Year: 2021

Schools, Nonprofit Reap Rewards of Library’s Reading Program

For immediate release: October 21, 2021

Four Douglas County schools and the Douglas Land Conservancy have extra money in their coffers this fall courtesy of the Douglas County Libraries (DCL) Foundation and DCL Summer Reading. Cherokee Trail Elementary School, Ben Franklin Academy, Rocky Heights Middle School, and Legend High School earned $500 each for securing the most Summer Reading sign-ups per school level in DCL’s Summer Reading school contest. Douglas Land Conservancy was awarded $1,000 as the nonprofit recipient of the program’s community reading goal.

“Students and readers stepped up big this year to earn these prizes for their schools and for a fellow nonprofit,” said Kristen Kallio, Special Events Supervisor at Douglas County Libraries. “Summer reading is its own reward, of course, but it’s always fun to see how motivated the kids are to win something for their school and to also be part of the larger community goal. It’s exciting!”

Summer Reading encourages reading from a young age and helps to keep kids reading during school breaks, so they grow up with a strong foundation in literacy.

According to Ben Franklin Academy Librarian Deb Williams, the prize money will come in handy for purchasing new books for the school’s library. “I start promoting the Summer Reading program every year in May to get the kids geared up. Once they know that the school could win money to bring in new books they get pretty excited,” she said.

At Legend High School, Librarian Ed Watterson said the award has been earmarked to expand the popular graphic novel section in the school library. Karen Nottingham, Librarian at Cherokee Trail Elementary, said her school will use the money for new books that address social and emotional learning, inclusiveness, and diverse communities. A few titles on their wish list include “Can I Sit With You?” By Sarah Jacoby, “Bright Star” by Yuyi Morales, and “Unsettled” by Reem Faruqi.

Rocky Heights Middle School Librarian Amy Tempel said book suggestions are welcome! She is encouraging the students’ suggestions on how to spend the money.

Each year, DCL encourages the broader community’s participation in Summer Reading, as well, through its community reading challenge, which benefits a local nonprofit if the goal is met. This year, the community exceeded the goal of 8 million minutes read.

“All of us at Douglas Land Conservancy were honored and so excited to be named the nonprofit recipient of the 2021 Summer Reading community goal prize,” said Patti Hostetler, Executive Director of the organization.

The Douglas Land Conservancy (DLC) works to protect and conserve the natural character, habitats, ecosystems, and open space of Douglas County and other areas along the Front Range. Hostetler said the $1,000 gift will help fund the group’s outdoor outreach programs, which help get people outside to learn about their natural surroundings and the importance of land conservation in our community.

“With the help of over 125 volunteers, we are able to offer over 35 guided hikes and educational outdoor opportunities to the community each year,” said Hostetler.

DCL’s Summer Reading will return in June 2022, along with the school contest and community reading challenge.

Douglas County Libraries elevates our community by inspiring a love of reading, discovery and connection.

Posthumous Gift Is a Valuable Addition to Archives & Local History at DCL

For immediate release: October 5, 2021

The Archives & Local History (ALH) department at Douglas County Libraries recently received a generous historical donation from the estate of siblings Robert F. (Bob) and Rosemary M. Metzler of Castle Rock. The Metzlers were professional educators and third-generation Coloradans whose family history in Douglas County dates back more than 100 years. Both sets of grandparents were early pioneers who homesteaded in various parts of the county.

The Metzler collection was acquired over a period of several months, between May and September 2021, and includes a variety of materials: books of Western history, fiction and art; local and historical cookbooks; teaching and educational materials; collectible rare books and fine editions; photographs; and paper documents of teaching material, Douglas County School District history, land and property history, and more.

According to Alyssa Carver, Head Archivist with ALH, the materials donated are representative of the history of the Metzler ranch in Castle Rock and the personal legacies of the family members.

“The Metzler family donation is a valuable acquisition for ALH because of its large size, broad scope, and historical significance across a number of important subject areas,” Carver said.

Those subject areas include history of schools and education in Douglas County; ranch life and the history of cattle, dairy, and related agricultural industries in the county; the ongoing sub/urbanization of the area over time; and local artists, authors, and creators.

To learn more about the Metzler collection, contact ALH at (303) 688-7730 or

Douglas County Libraries elevates our community by inspiring a love of reading, discovery and connection.

Douglas County Libraries to Host First-Ever Family Fête

For immediate release: July 6, 2021

Douglas County Libraries is pleased to host its very first Family Fête, an entertaining fundraising event for families with kids ages 4-10, benefiting the Douglas County Libraries Foundation. The Little Mermaid: A Family Shellabration will take place Saturday, August 28, at DCL in Lone Tree (10055 Library Way) from 6-9 p.m. All event proceeds directly support the DCL Foundation’s mission to positively impact community members so they can grow and thrive.

