San Rafael Public Library

Library Updates

National Poetry Month Is Here!

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Instituted by the Academy of American Poets in April 1996, National Poetry Month was established to remind the public that poets have an integral role to play in our culture and that poetry matters.  For more information, see the website. 

Usually, National Poetry Month is a time for poetry readings and celebratory activities around poetry and poetry writingAs we shelter in placewe’re bringing  the celebration to you!  We will be collecting video clips of poets, mostly local, who will read a poem for your reflection and enjoyment. Get inspired!  See if you feel moved to write a poem of your own. Now, more than ever, we need poetry! 

Want to dive in deeper?  See these websites for more poetry: 

Would you like a poem delivered to your inbox each day?

Or maybe you’d rather HEAR the poem 

Want more videos?

And as William Carlos Williams put it, “if it ain’t a pleasure, it ain’t a poem.” 


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Watch City Council Meetings Live on YouTube

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Watch the live broadcast of the City of San Rafael’s Council Meeting on Monday, April 6th at 7pm. You will be able to comment in the live chat or comment live by phone by contact ing the City Clerk at 415-485-3066.

The April 6 City Council meeting will again be streamed on YouTube Live at 7 pm. For those unable to participate through YouTube live, we will also provide a phone number you can call in to listen and/or participate. While we cannot allow physical access to the meeting due to the Shelter in Place order, we are offering several ways you can make your voice heard:

  1. Write to the City Council in advance
  2. Comment live on YouTube during the meeting
  3. Call-in and “raise your hand” if you want to speak during public comment time

More information about how to participate

Upcoming City Meetings

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Learn How to Make a DIY Mask

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Librarian Jill Tokutomi demonstrates how you can make your own mask.

Fu Mask pattern from

As mentioned, there is some conflicting information about if and how the public should be using masks at this time. Here are some resources to help you decide for yourself:

World Health Organization: When and how to use masks

New York TImes: More Americans Should Probably Wear Masks for Protection

BBC: Why Some Countries Wear Face Masks and Others Don’t

Science Mag: Would everyone wearing face masks help us slow the pandemic?

Don’t have elastic on hand? Salvage some from old stretchy articles of clothing:


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¡Sobreviviendo al estar con los Niños en Casa!

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¡Hola Niños 

¿Es super aburrido estar en casa? ¿Los adultos les dicen que ya dejen la computadora o la tableta? Aquí hay algunas ideas de cómo puedes encontrar cosas que hacer, incluso si estás atrapado en casa.  Si bien algunas de estas ofertas son digitalesintenta mezclarlas! 

A Moverse   ¡Enciende tu música favorita y ponte a bailar! Invita a los adultos a bailar también.  Ten una fiesta de baile familiar.  Camina al rededor del vecindario con precaución¡Un poco de sol convertirá el gris de tu cielos en cielos azules! Volvamos a los tiempos de antes donde no tenían nada de tecnologia  digital. Pregunta a los adultos que juegos jugaban de niños como el Yax, Carteritas, LoteríaSaltar la Cuerda, La Cebollitas, o un Trabalenguas. 

Encuentre la Calma en este enlace, Insight Timer has meditations and meditation music just for kids Stodavía no puede calmar su mente?  Practique la respiración profundapero no detenga la respiración.  ¡Haz algunas repeticiones y mira cuánto mejor te sientes! 

¡Canta!  Después de moverse y meditar, cantar es otra de esas cosas que tiene tantos beneficios, ¡como elevar tu estado de ánimo! ¿Y adivina qué? Las prácticas de respiración de Find Some Calm van a dar fruto.  La gente cantaba mucho antes del karaoke, ¡y tú también puedes! 
¡Puntos extra por aprenderte una canción que un  adulto en casa cantabde niño! ¡Les  recomendamos  cantar junto con su familia! 

Visita el Zoológico   El  San Diego Zooel Georgia Aquarium Y el Monterey Bay Aquarium  están ofreciendo vistas en vivo por la cámara web de pandas, pingüinos y ballenas Beluga. 

Piensa Creativamente:  The Bay Area Discovery Museum is coming to you.  It’s fun! It’s open-ended!  Awaken your inner engineer/scientist/artist! Tap into your creativity! 

