Neumann and Ruben Cortes and Latoya Richards-Mozell

Summer has arrived once again and it's the best opportunity to catch up on some new and popular books as suggested by three of Orange County Library System's Collection Development Librarians. Most of the suggested titles are available as e-books, digital audiobooks or... READ MORE

Remembering Kendrick B. Melrose
June 29, 2020 | Mike Donohue

On April 16, 2012, Orange County Library System received the largest single private gift in its history when benefactor Kendrick B. Melrose donated $1... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Ocean Animals!
June 19, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Let’s have some fun under the sea today! 

Let’s start with some questions: 

  • What are some ocean animals? 
  • What does a dolphin sound like? 
  • What’s your FAVORITE ocean animal? 
  • Can you swim like a whale? 

 

... READ MORE

DIY: Pride Film Festival
June 15, 2020 | Scottie Campbell & Mike Donohue

June is Pride Month in commemoration of the Stonewall Uprising in June of 1969. In recognition of this occasion, we have selected eight films for you to create a Pride film festival in your own living room or wherever you may be. No need to stop with our suggestions, there is... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Light Waves Sculpture
June 15, 2020 | Mike Donohue

Created by artist Christopher Janney, Light Waves is a unique glass sculpture comprised of four colored bands that bathe the western facade of Orlando... READ MORE

Virtual Summer Reading Program
June 12, 2020 | OCLS Staff

While our Summer Reading Program looks a bit different this year, staff are as committed as ever to putting their talents and creativity toward our new Virtual Summer Reading Program. Typically, we... READ MORE

Three Fun Science Experiments to Do at Home
June 8, 2020 | Patrick Green

Science is an essential tool for understanding how the world works. It is the process of analyzing data through experimentation and predictions. It can also give a middle school student the ability to make a paper-mache volcano that can spew vinegar, baking soda, and food... READ MORE

From the Director, June 2020
June 8, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

June is usually one of the busiest months at the library. Our annual Summer Reading Program is underway, and families flock to our locations to attend performances, bring their kids to one of our camps, and attend programs for young and... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Robots!
June 5, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Beep. Boop. Bop. Today we’re talking robots!

Let’s start with some questions:

  • What is a robot? 
  • What does a robot sound like?
  • What does a robot look like? 
  • What kind of robot would you build? 


Now, let’s read... READ MORE

OCLS Firmly Opposes Hatred, Racism and Intolerance
June 3, 2020 | OCLS Staff

The past week has been a trying time for our country, and for our community. We know that many of our families, friends, colleagues and leaders are struggling with feelings of fear, sadness and frustration in the week since Mr. George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police... READ MORE

Self-Care Inspiration from the Library
May 30, 2020 | Brendan Kalish

Some of us intend to implement new, healthier habits while staying home, but there still aren’t enough hours in the day. Others have personally been affected by the pandemic, or the past month has led to feelings of loneliness, anxiety or depression.

Whatever your... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Bubbles!
May 22, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Today we’re going to have some fun with bubbles! Don’t have any bubbles? No worries – we'll make some in the end!

 

Let’s start with some questions: 

  • Do you like blowing bubbles? 
  • Can you show me how you blow bubbles?... READ MORE
We're Reopening, With Care
May 20, 2020 | Scottie Campbell

"The library hasn’t been closed, only our buildings have."

I’ve repeated this refrain often over the past couple of months when friends and neighbors would ask about our reopening. We’ve been able to... READ MORE

10 Short Books to Help Boost Your Annual Reading Goal
May 18, 2020 | Scottie Campbell

We’re nearly through half of 2020 and it’s safe to say the year isn’t turning out how any of us envisioned. We are all working together to try to flatten the curve of a global pandemic. It’s the sort of situation we would prefer to encounter in a thick Stephen King book or on... READ MORE

Art 101: Ancient Greek Pottery
May 17, 2020 | Heidi Williamson

I normally teach our Art 101 events in-person, but since we're unable to do that for the time being in this post I would like to share a little bit of information about ancient Greek pottery and how you can create your own Greek style flowerpot for your home.


... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Kittens!
May 15, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Welcome to another week of Preschool Fun! Several weeks ago, we highlighted puppies and I heard kittens were a bit jealous. So, this week – we honor our feline friends. 

Let’s start by asking your child a few questions: 

Stay Fit While Staying at Home
May 13, 2020 | Melissa Tees

Keeping myself active and motivated has been difficult over the last few weeks. Even with the “home gym” my husband and I created, I still hit a rut when it comes to exercise. Luckily for me, I have found new inspiration through the wonderful world of the internet. Below are... READ MORE

Great A24 Films on Kanopy
May 11, 2020 | Patrick Green

Few independent studios have been as prolific and interesting as A24, a studio responsible for recent films such as The Lighthouse (2019), Midsommar... READ MORE

Sunshine State Young Readers Award Program 2020 Book List
May 10, 2020 | Ruben Cortes

On April 23, the Florida Association of Media in Education revealed this year’s titles for the Sunshine State Young Readers Award Program (SSYRA). The SSYRA is a statewide... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Farm Animals!
May 8, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Knock knock. (Who’s there?)
Cows go. (Cows go who?)
NO! Cows go moo!

In case you haven’t figured it out, this week’s preschool theme is farm animals! So, let’s have some fun! 

Start by asking your child a few... READ MORE

Five Tips to Help Maximize the Number of Books You Read
May 6, 2020 | Patrick Green

Reading. The most enriching activity an individual can perform – if you do not include cooking or frolicking through a field of freshly grown sunflowers. As a bibliophile, I find that my mind is constantly overcome with thoughts about how I can read more, despite my best... READ MORE

Tiger King Companion
May 4, 2020 | Melissa Tees

Hey all you cool cats and kittens, it’s Melissa at Orange County Library System. If you are like me, you’ve binged Netflix’s Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness while quarantined. After I finished the... READ MORE

Imagine Your Scary Story This Summer
May 1, 2020 | Tracy Covey

In February 2019, the Horror Writers Association, (a global group of horror writers and publishing professionals), announced its inaugural reading program,... READ MORE

Discover a New Hobby
May 1, 2020 | Heidi Williamson

Staying at home when you are not used to it can be stressful and super boring. One way to help alleviate both is by taking up a new hobby. As someone who loves mastering new skills, I have learned a few things about how to get started.

 

1. Choose a Hobby You’... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Dinosaurs!
May 1, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

What do you call a sleeping dinosaur? A dino-snore! This week we’re all about dinosaurs, so let’s go have a roaring good time.