According to Jaime Gotlieb, Community Services and Partnership Manager at DCL, the Family Fête is a spinoff of the DCL Foundation’s annual Fête des Fables Gala fundraising event, which celebrates a different literary fable each year.

“Our debut Family Fête is a Little Mermaid-inspired party that will include many fun and exciting experiences designed especially for families, including photo ops, stories with mermaids, music, and delicious food and drinks,” Gotlieb said.

The library’s Lone Tree location will transform into the undersea world of Ariel and friends for the evening. Families are encouraged to bring their little ones in their favorite mermaid costumes and enjoy meeting mermaids, face painting, a live DJ, and theatrical performances.

Included in each ticket purchase is a catered menu from dining stations like Prince Eric’s Poke Bowl, Sebastian’s Sliders, Ariel’s Shells & Cheese, and Over the Top Dogs, capped off with chocolate delights and a cotton candy bar to satisfy every sweet tooth.

Other entertaining experiences will include kid-friendly crafts and make-and-takes, like Ursula’s Magic Potion and a Salty Sea Scrub; a special mermaid Storytime and photo booth; and a fun shell pull where guests can pay $10 to pick a shell and win a stuffed sea animal valued from $5 to $50. Guests may also take part in an exciting silent auction, with all event proceeds benefiting the DCL Foundation.

Tickets to The Little Mermaid: A Family Shellabration are $50 per adult and $25 per child. For more information and to buy tickets, visit or call (303) 791-7323.

For more information on the Fête des Fables Gala: The Little Mermaid for adults on Friday, September 24, visit


The DCL Foundation delivers funding and resources to help sustain Douglas County Libraries to positively impact community members so they can grow and thrive. The Foundation provides scholarships and financial support for customers attending various DCL programs with associated small fees, such as Camp DCL for kids and high school equivalency testing for adults. Thanks to these scholarships, kids in families facing financial hardship get the chance to play and learn at the library’s weeklong spring and summer day camps, and adults are able to achieve their high school graduation goals.

Douglas County Libraries elevates our community by inspiring a love of reading, discovery and connection.

Douglas County Libraries’ Operating Hours Are Changing

For immediate release: July 1, 2021

Beginning Monday, July 5, all seven locations of Douglas County Libraries will have new operating hours. For most library locations, the new hours will be Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m.-8 p.m., Friday 8 a.m.-6 p.m., and Saturday/Sunday 10 a.m.-4 p.m. The new hours at DCL’s Louviers location will shift to 3-8 p.m. on Tuesdays and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Saturdays.

According to DCL leadership, the change in operating hours is in response to customer traffic and event/meeting room needs, which have been reviewed over a number of years. DCL is making these changes to support the way its customers use the libraries and to create consistency of hours across the library district.

For more information, visit or call (303) 791-7323.

Douglas County Libraries elevates our community by inspiring a love of reading, discovery and connection.

Birthday Parties at DCL Are a Treat for Parents

For immediate release: June 22, 2021

Douglas County Libraries is pleased to offer customized birthday parties for kids ages 2-7 at its library locations and beyond, making birthday celebrations a breeze for busy parents. The library’s parties incorporate the love of stories and play in three fun themes: Once Upon a Time, Fantasy and Folklore, and Things That Roar. And dress-up is always encouraged.

Parents have options when choosing to celebrate with DCL, from the traditional in-library party to birthday party kits to go that are perfect for summer celebrations. The in-library parties, offered at DCL’s Castle Pines, Castle Rock, Highlands Ranch, Lone Tree, Parker, and Roxborough locations on Saturdays and Sundays, are two hours and cost $195 for up to 12 children (including the birthday child). DCL’s professional event planners handle all party planning, cleanup, and on-site coordination.

DCL’s to-go party kits are a handy option for parents who choose to celebrate at home or outdoors and may be picked up from any DCL location for $50. The kit offers an optional inflatable water slide rental (available through Labor Day) for an additional $70 fee, which includes delivery and on-site setup, and an optional decorate-it-yourself dessert from a local bakery for an additional $25 fee.

The in-library parties and to-go kits include the choice of three fun party themes and décor, a gift book for the birthday child, age-appropriate goody bags with snacks and toys, age-appropriate activities and crafts, thank-you notes for use after the party, and more.

Visit for more information on each option or to book a party, or call (303) 688-7605.

Douglas County Libraries elevates our community by inspiring a love of reading, discovery and connection.