September 28, 2020
All branches of the Central Arkansas Library System, with the exception of the Millie Brooks branch in Wrightsville, are now open for in-person service from 9am-6pm, Monday-Saturday. Please call 501-918-3000 for more information.
More CALS Services Available Now
Curbside library services are available at all but one of the Central Arkansas Library System branches, Monday-Saturday, 9am-6pm. Services include holds pickup, new checkouts, book drop returns, and limited mobile printing at each of those locations. To protect the health and safety of patrons and staff, very specific procedures for requesting and picking up items have been put in place. Please note: curbside service at Brooks Library has been suspended.
Curbside Service Procedures
Need to print a resume? The article you need for a report? That recipe you found online? Use our mobile printing service to print from your phone, tablet, laptop, Chromebook, even your home computer and pick up the printed document at your favorite CALS branch. All you need is an email address and a document to print.
Mobile Printing Info
Surf the Internet through high-speed wireless networking from your laptop at all branch locations of the Central Arkansas Library System. You can connect at high speed without wires to e-mail, the Internet, and your company network with your computer equipped with wireless networking technology. Available 24/7.
Free Wi-fi Info
STATEMENT FROM CENTRAL ARKANSAS LIBRARY SYSTEM BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Recent events have shown that we, as Americans, still have a long path to justice, healing, and understanding, especially in the treatment of our African American and other marginalized communities. CALS Executive Director Nate Coulter posted a statement about the recent police involved killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and others whose names are not a part of the national story. He also offered ways for CALS to participate in addressing a part of the solution, so as a Board, we want to add our voice to his.
Acts of racism, violence, and injustice toward one another, particularly toward our communities of color, are a stark reminder that we all must do our personal best to make our own Central Arkansas Library System community fair, inclusive, and just. CALS’ fundamental mission is and has always been to, “help residents reach their full potential, and to inspire discovery, learning, and cultural expression.” A thriving equitable community benefits us all. To that end, we pledge our resources, creativity, and sustained effort to build true racial and social equity in our community.
Central Arkansas Library System Board of Directors
Nancy Rousseau, Vice-President
Brandon Grice, Treasurer
Stephanie Gibson Branton
Available Titles from CALS
Below are curated lists of materials in popular topics available from CALS. If you would like a CALS librarian to prepare a personalized list of recommendations, please complete our preferences questionnaire. For book recommendations of all kinds, please visit the CALS Catalog.
Democracy can’t survive without you.
This is no exaggeration. Pulaski County faces a serious shortage of poll workers to run the general election on November 3, 2020. The Pulaski County Election Commission recently put out a call for poll workers, and CALS is helping spread the word in a nonpartisan, publicly funded effort to support our elections.
In this entrepreneur readiness workshop we will discuss potential first steps for aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners. Participants will learn about some of the free resources offered by CALS as well as some other community organizations that can help.
When: October 1, 2020 10:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada)
Where: Anywhere with an internet (wi-fi) connection.
Join us every Thursday at 7:00pm CST for Arkansas Sounds Presents, a free online watch party of Arkansas music and culture, including unreleased performances, interviews and related content from our CALS Arkansas Sounds archives.
On Thursday, October 1, CALS Arkansas Sounds presents a tribute to legendary drummer, W.S. “Fluke” Holland. Our playlist for this Sun Records veteran and Johnny Cash original band member includes interviews,
In this class Ms. Opal will be teaching you about the basics of different crafts. So, each month we will focus on a different craft.
This is a virtual program. It will be shown live on the first friday of each month on the Nixon library Facebook page.
To find this program just click here.
August 14 – November 28, 2020
Galleries at Library Square, CALS Roberts Library
As part of the Central Arkansas Library System’s celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of Arkansas author Dee Brown’s classic Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, the CALS Galleries at Library Square are honored to host an exhibition of ledger art from the J.
Join us ALL October long for Virtual BingoFlix… SHOCKTOBERFEST: Terror From The 80s!
Play bingo along to the cheesy B-movie cliches in a selection of EIGHT terror films from the 1980s, for your chance to win a FREE movie pass to the theater once we reopen. FREE to play!