Let’s start by asking your child a few questions:

  • Tell me about dinosaurs!
  • What does a dinosaur sound like?
  • ... READ MORE
Concerts in Quarantine with Stingray Qello
April 29, 2020 | Josh Shidel

If you’re anything like me, you’ve been missing live music during the stay at home order. Seeing talented musicians perform their craft uncut and imperfect with the energy of the crowd all around you is a feeling like nothing else. While we can’t check out our favorite local... READ MORE

A True Crime Aficionado’s Guide to At-Home Entertainment
April 27, 2020 | Melissa Tees

True crime became my favorite genre of media after I read Truman Capote’s... READ MORE

Read-Alikes You Can Read Right Now
April 26, 2020 | Ruben Cortes

As we are adapting to our new way of life that includes social distancing, people also need to find new ways of entertaining themselves. Luckily this includes books! While the library has temporarily suspended home delivery for physical items, our digital collection,... READ MORE

A Day in the Life
April 25, 2020 | OCLS Staff

As part of National Library Week, a yearly celebration of libraries, librarians and library workers, we asked some of our staff (and their pets) working and teaching from home to share how they... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Cars!
April 24, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

New Friday, new theme! Welcome to our weekly series, Preschool Fun. Today our activities center around something we aren’t using much right now, but kids still love. That’s right, CARS!

 

Start by asking your child a few questions.

It’s important to let... READ MORE

Craft Ideas For Your Home
April 22, 2020 | Rebecca Baichan

With many people at home during self-isolation, now is the perfect opportunity to learn a new craft and get organized around the house. Crafting is a great way to relax, relieve stress and have fun. Below, I have listed three inexpensive craft projects you can enjoy making at... READ MORE

Build a Backyard Ecosystem
April 20, 2020 | Heidi Williamson

Orders to stay at home can have some people longing for the outdoors and the wildlife that comes with it. Fortunately, for those with a yard there is no reason you can’t invite some native Florida wildlife into your life. You may not be able to acquire all the plants you will... READ MORE

How Analogue Tools Help to Connect Us
April 19, 2020 | OCLS Staff

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we conduct our daily lives. While text messaging, email and video chat are currently bridging the “social” part of social distancing, it’s important we remain connected to one another in ways that allow mental breaks from the sensory... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Clouds!
April 17, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Welcome to another edition of Preschool Fun! This week we’re going to have fun with ... clouds!

First, go outside and look up. Do you see clouds? If so, ask your child:

  • Are the big or small?
  • Are they puffy or flat?
  • What do they look... READ MORE
Free Online Resources from Educational Technology Companies and Your Public Library
April 15, 2020 | Tracy Covey

In response to unprecedented school closures and the need for learning from home, School Library Journal published a list of resources that are currently available to students, educators, and parents during the COVID-19 outbreak. You can... READ MORE

Como usar la biblioteca durante el distanciamiento social
April 14, 2020 | Brendan Kalish

Debido a preocupaciones acerca del COVID-19 y recomendaciones de directivos y oficiales públicos a practicar la distancia social, el sistema de bibliotecas del condado de Orange ha decidido cancelar todos los eventos y clases. La biblioteca toma muy en serio... READ MORE

sic in the Time of Quarantine
April 13, 2020 | Rebecca Hyman

In troubling times, music is something that unites us and lifts our spirits.  According to... READ MORE

Kitchen Scrap Garden
April 12, 2020 | Rebecca Sung

“I just left some groceries on your doorstep. Go ahead and bring it inside,” I texted my brother. 

Our community was and still is in the trenches of battling the spread of COVID-19. Social distancing is requiring parents, siblings, friends,... READ MORE

Preschool Fun Puppies!
April 10, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

Practicing social distancing, but needing new activities to do with your toddler or preschooler? We’ve got you covered! Welcome to another edition of Preschool Fun! This week we’re celebrating puppies.

Start by asking your child a few questions about puppies, just for... READ MORE

How to Begin Researching Your Family History
April 8, 2020 | Shasta Quinn

Are you interested in researching your family history but haven’t had the chance to get started? This is a great time to begin because Ancestry.com is allowing library users to access... READ MORE

Some of the Best Marvel Comics Available for Free With Hoopla
April 6, 2020 | Mike Donohue

The date is May 3, 2006. I am a junior in high school and as of yet unencumbered by the difficult decisions of adulthood. Yet, for several months I have felt conflicted. Everywhere I look, people are asking me, “whose side are you on?”

As if it was that easy. On one... READ MORE

Preschool Fun: Colors!
April 3, 2020 | Lauren Mathur

You’re home with your child and you don’t know what to do next. You want something educational, but fun, and you’ve watched far too much Paw... READ MORE

Roses are Red, Violets are Grateful, That National Poetry Month Happens in April
April 2, 2020 | Luis Rivera

April is a time where flowers bloom from their winter sleep, birds sing as they fly across the skies and writers pick out their new seasonal pens of inspiration to write with. Well, not so much that last part. Among other celebrations, April is also recognized as... READ MORE

Cuisine Corner: Dalgona Coffee aka Frothy Coffee
April 1, 2020 | Marianne Vitale

You can recreate the latest coffee trend, Dalgona Coffee or Frothy Coffee, at home in a few easy steps. All you need is instant coffee, sugar, water, your milk preference, a mixer (or a whisk/fork... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Orlando Public Library’s Expansion
March 31, 2020 | Mike Donohue

April 6, 2020 marks the 35th anniversary of Orlando Public Library’s 230,000 square foot expansion. In 1966, when the building was first constructed, it occupied a comparatively meager 60,000 square feet. However, it was always the intention to further expand upon... READ MORE

The 5 Best Films Available for Credit-Free Viewing on Kanopy
March 27, 2020 | Mike Donohue

With no shortage of subscription-based streaming services out there, sometimes it’s nice to watch something with a little less financial obligation. Kanopy, an on-demand streaming platform which features documentaries, children’s TV... READ MORE

Library Bootcamp for Teachers - Library U
March 23, 2020 | Mike Donohue

Every June, educators from across Orange County are invited to Orlando Public Library to participate in the one-day, interactive learning experience, Library U. From storytimes, to Virtual Reality Game Design classes, Orange County... READ MORE

Become Your Best Self with the Enneagram
March 20, 2020 | Brendan Kalish

I never expected to benefit from yet another personality test but as it turns out researching my Enneagram type was a wise choice. With a limited investment of time, you can learn a ton about yourself... READ MORE

#OCLSReads: Early Childhood Literacy Calendars
March 19, 2020 | OCLS Staff

The Public Library Association (PLA) has developed a new product designed to boost early childhood literacy programming in libraries, schools and daycare centers. PLA's 2020 Early Literacy Activities Calendar is now... READ MORE

Photo of stack of books with glasses on top at a table top with light pouring through windows. Next to book stack are scone and beverage.
March 16, 2020 | Cynthia Velasco

Amid ongoing concerns about COVID-19 and directives from public officials to implement social distancing practices, Orange County Library System has... READ MORE

Everyone Needs Advocacy - March is National Social Work Month
March 6, 2020 | Scottie Campbell

“I was raised in New York City,” Andre Morris, Library Social Worker for Orange County Library System explains his personal investment in his work. “I was from Jamaican parentage. We didn’t have our residency, green card, and I went through homelessness; sleeping on floors.... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Books-By-Mail (Pictured: A brochure circa 1970s and a publicity photo from 1976.)
March 6, 2020 | Mike Donohue

(Pictured: A brochure circa 1970s and a publicity photo from 1976.)