¡Hagamos ArteIncluso si piensas que no tienes materiales para hacer algo de arte.   Mira a tu alrededor y elabora esculturas con todo lo que veas: calcetines, peluches, envases desechados, gomas, correo basura y objetos para reciclar. No hay una manera incorrecta de hacer esto, pero, por favor, ¡díselo a un adulto primero, para que no tomes algo que se necesita en la casa! Haga clic en este enlace:  

Utiliza la Biblioteca Digital 
¡Visite nuestra página de Niños para ver nuestros recursos electrónicosincluidos libros electrónicos y audio, cuentos digitales, una lista de juegos aprobados por bibliotecarios y mucho más! 

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Surviving Staying at Home for Kids!

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Hey Kiddos!  

Is staying at home getting booorrrriiiinnnnggg? Are your adults telling you to get off the computer or tablet??  Here are some ideas of how you can find things to do even if you are stuck at home.  While some of these offerings are digital, try to mix it up!   

Get Moving to change your blahs into some serious bounce!  Turn on your favorite music, and dance!  Get your adults in on the action too.  Have a family dance party! Or head out for a walk around the neighborhood, an open park, or trail.  A little sunshine will turn your blues into blue skies! Go non-digital: get into play from the old days!  Ask an adult about games they played as kids, like Simon Says, jump rope, or hopscotch. 

Find Some Calm  Insight Timer has meditations and meditation music just for kids.  Still can’t quiet that monkey mind?  Practice taking slow deep breathes in and out—but don’t hold your breath.  Do a few rounds and see how much better you feel! 

Sing!  After moving and meditating, singing is another one of those things that has so many benefits—like upping your mood! And guess what? All that breathing practice from Find Some Calm is going to pay off as you hold those notes.  People were singing way before karaoke, and you can too!  Extra points for learning a song from the adult in your house from when they were a kid!  Singing together with your family is highly encouraged! 

Go to the Zoo:  The San Diego Zoothe Georgia Aquarium and the Monterey Bay Aquarium are offering live webcam viewings of pandas, penguins and beluga whales. 

Think Creatively:  The Bay Area Discovery Museum is coming to you.  It’s fun! It’s open-ended!  Awaken your inner engineer/scientist/artist! Tap into your creativity! 

Make Some Art! Even if you aren’t stocked up on art supplies, art is all around you waiting to happen.  Look around, and make sculptures with anything you see: dirty socks, stuffed animals, discarded packaging, rubber bands, junk mail! There’s no wrong way to do this—but please, tell your adult first, so you don’t take something that they need!
Check out:

The Art of Education.

Sculpture Projects with Found/Recycled Objects for Kids Pre-K to 3rd Grade
Found Art Sculpture Project for Pre-K through 5th Grade:

Make Use of your Digital Library:  Go to our Kids’ page to see our e-resources including E-Books and Audio, digital storytimes, a vetted list of librarian approved games, and more!

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Join the Online Book Club!

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The San Rafael Public Library Joins Libraries Worldwide in Largest Digital Book Club Engaging and informative “Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic.” E-book and audiobook are now available for reading and global discussion. – Thursday, March 23, 2020-April 13, 2020 

San Rafael Public Library patrons can join thousands of readers around the world in laughter and learning during Big Library Read, the world’s largest digital book club. From March 23–April 13. 

Booklovers can enjoy stand-up comic Michael McCreary’s hilarious yet insightful memoir, Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic, from their public library as an ebook or audiobook with no waitlists or holds! San Rafael Public Library readers can join by visiting or downloading the Libby app, then discussing online at 

Big Library Read is available in over 22,000 libraries and schools around the world, including more than 90 percent of public libraries in North America. It is facilitated by Rakuten OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for popular ebooks, audiobooks and magazines.  

Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic is stand-up comic Michael McCreary’s memoir in which he points out that autism “looks” different for just about everyone with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Diagnosed with ASD at age five, McCreary got hit with the performance bug not much later. During a difficult time in junior high, he started journaling, eventually turning his pain into something empowering—and funny. This unique and hilarious #OwnVoices memoir breaks down what it’s like to live with autism for readers on and off the spectrum. Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic is an invaluable and compelling read for young readers with ASD looking for voices to relate to, as well as for readers hoping to broaden their understanding of ASD.  

