Castro Valley Library

Food 4 Fines is HERE!
Tuesday, December 20, 2011, 11:14 am
Filed under: News, Programs | Tags: , , , , ,

Our first day with Food 4 Fines and the first barrel is full - Yay!

Saturday was the first day of Food 4 Fines at the Alameda County Libraries.  We started with a bang at Castro Valley Library and filled one barrel completely.  Since then we’ve been working on filling another with non-perishible food that’s being redeemed for library fines.

I was out at the membership desk for most of the day, so I had the pleasure of helping many of you with your food and fines.  I continue to be amazed at the generosity of our community.  I know it will continue long past the December 31st Food 4 Fines deadline.

I know of at least one parent who was using this program as a teaching opportunity for their children.  One little boy was pouting as he handed me his cans of food.  His mother had him choose some of his favorite foods to donate because he kept some of the library’s favorite books past their due dates.  I tried to keep a straight face as I thanked him for making such a hard choice.

Most of the other people I worked with were so excited to be able to help others while cleaning out their cupboards.  I appreciated hearing such great feedback.  There were others, too, who came in with food AND money.  They paid their fines with the money and donated the food.  As one person put it “I am lucky enough to be able to do both – so why not?”

So remember: Food 4 Fines continues until December 31, 2011.  We can accept any unexpired, non-perishible, factory sealed food during this program.  One item is equal to $1 in fines, and we can redeem up to 10 items per library card.  Unfortunately, food packaged in glass cannot be accepted. 

We are also accepting regular food donations.  Just bring them to the membership desk and we’ll put them in the barrel for you!

Thanks again for your generosity so far. 

Happy Holidays!

Holiday Cooking
Tuesday, December 13, 2011, 11:28 am
Filed under: Books | Tags: , , , , , ,

The holiday season is here!  It’s full steam ahead with all of the shopping, entertaining and cooking so many of us do during such a busy time of year.  For some of us (like the young lady I helped at the information desk the other day), it’s our first time hosting the family’s holiday bash.  Others are “old hands” at this holiday entertaining thing, but they want new recipes for their upcoming parties.

The cookbook section in our library is one of the most heavily used sections.  Our cookbooks are shelved starting in the 641.5 call number range in the adult, children’s and new books areas.  Feel free to browse – and of course if you can’t find exactly what you need, ask a librarian at the information desk.  We’re always happy to help.

To get you started here are some great Holiday Cooking titles for you to check out.  Clicking any of the pictures will bring you to the library’s catalog entry.

Do you yearn for a holiday meal that’s not the typical turkey or ham?  Daisy’s Holiday Cooking gives your menu a Latin spin, and includes tips for easy entertaining.  (641.598 MARTINEZ)





This children’s cookbook talks a little bit about different holiday traditions around the world, basic kitchen safety, cooking tips, and a glossary.  Most recipes include a preface that tells budding young cooks about the holiday that particular recipe celebrates.  Countries and regions represented include Italy, Africa, Poland, Mexico, Japan, Vietnam, Russia and more. (J641.568 HOLIDAY)



Looking at the recipes in this book is making me hungry!  Menus for easy “down home” cooking are included for every month of the year.  Do you need ideas for Super Bowl Sunday?  Or maybe a new baby is coming home?  The Neely’s have ideas for you! (642.4 NEELY)





The editors of American Profile Magazine asked their readers to submit their favorite holiday recipes.  More than 250 cherished recipes and memories are included in this book.  (641.568 HOMETOWN)

Food 4 Fines is Coming Soon!
Monday, December 5, 2011, 2:12 pm
Filed under: Libraries, News, Programs | Tags: , , , ,

One of 3 Ways to Give
December 17 – 31, 2011

 To provide food for both body and mind, the Alameda County Library is partnering with the Alameda County Community Food Bank to bring Food 4 Fines to Alameda County Library card holders.  From December 17 – 31, for each non-perishable food item brought to the library $1.00 will be subtracted from overdue fines to a maximum of $10.  We recognize that due to high fines or unreturned materials, some customers are not able to use the library.  This program serves a two-fold purpose – to help customers return to the library and help meet the needs of so many hungry neighbors.

 Jean Hofacket, Director of the Alameda County Library, said: “Libraries are a vital part of our communities, connecting those in Alameda County with options for learning, coming together and to play.  We are very happy to continue this tradition by providing an opportunity to make this holiday time brighter for all through Food 4 Fines.’’

 “The County is making it easier to return overdue books while also helping the needy,” said Nate Miley, President of the Alameda County Board of Supervisors. ” Through the charitable program we hope to feed many hungry families this holiday season.”

