A Message from Deputy Director Nathan James

December is a month of giving and CALS has a small gift for all of our wonderful patrons to show how much we appreciate you. We are giving you the gift of more time. More time to finish the last few chapters. More time to watch that movie you haven’t started yet. More time to read just one more book to your child before bedtime. Starting this month, every item you check out will be automatically renewed one time, as long as the item hasn’t been requested by another patron. You’ll see your new due dates on the email courtesy due date reminder notice which we send three days before an item is due. So take your time and enjoy your materials for a little while longer, it’s our gift to you.

For our patrons who are still searching for that perfect present, we have exciting news about the Galleries at Library Square and the Bookstore at Library Square. We will be merging the Bookstore and Galleries into a single location in the Roberts Library, where the current Galleries are located. The new location will give Library Square and River Market visitors easier access to one of the best gift shopping experiences in Central Arkansas. Find quality used and new books, unique gifts, and one of the largest collections of local art in the state, all under one roof. And each purchase supports local artists and CALS, helping us fund the programs, resources, and services you love.

As we begin to rearrange and remodel to accommodate the combined inventory, we are having a fantastic sale as another small “thank you”! If you still have holiday shopping to do, you can save a lot on those last-minute gifts with 20% off art at the Galleries and 50% off books at the Bookstore through January 9.

December is also a month of light. As the days grow shorter and darker, we celebrate our hopes and our holidays with light, lighting a candle, stringing lights on trees and our homes. And this year there’s a special light for all the world to share. Look up in the evening and you’ll see a light that hasn’t been seen for many years, the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn, what some call the Christmas Star. On December 21, Winter Solstice, look up and to the West just after the very early sunset to see these two planets lined up so that they almost seem to be a single bright star. And as you look up and wonder at this celestial light, I challenge each and every one to think about your own light, and then take a moment to share it with someone. Share your light with a phone call, an email, a smile, a heartfelt “Hello, I am thinking of you.” Remember that simple gifts, freely given, can brighten even the darkest day.

I’m reminded of a favorite song from my childhood:

This little light of mine,

I’m going to let it shine.

This holiday season let your little light shine and share it with someone you love because together we can all shine a little bit brighter. Happy Holidays from CALS!