UPDATE JULY 20: MaineCat requesting has been restarted. Please be aware quarantine protocols will result in longer than usual delivery times. PPL To Go is up and running! Place a hold. Wait for your pickup notice. Then make an appointment to pick it up. We look forward to seeing you! Our COVID-19 page continues to have links to current health information in multiple languages. Reference will be answering questions Mon-Fri, 10am-4pm, 871-1700 x725. If you would like to get a library card, please email lending@portlib.org

Life of the Library

What’s new?

Meet Jenna: PPL Associate Director

posted: , by Heather Wasklewicz
tags: Adults | Discover Portland
“Portland Public Library has closed the books on another amazing year! With your generous support and donations, we’ve been able to add a variety of titles to our print and digital collections, and our staff and partners have organized countless free events for everyone to enjoy: author talks, concerts, gallery exhibits, film series, and of course story-times, teen activities, business workshops for entrepreneurs, and technology help for all levels. When I glanced back over last year’s event calendars and librarian-curated booklists, I realized I couldn’t pick my own favorites to highlight here – there’s just so much, something for every age and for every interest. Maybe you only drop by at lunch and read the newspaper in the sunny Atrium, take advantage of our fast and upgraded WiFi, or download an audiobook from home for your next road trip. As our new tote bags say No One Beats Our Prices!
We often ask ourselves, ‘who are our patrons, who are we trying to reach?’ And inevitably, our answer is everyone. Because no matter which branch you visit, we’re all part of the same community, and our diversity of people, of materials, and of the experiences we share together, it’s what makes Portland so special. Thank you for ensuring that PPL remains the social, cultural, and civic heart of Portland. Together, we speak volumes! (puns always intended).”
-Jenna Mayotte,
Portland Public Library Associate Director

Meet Peter: PPL Rebrand Consultant & Brand Ambassador

posted: , by Heather Wasklewicz
tags: Adults | Discover Portland

In 1979 the buzz around Portland (at least among kids) was that the new Portland Public Library building in Monument Square had electronic stacks that MOVED BY THEMSELVES… at the press of a button! The Star Wars/Jetsons-like future had arrived, and it was right here in Portland.

This was a pretty big deal in 1979. It was the kind of story that’s worth talking about, and it spread fast, even in the pre-social media days.

I used the library often over the next decade for term papers, consulting more books than necessary as an excuse to operate the electronic stacks. I came to love the library for its free access to books, music, and videos, and also for offering what we now call “third space;” a public place to do your thing while feeling connected to the community around you.

In 2015, I moved back to Portland after many years away. With no term papers to write, and media accessible by smartphone, I confess I wasn’t thinking much about PPL.

In the span of one week, however, I attended a business meeting in a PPL conference room, went to an art opening in the Lewis Gallery, and brought my daughter to story reading in the Sam L. Cohen children’s library.

I discovered a PPL that was completely transformed. In addition to the art gallery, meeting spaces, and daily storytelling, there are music performances, author readings, lecture series, film screenings, maker fest, comic arts festivals, 3D printing, and so much more.

PPL has become a vibrant center for culture, performance, science, tutoring, and community events, and it’s all free. It is vibrant and buzzing with life.

PPL welcomes more visitors each year than any other cultural or educational institution in Maine. Those who know about the library love it.

But my impression is that many in Greater Portland have not entered the main branch in years, maybe decades, and have no idea what PPL has become, and all that it offers BEYOND the traditional resources we associate with libraries.

I was honored to work with Sarah Campbell and her team to design a new brand for PPL that we hope will have something of the effect the electronic stacks did back in 1979 — create a buzz, encourage people to take a second look, and discover what the vibrant, 150-year-old “startup” in the middle of Portland has in store for you.

It’s not what you may think of when you think “library.”

Visit a show in the Lewis Gallery, or check out the Press Herald photo archive online at portlandlibrary.com. Attend a lecture or author talk. Host a business meeting in the conference space, or eat your lunch in the atrium. Bring your toddler to story time, your tween to Legos, or your grandparent to technology tutoring. And talk to the librarians! They are experts waiting to connect you with the portals to discovery you are looking for.

PPL is a jewel in the crown of today’s dynamic, vibrant Portland.

It’s the kind of story that’s worth talking about.




PPL Is Bolder Than Ever!

posted: , by Heather Wasklewicz
tags: Adults | Teens | Teen Reads | Teen Events | Teen Health | College & Career | Homework Help | Parents & Teachers | Kids & Families | Kids Programs | Early Literacy | Kids Reading Lists | Fun & Games | Discover Portland | Seniors | Art & Culture | Business | Careers & Jobs | Genealogy | Government | Health | Health@PPL | Welcome | Health Resources | Health Outreach Specialist | Medlineplus | Latest Health News | Language Learning | World Languages | English Language Literacy | News | Portland History | Science & Technology | Readers Writers

Portland Public Library unveiled a new look on Wednesday, May 15, 2019.

It’s a big week at PPL! We are making some noise! Noise, you say, in a library? Yes!

Did you know that Portland Public Library is the most visited cultural institution in all of Maine? Over 600,000 people visit PPL each year at our four locations (not counting all who use our online services for language-learning, practice tests, small business info, Consumer Reports, and more!).

Did you know that PPL offers over 1,000 workshops, discussions, exhibits, and events throughout the year?

You already know we have great wifi, but did you know we lend wifi hotspots to take home? How about hosting free tax filing support? Ballot issue discussions? Coding workshops? And Legos!

PPL is constantly evolving to mirror the dynamic community we serve, growing and changing as we facilitate the vibrant conversations of our city. We provide the rich experiences and access to resources you’d expect from a big city library tailored to the unique flow and interests of life in 21st century Portland.

When you have a library card, you’re a Library insider. And even library insiders don’t know all this about PPL, so chances are our friends and neighbors throughout Greater Portland don’t know about it either. Help us spread the word. We are excited to change our logo, colors, and messaging to boldly speak out about the Library’s evolution as an epicenter for lifelong experiential learning, civic and cultural gatherings, and partnership in community-wide innovation. Today’s PPL is vital to our great city, that is on-the-move in so many ways!

There is literally something for everyone at today’s PPL, whatever your stage of life. And it is FREE. Enjoy our expert staff, services, collections, and programming. Our storytimes, performances, business seminars, computer help, music-making, telescopes, 3-D printer. Our amazing partnerships with creative leaders and thought trailblazers. It’s all to share, discover, and build more…together.

Welcome to PPL!

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