Our Books-By-Mail service began in December 1973. In its earliest iteration, customers could... READ MORE

Melrose in the Mix: Q&A with Steven Garron
March 3, 2020 | Jim Myers

(Pictured: The Garron-Tees (l-r): Justin Martin, Steve Garron, Wheeler Newman and Chris LeBrane.)

The Melrose Center started 2020 by making one of their popular programs even more accessible. In January, ... READ MORE

From the Director, March 2020
March 1, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

Parents, we know it can be tough to keep your kids busy when school’s out of session. So, our staff has come up with a series of fun, creative spring camps to help beat the boredom. This month, we’ll host programming at multiple locations during... READ MORE

Read It! Don't Lose It: How to Regain Your Focus While Reading
February 21, 2020 | Luis Rivera

Imagine you have just picked up a book from your “books I need to read” list. You prepare your favorite beverage and find the comfortable spot on your couch. Enthusiastically, you open the book and begin to read it, scanning the words, feeling the pages on your fingertips... READ MORE

From the Director, February 2020
February 1, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

In 1976, President Gerald Ford became the first president to officially recognize ... READ MORE

Our History Speaks Volumes: Remembering Eddie T. Jackson
January 27, 2020 | Mike Donohue

In June 1924, our Booker T. Washington Branch opened at 107 South Terry St. The branch was the second public library location to open in the city of Orlando following the... READ MORE

The Mayor's Pick
January 27, 2020 | Mayor Jerry Demings

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings is a strong supporter of libraries and has even been a participant in the African American Read-In in the past. As we know... READ MORE

Alafaya Branch 20th Anniversary
January 24, 2020 | Lynette Schimpf

Orange County Library System’s Alafaya Branch is excited to celebrate our 20th Anniversary on Saturday, February 1, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. You are invited to enjoy a day packed full of events and activities... READ MORE

From the Director,January 2020
January 1, 2020 | Mary Anne Hodel

The New Year is here, and our staff is ready to hit the ground running! We have an exciting month ahead for you in January, starting with the reopening of our Southeast Branch, which has been closed for a... READ MORE

How to Host a Frugal Feast
January 1, 2020 | Danielle Haight-Mueller

We find ourselves smack dab in the middle of the holiday season, meaning it is time to host a plethora of dietary restrictions, picky guests and high expectations. Whether you are celebrating Christmas, Chanukah, Festivus, National Cookie Day, New Year's, or just having the... READ MORE

The Best Books of 2019, as Decided by a 5-year-old
December 28, 2019 | Lauren Mathur

Last year, I wrote a blog post on my 4-year-old's favorite books published that year. Well, we’re doing it again! And as you may have guessed, this time she’s 5. This time we have some... READ MORE

Eatonville Branch 15th Anniversary
December 26, 2019 | Patrice Florence-Walker

My name is Patrice Florence-Walker, and it has been an amazing honor to have served as manager of Eatonville Branch since 2007. The staff and I invite you to help us celebrate this milestone on... READ MORE

The Macomber Miracle Header
December 23, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

Debbie Macomber’s love of books began in earnest when she received her first book at the age of 4 or 5 from a children’s librarian in her hometown of Yakima, Washington.

“My mom said that when I was handed... READ MORE

Five Questions With Three Foodies
December 21, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

On January 12 at Orlando Public Library, WUCF will host a sneak peek of the premiere episode... READ MORE

Hiawassee Branch 10th Anniversary
December 19, 2019 | Ken Gilbert

Hi! My name is Ken Gibert and I am honored to serve as manager of Hiawassee Branch for the last 18 years. The staff and I are pleased to invite you to Hiawassee Branch on the 10th Anniversary... READ MORE

Giving the City Beautiful Its Literary Due - Nathan Holic Q&A
December 9, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

This month, independent publisher Burrow Press will release what they are calling “the Great Orlando Novel” from local author Nathan Holic, Bright Lights, Medium-Sized City. “I think it’s important that... READ MORE

Orange County Library System introduces mobile checkout, virtual library cards as part of new library app launch
December 3, 2019 | OCLS Community Relations Team

On December 2, Orange County Library System begins offering a digital version of your library card that can be stored in your phone, mobile checkout with interactive receipts, and a brand-new Express Collection to all library users through the cloudLibrary app.

With... READ MORE

From the Director, December 2019
December 2, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

Usually, people wait until the New Year to unveil their fresh new looks and announce exciting changes. Well, we decided not to wait until January to share our makeover news.

By December 2, two of our branches will have undergone a... READ MORE

This Collection is Magic
November 23, 2019 | Jane Tracy

“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirates loot on Treasure Island and at the bottom of the Spanish Main…and best of all, you can enjoy these riches everyday of your life.” – Walt Disney

Enter the treasure trove of... READ MORE

In Anticipation of Mister Rogers on the Big Screen
November 18, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

The Orlando area is one of a handful of spots in the world that has the right to anticipate A... READ MORE

Es hora de estudiar inglés
November 5, 2019 | Brendan Kalish & Elibeth Guerrero

Mucha gente nueva está llamando a Orlando su hogar y por eso está creciendo la demanda para clases de inglés. En febrero de este año empezamos a dar clases de inglés por primera vez en la biblioteca principal (Orlando Public Library). Comenzamos con lo básico en English from... READ MORE

From the Director November 2019
November 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

November is a month to be grateful, so I’d like to take a moment to extend my sincerest thanks to those who helped us make this year’s ... READ MORE

Q&A with Rob Greenfield
October 30, 2019 | Rebecca Baichan

Rob Greenfield is self-described as an adventurer, environmental activist, humanitarian, and a dude making a difference. He just completed Food Freedom, a year-long project to grow and... READ MORE

Southeast Branch 25th Anniversary
October 29, 2019 | Paolo Melillo

My name is Paolo Melillo and I am honored to serve our community as manager at Southeast Branch. The staff and I are... READ MORE

NaNoWriMo Celebrates 20 Years & Countless Words
October 28, 2019 | Sarah Fisk

National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo for short, is an international event for which over 300,000 writers attempt to write 50,000 words of a new... READ MORE

NEA Big Read is Coming to OCLS
October 18, 2019 | Matthew David & Stephanie Lum

One of the most unbeatable things about reading is that every now and then our passion for it is renewed by something unusual, or unique, or just exceptionally good. That is the opportunity Big Read offers. The ... READ MORE

From the Director, October 2019
October 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

October is one of my favorite months at the library. All month long, we focus on hosting fun, safe events that your whole family can enjoy together. If you need Halloween costume inspiration, find it in our sewing studios, where... READ MORE

Día de los Muertos: Q&A with Dr. Beatriz Reyes-Foster
September 28, 2019 | Josh Sidel

What is Día de los Muertos all about? Dr. Beatriz M. Reyes‐Foster, Associate Professor & Graduate Coordinator of Anthropology at UCF, presents Día de los Muertos at... READ MORE

BizKids
September 2, 2019 | Ryan Baichan & Tony Orengo

In 2017, Orange County Library System unveiled a new series of camps called “BizKids” which teach entrepreneurship and business skills to youth. The camps provide students with opportunities to develop a business idea, run a... READ MORE

