MCPL-reading_nooks

Recently Re-opened Public Library in Wausau Has a New Look!

All Marathon County Public Library (MCPL) locations returned to pre-pandemic operating hours on June 1, 2021. A closure that lasted more than 1 year gave the library a chance to make some changes at its Wausau Headquarters.

If you haven’t been back to the library yet, check out some pictures of updates you can look forward to at MCPL Wausau, including new, modern furniture; comfy, private study nooks; an updated Teen Zone with charging stations; a beautiful repurposed Rotunda, first-floor computers; and more! (Click the title for details…)

Save the Dates :: Central Wisconsin Book Festival Is Coming Sept. 17-26, 2021

The 5th annual Central Wisconsin Book Festival will include up to 30 events spread across Wausau, Stevens Point, and Wisconsin Rapids, along with various virtual events. Children’s authors, non-fiction, poetry, and, of course, fiction will all be part of the 10-day lineup. Read on to see some of the authors and poets already scheduled to attend. (Click the title for details…)

Supervisor_Allan_Opall

From the Classroom to the Parks System to the Government Board Room — Marathon County Supervisor Allen Opall Leads & Serves His Community

After working for a decade as a teacher and then serving as a Park Manager for Wausau and Marathon County for 20 years, Allen Opall got involved in Town of Rib Mountain Government.

He has close to 2 decades at the helm for the Town of Rib Mountain, and spent the last 6 years representing Rib Mountain while also serving on the Marathon County Board of Supervisors. His interest in civics and local government is matched (or perhaps exceeded) by his love for the outdoors. Get to know a bit more about Supervisor Opall in the full article… (Click the title for details.)

Early_Literacy_Center_MCPL

Marathon County Public Libraries Aim for June Reopening to the Public

The Marathon County Board of Trustees set a tentative date of June 1, 2021, for all 9 MCPL locations to return to pre-pandemic hours of operation.

Get the details on what will be available (and what won’t) at that time, and read about some of the great summer programming they have lined up for their dedicated patrons — including outdoor family story times! (Click the title for details…)

Crafts & Classes • A virtual poetry reading on April 8 with at least 10 Wisconsin poets sharing work collected in the new Wisconsin Fellowship of Poetry book “Sheltering with Poems: Community and Connection During COVID.” Click here to learn more about it. Registration is required, and a link is included on the MCPL page. • All month (or while they last) at all 9 MCPL locations, pick up a Grab and Go project to create pasta sculptures and mosaics at home. Just add some glue and you’ll be surprised with what you can create! Free of charge. Registration to pick up a kit required at all locations except Wausau. • Our monthly Little Treasures craft for adults and teens is a colorful beaded wrap bracelet that would make a nice accessory for yourself or a gift for someone else. Also free and available while they last, so call ahead to schedule a pickup at the 8 branches, please. • Two (identical) gardening classes with Extension Marathon County on April 8 and April 15 on direct sowing and transplanting. These monthly classes are a huge help if you have a garden or thinking about starting one. Registration required. • Professor Brett Barker of UWSP at Wausau is leading a virtual Civil War book club through the Marathon County Historical Society. The group’s next meeting will be April 29. Keep an eye on the MCPL events page or the MCHS calendar of events for upcoming History Chats and History Speaks programs from the Historical Society, too! • Have you watched our virtual story times recently? Take another look with your children or kids you care for. We’ve made a few improvements to our video skills to make some fun videos you can watch anytime! Here’s one example and the schedule for Tuesday story times. • Our book clubs are still meeting virtually, but we have an eye on the summer and we’re hoping we can get together safely outdoors for some literary gatherings. Building Improvements Over the past year, while MCPL Wausau was first closed to the public and later open solely for computer use, we’ve taken advantage of the time to make some changes and improvements to the library. First up was new carpet and windows throughout the building. But the current renovations are a bit more substantial… When patrons are once again able browse through our shelves, they’ll find we changed floors for some of the collections. Also, a majority of the 30-plus public computers will be moved to the first floor so patrons who just need to check email or their social media accounts or print documents can do so quickly and efficiently. Use of the remaining computers on the second floor will be limited to reference purposes such as research or the writing of reports, as well as job applications and creating resumes. Another change that will likely be immediately noticeable is new furniture! We’re replacing tables and chairs and adding new workstations on both the first and second floor where patrons can easily plug in their own devices and tap into wi-fi for their own needs. New furniture also is in the works for our MCPL branch locations, too. Hours & Accessibility May Be Expanding… All MCPL locations will continue with limited operations through at least mid-April, when the Board of Trustees will make another determination whether to expand hours of operation at the 9 locations and/or expand in-person access to our libraries. MCPL’s administration continues to work closely with the Marathon County Health Department on the timing of expanded hours of operation and service. We look forward to a return of normal, but we always want to make sure all MCPL locations function in the safest way possible for our patrons and staff. We also look forward to the day when the public can see all the great things we’ve been doing to update our libraries, and we think you’ll like what you see — when you’re able to safely see it! Thank you for continuing to support your local libraries!

April Activities (& Changes Happening Inside) at Marathon County Public Libraries (MCPL)

Read on for an update on MCPL’s April classes and crafts (like virtual poetry readings and bracelet kits), and learn a bit about some of the renovations taking place to give the libraries a fresh new look. For example, pictured above is one of the new workstations at the MCPL-Wausau Headquarters that offers a place to charge devices as you work.(Click the title for details…)

gary_beastrom-award

Supervisor Gary Beastrom :: Exemplifying Dedication to Community

The man they call “Mr. Athens” (of Athens World Fair fame) recently spoke with Wisconsin Central Time NEWS to share some of his personal story, his decades as a teacher and EMT in Athens, and, more recently, his time serving on various boards throughout Marathon County. (Click the title for details…)

Marathon County Board Supervisor Bill Conway

“City Kid” Bill Conway Delights in Asserting Himself on County Board

Bill Conway is serving on the Marathon County Board of Supervisors for the first time, although he and his family have served others in their community for decades.

Wisconsin Central Time NEWS caught up with Conway via a virtual chat to learn more about his life, his family, his political and social positions, and his interest in viewing County Government through a human services lens. (Click the title for details…)

wi-fi signal

Marathon County to Boost Public Library Wi-Fi Signal With CARES Act Funding

With limited access to the libraries and an increasing need for internet access due to the pandemic, Marathon County will use federal funding to increase the strength of its Wi-Fi signals, which will result in faster download and upload speeds for patrons using their own devices while parked outside area libraries when they are closed. (Click the title for details…)

County Board Supervisor Jonathan Fisher

Jonathan Fisher :: Crunching Numbers, Going Solar, & Helping Others

Although he has only 5 years under his belt as a Marathon County resident, Jonathan Fisher has already ingrained himself into the community. He’s serving his first term on the Marathon County Board of Supervisors, representing District 38, and is active with several organizations.

Fisher, who works in finance and accounting, spoke with Wisconsin Central Time NEWS to share a bit more about himself, his passion for service, and his priorities for moving Marathon County forward. (Click the title for details…)

History Chats

Marathon County Historical Society & Public Library Team Up for Virtual Events

The Marathon County Historical Society and Marathon County Public Library are partnering on a series of virtual programs this fall. 

Tune in via Zoom or Facebook for a look at local, state, and national history on topics like: Marathon County Schools, the Lincoln-Douglas Debates, Death & Dying, and more. BONUS: Programs are archived on YouTube if you can’t attend the live events. (Click the title for details…)