FY2007/2008 Annual Report

Library Usage Highlights

Highlights of library usage statistics:

  • Library patrons visited the library this year a 235,849 times, averaging nearly 20,000 per month
  • 3,032 patrons registered for library cards this year
  • Total circulation is up by 4.3% -- 576,039 items were checked out -- a new all-time high
  • DVD checkouts have increased by 41.1%
  • Total Music CD checkouts (41,974) decreased by 1.8%, but total audiobook checkouts (15,990) increased by 5.6.
  • Circulation of Adult books (99,097) increased by 8.4% this year, while circulation of Young Adult books (18,489) increased by 16.1% and Children's books (145.162) increased by 6.8%
  • Program attendance averaged more than 3,300 per month at an annual total of 39,899 -- up 6% from last year.
  • Library website (www.wauclib.org) visits increased by 17% -- usage hit an all-time annual record of 272,818 online visits involving 770,172 page views
  • There were 35,897 online visits to the library-sponsored Wauconda Area Community Website (www.waucondaarea.info)
  • Online renewals of materials done by patrons themselves hit an all-time high of 26,050 for the year, up about 18% from the prior year.
  • 29,487 items were checked out on the Self-Checkout workstation -- up 7.3% from the previous year.
  • A record 1,119 ebooks and e-audiobooks were checked out via downloading from MyMediaMall.

Library Usage Statistics: FY0607 Compared to FY0708

  FY0607 FY0708 %Change
Population Served* 25,150 25,150 0%
Total Active Borrowers 19,662 15,068 17.9%
Total Information Transactions      
Adult Services Department 49,626 47,845 -3.6%
Children's Services Department 50,616 42,905 -15.2%
Circulation Department 143,329 151,545 5.7%
Library Total 243,571 242,296 -0.5%
Reference Transactions      
Adult Services Department 25,577 26,292 2.8%
Children's Services Department 42,386 34,172 -19.4%
Circulation Statistics      
Adult Materials Loaned 356,333 364,576 2.3%
Children's Materials Loaned 203,892 211,463 3.7%
Library Total 560,225 576,039 2.8%
Interlibrary Loan      
Items requested and received by our patrons from other libraries 4,360 4,690 7.6%
Items request by and sent to other libraries for their patrons 3,539 3,644 3.0%
Program Attendance      
Adult Programs 12,838 13,610 6%
Children's Programs 22,999 26,289 14.3%
Non-Library Meeting Attendance 1,641 1,349 -17.8%
Library Total 35,837 39,899 11.3%
Internet Usage      
Library website page views 445,781 770,172 72.8%
Library website visits 233,097 272,818 17%
Circulation by Wauconda Area patron age group      
Adults (18+) 355,729 369,649 3.9%
Teens (14-17) 21,733 23,606 8.6%
Child (5-13) 67,274 75,915 12.8%

*Population is based on U.S. Census 2000 and special census of Village of Wauconda in 2006.


Library Operations

  • Addressed slowdown in library usage growth rate.  Ad hoc Library Usage Committee established for an in-depth discussion of library usage trends and issues. Library director provided detailed report for board.  Corrective measures such as improved merchandising of the collection and more effective programming are showing good results
  • Furnishings for better merchandising -- Added eight special mobile “bookstore” shelving units; added 80 shelves for addition to Fiction and Non-Fiction, substantially increasing capacity and enabling face-out display of all new non-fiction books.  Substantial progress in weeding and updating of the Adult Services non-fiction collection.
  • Enhanced outreach to the Hispanic community by hiring and designating Hispanic Community Outreach Librarian and working with her to get grants, enabling her trip to the Guadalajara International Book Fair and funding ($5,000) to produce a video tour of the library and brochure in Spanish and English (“The American Dream Starts @Your Library”). 
  • Library director played a key role in reviving the CLC-administered family literacy classes held at the library.
  • Library director prepared a 3-Year Plan Spreadsheet for board review with input from managers and staff for long-range planning.
  • Established a checklist of trustee training procedures based on those recommended by the Illinois State Library.  
  • Hired and worked with Dawne Tortorella to design a new website for the library – this project is now about half done.
  • Negotiated Wauconda Township’s compliance in paying the Personal Property Replacement Tax.
  • Complete overhaul of the library’s disaster plan completed and submitted with the Per Capita Grant application, thanks to an outstanding team effort. 
  • Added web-based program registration Evanced Events Calendar, enabling user-friendly self-service program registration for library patrons
  • Successfully completed the Request for Proposal process and application for federally funded erate discount, resulting in expected savings of about $9,000 in FY0809 for telephone and Internet services.
  • Researched and received state certification of the population of the library district at 25,150, resulting in an increase of about $3,440 in the Per Capita Grant from the state this year. 
  • Established an internal web page intended to centralize useful information about the library for all staff and trustees, including monthly board packets. 
  • Made improvements to already strong school outreach program, resulting in increases in joint programming with District 118 and class visits to the library, as presented at the March 2008 board meeting.
  • Managed the purchase, installation, and programming of a new 42-inch HDTV promoting library services and programs, paid for by the Friends of the Library.
  • Books on Wheels Grant Application – Although the grant was denied, this project succeeded in communicating the library’s desire to provide van delivery and pickup of library materials to various community institutions.  The villages of Island Lake and Volo agreed to library installation of drive-up book returns at their village halls. 
  • Established cash reserve of more than $100,000, intended to grow to at least $300,000 over the next three years.