From the Director September 2019
September 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

It’s well known that Mark Twain once said that the secret to getting ahead is getting started. But how do you even get started... READ MORE

A Maker with a Purpose
August 25, 2019 | Vanya Walker

Orlando entrepreneur and activist Victoria Walsh, affectionately known as Macramé Momma, teaches the joy of making through the art of macramé. Victoria guides students in the creation of classic plant hangers, delicate earrings and... READ MORE

Local Wanderer
August 14, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

You already know your library card means adventure. Dive into the pages of a book you’ve borrowed and you’re off to other worlds. Adventure, though, can be right around the corner and now Orange County... READ MORE

Mini Book Fair Q&A
August 5, 2019 | Edward Booker

The Herndon Branch will be hosting their first-ever Mini Book Fair on Saturday, August 10. Don’t let the name of this event fool you – book nerds and scribblers alike will find plenty of literary enrichment with... READ MORE

From the Director August 2019
August 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

It’s always hard to believe when August rolls around that summer is just about over. Summer is the busiest time of year at our libraries, and this summer has been one for the books! In July, we celebrated serving 100,000 free meals to children through our annual partnership... READ MORE

7 Ways Your Library Card Can Help You Through College
July 31, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

1. Are you familiar with the massive open online course website Lynda.com? Normally there is a fee for this incredible resource, but your library card gives you free access. Lynda was recently acquired by... READ MORE

This Year's Best Travel Accessory: A Book
July 5, 2019 | Luis Rivera

Upon us is the season of family road trips, beach getaways, barbecues galore and summer vacations away from those dreadful, heavy textbooks.

Traveling is the time when we aspire to worry less and soak in as much relaxation or adventure as possible. But is total and... READ MORE

From the Director, July 2019
July 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

This month, our nation celebrates a scientific achievement by which nearly every other technological advancement is measured: July 20 is the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission, which put a man on the moon for the first time. It was, indeed, a giant leap that... READ MORE

Melrose in the Mix: The Pauses
June 25, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

Touring regularly in support of their acclaimed 2018 album Unbuilding, Orlando band The Pauses come home to perform at Melrose in the Mix on Saturday, July 6, 3:30 p.m.... READ MORE

#OCLSReads for Pride Month
June 3, 2019 | Ruben Cortes

Every June is designated as Pride Month to celebrate the impact of LGBTQ people. This year is extra special as it is the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots which served as the catalyst for the gay liberation movement in the United States. These are some of my favorite... READ MORE

#OCLSReads Books for Summer
June 1, 2019 | Chris Neumann and Ruben Cortes 

Summer brings longer days and even warmer weather, which means more time for reading—preferably indoors away from oppressive 95-degree Florida weather. But whichever environment you prefer (reading at the beach, at a park, or even relaxing at home), here are some suggestions... READ MORE

From the Director Header, June 2019
May 31, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

Every year, the Orange County Library System’s Summer Reading Program grows. It’s a labor of love for us to create the hundreds of camps, events, classes and educational opportunities that help kids continue... READ MORE

How Ali Learned English With The Library
May 30, 2019 | Viviana Valencia-Serrano

Did you know the Orlando Public Library is now offering English from Zero? Located in the heart of downtown, the location will offer... READ MORE

Melrose in the Mix
May 25, 2019 | Jim Myers

Melrose in the Mix is a live recording session held regularly in the Melrose Center. The series began in April 2017 with a session by Swamp Sistas, a society of women singer/songwriters led by popular roots musician Beth McKee. Since... READ MORE

From the Director May 2019
May 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

I want to take a minute to tell you about the Friends of the Orange County Library System. They’re an all-volunteer nonprofit organization that exists to help fund library programs that aren’t covered by our budget. They are the... READ MORE

North Orange Branch 30th Anniversary
April 30, 2019 | Maritza Alicea

My name is Maritza Alicea and I am proud to serve our community as Branch Manager at your North Orange Branch. The library’s staff and I are excited to invite you to the branch’s... READ MORE

A Conversation with Delilah S. Dawson, Orlando Book Festival Closing Keynote Speaker
April 26, 2019 | Sarah Fisk

The Orlando Book Festival is a day-long celebration of books at the Orlando Public Library. Join us for panels, writing workshops, book signings and more from bestselling authors from all over the country.

... READ MORE

Orlando Book Festival 2019 - A Conversation with Daniel Jose Older, Opening Keynote Speaker
April 26, 2019 | Sarah Fisk

The Orlando Book Festival is a day-long celebration of books at the Orlando Public Library. Join us for panels, writing workshops, book signings and more from bestselling authors from all over the country.

... READ MORE

Library After Hours: Brittany Hennessy
April 22, 2019 | Whitney Gonzalez

Influencer marketing is something that many might still be skeptical of. Author and influencer Brittany Hennessy first witnessed the power of influence when her blog went viral in 2010. One thing led to another, and... READ MORE

How to Find Books For a 1-Year-Old
April 9, 2019 | Lauren Mathur

Last year I wrote a post from my 4-year-old's perspective, listing her top books of the year. Today I’m bringing you some of my 1-year-old's favorites, and this was inspired by several interactions.

As a librarian, many parents ask me for book recommendations,... READ MORE

From the Director April 2019
April 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

Libraries equal strong communities. 

That’s the theme of this year’s National Library Week, a national initiative sponsored by the American Library Association to encourage people to celebrate the contributions libraries (and library... READ MORE

National Library Week
March 31, 2019 | Scottie Campbell & Cynthia Velasco

“To build up a library is to create a life,” Argentinian author Carlos María Domínguez once said. “It’s never just a random collection of books.” When you take a look at the Orange County Library System and the communities we serve, you get some sense of what Domínguez means... READ MORE

Q&A with Jarrett Johnson of Lineage Coffee
March 27, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

How does your coffee make it from bean to cup? Have you ever wondered? Jarrett Johnson of Orlando’s über-popular Lineage Coffee Roasting, will present ‘Farm-to-Cup Coffee: How the... READ MORE

A Conversation with Melanie Benjamin, 14th Annual Southwest Author Series
March 25, 2019 | Penguin Random House

Melanie Benjamin has captivated readers with her bestselling historical novels, including... READ MORE

English Classes for Families - Week Six Recap
March 6, 2019 | Mayonne Granzo

This week our focus was to describe people and places with as much detail as possible. On the first day, students were instructed to think about their home cities or towns and to describe it by what they can see, hear, smell and taste. For many students this was a reflective... READ MORE

Early Childhood Literacy Calendar
March 1, 2019 | OCLS Staff

The Public Library Association (PLA) has developed a new product designed to boost early childhood literacy programming in libraries, schools and daycare centers. PLA's ... READ MORE

From the Director March 2019
March 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

When you think of the library, what comes to mind? Perhaps you think of it as the place you visited as a child, where you learned to sit quietly while you listened to adults reading you stories. Maybe you think of it as the place you went in college to escape the din of your... READ MORE

Learn. Grow. Connect.
February 20, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

The building blocks of a fulfilling life.

Learn – the constant and ongoing endeavor to gather as much knowledge as we can.

