Attention: our libraries will be closed Sunday, May 27 and Monday, May 28 in observance of Memorial Day.
| Monday, April 02, 2018
| Friday, March 23, 2018
DWe Williams has spent her life sharing the arts | Monday, February 12, 2018
NewsOK | Wednesday, February 07, 2018
New Bethany library taking shape
BETHANY — Steel superstructure is in place on Bethany's 23,000-square-foot public library that is being financed by an $8.1 million bond approved by city voters last year and about $2 million in Metropolitan Library System funds.
Arlita Harris, Ward 2 city councilwoman and chair of the library steering committee for the city, said construction is on schedule for a planned opening late this year.
Harris said the planning and zoning commission will consider plans for the playground and park improvements Feb. 15, and the city council will consider them Feb. 20.
The plans include a gazebo and amenities for a handicap-accessible park that will be developed adjacent to the new library.
Shiloh Enterprises Inc. in Edmond is the general contractor for the library, with a winning construction bid last year of $5,738,000 that included demolition of Bethany's original library building.
Proceeds from the voter-approved bond will cover construction costs and overall campus improvements, Harris said. Library system money financed preliminary architectural drawings and will cover the cost of computers, other equipment, furnishings and library materials, she said.
The new library is being built at 6700 NW 35 in Bethany, immediately south of Bethany city government and police operations.
The library will include artwork inside the library and on the grounds, meeting space, drive-up book drop, quiet reading area, teen center, children's program section, outdoor reading porches and an increased collection of materials. The revamped campus will include walking trails, pond improvements and extensive landscaping.
Harris said construction crews hope to complete the library's exterior before the wetter spring and summer months so that work inside the library can begin.
Bethany's original library opened in 1965 but had become outdated and cramped. Current library operations are housed in temporary space at 7941 NW 23.
| Friday, February 02, 2018
The Metropolitan Library System will celebrate Black History Month with programs available at Oklahoma County libraries throughout the month of February.
Kicking off the month is popular musical group, Short Dogg. They will take you on musical journey through Oklahoma's jazz history, beginning with the deep deuce jazz era in Oklahoma City, through the Greenwood jazz scene in Tulsa, then through today's contemporary jazz era.
Rhythmically Speaking will present, The Principal, the Superintendent, and the Philanthropist, a story about three strong women who made their mark on education.
MLS staff librarian and musician, Cheryl Coleman, will entertain everyone with a musical tribute that will introduce you to the history of the 13 Historic All Black Towns of Oklahoma.
History tells us Oklahoma found itself at the center of a national debate concerning the term “freedmen” during the late nineteenth century. Learn more as doctoral student of history, Leroy Myers, details the relationship between Native freedmen and black Americans in Oklahoma.
Throughout the month, the Ralph Ellison Library located at 2000 NE 23rd in OKC, will also hold additional Black History Month programs and performances. Learn the history of the Muscogee Creek Indian Freedmen and get tips for researching your own family tree. A few special film viewings will be offered including viewings of And the Children Shall Lead, 13th, and I Am Not Your Negro. A special film release party will also be held for the premiere of Marvel’s Black Panther, the first black superhero in mainstream American comics.
MLS also offers a variety of resources on African American history and heritage including research sources with biographies, images, historical records, newspapers, and genealogical archives. For more information on Black History Month programming and resources, visit our Black History Month page.
Midwest City Beacon | Tuesday, January 23, 2018
Randy Wayland has seen a lot of changes in this 34-plus years with the Metropolitan Library System – and, he’s worked his fair share of locations throughout that system. But, Midwest City is what he’s chosen to call his professional home, he says.
Firefighter obstacle course held at Midwest City Library | Wednesday, June 21, 2017
MIDWEST CITY — Children learned what it's like to be a firefighter at the Midwest City Library.
Firefighters from the Midwest City Fire Department held the Stop! Drop! Roll! firefighter's obstacle course on Thursday at the library, where visitors learned about carrying fire hoses, dodging obstacles and how to put out imaginary flames.
NewsOK | Sunday, June 04, 2017
By Henry Dolive For The Oklahoman
OKLAHOMA CITY - BETHANY — Officials are looking at a mid-August construction start for Bethany's new public library, to be funded largely from an $8.1 million bond that voters approved in April 2016.
Contractors are expected to begin bidding on the project in June, following final approval of architectural plans for the library to be built on the site of Bethany's now-closed library at 3510 N Mueller Ave.
Library operations are housed presently at a temporary location at 7941 NW 23.
Officials will open bids on the 23,000-square-foot library project at 2 p.m. July 6, said City Manager J.D. Cox, with a contract to be awarded that month. Groundbreaking and start of construction is set for Aug. 12, he said.
Ward 2 Councilwoman Arlita Harris, who chairs the library steering committee, said the committee is pleased with the construction cost estimate.
“It came in right where we wanted it to be,” she said. “If the bids come in that way, it will be a wonderful thing.”
The construction contract will include demolition of the old library, which closed in February. The new library will occupy the same site but will be about triple the size.
Among features to be offered in the new library, Harris said, are conference space for groups of 100 or more, a larger collection of materials, a drive-up book drop, a quiet reading area and a special section for children's programs.
