Where Are They Going?

The days are getting shorter, the wind is getting colder, and all over the world animals are on the move. This is a great time of year for you and your family to learn more about the earth’s phenomenal animal migrations. Ducks, geese, butterflies, whales, wildebeest and many more kinds of animals make yearly journeys to find better food and shelter as the seasons change. Here is a selection of Library resources on migrations for all members of your family.

For the very youngest, we have some terrific picture books that discuss migrations in very simple terms. April Pulley Sayre always has great non-fiction books for kids, so pick up a copy of Here Come the Humpbacks!  If you enjoy that,  Following Papa’s Song presents whale migrations as more of a story, for even younger readers.

Here Come the Humpbacks by April Pulley Sayre  Following Papa's Song by Giano Marino

Many children’s books have been written about butterfly migrations. Here are a couple of my favorites. Gotta Go! Gotta Go! by Sam Swope features repetition that will stick with your kids for months. Read one of these picture books and then check out the PBS video of butterfly migrations.

Gotta Go! Gotta Go! by Sam Swope  Hurry and the Monarch by Antoine O'Flathart    The Incredible Journey of the Butterflies produced by PBS

Don’t stop with whales and butterflies! Move on to the migrations of turtles, songbirds, caribou, and owls.

The Journey of a Turtle by Carolyn Scrace  Is This Panama? A Migration Story by Jan Thornhill

A Caribou Journey by Debbie S. Miller  Ookpik: The Travels of a Snowy Owl by Bruce Hiscock

The book Animal Migration by Jeanie Mebane and the Disneynature Migration DVD both give good overall information about migrations.

Animal Migration by Jeanie Mebane 

Older kids may by interesting in learning how scientists investigate migrations. Tracking Animal Movement is part of our Animal Trackers series of non-fiction books for upper elementary age kids. Moonbird is a great read for older kids or even adults.

Tracking Animal Movement by Tom Jackson  Moonbird: A Year on the Wing with the Great Survivor B95 by Philip Hoose

For adults, David Wilcove’s No Way Home provides an in-depth look at how animal migrations are changing in response to degraded or threatened ecosystems.

No Way Home by David Wilcove

For Dummies

What self-help, reference, and how-to books cover a wide range of topics, are authored by several knowledgeable collaborators, and are “the world’s best-selling reference brand,” with distinctive, bright yellow and black covers? Here’s a hint: these books cover about 2,500 titles with about 200 million books in print in dozens of languages across the world.

For Dummies reference books are advertised as guides for learners of every level because the information is broken down into easy to understand language. The Aurora Public Library District has several For Dummies titles over a wide variety of topics to help you learn without being intimidated by information or prose.

For Dummies is owned by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., which is a global publishing company founded in 1807. The company publishes online products, journals, encyclopedias, and books in print format as well as electronically. For Dummies books are printed in a similar format, with comics, icons, and lists to help you remember what you’ve read.

The first For Dummies title was published in 1991, and from there almost 2,500 titles have been published in dozens of languages over topics including the arts, photography, business, computers, hobbies, cooking, health, sports, music, pets, and so many more. For more topics, you can visit their website here.

The Library has acquired several new For Dummies titles, like Facebook For Dummies and Windows 10 For Dummies, that you can check out on the For Dummies display at the Aurora Public Library. Other titles include Bridge For Dummies, Guitar For Dummies, Job Interviews For Dummies, and Shakespeare For Dummies, just to name a few!

“Success is for dummies.”

Happy Learning!

Vietnam War Display

The Vietnam War might have been one of the most controversial chapters in United States history. For the first time, Americans at home had a front-row seat to brutal battles from their television set, newspapers, and magazines. Images from the war were everywhere, and tensions were mounting between those opposed to America’s involvement in the war and those who supported the fighting.

