When someone mentions March Madness, it is difficult to determine if they are talking about basketball, politics, or the weather.  Perhaps they are referring to all the activity at the library.

Thank you to those who supported the Friends of the Berne Library at the yearly book sale by donating, purchasing, and/or working.  The fundraiser was definitely a success.  Start saving your books and jewelry for March 2017.  

Glaze and decorate

The Friends' next fundraiser is Bowls for Books on Saturday, April 16.  Colleen Skiff's art students are making the bowls while learning how to use a pottery wheel; but we need your help to decorate and glaze them.  Work sessions  are being held at the library on Thursday, March 31 between 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. and again on Saturday, April 2 between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.  Stop in anytime during the sessions but please let the library staff know you are coming so we have sufficient supplies.

Using your device

The first NCAA tournament was held 77 years ago in 1939.  Only eight teams competed for the title, with the Oregon Webfoots emerging victorious over the Ohio State Buckeyes.  Facts on March Madness were gathered from the Best Schools Magazine 2016 website.  

Do you know how to find this type of information online?  The Albany County Office of the Aging is sponsoring technology workshops for those 60 or older.  Trainers from MicroKnowledge, Inc. will be at the Berne Library on Monday, March 28 at 1 p.m. for a workshop on tablets.  They will be there again on Thursday, March 31 at 1 p.m. for a laptop computer workshop.  The class is limited to twelve participants so please register with the library staff as soon as possible by calling 872-1246 or emailing .  Attend one or both of these events.  

Trademark madness

The phrase “March Madness” was not associated with the NCAA until 1982 when sportscaster Brent Musburger coined the term during his coverage of the tournament. The phrase had been used previously in an Illinois high school tournament and a trademark battle ensued.  The court decided to grant a dual use trademark allowing both groups to continue use of the term.  


Despite the weather, Spring officially began on March 20 with the vernal equinox.  Children ages 1 to 5 are invited to Storytime on Tuesday, March 29 to explore springtime ideas.  Join Ms. Kathy at 10:30 a.m. for stories, activities, and a craft.

Movie Night

The madness of power is the theme of Movie Night at the Library on Friday, April 1.  Check the library's website for the title of the film.  The movie begins at 6:30 p.m. and is rated PG-13 for action and violence.  Admission is free and refreshments are provided.   

Sunday Book Club

Finish off the month of March by reading “Big Little Lies” by Liane Moriarty.  The novel will be discussed at the Book Club on Sunday, April 3.  Join other adults at 7 p.m. for a conversation about the power-crazed parents of kindergartners.  

Don't expect to fill out a perfect March Madness tournament bracket.  The chances are 1 in 9.2 quintillion of picking out all the winners.  You have a much better chance of finding a book you would like to borrow from the library with your free library card.  Stop in and see.

Through the database link on the Berne Public Library's website, you can access an incredible amount of knowledge.  There is an article on goats by Robert J. Hudson from the Grolier Online New Book of Knowledge, which supplied these goat facts.  

Did you know goats are in the same hoofed mammal family as sheep and cattle?  The does give birth in the spring to one, sometimes two offspring known as kids.

Lego League

If you have kids ages 5 to 16, they are invited to the library at 11 a.m., on Saturday, March 19, for Lego League.  This month, use the library's Legos to build a farm with fencing that will keep in goats.  As farmers know, that is a daunting challenge.

Book sale

Book lovers will feel like a kid in a candy store this weekend. The Friends of the Berne Library are holding their annual Book Sale Plus.  All types of books, movies, music, jewelry, fashion scarves, and puzzles are on sale at the Hilltown Senior Center, 1360 Helderberg Trail, Berne.  Stop in on Saturday, March 19, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for the best choices.  Then come on Sunday, March 20 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for the best deals.

Knit wits

Goats were among the first animals to be domesticated.  They are raised for their meat, milk, and hair.  Angora goats produce mohair while Cashmere goats produce cashmere fibers.  People attending Knit Wits use these yarns while working on individual projects.  The group meets at 7 p.m., on Sunday, March 20.  Anyone interested in knitting or crocheting is invited for an evening of sharing ideas and conversation.

Story time

Wild baby goats spend much of their day developing social and physical skills such as head-butting.  Storytime is where human kids develop social skills so they aren't butting heads with others. On Tuesday, March 22, goats will be the focus of story time.  Children ages 1 to 5 are invited to join Ms. Kathy at 10:30 a.m., for stories, activities, and a craft.  In addition, farmer Scott Green will bring his baby goats for a visit if the weather permits.  