Big Library Read is an international reading program that simultaneously connects millions of readers around the world with an ebook through public libraries. Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic is the 21st selection of this program which began in 2013 and takes place three times per year. Readers can join an online discussion about the book at The free program runs for two weeks and only requires a library card from a Marin County public library to get started.  

Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic was published by Annick Press and can be read on all major computers and devices through Libby, including iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phones and tablets and Chromebook™ without waitlists or holds. Through Libby, readers can also “send to Kindle®” [US libraries only]. The title will automatically expire at the end of the lending period, and there are no late fees.  

Hope you can join us! 


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Storytime Online

Posted by jill on

We will have live storytimes on our Facebook page!

Wednesdays, 3/25 and 4/1 at 10:30am

Thursdays, 3/26 and 4/2 at 10:30am

Visit our Facebook page on those days and times to see your favorite librarians at storytime!

Online Storytime YouTube Channel

The library may be closed, but we still want to share stories, songs, rhymes, and movement with you. We are excited to offer online storytimes during this time of social distancing. Enjoy storytimes by your favorite San Rafael Public Library staffers while we’re all sheltering in place. Check out our YouTube playlist. We will continue to update it with new storytimes in both English and Spanish!

We miss our storytime families and can’t wait until we see each other again at the library. In the meantime we hope seeing some familiar library faces provide some comfort and normalcy for your kiddos during these strange times.

For information and updates on COVID-19 and how to keep you and your loved ones safe, visit the Marin Health and Human Services website.

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Things to do Online while Social Distancing 

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The following is a list of online recreational activities that you can do in your home while practicing social distancing. A few suggestions require a local library card and a PIN to access. If you do not have a library card, visit the library’s Services page to obtain an electronic library card which provides online access to the library’s digital resources. If you have a library card, but have forgotten your PIN please use this link to reset your PIN 

We hope that these ideas will make your time at home more enjoyable. 

Cook: Use the food you have on hand by matching the ingredients to recipes available online. Apps such as FridgeToTable, Epicurious, Big Oven, and AllRecipes, allow you to search by ingredient name in order  to create delicious meals. 

Find your Roots: Genealogical research is the perfect activity for when you’re home and feeling disconnected from people. Cyndi’s List (  is a great place to find resources for tracing your family history. Start with the section for beginners or go directly to one of the thousands of other categories that Cyndi provides.  

Fine Arts: Head to a virtual museum – many museums won’t be open to the public for an in-person visit, but why let that stop a good dose of culture and history when you can make a virtual visit? 

The Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, National Gallery of Art and the Guggenheim Museum’s virtual galleries offer plenty of opportunities to see and experience the magic that museums have. International museums such as the Louvre, the Vatican Museum  and the Musée d’Orsay, Paris also offer virtual tours.﷟HYPERLINK “” 

Google has a rich library of information and images from over 1200 museums click on this link to explore Google Arts & Culture 

Go to the Zoo:  The San Diego Zoo, the Georgia Aquarium and the Monterey Bay Aquarium are offering live webcam viewings of pandas, penguins and beluga whales. 

Learn a language: Take advantage of your local library’s language learning program. The local San Rafael Public Library offers  Mango Languages which will help you to get started in over 70 languages. All you need is a library card. Another good free app is Duolingo. 

Listen: The Metropolitan Opera is offering free streaming of a different opera every night while they are closed at 

You can stream music without downloading for free by using sites such as Pandora, Spotify, You Tube Music, Slacker Radio, JangoMusixhub, My Space, iHeart Radio, Deezer, and Soundcloud. 

Play:  You don’t have to be over 65 in order to enjoy the free games that are available on AARP’s website 

Read:  If you haven’t tried to use one of the library’s electronic book or magazine platforms, then you’re in for a treat. Go to the library’s homepage and select the ebook tab for a variety of free ebook choices ( The Libby/Overdrive platform has the largest number of selections in audio and in print, while Hoopla also includes streaming videos and music. You can read entire issues of magazines on your computer, smartphone, or tablet using the RBDigital database which is under the eresources tab ( All you need is your library card numbern and a PIN. 