Photographer George Cooper is documenting the lives of subterranean homeless people,
Six Bridges Book Festival Goes Virtual
We’ve decided to shift the upcoming Six Bridges Book Festival to a virtual event. The COVID situation is complex and numbers are still increasing, so for safety of the authors, moderators, volunteers, patrons, and staff, we felt this was the right way to go. The virtual event is still scheduled to begin on October 8 and we’re currently working on adjusting the schedule for this new format. We’ll post updates here and on social media as more information becomes available.
A Message from the Executive Director
August 13, 2020
Recently, CALS has been distributing thousands of meals every week to families who need help feeding their kids and teens. After COVID-19 triggered widespread job losses, the need for assistance skyrocketed for many families in our area who had never imagined they would be in such a position. CALS has now given out over 127,000 meals from our library branches in response to the pandemic.
Committed to personal service for our visitors
At a recent food distribution session at CALS McMath Library, our branch manager Laura Hodo called out a friendly hello to a library visitor, addressing the woman by her name. To Laura’s surprise, the woman began to weep.
She thanked Laura through her tears, saying, “I’m having a really hard time right now, and it’s important to hear someone say your name. Thank you for being here and knowing who I am.”
I often hear praise for the work CALS staff is doing. Someone stopped me on the sidewalk the other day to tell me how impressed he was with the library safety protocol at his branch. Last weekend, another patron emailed to say how grateful she was that someone at Fletcher had taken time to answer her questions and then steered her to a book she was enjoying. And we just received a very special thank-you note from a woman who had accidentally returned a book containing a bookmark that her young son had given her many years ago before he died. She was heartbroken to lose that bookmark, but the next time she checked out a book from her library, there was her family keepsake, tucked inside the book along with a note from a library employee at Thompson Library.
Our staff builds relationships with the people they serve in your neighborhood libraries. When I volunteered to hand out meals recently at our Dee Brown Library, I observed how our staff there knew most of the meal recipients by name.
Providing emergency food assistance (with the help of generous community volunteers) is just one of the ways we try to lift up the community. There are other crucial programs that we are currently supporting for the benefit of our schools and hospitals, for our children and families, and for everyone who calls Central Arkansas home.
CALS works to help Arkansas #CompletetheCount
Federal tax revenues that are returned back to Arkansas to pay for all sorts of important programs and infrastructure are allocated based on the once-a-decade U.S. Census. If we miss people who should be counted this year, this will negatively affect our state for years to come.
CALS has been working to help our community members complete the Census. Our Community Liaison to the Latinx community, Maria Aguilar, has gone out into churches, grocery stores, and other sites in our neighborhoods to assist Spanish-speaking people with completing the Census. We estimate that Maria’s efforts thus far have solicited enough new Census responses to bring in over $5 million to the people of Pulaski County over the next decade. She will keep working up until the September 30 deadline.
And Maria’s not alone. Several other staff members are hard at work setting up events and partnerships that will raise our census responses and help our state for years to come. We’ll be out there working with the City of Little Rock as well as our other partners to do our best for all of us in central Arkansas.
Register to vote, absentee or in person, at CALS branch libraries
Here’s another way that CALS is committed to helping people engage with their civic obligations. In November, we will have national and local elections. You can register to vote right now at any one of our library branches. Eight of our libraries will be early voting sites. We are working with the Election Commission and the County Clerk to educate people about the Governor’s order of August 7 facilitating absentee voting by mail, so they do not have to vote in person if they are worried about contracting the COVID-19 virus. Finally, the Pulaski County Election Commission has recently put out a call for poll workers. Working with the Arkansas Department of Health, the commission is providing protective wear for workers (PPE) and will limit the numbers of voters inside a polling location at any one time. If we can help with answering questions and guiding people to meet this call responsibly, CALS will be there, too.
In the meantime, we’re at our branches that are now all open 3 days a week, offering help with completing the census and registering to vote. If you’re not registered to vote or you haven’t filled out your Census response yet, please come stop by your local CALS library where we have safe social distancing, masks, and friendly staff members who can help you. Here’s a helpful guide to our new library hours, as well as what you should know before you visit.
CALS Executive Director