Ames Free Library

"Where the Community Connects"

The Ames Free Library will be closed on Monday, May 29 in observance of Memorial Day.

Staff Picks

A Glimpse of Nature - Burdock

For the past two weeks, we’ve concentrated on “firsts” – the first observation of a natural phenomena in its annual cycle.  This is only reasonable, for the appearance of something new draws attention.  More effort is required to notice “lasts” – the last cricket to sing in fall, the last hummingbird to migrate, the last aster to bloom.  On March 17,  I noticed the end of a cycle that I’ve been photographing for months, the life of burdock. 

You already know this plant, if not its name or natural history.  It is the plant with burs!

Librarian's Lounge - March 2022

It’s almost spring! Although I’m not usually one to wish the days away, I’m ready for weather that’s warm enough to sit outside and enjoy some time reading in the sunshine and fresh air. Until then I’ll employ a little technological wizardry to imagine myself reading by the sea or with the songbirds (see the Stress-Free Fridays post from July 31, 2020 for details!)

What I’m Listening To

A Glimpse of Nature - The Pace Quickens

March 18, 2022.


I will be offering “Trees in Early Spring” on Monday, March 21 at 2:30.  This 1-hour nature walk around the library’s property will provide guidance and practice in tree identification.  Learn some interesting facts about our local trees and develop skills to wow your friends.  

This program is suitable for adults and kids aged 10 and older.

Resources to Learn More About Russia and Ukraine

In late 2021, Vladimir Putin began deploying masses of Russian troops around Ukraine. However, as of Thursday, February 24, 2022, Russia attacked Ukraine along multiple points after various diplomatic entities tried to avert such a crisis. This was the formal ignition of the Russian invasion on Ukraine. Following the initial assault, areas near the Ukraine capital Kyiv, the eastern area of Donbas, and the land area of Crimea on the Black Sea have all been homesteads for the Russian advance and assault.

A Glimpse of Nature - Nature’s Rhythms

I look forward to long weekend walks when there is adequate daylight and no need to rush. Last Saturday’s excursion at an abandoned cranberry bog didn’t disappoint. The sun was shining, and crusty snow still covered the ground. Animal tracks were everywhere, tracks that had repeatedly melted and froze and were largely indistinguishable. Canine? Rodent? Definitely mammalian. Towards the end of the trek, an unexpected sound caught my attention and made me smile: the song of a male red-winged blackbird, the first I had heard this season.


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