To do:  Tackle some of those minor repairs and home improvement projects that you’ve been putting off- use that leftover paint you’ve been keeping for touch-ups, tighten those loose screws, etc. Need help? Besides the thousands of YouTube videos that helpful homemakers and handypersons have posted, many do it yourself magazines such as This Old House ( and Family Handyman ( have free articles available online. 

Travel: Plan for a future trip. Don’t want to fly for a while? No problem. Plan a future road trip with, which helps you find quirky roadside destinations sorted by categories like “abandoned places,” “swimming holes,” “vegetarian restaurants,” and dozens more. Nasa (  and the National Park Service ( offer virtual tours and videos so that you can travel vicariously. 

Write: Take time to write a heartfelt letter to a loved one or a friend. Consider making your own hand-decorated card or notepaper to make it extra-special. Who doesn’t like getting “snail-mail” that isn’t bills or advertising? Enhance your letters with poems from websites such as or and learn how to make unique cards by googling the phrase “handmade cards” (you will find thousands of inspiring examples). 


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Posted by jillt on

Coronavirus badge


Para ayudar a mitigar la propagación de COVID-19, todas las Bibliotecas públicas de la Ciudad de San Rafael, incluidas la Biblioteca del Centro, la Biblioteca Pickleweed y la Biblioteca del Centro Comercial Northgate, están cerradas.

Esto está de acuerdo con la medida que ordena a los residentes a refugiarse en sus casas durante tres semanas a partir del 17 de marzo. Puede leer más sobre este tema  aquí..

Esto es lo que se estamos llevando a cabo durante este periodo:

  • Se están eliminando las multas  para todos los materiales mientras la biblioteca está cerrada y alentando a los usuarios a mantener sus artículos en casa.
  • Estamos trabajando para extender las fechas de vencimiento de todos los artículos hasta que la biblioteca haya vuelto a abrir.
  • Mantenemos todos los artículos “retenidos” en los estantes en sus ubicaciones actuales para que estén disponibles una vez que se vuelvan a abrir las bibliotecas.
  • Estamos en el proceso de renovar todos los materiales de Link + hasta el 7 de abril. Si tiene preguntas sobre elementos específicos en su cuenta, puede comunicarse con nosotros a través de o nuestro chat  . Proporcione su número de tarjeta de biblioteca, nombre y apellido.
  • Le recomendamos que se comunique con nosotros de forma remota para obtener asistencia personal utilizando nuestro chat que se encuentra en la parte inferior izquierda de nuestro sitio web durante el horario de atención.
  • Estamos promoviendo nuestra amplia gama de materiales digitales y servicios en línea desde casa, que incluyen: libros electrónicos audiolibros, películas, revistas digitales y noticias;aprender mas acerca de .

Para obtener más  información y orientación más reciente del Departamento de Salud y Servicios Humanos del Condado de Marin (Marin HHS), visite la página web de Coronavirus de Marin HHS: También puede suscribirse para recibir actualizaciones por correo electrónico. Además, las personas pueden comunicarse con Marin HHS con preguntas no médicas sobre COVID-19 llamando a un centro de información específico al 415-473-7191 o por correo electrónico a:

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  • Downtown Library

    Sun: 1-5
    Mon: 1-8
    Tues, Weds, Thurs: 10-8
    Fri & Sat: 10-5

    (415) 485-3323

    1100 E Street (at 5th Avenue)
    San Rafael, CA 94901

  • Pickleweed Library

    Sun & Mon: Closed
    Tues & Weds: 1-8
    Thurs: 11-8
    Fri & Sat: 11-5

    (415) 485-3483

    50 Canal Street
    San Rafael, CA 94901

  • Northgate Pop-Up Library

    Mon, Weds, Thurs: 1-8
    Fri, Sat, Sun: 1-5
    Tues: closed

    (415) 524-2694

    5800 Northgate Drive
    San Rafael, CA 94903

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