The conflict began when communist North Vietnam and non-communist South Vietnam fought for control of the whole country. Active American involvement in the war began in 1954 with President Dwight D. Eisenhower pledging his support to South Vietnam. The war spanned decades, finally ending with the withdrawal of U.S. forces in 1973, with more than 3 million people killed, including 58,200 American men and women killed or missing in action. More than half of the deaths were Vietnamese civilians. For a timeline and a more in-depth look into the history of the war, click here.

In preparation for the upcoming premiere of the ten-part, eighteen-hour documentary series on PBS, you can view a Vietnam War display on the upper level at the Aurora Public Library and check out books related to that era. The documentary premieres on Sunday, September 17 at 8 p.m. on PBS. To learn more, visit these websites:

Library of Congress

National Archives

Happy Learning!

Solar Eclipse 2017

You might have heard about the total solar eclipse that has been reported for Monday, August 21, 2017 in North America. According to USA Today, the “path of totality” will occur in 12 states, beginning in parts of Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, and ending in South Carolina. Any given part of the eclipse will last about two or three minutes, but the entire path of the moon across the sun will take about an hour and a half to reach from one end of the country to the other. You will not see any part of the eclipse unless you are in path or close to it, so make sure you plan accordingly!

Here’s how the Aurora Public Library District can help:

Plan your trip across the country with the help from our Online Resources; more specifically, plan your trip with “A to Z the USA,” which you can access through the Online Resources page. All you’ll need to have handy is your library card and pin number. You can find information by state to state to plan your trip across the United States for the best viewing of the eclipse. You can also check out a copy or peruse a road atlas from one of our branches, or even log onto one of our public computers to print directions.

You can also check out the book Eclipses by Nick Hunter to learn more about solar eclipses. Impress your friends with facts as you’re waiting to see the phenomenon yourself. You can find out more information by reading the entry on eclipses in one of our reference encyclopedias. Or if you’d rather, you can go the Online Resources on the website and visit either the Britannica or the World Book websites for free to find out more information. You’ll just need your library card number to log on.

If all this eclipse talk has peaked your interest in all things outer space, check out our collection of non-fiction books beginning in section 520. We also have astronaut memoirs and true accounts of space missions beginning in section 629. We also have non-fiction DVD’s about space, like Cosmos. And don’t forget to check out the online Indiana Digital Download Center for more titles. If there’s a title you want that we don’t have, we’ll also be happy to get it for you via Interlibrary Loan.

Online Resources: Back to School

Kids are already dreading going back to school in the fall while their parents have had a countdown since May. The Aurora Public Library District’s website has several helpful Online Resources to make the school year a little easier.

Aside from the list of links for local school libraries, there are also links to online encyclopedias. All you need is your library card number to log in in order to have full access to these encyclopedias all the time for free, whether you need them for a research project or you just want to know more about a subject. There are also links to Inspire and Morningstar, which are databases used to locate cited resources that you can also use for research. These links will come in handy when you have a big research paper due this year!

There is also a link to GoodCall Scholarship Engine, which makes it easier for prospective college students find scholarships based on individual preferences. You can research and apply for multiple scholarships without ever having to leave your computer. There is also a link to take Practice Tests for adults and students, like the SAT, ACT, GRE, and many career placement tests. If you’re a nervous test-taker like I am, you can never have too much practice!

Another Online Resource we have is the AR Bookfinder. There is information about every AR book, including how many points each book is worth as well as the reading level, a short synopsis of the book, reading interest levels, and skills that will be used on the quiz. While you’re in the Online Resources, be sure to check out Novelist and Novelist K-8, too, to find author and title read-a-likes for your next great read.

There is also a link to Live Homework Help, where you can get free one-on-one tutoring time from 2 p.m. to 12 a.m. Math was always a difficult subject for me, so I wish I would have known about this amazing tool when I was in school! It would have saved me a lot of tears.

You can always stop in the Library, too, with any questions and we’ll be happy to help you! If you have a valid library card and have access to the public computers and Internet, you can also use one of our public computers for any of these resources as well as to type papers, print, or anything else you need to do. We will be happy to help you make this school year the best one yet!