Personnel Highlights

  • Established more equitable and competitive wages for all non-management staff as compared to average wages of NSLS libraries
  • Established position of "Coordinator of Electronic Information Resources”  
  • Established position of "Coordinator of Adult Services Programming"
  • Hired full-time Adult Services Librarian designated her as “Hispanic Community Outreach Librarian” 
  • Joint library in-service training day at Ela Area Library: Warren Graham “Black Belt Librarian”, focusing on library security issues

Library Policy Revisions or Additions

  • Patron Behavior Policy (revised)
  • Circulation Policy (revised)
  • Personnel Policy (revised)
  • Meeting Room Policy (revised)
  • Privacy Policy (added)
  • Program registration guidelines (added)

Public Relations (see also School Outreach and Outreach to the Business Community below)

  • Four 8-page full-color newsletters for the first time (previously only 3 per year)
  • Website additions and improvements, making access to online services easier and more up-to-date
  • More coverage of library events in local newspapers
  • Improved utilization of display cases has resulted in better visibility of in-house advertising of library programs
  • FIRST Program – The library has played an essential role in the success of the Families Involved in Reading Stories Together (FIRST) program in the Wauconda area.  The Library director worked closely with the Wauconda Park District, School District 118, and the College of Lake County to bring this program to the library and ensure its proven success.
  • United Partnership Participation – Library Director increased his participation in the United Partnership for a Better Community this year, serving on its Cultural Diversity Committee and hosting most of that committee’s monthly meetings at the library.

School Outreach

  • Family literacy classes partnership with WHS, CLC, and the Park District; expanded programming for ESL students and Hispanic students, and several important online academic databases.
  • The library again participated in the school district’s “Show Them What You know” campaign, promoting parental and community support for students taking ISAT and PSAT exams in March. At the request of the school district’s curriculum director, Library director wrote a letter in support of a grant application.
  • Acquisition of required textbooks from local area schools for a centralized School Textbook Collection in both the adult and children's reference departments of at the library
  • Improved ESL resources, including addition of a bilingual reference staff member and automatic web-based translation of the library website
  • Hosted New Faculty Visit
  • Hosted School Librarians Breakfast
  • Attended school librarians meetings at Curriculum Office
  • Hosted visits to Children's Services Department for District 118 5th Grade classes
  • Hosted behind-the-scene tours for District 118 3rd Grade classes
  • Hosted library visits for Messiah Lutheran preschool classes
  • In cooperation with District 118’s bilingual team, the library welcomed ESL families and conducted tours of the library
  • Library presence at Curriculum Nights at Dist. 118 schools during September
  • Library presence at Family Reading Night at the Wauconda Grade School

Outreach to the Business Community

  • Worked with Wauconda and Island Lake Chambers of Commerce to promote their programs on the Community Website (www.waucondaarea.info)
  • Library Card Sign-Up Month (September, 2005) business partnership with 122 participating businesses.  The library promoted these businesses in print and on the Internet.  In return, the participating businesses provided free or discounted products or services when customers showed their library cards.
  • Participated in Wauconda Chamber Expo
  • 2-page article in the Wauconda Chamber Community guide