Technology workshops

Are you an old goat who would like to keep up with the changes in technology? There are three recently scheduled workshops at the library for those 60 or older.  On Monday, March 21, at 1 p.m., bring your smart phone to the library to learn how to use it.  If you don't own a smartphone, attend the workshop for an overview to see if you want one in the future.  The class is limited to 12 participants. Call the library at 872-1246, e-mail , or stop by the library to register before Saturday, March 19.  

A class on tablets will be held on Monday, March 28, and a class on laptop computers is scheduled for Thursday, March 31. Attend one, two, or all three of these workshops to keep up-to-date on technology.  Trainers from MicroKnowledge Inc. will be holding the classes made possible through a grant with the Albany County Department of Aging.

Craft activity

All kidding aside, there are many opportunities at the library for expanding your knowledge and fostering creativity.  On Thursday, March 24, adults are making gift cards using a variety of techniques.  If you are interested in paper crafting, these talented people are willing to share their ideas and equipment.  The fun starts at 7 p.m.
There are two more reasons to like goats.  One is that goat milk can be made into delicious feta cheese.  The other is watching the carefree behaviors of baby goats. If you have not seen any online videos of kids playing, come to the library and use our computers or WiFi to watch these hilarious clips.  It will bring a smile to your face.

Limerick is the capital of County Limerick, one of the 32 counties making up Ireland. A limerick is also a comic verse, frequently nonsensical, explained as follows:

What is a limerick mother?

It's a form of verse, said brother,

In which lines one and two

Rhyme with five when it's through

And line three and four rhyme with each other.


The Teen Action Group will meet at the library on Friday, March 11, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. View the completed SRP video with Ms. Kathy and then have some nonsensical fun making up limericks and playing games.  

Book sale

In addition to limericks, the Irish have produced serious quality literature.  William Butler Yeats, James Joyce, George Bernard Shaw, John Banville, and Anne Enright are all Irish authors.   


Whether the books you own are by Irish authors or not, the Friends of the Berne Library are interested in them. Donations for the annual book sale may be brought to the Hilltown Senior Center, 1360 Helderberg Trail, Berne on Saturday, March 12, from 9 a.m. to noon.  Jewelry, fashion scarves, puzzles, audio-books, movies on DVDs, and music CDs are also being accepted.  

Albany parade

You should have enough time to drop off donated items before the Saint Patrick's Day parade begins in Albany, at 2 p.m. However, if March 12 is not a convenient day, contact Judy to make other arrangements by calling the library at 872-1246 or e-mailing .  

Board games

Fidchell was an Irish board game of equal sides played between two people. If you have an interest in board games, join other adults on Sunday, March 13, for game night. The group meets at 7 p.m., in the community room of the library and all are welcome.

Wearing of the green

In the U.S.A. it is customary to wear green on St. Patrick's Day; but in Ireland the color was long considered to be unlucky. Author Bridget Haggerty explains that in Irish folklore green is the favorite color of the faeries. They are likely to steal people, especially children, who wear too much of the color.

Children ages 1 to 5 will be focusing on the color green during storytime on Tuesday, March 15.  Join Ms. Kathy at 10:30 a.m., for stories, activities, and a craft. She promises to protect the children from the faeries.  

Memoir class

Do you have some family folklore that you would like to share with the memoir class?  The group, facilitated by MaryJo McKeon, meets at 2 p.m., on Wednesday, March 16, and new faces are needed.

Pancakes and books

After recovering from the holiday, spend a quiet weekend in the Hilltowns. On Saturday, March 19, enjoy some pancakes at the Berne Reformed Church then come over to the Hilltown Senior Center for the best choices at the Friends Book Sale. The sale is from 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.  

Firehouse breakfast

Eat breakfast prepared by the Kiwanis at the Knox Firehouse on Sunday, March 20, and then come to the Hilltown Senior Center for the best deals of the Friends Book Sale. The sale is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday.  

For a challenge this week, try writing a limerick starting with "There once was a library friend,”  and submit it to the library before St. Patrick's Day.

— Photo from Judy Petrosillo Tim Gerard poses with his picture of a mother doe and her fawn, “Backyard Visitors,” which won the Adult Division People's Choice award. Sixteen adults entered 38 photographs in the Berne Library contest. Patricia Aronson won the grand prize; she was first in the category “Backyard Visitor”; Erin Bremer was second, and Marilyn Naradolillo was third. In “Hilltown Charm,” Bremer was first, Heather Curvin was second, and Heidi Johnson was third; in “Up Close and Personal,” Sandra K

English philosopher Francis Bacon said, "Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested." It seems that only the reader can decide which is which. Take advantage of the wide selection of books to be sampled at your public library.