Website Resources: Travel


Are you going on a trip and don’t want to lug a bunch of travel books around with you? You don’t want to constantly be worrying about losing the books, or how they’re going to fit in your suitcase, or how much your suitcase is going to weigh at the airport. We have plenty of travel guides that can be checked out from the Aurora Public Library District if you prefer to have the hard copy of a book in front of you, but we also have several little-known online travel resources that are available.

Of course, you know that you can download digital formats of books and audio books from the Indiana Digital Download Center, but what you might not have known is that we have an abundance of travel books and guides available to download as well. Since this selection of downloads are little-known, it is likely that you will be able to borrow and download a title right away. Just make sure you have your lending period set for as long as you’re going to be away; you don’t want your download to disappear halfway through your trip! If you have any questions about this, please don’t hesitate to call the library or stop in with your device today!

If you go under the Online Resources tab through the Aurora Public Library District website and scroll down, you’ll see a whole list of databases that you, as a library patron, can use at no cost. All you’ll need to have handy is your library card number! Most of the databases listed are available through any computer and Internet connection.


A to Z in the USA

This website is amazing because you can select information by state or the country as a whole, rather than slogging through a bunch of information you don’t really need to know. You just have to log in with your library card number and you’ll be ready to go! You can explore the different climates throughout the various regions of the Unites States, as well as culture and society, education, food, history, geography, and so much more. If you narrow your search down by state, there are more tabs to go through that are more specific than the general overview of the state that is provided, including information about demographics, energy, maps, and more.


A to Z World Travel

This site is similar to the former website, however, this page is expanded to include the entire world. You can select where you’re traveling to by popular cities listed in alphabetical order with the country in parentheses. There is also a section included on the homepage with links to information you might need quickly, such as the different time zones of the world, satellite telephones and international calling, and tips on how to save money. Once you have selected the city you will be traveling to, you will be directed to a page with in-depth information devoted strictly to that city with a real-time clock telling you what time it is there at the top of the screen. There are tabs listed that will offer neighborhood information, maps, activities, emergency information, and more.


Global Road Warrior

This website allows you to search by country where you are traveling. Once again, there are tabs running along the left-hand side of the page after you have selected your country that you can select for more in-depth information pertaining to these specific tabs, such as business culture, facts about the country, language glossaries, human rights information, health and medical information, religion, and travel essentials. There is also a section where you can see news feeds in real time so you will be as up-to-date as possible on information.

These three resources working together will provide you with an arsenal of information so you will be as prepared as possible for your next trip. And the best part is, you can access this information from anywhere with an Internet connection as long as you have your library card number with you!

Happy Traveling! Also, I’d really like to come with you.

Travel to Section 910

Are you planning a trip sometime soon? Let the Aurora Public Library District help! Let’s take a short trip to the 910’s in the Nonfiction section of the Library.


Section 910 is the beginning of the Geography and Travel section of the Library. In this section, you’ll find books on the geography of our world and the cultures of peoples living in certain areas of the world, such as Great Lakes Island Escapes by Maureen Dunphy and Peoples and Nations of the Far East and Pacific by Sheila Fairfield. This would be a great section to start if you are interested in the culture of the people of the region of which you are traveling.

Section 911 contains Historical Geography. This area includes titles about the history that took place in a certain region, such as Where History Was Made by Ben Dupre and London: A Life In Maps by Peter Whitfield. If you want the historical significance of where you’re traveling to, this would be the spot for you.

Section 912 holds books about the Graphic Representations of the Surface of the Earth. In other words, this section is filled with atlases. In this area, you’ll find the National Geographic’s Atlas of the World and more. We also have several road atlases that can be checked out, or we can help you copy certain pages and print them out, too.