Grow – the noble desire to be the best person you can be.

Connect – while you pursue these efforts, your community provides support... READ MORE

Eating Healthy Never Tasted So Good!
February 15, 2019 | Luis Rivera

At the end of 2018, I attended a pot-luck dinner party with some friends. The majority of us brought holiday favorites such as casseroles, cheese platters, sugar cookies, etc. One of the guests at the party brought what I assumed to be a delicious platter of buffalo chicken... READ MORE

Book to Big Screen
February 8, 2019 | Scottie Campbell

Which book was the first to be adapted to film is the matter of surprising debate and we’ll leave the curious to venture down that internet wormhole on their own. It is a safe bet, though, that from even that first film adaptation in the late 1800s, people were discussing... READ MORE

From the Director
February 4, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

It has been 30 years since the Black Caucus of the National Council of Teachers of English came up with the idea to sponsor an African-American Read-In. The event, held each year during Black History... READ MORE

OCLSReads for Black History Month
February 1, 2019 | Jaylen Christie

Try as I might, I simply cannot recall an instance when I was ever not reading a book. Reading is one of my favorite forms of relaxation, and with it being Black History Month, I believe it’s a superb way to... READ MORE

English Classes for Families
January 28, 2019 | Mayonne Granzo

English Classes for Families was a new series offered last year at the North Orange Branch thanks in large part to funding from the Florida Humanities Council and the ... READ MORE

From the Director
January 1, 2019 | Mary Anne Hodel

Every new year is an opportunity to learn, grow and connect to the world around you – a chance to set new goals and look forward to the future. 

The start of the new year is exciting, but it can also be overwhelming. Whether you’ve got a list of resolutions a mile... READ MORE

New Year, New You
December 31, 2018 | Cynthia Velasco

Many of us set goals at the beginning of a new year. In fact, according to The Washington Post, 40% of us do so! ... READ MORE

Top 10 Books Checked Out From The Library in 2018
December 22, 2018 | OCLS Staff

This year was a popular year for fiction at the Orange County Library System. From fiction veterans such as David Baldacci (who spoke at the library earlier this year) to the breakout thriller The Wife Between Us by Greer... READ MORE

Best Picture Books of the Year, as Chosen by a 4-Year-Old
December 19, 2018 | Lauren Mathur

My four-year-old loves books. We read up to five before bed, and several more during the day. As penalty for the audacity of having a full-time job, I’m required to bring her home at least three books a day. I guess it’s a good thing I'm a librarian. 

As the... READ MORE

Tres películas divertidas en español
December 17, 2018 | Brendan Kalish

Las películas en español más conocidas suelen ser perturbadoras a la manera de Hable con ella de Almodóvar y... READ MORE

Giving Tuesday
November 20, 2018 | OCLS Staff

Each year, nonprofit organizations around the world call on their supporters to help raise funds for the meaningful work they do in their communities on Giving Tuesday. Entering its seventh year, Giving Tuesday is a global day... READ MORE

The Great American Read - The Martian
October 22, 2018 | Jeff Stanford

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read - The Alchemist
October 16, 2018 | Kristen Manieri

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read Header - The Lord of the Rings
October 12, 2018 | Whitney Broadaway

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

English Classes for Families
October 8, 2018 | Jorge Sanchez

During the second week of English Classes for Families, we made an effort to get to know the families who have been attending better, and as a result participation in our classroom has increased. 

In the first class of the week, we reviewed formal and informal... READ MORE

English Classes for Families
September 24, 2018 | Jorge Sanchez

The Orange County Library System was forunate to receive funding from the Florida Humanities Council and the National Endowment for the Humanities to begin a new series at the ... READ MORE

The Great American Read - The Call of the Wild
September 14, 2018 | Alyssa Chandler

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read - Wuthering Heights
September 12, 2018 | Ricardo Williams

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

Melrose Film Festival
September 12, 2018 | Scottie Campbell

The first-ever Melrose Film Festival will be held Saturday, September 15 in the Melrose Center at the... READ MORE

The Great American Read - Looking for Alaska
September 10, 2018 | David Matteson

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read: The Chronicles of Narnia
August 31, 2018 | Brendan O'Connor

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read - Catch-22
August 10, 2018 | Ryan Rivas

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read - The Sun Also Rises
August 7, 2018 | Eddie Selover

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read - The Outsiders
July 30, 2018 | Jenny Torres Sanchez

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
July 24, 2018 | Erik Deckers

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

The Great American Read - The Giver
July 2, 2018 | Lauren Gibaldi

The Great American Read is a new eight-part series from PBS that explores and... READ MORE

Best of Orlando 2018
June 30, 2018 | OCLS Staff

For the seventh year in a row, the Orange County Library System has been nominated in the Orlando Weekly's Best of Orlando Readers Poll. From June 27 through 11:59 p.m. Monday, Aug. 6,... READ MORE

#oclsrocks Photo Contest
May 31, 2018 | OCLS Staff


June 2 - July 30

 

... READ MORE

An Interview with Jordan Keyes and Isaac Folch, the founders of FREE DAPS
May 18, 2018 | Youth Services Staff

FREE DAPS is a group of freestyle rappers and improvisers who use hip-hop to create a thrilling, one-of-a-kind musical comedy show every time they perform. Erin Topolsky, Youth Programs Coordinator, recently got to know a little bit more about the group and its founders,... READ MORE

Follow Your Heart
May 15, 2018 | Jaime Mera

“There are only two ways to live your life,” Einstein said. “One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as... READ MORE

Money Talks for Women
April 26, 2018 | Luis Rivera

From May 22 through June 26, the Orlando Public Library will host Money Talks for Women, a six-week series to learn about saving, investing and more... READ MORE

Alternative Transportation: Getting You Around Orange County – and to the Library!
April 14, 2018 | Brendan Kalish

Bicycle trails and public transportation in the Orlando area have improved significantly in the last few years, but they remain among our city’s best kept secrets. Consider going on an adventure and riding a bicycle or hopping on a train to your local library. It requires... READ MORE

Orlando Book Festival - A Conversation with David Baldacci
April 10, 2018 | Sarah Fisk

David Baldacci is the internationally best-selling author of more than 55 books, several of which have been adapted to film and... READ MORE

Orlando Book Festival - A Conversation with S. Jae-Jones
April 3, 2018 | Sarah Fisk

S. Jae-Jones, called JJ, is an artist, adrenaline junkie, and New York Times best-selling author of... READ MORE

Instagram Photo Challenge 2018
April 1, 2018 | OCLS Staff

In April, the library is bringing back its wildly popular #oclslovesorlando Instagram Photo Challenge. We want to encourage you to get out and explore Orlando. New art exhibit, restaurants and venues open every month. The opportunities to learn, grow, enrich... READ MORE

National Library Week 2018
March 30, 2018 | OCLS Staff

National Library Week is an annual celebration organized by the American Library Association to encourage people to read and support their libraries. This year marks the 60th... READ MORE