Movie night

If your favorite genre is comedy, this month's film is perfect for you.  Family Movie Night is from 6:30 to 8 p.m., on Friday, March 4. The Oscar nominated animation is rated PG and should make you laugh aloud. Admission is free and refreshments are provided. The title is available on our website bernepubliclibrary.org.

Book club

One of the stimulating things about a book club is that you are encouraged to read types of books outside of your comfort zone. On March 6, at 7 p.m., the Sunday Book Club will be discussing “All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr.”  The novel is about a blind French girl and a German soldier whose paths collide in occupied France during World War II. All adults are welcome to participate in the conversation on this historical drama that won the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

Story time

The pre-school children also have a book club. They will be talking about “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” by Bill Martin Jr, and John Archambault during story time on Tuesday, March 8.  Children ages 1 to 5 are invited to join Ms. Kathy at 10:30 a.m., to discuss this rhythmic alphabet chant along with other stories, activities, and a craft.  

Trustees meet

The role of a library trustee is something that needs to be digested.  The Upper Hudson Library System executive director helps trustees understand their job. Tim Burke will meet with trustees at 6:30 p.m., on Thursday, March 10. The open business meeting follows the training workshop at 8 p.m.


The teen action group meets at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, March 11. Bring a friend for a teen activity in the library when the library is closed to the public and there is food, of course.

Item drop

This is the month to refresh your personal book collection by donating books you no longer want and replacing them with new-to-you items. Drop off items at the Hilltown senior center, 1360 Helderberg Trail on Saturday, March 12, from 9 a.m. to noon. The Friends of the Berne Library are accepting books, audio-books, music CDs, movies on DVD, jewelry, and fashion scarves.  If this timeframe does not work for you, please contact Judy by calling 872-1246 or e-mailing .

The sale takes place on Saturday, March 19, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and again on Sunday, March 20, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Help is needed for this event. Please contact Donna Gwin by e-mailing .  

Celebrate National Nutrition Month by devouring some great books. See you at the library.

"How did it get so late so soon? It's night before it's afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?" wrote Dr. Seuss.

The National Education Association celebrates Read Across America on Wednesday, March 2, which is the birth date of Theodor Seuss Geisel.  

Photo contest

The time has come to reveal the winners of the photo contest. The Photography contest reception is at 11 a.m., on Saturday, Feb. 27. Come and see the winners of the people's choice in addition to those chosen by the judges. Thank you to Colleen Skiff, Agnes Zellin, and Paul Tick for volunteering to judge the entrees. It was a difficult task because of the superb quality of the 53 pictures.

Game night

Game Night is at 7 p.m., on Sunday, Feb. 28.  This is a fun time for adults to play board games.  If you would like to hone your skills before playing with others, games may be borrowed from the library between game nights.

Clock discussion

If the sands of time move too quickly for you, perhaps your clocks need adjusting. Jim Burghart is discussing the history and mechanics of clocks during the antique clock program on Monday, Feb. 29.  He will show how to maintain antique clocks and dispel some clock myths.  Bring a friend, but not your clock, to this special program at 7 p.m.

Dr. Seuss story time

People often asked Dr. Seuss where he got his ideas.  According to his biography by Judith and Neil Morgan, he once said he went to a small hamlet called Uber Gletch on the fourth of August each summer to get his cuckoo clock repaired. While the cuckoo was in the hospital, he would wander around and get ideas from the strange people in the streets.  Of course, he tended to invent answers.

Dr. Seuss was childless but he invented a fictional daughter, Chrysanthemum-Pearl, who did astonishing things. The books of Dr. Seuss will be the theme for story time on Tuesday, March 1.  Children ages 1 to 5 and their caregivers are invited to be in the right place at the right time. Join Ms. Kathy at 10:30 a.m., in the community room for stories, activities, and a craft.   

Friends meet

While families are reading across America on Wednesday, March 2, the Friends of the Berne Library will be meeting at 7:00 p.m. to discuss funding library needs.  If you have the time to help, it would be greatly appreciated.  The next fund-raiser is the book, movie, jewelry, and scarf sale on March 19 and 20, at the Hilltown Senior Center.  Donated items may be brought to the center at 1360 Helderberg Trail on Saturday,  March 12, from 9 a.m. to noon.  

Family movie night

Once upon a time, dinosaurs roamed the earth. Although they are extinct, they hit the big time in the movies.  Family Movie Night at the library is Friday, March 5.  The animated film being shown is rated PG and begins at 6:30 p.m.  Admission is free and refreshments are provided.  This is an inexpensive way to have a good time on the hill.

As Dr. Seuss said, "Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one."  Make time to visit the library this week.