Section 913 is Geography of and Travel in the Ancient World. In this area, you’ll find a few different items pertaining to the geography of the world in years past. Some titles include Ancient Ruins and Archaeology by L. Sprague De Camp, Red Land, Black Land: The World of Ancient Egyptians by Barbara Merz, and An Archaeological Survey of Dearborn County, Indiana by Cindy K. Parish.

Sections 914-919 pertain to traveling the world as we know it now. 914 includes DK Eyewitness travel guides from Amsterdam to Warsaw and everywhere in between. This part of the Library collection is the best place to begin as you plan your vacation. Travel and information books on specific continents are also easy to locate because they are separated by call number and location by continent:


914: Europe

915: Asia

916: Africa

917: North America

918: South America

919: Australia, Pacific Ocean islands, Arctic islands, and Antarctica

Stop in the Library today to check out some of these great travel resources. Books check out for two weeks, but you can always call and have them renewed if you are unable to stop in. And if you don’t have time to stop in and browse our physical travel collection, be sure to check the Indiana Digital Download Center to view our digital travel collection (and cut down on the weight of your luggage to save you some money!). You can also check out our different online travel resources, too, on our website. We have several links to travel databases, like A to Z in the USA, A to Z World Travel, and Global Road Warrior. These resources are great to use when you’re on the go and need to plan activities, look at maps, and learn information about where you’re traveling to. All you need to log on is your library card and pin number! And if you’re unsure about your pin number, call the library today for more information.

Happy Traveling! Also, do you have room for one more?

Website Resources: Novelist (What to Read After…)

If you’re like me and hate that slump after finishing a series and not knowing what to read next, then this blog is for you. Under the Online Resources tab on the Aurora Public Library District website, you’ll find a link to the website Novelist. Novelist offers short biographies of authors as well as synopses of over 120,000 fiction titles. Novelist also offers series and author read-a-likes, so you can find your next great read.

For example, I just finished rereading the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling in anticipation for the new Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them movie, which will be released on November 18. So I went on Novelist to try to find series read-a-likes:

Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini


In a fantasy world, a fifteen-year-old boy named Eragon finds a rare dragon’s egg. He raises the dragon on his own and becomes one of the legendary and outlawed Dragon Riders. Now Eragon is set with the task of restoring the Dragon Riders back to their former glory and defeating the tyrannical King Galbatorix over a series of four books.

Pendragon by D.J. MacHale


Fourteen-year-old Bobby Pendragon is destined to save the magical world of Denduron. He is whisked away from everything he has ever known to a new land where he must defeat a magical ruler and play a role in the revolution to overthrow the evil Saint Dane. This series takes place over ten books where Bobby ages and matures, just like Harry does throughout his series.

Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer


Artemis Fowl is a twelve-year-old genius who is trying to restore his family’s fortune to its former glory. Magic and futuristic technology collide in a world of fairies over the course of eight books, where Artemis grows into a criminal mastermind with an arch-nemesis.

Percy Jackson & the Olympians by Rick Riordan


Twelve-year-old Percy Jackson is shocked to learn that he is a demigod after fighting off monsters and trouble for his entire life. He begins training at Camp Half-Blood and learns that his father is Poseidon, the ancient Greek God of the Sea. It is up to Percy to start a quest to dispel a war between the Greek gods. This series is told over the course of five books where tensions mount and the stakes are raised, and Percy has to save the world over and over again.

In my opinion, Rick Riordan tells stories in a similar way to J.K. Rowling, which is why I love his other series (Heroes of Olympus, Kane Chronicles, Trials of Apollo, and Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard) so much. If you’re looking for a series similar to Harry Potter, I would start with Percy Jackson & the Olympians and then the Heroes of Olympus series.

If there’s a series you love so much that you were depressed when it was over and ate a whole box of cookies (don’t judge), then Novelist is a great tool for you to use. Also, be sure to look into SelectReads as well. SelectReads sends monthly newsletters to your email address based on your book preferences to help you find your next favorite author and series.