The new library also will include a teen center, large picture windows and outdoor reading porches. The campus will include walking trails, improvements to the nearby pond, a new playground, additional parking with wider spaces and extensive landscaping.
Construction will take 12 to 18 months.
Cox said the library was designed to incorporate many of the requests made during public meetings conducted before the bond election.
The Bethany Library is part of the Metropolitan Library System, which oversees staffing, selection of materials and day-to-day library operations, and is providing about $2 million toward the new library.
Cox praised the leadership of Harris, Metropolitan Library System Director Tim Rogers, Bethany's library consultant Todd Olberding and others.
“An enormity of work has been completed to bring this project to this point of final approval to go out for construction,” Cox said. “It has truly been a team effort.”
Harris said the presentation to the city council on June 5 will be led by Denelle Wrightson, director of library architecture for Dewberry Architects, the firm chosen by the city council. Harris described Wrightson as one of the world's foremost library architects, having designed 250 to 300 libraries.
Bethany' old 8,400-square-foot library was opened in 1965, and while one of the metro system's busier libraries, it was one of the smallest. It did not meet handicap-accessibility requirements, lacked energy-efficiency, had little meeting space, and its mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems were dated.
“We hope that this new and much-improved library will increase our sense of community and provide residents with a wonderful place to spend time with family and neighbors,” said Nikki Phipps, Bethany public information officer.
Voters gave the bond proposal 71.7 percent approval, with the question winning by a vote of 1,022-404.
Libraries Adding Healthy Vending Machines | Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Libraries adding healthy vending machines
OKLAHOMA CITY – In partnership with the American Heart Association, Oklahoma County’s Metropolitan Library System has been outlining the development and implementation of evidence-based nutrition standards for healthier foods and beverages in vending machines in libraries.
Vending machines in the Metropolitan Library System will meet AHA-recommended nutrition standards to provide members with healthier options and provide basic education on nutritional value of the food available. The library system’s 550 employees will have healthier choices in vending machines where they work.
“We are currently in the process of conducting assessments on their vending machines to assess how many of the items meet the AHA nutrition standards,” said Breanna Russell, AHA’s regional campaign manager team lead, Anchor Partnerships Program. “We will then work with the library system and vendor providing resources to implement healthy options, as well as resources to help generate awareness and educate the public about the new food choices offered within the libraries.”
ONEcard Partnership between OKC Public Schools and Metro Library | Wednesday, October 19, 2016
OKLAHOMA CITY - Students in the Oklahoma City Public School District won't need a library card anymore.
"We thought 'Let's start with the biggest school system we have in Oklahoma County,' which was Oklahoma City Public Schools,” said Kim Terry, director of public relations and marketing at Metropolitan Library System.
All students need to check out a book at an Oklahoma City library is their student ID.
"They can check out any of our books. They can check out 10 books, CDs. We have music CDs, audiobooks they can check out," Terry said.
Because fines can keep a child from coming back to the library, late returns will not be penalized.
Computers are popular at libraries, and it's hoped the students will also take advantage of 120 online learning tools.
"Say a child is having trouble with math. They can go on our learning express page, click on elementary, go to math skills and do a bunch of practice skills with math," Terry said.
Because, easy accessibility is important to keep a child motivated.
"A lot of times, I know, when I was in high school, I knew 'Okay, I really need to do homework,' but I didn't want to go to the library. I waited until the last minute. Well, now, you can access all of this stuff from home,” Terry said.
The Metropolitan Library said, since Sept. 1st, 1,000 students have used the new One Card system.
They are hoping to expand to other districts.
Newsok | Tuesday, January 27, 2015
Anna Evans can remember moving books into the Bethany Library when it opened Jan. 31, 1965.
The library at 3510 N Mueller had been approved by Bethany voters two years earlier. The $175,000 bond provided money for construction of the building and to buy about 30,000 books that would be used to stock its shelves.
School Library Journal | Thursday, January 15, 2015
Yoga has grown so popular in Oklahoma City’s Metropolitan Library System (MLS) that the library now offers classes at seven locations, including programs for kids, from preschool to age 12. Kristin Williamson, the children services coordinator at MLS, has been with the library since the program was started by a children’s librarian who used Teresa Anne Power’s book The ABCs of Yoga for Kids (Stafford House, 2009) to create a mini-exercise class for preschool children. Some of the classes are run by librarians, while some MLS library branches hire certified yoga instructors.
Newsok | Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Even before Tim Rogers was hired last year as executive director of the Metropolitan Library System, he made it a point to visit all of its branches when he was in Oklahoma City in September for his interview.
Oklahoma Gazette | Wednesday, January 14, 2015
As a boy in Buffalo, New York, Tim Rogers watched broadcasts of the Toronto Blue Jays that played on Canadian television and reached American homes just on the other side of Lake Ontario.
He also had an affinity for the Los Angeles Dodgers — his mother’s influence — and the Kansas City Royals, his adopted home team after living in Kansas City, where he was director of operations for the Johnson County Library system.
The Oklahoman | Thursday, October 16, 2014
The Metropolitan Library Commission has named Tim Rogers as the new executive director for the library system.
He will start his new job Jan. 15. He will replace Donna Morris, who is retiring after 45 years.