 Added Susan S. Muranishi, Alameda County Administrator: “Food 4 Fines is a great idea that is in keeping with the Alameda County Library’s long tradition of engaging library users and harnessing their support to help the larger community.  It also is one of many examples of how Alameda County strives to come up with new ideas to improve the way we serve our residents.’’

The Alameda County Library system services a community of over 500,000 customers; the Alameda County Community Food Bank serves over 49,000 people each week.  Together we can make a difference! 

Traditional barrel drives are now a key source for high demand non-perishable items like peanut butter, canned tuna and meat, beans, rice, low-sodium soups and stews and low-sugar cereal.  Only non-perishable, unexpired, store-sealed items will be accepted.  No glass, please! 

 Libraries participating are:


AlbanyLibrary (510-526-3720)


Castro ValleyLibrary (510-667-7900)

1247 Marin Ave.,Albany,CA 94706 3600 Norbridge Rd.,Castro Valley,CA 94546

CentervilleLibrary (510-795-2629)


DublinLibrary (925-828-1315)

3801 Nicolet Ave.,Fremont,CA 94536 200 Civic Plaza Dr.,Dublin, CA  94568

FremontMain Library (510-745-1400)


IrvingtonLibrary (510-795-2631)

2450 Stevenson Blvd.,Fremont,CA 94538 41825 Greenpark,Fremont,CA 94538

NewarkLibrary (510-795-2627)


NilesLibrary (510-795-2626)

6300 Civic Terrace Ave.,Newark, CA  94560 150 “I” St.,Fremont,CA 94536

San LorenzoLibrary (510-670-6283)


Union CityLibrary (510-745-1464)

395 Paseo Grande,San Lorenzo,CA 94580 34007 Alvarado-Niles Rd.,Union City,CA 94587

 Please call for open hours or check our website.

 Food 4 Fines is one of the 3 Ways to Donate.  We will be accepting food donations through January 31 – or you can make a virtual donation via credit card by visiting our website at

How Do I Find Upcoming Programs?
Thursday, October 27, 2011, 5:20 pm
Filed under: Programs | Tags: , , , ,

We all know the Library offers a ton of free programs for the community.  When you’re visiting the Library it’s easy enough to learn about the upcoming programs thanks to the electronic sign (donated by the Castro Valley Rotary) and all of the flyers posted on our slatwall.  But, how do you find out about programs from home?  It’s actually pretty simple to do.

The first step is to visit the Castro Valley page of the Alameda County Library website.  Here’s a link to make it easier for you to find:  Do you see the buttons on the right side of the screen that read “Monthly Calendar” and “Library Events”?  Clicking on “Monthly Calendar” will take you to Castro Valley’s calendar for the current month.  Click the names of the programs for more detailed descriptions.  From there you can cycle through to see what’s coming up in later months too. 

The other option, “Library Events”, gives you the same information in list format and starts with today’s date.  You can scroll through all of the events listed to find the one that’s right for you.  You can also narrow your search by using the drop down menus near the top of the page.  There’s also a shortcut to the Library Events listing on the left side of this page under “Blogroll.”

And of course, if you have any questions about our programs or would like to register for one, you can always give us a call at 510-667-7900.

It’s a Crime…
Thursday, August 25, 2011, 4:07 pm
Filed under: Books, Programs

… the Adult Summer Reading Game has ended for the season!  The Friends of the Castro Valley Library sponsored the game and donated nine weekly prizes and a grand prize.  This year we received 126 entries by 34 patrons who read books on our theme: crime.  It sounds like they had a lot of fun!

Some library patrons agreed to have their book reviews added to our blog.  Click the book covers to find (and enjoy!) these titles too.  In no particular order:


The Unquiet Bones by Melvin R. Starr
“Intelligent, well-written with plenty of twists.  A good start to a new series.”




Classic Revenge by Mitzi Kelly
“Light-hearted and funny who-dun-it!”




Booby Trap by Sue Anne Jaffarian
“Wonderful as all the Odelia Grey mysteries are!”




The Mystery of King Karfu by Doug Cushman
“This is a fun book with some obvious clues. My sons enjoyed it.”




To the Nines by Janet Evanovich
“This book is more girsley than the others with the snuff game, but the character development is great.”



Gone with a Handsomer Man by Michael Lee West
“I didn’t know mysteries could be adorable but this one was. Fun summer read.”




And our blog entry wouldn’t be complete without a picture of our lucky grand prize winner, Claudia Widner:


Congratulations to Claudia and all of our weekly winners.  Thank you for playing, and we look forward to having fun again next summer!

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