Happy Reading!

Every Yearbook Is A Window Into The Past

yearbookYearbook – a book published by the graduating class of a high school or college, containing photographs of class members and commemorating school activities.

You will usually find yearbooks hidden in an attic or basement but did you know you can also find a collection at your Local History Library @ The Depot. Did you ever wish to see what your grandpa looked like as a freshman or what activities your grandma participated in while in high school?  Enjoyment is not the only reason to view an old yearbook.  Yearbooks are one of those resources many people do not think of as a history resource.  Yearbooks do not provide information about the vital events usually associated with genealogy research, yet they do provide other information about individual lives.

Here are some examples of how a search through an old yearbook may help you in your family history:

*It pinpoints a person in a particular time and/or place

*Class lists usually include a photo (grandpa & grandma)

*Family linkage (siblings, students with the same last name – they could be relatives)

*History (The history of the school or town may be included)

*General history (world events, advertisements, fads, cultures, fashion)

*What world events concerned and/or influenced students?

The next time you find yourself in your basement or attic look up your old yearbooks.  If you decide they are simply occupying space and collecting dust, you might consider donating them to The Local History Library.  Our collection includes 1912 through 2016 and is in search of volumes/years 1925, 2000, and 2003. to make our collection complete.

After you journey down memory lane cruising through your yearbooks, come in and cruise through ours.  While visiting The Depot, we guarantee you will find many resources available to you to assist your research into local history and genealogy.

Our hours are:

Tuesdays, Wednesdays & Thursdays:  11:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Third Saturday of the Month:                 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Phone:  812-926-4363


Holiday Cookbooks

The winter holidays are fast-approaching, and with them come the business of family gatherings, shopping, and parties. And of course, where there’s more than one person gathered, there are mountains and mountains of food waiting to be devoured. The Library’s collection of cookbooks can help you find that perfect recipe.

For Thanksgiving gatherings, the Aurora Public Library District has several cookbooks dedicated to the holiday. These books are filled with traditional recipes that your family will love (and come to expect!), as well as new twists on old classics. The Library also has a few Thanksgiving craft books, too, that your family will enjoy when they’ve eaten too much dinner and can’t move. Nancy Hathaway’s Thanksgiving Crafts and Cookbook is an excellent place to start.


The Library has other holiday cookbooks to offer, too. Al Roker’s Hassle-Free Holiday Cookbook, Paula Deen Celebrates, Debbie Macomber’s Christmas Cookbook, and the Jewish Holiday Cookbook are just a few titles we have to offer. And if you’re looking for the perfect side dishes to go with your traditional main course, Choosing Sides by Tara Mataraza Desmond is a wonderful resource. We also have great cookbooks dedicated entirely to desserts, like Anita Prichard’s Complete Candy Cookbook and Sandra Lee’s Semi-Homemade Desserts.


The Aurora Public Library District has cookbooks specifically for entertaining guests in your own home as well as what to bring to parties, such as Bite by Bite, Relax, Company’s Coming!, Entertaining with Southern Living, and The Church Supper Cookbook. Get the kids involved, too; we have plenty of cookbooks with kid-friendly recipes, like I Can Cook, Cool Sweets & Treats to Eat, and the Better Homes and Gardens Step-By-Step Kids’ Cookbook. They’ll love helping you in the kitchen and you can make some great memories along the way.


We also have several volumes of special dietary cookbooks on our shelves, like The Best Gluten-Free Family Cookbook, The Complete Step-By-Step Diabetic Cookbook, The American Heart Association Low-Salt Cookbook, and The Allergy Self-Help Cookbook. And if there’s a specific cookbook you’re looking for that we don’t have, we can always try to get it through Inter-Library Loan.

This time of year can be stressful enough without having to worry about cooking, so let the Aurora Public Library District help you. Stop in today with your questions, or visit the Indiana Digital Download Center for more cookbooks.

Happy cooking!