Rick Riordan Presents
March 29, 2018 | Nathaly Ruiz

If you haven’t heard of the popular author Rick Riordan, now may be the time to start listening. In September 2016 Riordan, author of the... READ MORE

A Conversation with Sarah Weeks
March 26, 2018 | Sarah Qronfleh

Sarah Weeks is the author of Save Me a Seat (co-written by Gita Varadarajan)... READ MORE

Learn to Make Soap
February 28, 2018 | Katy Marquardt

I have always been interested in art. As a teenager I would decorate t-shirts with paint and glitter and I also loved to draw. Not long ago, I became interested in the art of soap making as an alternative to store-bought brands. As we've probably seen in the news and... READ MORE

Throwback Thursday: TV Classics from the Vault
February 15, 2018 | Daniel Burnett

You may not know this about me, but I love old TV shows! They remind me of when I was growing up and we would watch these classic programs –  some of my favorites were... READ MORE

Inexpensive Valentine's Day crafts
February 14, 2018 | Cynthia Velasco

Valentine’s Day and crafts are like most classic combos we all love—milk and cookies, peanut butter and jelly, or extra guac and tacos. Crafting can be a fun way to engage with your kids, as well as an opportunity to de-stress from the challenges that come from being a parent... READ MORE

3 Must Read Black Panther Series
February 2, 2018 | Mike Donohue

With a seemingly endless supply of blockbuster releases, Marvel Studios is no stranger to box office success. However if the record-breaking advance ticket sales for their newest upcoming release Black Panther... READ MORE

Orlando Lady Boss Podcast - Why Libraries are Awesome!
January 30, 2018 | Wayne Middleton

Staff members Erin S. and Cynthia V. had the opportunity to speak with Diana Griffith, founder of Orlando Lady Boss, about the Orange County Library System and how the resources it offers changes lives. Erin and Cynthia discuss... READ MORE

A Conversation with Jeff Zentner
January 29, 2018 | Sarah Fisk

Jeff Zentner is the author of The Serpent King, which received the William... READ MORE

Tips on Making and Keeping Your New Year's Resolutions
January 6, 2018 | Nathaly Ruiz

The year 2018 is upon us and for most of us that means it’s the perfect time to think about the things we want to accomplish and change, or in other words, the time to create our resolutions. However, as you may have noticed, it is common not to keep these resolutions,... READ MORE

Sunshine State Author Series
December 26, 2017 | Sarah Bates
Top 10 Favorite Movies I Checked Out From OCLS In 2017
December 25, 2017 | Chris Neumann

I checked out A LOT of DVDs this year from the Orange County Library System. This list compiles my ten favorites. Happy watching!

10. Atomic Blonde

... READ MORE

Romance Favorites of 2017
December 21, 2017 | Vanessa Neblett

So many great romances to choose from in 2017. Here are a few not to miss.

Silver Silence by Nalini Singh

... READ MORE

10 Excellent Works of Adult Fiction from 2017
December 15, 2017 | Zach Rupprath

As 2017 draws to a close, we take this time to reflect on some of the best books of the year.  Social media, migration, gender inequality, love and loss were all hallmarks of 2017 and these issues are all reflected in this year’s literature. Dive on in to some of the best... READ MORE

E-reader
December 12, 2017 | Brendan Kalish

With all the different models of e-readers available, making a choice can seem intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. The first thing you need to decide is how you plan to use it. Do you only want to read books? Or would you also like to take pictures, browse the internet,... READ MORE

bookbuzz recommendations
December 6, 2017 | Luis Rivera

December is the perfect time to reminisce on the many great things we’ve accomplished throughout the year, including the many books that have been read. After a long day of fun-filled holiday activities, pour some of your favorite hot cocoa and snuggle up with some of this... READ MORE

Doc Harrison novels
December 1, 2017 | Cristina Gonzalez

Peter Telep is a #1 New York Times bestselling author, who has penned more than 40 novels and has collaborated with legendary author Tom Clancy. He is a film and television... READ MORE

Orlando Children's Business Fair
November 30, 2017 | Mira Tanna

The Orlando Children's Business Fair (OCBF) was a one-day marketplace, where children debuted their innovative products and inventions and built marketing strategies at the Orlando Public Library. Staff interviewed the category winners to learn more about their business and... READ MORE

Isaac Asimov
November 21, 2017 | Kevin Luering

Foundation is not only an essential part of the Asimov saga, but also one of the most important pieces of fiction of the 20th Century. The original trilogy’s influence penetrated the barrier of the science fiction community. It has been cited by economists,... READ MORE

Native American Boy
November 20, 2017 | Nathaly Ruiz

Made Official by George H.W. Bush in 1990, November is National American Indian Heritage Month. Back in 1915, NAIHM started out as a May holiday proposed by Dr. Arthur C. Parker, a Seneca Indian, to recognize the contributions of the first Americans. Today, we celebrate... READ MORE

Thanksgiving Dinner
November 16, 2017 | Jo Ann Sampson

Ah, Thanksgiving is coming. A time for family and friends to gather, and videos of turkey frying disasters to be posted. Anyone who cooks has stories of triumphs and tragedies in the kitchen, especially when it comes to holiday cooking. Some of those less successful attempts... READ MORE

Book Buzz Recommendations
November 3, 2017 | Luis Rivera

We all have plenty to be grateful for; from family and friends to our favorite books. This holiday season while your stomachs are full make time to spend together with your loved ones and snuggle up with some of our picks for this month’s Book Buzz. Happy reading!

... READ MORE

The Writers Corner
November 1, 2017 | Lauren Mathur

Have you ever looked at a book on our shelves and thought “I could write that?” Have you ever started writing and given up after a few pages? Congratulations, you’re like most writers!

Writing a book is hard, but possible, as proven by the countless books published... READ MORE

Book Buzz Recommendations
October 27, 2017 | Luis Rivera

From pumpkin seeds to pumpkins turning green, this month's featured books are sure to bring some spooky fun for readers of all ages. Visit your local library for some fang-tastic reads!

(Ages 1-3)

... READ MORE

Sunshine State Author Series
October 25, 2017 | Lorrie Taylor

Local author James Ponti continues the momentum for the Orange County Library System’s Sunshine State Author Series with an author event on November 18 at... READ MORE

Twisted Picture Books
October 23, 2017 | Lauren Mathur & Misty White

Picture books are a requisite for any child. Sweet, funny, charming, with pigeons, bears, big red dogs and more, there’s something for everyone. But what about those picture books that aren’t quite what you expected? The ones that make you go “WHAT DID I JUST READ?”... READ MORE

Best Halloween Movies
October 20, 2017 | Mike Donohue

With the Orange County Library System’s DVD Vault and home delivery services, movie night is just a click away. Using just your library card number and pin, you can choose from an inventory of thousands of films brought to your... READ MORE

Cliffhangers
October 5, 2017 | Nathaly Ruiz

With plenty of shows making their fall returns, I couldn’t help but think of some of the top season cliffhangers that left me aching for the next season to come. Here I’ve compiled a short-list of some of those jaw-dropping finales.