Library Facility and Grounds

  • Concrete projects bid out and completed — Successful completion of front stair repair, 156 feet of new sidewalk, and 59 feet of new curbing.  
  • Successful completion of furnishing additions to Children’s and Circulation work areas, increasing staffing capacity until future building expansion or remodeling.
  • New permanently mounted theater system for Children’s Storytime Room.
  • Wiring for and installation of a new 42-inch HDTV promoting library services and programs

Adult Services Department


  • The Adult Services Reference Desk answered 47,845 questions this year, averaging nearly 4,000 per month.
  • A number of changes were made to the Online Database subscriptions:
    • Discontinued
      • Gale Literary Databases
      • Gale Testing & Education Reference Center
      • World Book Encyclopedia
    • Added
      • Salem Health
      • Encyclopedia Britannica Online & Encyclopedia Britannica Online for Kids


In Print

  • The entire non-fiction collection was shifted over the summer and weeded of old, outdated titles to make room for new book displays for all new adult and young adult fiction books.
  • 10,407 books were withdrawn while 11,876 new titles were added, brining the total number of books in the collection to 94,638.
  • Notable increases in Adult print materials included:
    • A 8.4% increase in total circulation
    • A 4.8% increase in Non-Fiction
    • A 10.3% increase in Fiction
    • A 111.9% increase in Most Wanted
    • A15.7% increase in Science Fiction
    • A 56.8% increase in Foreign Language
  • The Young Adult print collection circulated over 18,489 books, or a 16.1% increase from last year.

Audio Visual

  • Audiobooks on cassettes and VHS movies continued to be weeded as replacement on CD’s and DVD’s were purchased.
  • Notable increases in Adult Audio Visual materials included:
    • Audiobooks on CD for adults increased 24.1%. 
    • DVD circulation increased 43.9%, with a non-fiction DVD increase of 13.7% and fiction DVD increase of 46.4%.


Programming played an important role in bringing the community to the library.  Attendance increased 10% from last year.

  • For adults, 170 programs were offered and included:
    • 25 computer classes
    • 3 author events
    • 61 book club discussions
    • 26 feature films
    • 39 informational and instructional programs
    • 12 music programs
    • 3 bus trips
  • For young adults, 83 programs were offered and included:
    • 20 book club discussions
    • 40 club meetings, including Anime Club, Chess Club, Teen Knitting Club and Teen Action Group
    • 7 gaming sessions
    • 16 informational and instructional programs.
  • Free weekly tax assistance to individuals over the age of 55 was offered by two experienced AARP volunteers.  Over 259 people took advantage of this service.
  • Staff began to offer one-on-one computer instruction by appointment.
  • Reading Program highlights:
  • Summer Reading Program 2007, Catch the Beat
  • Annual Winter Reading Program 2007, Brew Up Some Winter Magic
  • Summer Reading Program 2008, Get in the Game, READ!
  • Rebecca Caudill Reading Club for Grades 6-8
  • Read and Win with Abe:  Abe Lincoln Illinois High School Book Award for Grades 9-12
  • Author event highlights:
  • Sandra Balzo, author of Uncommon Grounds
  • Jon Clinch, author of Finn
  • The Outfit with Chicago mystery bestselling authors, Barbara D’Amato, Kevin Guilfoile, Libby Hellmann, and Michael Allen Dymmoch
  • Additional program highlights:
    • Adult
      • Holiday Express Train Run
      • Demystifying Olive Oils and Balsamics
      • Training to Be Top Dog: Guiding Fido to Good Behavior
      • 2012: What’s all the Hubbub?
      • Fireside Chat with Franklin Delano Roosevelt
      • Iraq in Context: A Global Society
      • Springtime Cooking in Paris
      • Chair Yoga and Tea Experience
      • Understanding the Gifts of Dyslexia
      • Cut the Clutter and Lighten the Load
      • Giving Gifts that Give Back
      • eBay Essentials
      • Raptors in My Backyard
    • Young Adult
      • Dance Dance Revolution (DDR)
      • Wii Want You Gaming Competition
      • Harry Potter and Deathly Hollows Bookmark Contest
      • Beat the Heat Snacks for Teens
      • Teen Read Week Laugh Out Loud Joke Competition
      • 1St Annual Chocolate Chip Cookie Bake-Off
      • Study Slam for Finals
      • Stamp Your Heart Out Valentine Craft
      • Guitar Hero/Rock Band Game Day
      • You’re the Master: Video Game Workshop
      • Sizzling Summer Braids, Twists & Ponytails


Outreach to the schools continued to be an important focus.  The library and school district worked closely together on the following events:

  • District 118 Art-A-Fair – This was the first year the library was a part of the district-wide art fair in March.  Student artwork was displayed throughout the library.  The library also hosted a reception for artists and their families following the awards ceremony.
  • Financial Aid Night for Parents and Students – The library coordinated a program with the guidance office to answer questions about the financial aid process.
  • New Faculty Luncheon – Each year the library hosts a luncheon and library tour for the new district faculty as a way to introduce all that the library has to offer teachers and students.
  • Librarian’s Breakfast – A breakfast was held at the library for the School Library Media Specialists and their assistants to facilitate communication among the different libraries.
  • Parent/Teacher Open Houses – Staff attended the various parent/teacher open houses, encouraging library card sign-up and reminding parents the library is here to help!
  • School and Classroom Visits – Several classes visited the library throughout the school year for assistance with research papers.
  • AvantRetro Poetry Performance Duo – The library, in conjunction with the English department at Wauconda High School, arranged for this duo to perform students’ poetry in the high school’s new auditorium.
  • Shaw Chicago Shakespeare Presentation – Members of the theater group, Shaw Chicago, came to the library to present various scenes from popular Shakespeare works to Wauconda High School students at all levels.
  • Read Enthusiastically Aloud Daily (R.E.A.D.) Grant – The school district received grant money to encourage parents and children to read every day to foster a love of reading.  The library participated by providing reader’s advisory assistance and book displays.


The library worked with various community groups in promoting its services.

  • Senior Fair at Liberty Arms Assisted Living Residence – The library hosted a table with flyers and raffle items for the residents at Liberty Arms.
  • Senior New Year’s Party at the Park District – Staff assisted with the annual New Year’s party at the Wauconda Park District sponsored by the Senior Coalition.
  • F.I.R.S.T. Family Literacy Program – The library continued its role in providing library skills to English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) families through this College of Lake County sponsored program.
  • Wauconda Chamber of Commerce Business Expo – The library participated in this annual event with flyers, program information and raffle prizes.
  • Summer Concert Series – For the first time, the library partnered with the Wauconda Park District to put on a Summer Concert Series.  Concerts were held every other week and alternated between the library and park district. 


For the first time, the department had a staff member devoted to reaching out to the fast-growing Hispanic community.

  • Hispanic Heritage Month Expo – The library sponsored a table at this event with a variety of bilingual, bicultural, Spanish-language, and literacy items available at the library.  Raffle prizes were awarded at the end of the day.
  • Celebrating Hispanic Culture – In May, the library proudly presented a Hispanic dance duo in full-costume in addition to singer-guitarists, Trio los Magnificos. 
  • Guadalajara Book Fair – An Adult Services staff member was one of 150 U.S. librarians chosen to attend the international book fair in Guadalajara, Mexico to connect with publishing companies and vendors.


Staff applied for and received two grants this year. 

  • The American Dream Starts @ Your Library Grant provided the opportunity to help increase literacy services to adult English learners.  The grant was awarded by the American Library Association and Dollar General.  This grant funded a library orientation video in Spanish and English as well as a library services brochure in Spanish.
  • The Picturing America Grant was awarded to the library by the National Endowment for the Humanities, conducted in cooperation with the American Library Association Public Program Office.  The library received 20 laminated reproductions of American art of various types, which have been displayed in the Genevieve Lincoln Room.

Children's Services Department


The circulation of Children’s print materials (145,162 items checked out) increased overall by 7%, with notable increases in several areas: nonfiction (+22%), easy readers (+12%), foreign language resources (9%), and picture books (+8%).  Usage of Children’s audiovisual resources increased substantially, particularly Children’s DVDs: 46,144 were checked out, a 32% increase compared to last year. One hundred and ninety book displays and audiovisual resources displays were created and forty-one bibliographies were developed, facilitating access to popular and prominent elements of the Children’s collections. 


The Children’s reference desk was busy this year, handling 42,905 requests for information, reference, readers’ advisory services, and equipment assistance.