... READ MORE

Banned Books Week
September 30, 2017 | Latoya Mozell & Rebecca Hyman

Across the country, libraries, including OCLS, celebrate Banned Books Week September 24-30, 2017. This annual event highlights the freedom to read and the value of free and open access to information.  

Libraries... READ MORE

Sunshine State Author Series
September 24, 2017 | Mira Tanna

Newbery award-winning author Kelly Barnhill kicks off the Orange County Library System’s Sunshine State Author Series with an author event on October 18 at our Winter Garden Branch, followed by a writing workshop at the library’s... READ MORE

An Interview with Margarita Engle
August 21, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

Margarita Engle is a multi-award winning, Cuban-American author of children, teen and adult literature. She is the reigning Young People’s Poet Laureate and is the first Latino to be chosen for the prestigious honor. For Hispanic... READ MORE

Inventions
August 19, 2017 | Cristina Gonzalez

Do you want to become an inventor, but need some inspiration to get started? Are you curious about the advances in technology that were made 50 years ago? Or a hundred? Or even a thousand! Well, you’re in luck! Check out these awesome books where you can learn about the... READ MORE

Draw a Better World Crayola Contest
August 17, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

This summer, the Orange County Library System held an art contest, which challenged children to “Draw a Better World.” The contest was hosted in partnership with The Crayola Experience and winners throughout the county... READ MORE

Book Buzz
August 8, 2017 | Luis Rivera

Back to school is nearly upon us! Teachers have begun preparing lesson plans and students are ready to shop with their parents for new school supplies. But just because the Summer Reading Program is over and school is about to begin, doesn’t mean that recreational reading has... READ MORE

Love YA
August 5, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

While the Summer Reading Program is drawing to a close and we have a lot to look back on with fond memories, one of our most poignant events held this summer was Love YA.: A Celebration of Diverse Young Adult... READ MORE

Cómo aprender el inglés en cinco pasos sencillos
July 28, 2017 | Brendan Kalish & Cristina Gonzalez

Muchos recién llegados a los Estados Unidos quieren saber cuanto tiempo se necesita para aprender bien el inglés. Algunos llevan aquí años y todavía no lo han podido aprender bien. Siempre es un reto grande acostumbrarse a un país nuevo y además aprender otro idioma a la... READ MORE

Isaac Asimov
July 26, 2017 | Kevin Luering

The Empire series is the shortest and does little to advance the saga as a whole. Instead, each book for this sequence has its own independent story. They are vignettes, depicting a Galactic Empire in the process of becoming established, and the turmoil that is experienced by... READ MORE

July 4 Recipes
July 2, 2017 | OCLS Staff

So either you forgot the holiday was this coming up on Tuesday or the work-week made it impossible to plan ahead. No matter what the reason, we have you covered!

 

Refreshing Beverages

... READ MORE

Books for Pride Month
June 30, 2017 | Jaclyn Kobylarski

In honor of LGBTQ pride, here is a show-stopping book list that describes the lives, struggles, and strengths of LGBTQ characters and people, fact or fiction. These 11 books celebrate the spirit of the movement and implore us, at any age, to build a better world.

... READ MORE

Books for Pride Month
June 23, 2017 | Jaclyn Kobylarski

In honor of LGBTQ pride, here is a show-stopping book list that describes the lives, struggles, and strengths of LGBTQ characters and people, fact or fiction. These books—ranging from children’s picture books to works of fiction—all celebrate the spirit of the movement and... READ MORE

Orlando Book Festival Interview
June 22, 2017 | Sarah Fisk

The Orlando Book Festival is a daylong celebration of books at the Orlando Public Library. Our closing keynote speaker will be Jonathan MaberryNew York Times... READ MORE

Orlando Book Festival Interview
June 22, 2017 | Sarah Fisk

The Orlando Book Festival is a daylong celebration of books at the Orlando Public Library. Our opening keynote speaker will be New York Times ... READ MORE

SRP 2017
June 21, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

The Kids Summer Reading Program is officially in full swing thanks to the help of Koo Koo Kanga Roo and Mix 105.1!

On Saturday, June 3, the downtown library and the Southeast Branch got... READ MORE

June is Audiobook Month
June 20, 2017 | Luis Rivera

Did you know that 85% of learning derives from listening? When we listen, really listen and not dose off, information is better retained than just reading it. June is Audiobook month, which means your headphones will likely become your greatest accessory if they aren’t... READ MORE

Book Buzz
June 10, 2017 | Luis Rivera
Science Fiction
June 7, 2017 | Kevin Luering

The Three Laws of Robotics

  1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  2. A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings except where such orders... READ MORE
Koo Koo Kanga Roo
May 26, 2017 | Erin Topolsky

Koo Koo Kanga Roo is a band/comedy duo/workout franchise consisting of vocalists Bryan Atchison and Neil Olstad, who are on this planet to make you dance while laughing so hard that milk comes out of your nose.
 

... READ MORE

Geek Pride Day
May 25, 2017 | Wayne Middleton

“Being a nerd is not about what you love, it’s about the way that you love it.” – Wil Wheaton

Geek Pride Day (Día del orgullo friki) was first proposed and organized on May 25, 2006 by Spanish blogger Germán Martínez as a... READ MORE

Poetry Contest
May 24, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

April was National Poetry Month and to celebrate the library invited kids and teens to participate in a county-wide poetry contest. Two winners were chosen, one from the 6-12 age range and one from the 13-18 age range.

Our 2017 Kids’ Poetry Contest winner is Seylah H.... READ MORE

Spring Crafts
May 22, 2017 | Nathaly Ruiz

Here in Orlando, our seasons always seem to be mushed together under one hot umbrella. Trying to make improvements or enhancements doesn't have to be super expensive, so to make this season stand out I’ve collected five simple DIY projects to make your home bloom. At the... READ MORE

Book-To-Movie Adaptations Debuting in Summer 2017
May 17, 2017 | Jaclyn Kobylarski

Sometime between watching the first teaser trailer and shoveling buttery handfuls of movie theater popcorn into our mouths that inevitable question may start to dawn on us… Hey, wasn’t this a book?

It seems that many movie studios, writers and producers are... READ MORE

Book Buzz
May 15, 2017 | Luis Rivera
5 Books to Get Your Kids Started in Programming
May 12, 2017 | Cristina Gonzalez

Does your child love video games? And do they ever wonder how they’re made? Learning how to code is an important part of literacy in today’s world. There are many books in the library that can get you started at any age. With so many books to choose from, it can get tricky.... READ MORE

Offbeat Children’s Books Destined to Become Classics
May 10, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

Children’s Book Week is the perfect time to discover a new “read it again” storybook for your little one. While there are always the beloved, classic stories that we all remember from our childhood, it is worth taking a look at some of the more quirky and offbeat stories that... READ MORE

Batman
April 25, 2017 | Mike Donohue

On April 25, 1940, “Batman #1” was released to newsstands throughout the United States.  While not officially the first appearance of the Caped Crusader, Batman #1 does mark Bruce Wayne’s first appearance in a solo comic series. 77 years and over 600 issues later, the Batman... READ MORE

Charlotte Bronte
April 21, 2017 | Tracy Covey

Here are 10 facts to commemorate the 201st birthday of British novelist, Charlotte Brontë, most famously known for writing Jane Eyre.

 

1. Charlotte Bront... READ MORE

Books to Read
April 21, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

Storybooks to Help Children Understand Autism and Sensory Processing Disorder

April is National Autism Awareness Month and what better way to gain awareness than by reading and teaching your child about autism and sensory processing disorder. Whether... READ MORE

Book Buzz
April 19, 2017 | Luis Rivera
No-Bake Desserts
April 17, 2017 | Rebecca Hyman

Looking for easy and fun-to-make desserts, but don’t want to spend your day in a hot kitchen? The library has you covered! These delicious sweet treats are guaranteed to satisfyno oven required.

... READ MORE

YA Books for Adults
April 13, 2017 | Lauren Mathur

YA novels have exploded in popularity within the last few years. From Hunger Games to The Fault in Our Stars, they cover a range of topics and offer a... READ MORE

Library Workers
April 11, 2017 | Brendan Kalish

Happy National Library Week!

Have you ever wondered what library workers do all day? Strictly speaking, not everyone who works in a library is a librarian. Like a hospital has doctors, nurses, and... READ MORE

Science Fiction
April 6, 2017 | Kevin Luering

Isaac Asimov’s bibliography count is around 500 published books. The exact number depends on the source. Although he delved into subjects ranging from politics to astrophysics, in both fiction and non-fiction formats, Asimov is remembered most commonly for the three series... READ MORE

IG Challenge
April 1, 2017 | OCLS Staff

In April, the library wants to encourage you to get out and explore Orlando. With so many one-of-a-kind things to do see, explore and experience, there's no shortage of inspiration to be found. Tag your photos with #oclslovesorlando. We'll repost our favorite submissions... READ MORE

Books to Read
March 31, 2017 | Tracy Covey

43 Forever Fashionistas

Take a journey through time with the book, Bad Girls of Fashion: Style Rebels from Cleopatra to Lady Gaga by Jennifer Croll, to discover exactly what Cleopatra... READ MORE

Jackson Pearce
March 27, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

Sunshine State author Jackson Pearce entranced audiences at Alafaya Branch and the Orlando Public Library on March 8 and March 9 with the true story of a wounded rat that she saved from the jaws of a cat, put in her backpack and brought home at age 9. The rat, much to her... READ MORE

Books to Read
March 24, 2017 | Tracy Covey

As Beyonce sings, Run the World (Girls)

From Pocahontas to Misty Copeland, Laurie Calkhoven writes about 50 significant women throughout American history in the book, Women Who Changed the... READ MORE

Women Power
March 22, 2017 | Jaclyn Kobylarski

March is National Women’s History Month! What started as just a week in 1980 centered around March 8th has grown into a month-long celebration of the progress and contributions of women in society (but I know what you’re thinking… why not every day of the year?).... READ MORE

Tulips
March 20, 2017 | OCLS Staff

The first day of Springalso known as the Vernal Equinoxofficially began today at 6:29 a.m. EDT. In numerous cultures, this transition marks an opportunity for new beginnings. Here are seven book recommendations from... READ MORE

Books to Read
March 17, 2017 | Tracy Covey

Ladies of Liberty: The Women Who Shaped Our Nation

Cokie Roberts, the American journalist and political commentator, adapts her 2007 book, Ladies of Liberty, for children in this non-fiction... READ MORE

Art is Moving
March 13, 2017 | OCLS Staff

This week, if you’re riding on SunRail, look before you sit – is there a little journal labeled “Open Me” on a seat near you? If so, don’t be shy. Open it, grab the writing implement of your choice and write, sketch or draw something that inspires you.

The journals... READ MORE

Books to Read
March 10, 2017 | Tracy Covey

Lady Ada’s Algorithm

Imagine a baby girl, born in nineteenth century England, who studied music, French, and especially mathematics as a child, growing into a uniquely talented woman who is recognized today as the “world’s first computer programmer... READ MORE

Vision
March 6, 2017 | Kevin Luering

2016’s best surprise in the graphic novel world has to be Tom King’s sci-fi suburban drama “Vision“. Relatively new to the professional comic scene, King once was an assistant to the legendary “X-Men” writer, Chris Claremont. He put his comic career on... READ MORE

Books to Read
March 3, 2017 | Tracy Covey

Dr. Eugenie Clark, Shark Lady

Can you say ichthyologist?

Merriam-Webster online offers this phonetic spelling for better pronunciation. Go ahead, take a stab at it. \ˌik-thē-ˈä-lə-jist\ This is a fancy word for a fish... READ MORE

Jason Reynolds & Brendan Kiely
March 1, 2017 | Stephanie Mackin

“We can’t be more loyal to our fears than our futures,” said Jason Reynolds, co-author of All American Boys, during a truly inspirational talk at the Orlando Public Library. He and co-author Brendan Kiely visited Orlando as part of the OCLS Sunshine State Author... READ MORE

Peanuts
March 1, 2017 | Rachael Bethel

It’s National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day! Unlike “Peanut Butter Day” in January, National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day celebrates those who love peanut butter and the different ways they eat it.

 

When you think of peanut butter, most people think of peanut butter... READ MORE

Sunshine State Author Series
February 27, 2017 | Stephanie Doane

The Sunshine State Author Series brings top-notch writers of children’s and young adult literature to Orange County for public readings, writing workshops and visits with students to spark interest in reading. Library staff member Stephanie Doane had the privilege of... READ MORE

Jack Reacher
February 24, 2017 | Jo Ann Sampson

It's the age old questionwhich is better: the book or the movie? Most readers usually say the book but why is that? Is it because the book came first? Is it because you spend two... READ MORE

Herndon Branch
February 21, 2017 | Rachael Bethel

February is National Library Lovers Month! Did you know that according the 2016 Pew Report, 76% of Americans believe that libraries serve their community well? Let’s make it 100%! Take a look at these... READ MORE

Maker Mondays
February 7, 2017 | OCLS Staff

Maker Mondays is a new series offered at the Alafaya Branch that aims to give library users,... READ MORE

Young girl reading
February 6, 2017 | OCLS Staff

Valentine's Dayor Saint Valentine's Day as it also knownis an internationally recognized... READ MORE

Living space
January 24, 2017 | OCLS Staff

A new year gives us the opportunity to restart or even refresh areas of our lives. Our homes can be a haven but can also cause us unnecessary stress in our lives. Sometimes the way we organize – or don’t organize – our living spaces can contribute to feelings of overwhelm or... READ MORE

Sunshine State Author Series
January 24, 2017 | Lauren Mathur

The Sunshine State Author Series brings top-notch writers of children’s and young adult literature to Orange County for public readings, writing workshops and visits with students to spark interest in reading. Library staff member Lauren Mathur had the privilege of... READ MORE

Ethnic Cuisine
January 18, 2017 | OCLS Staff

The start of a new year always brings an excitement to refresh and enhance your daily life. We’ve put together a list of new hobbies and interests – and how to get started – for you to consider in 2017.

1... READ MORE