At the end of the fiscal year, the Children’s collection contained 50,068 items: print resources (41, 285), audiovisual resources (8,512), and specialty collections, including kits, puppets, and teacher bags (271).

A new, subset collection was added to the parent/teacher collection - toilet training kits. These kits, composed of six picture books, one DVD, and one parenting resource, were designed to help parents deal with this developmental stage of their child’s growth.

Several collection maintenance projects were undertaken to remove old, inaccurate, and damaged resources in the following collections: juvenile nonfiction (500s and 600s), CD-ROMs, and periodicals.


The Children’s Services staff presented 336 programs, which included 105 sessions of preschool and baby storytimes, eight reading programs, two intergenerational book discussion clubs, eighteen craft programs, twenty-four movies, three family-oriented storytimes presented in Spanish, and many special events and activities for children and families.  Attendance at children’s programs totaled 26,289, an increase of 14% compared to FY 2006-07.  Some of the most popular programs are listed below.

  • 2007 Summer Reading Club: Catch the Beat At Your Library
  • 2008 Summer Reading Club: Get In the Game - READ
  • Reading Rewards Club
  • 2008 Family Reading Club: Dragons, Dreams and Daring Reads
  • Harry Potter Presto Predicto
  • Teddy Bear Picnic
  • Fancy Nancy Tea Party
  • Preschool Halloween Party
  • Junie B. Jones Jamboree
  • Games on the Grass
  • Bucket Boys
  • Traveling World of Reptiles
  • Picture Book Bingo
  • Keep Your Teeth HealthyGeronimo Stilton Celebration
  • Polar Bear Picnic
  • Captain Underpants Party
  • Search the Stacks
  • Drop-in Wii
  • Professor Marvel’s Flea Circus
  • Holiday Express Train
  • Search and Rescue Dogs
  • Dave Rudolph’s Beach Party
  • Stage Combat
  • Animal Encounters


Outreach services to preschools and elementary and middle schools increased substantially.  Highlights include:

  1. Twenty teacher book bag requests, encompassing thirty-seven separate topics, were filled to support curricular units.
  2. Thirteen classes of preschoolers visited the library, and Children’s staff visited sixteen preschool classes to present thematic storytimes.
  3. Fifty-six classes of elementary students came to the library on field trips, and Children’s staff visited eighty-four classes of students to serve as mystery readers and to promote the library’s summer reading program.
  4. Children’s Services staff attended the open house events at Wauconda Middle School and Matthews Middle School.
  5. Children’s staff planned and presented Summer Success Celebrations (consisting of a special storytime for the younger students, interactive booktalks for the older children, and take-home prizes for both groups) for 114 students who attended summer school in 2007.
  6. In addition to developing two issues of the library’s newsletter for educators, The Teacher Connection, the Children’s staff published a monthly student newsletter, The Book Report, which was delivered to over 2,600 kindergarten through sixth-grade pupils.
  7. The Children’s department once again offered two programs, B.L.A.S.T. - Bringing the Library And Students Together and Kindergarten Treasure Chest,
  8. to encourage students to obtain library cards and discover all of the library’s services and resources available to them.
  9. In support of CUSD #118’s grant-funded reading initiative, R.E.A.D. - Read Enthusiastically Aloud Daily, the Children’s staff compiled not only a list of great read-alouds for kindergarten through sixth-grade students but also strategies for parents to encourage reading at home and enhance their children’s reading experiences.
  10. With the Adult Services department, the Children’s Services department co-sponsored Art A-Fair, a month-long display of outstanding student artwork that graced the walls, ledges and counters of the library.
  11. Children’ Services staff conducted the following professional presentations: New Faculty Workshop, Preschool Teachers Workshop, and School Media Specialists Breakfast.


The Children’s Services department provided outreach services to the Wauconda Area community through the following programs and events:

  1. Family Literacy - In partnership with the College of Lake County, Wauconda CUSD #118, and Wauconda Park District, the Children’s staff presented six early literacy storytimes to children ages three through six from fall through spring.
  2. Boy Scouts Tour - Children’s staff conducted a library tour for a den of Boy Scouts, providing information and instruction regarding the library’s resources.
  3. Business Expo - Children’s staff distributed library promotional materials and welcomed visitors to the annual Business Expo held at Wauconda High School.
  4. Hispanic Heritage Celebration - Children’s staff handed out kindergarten readiness calendars (in Spanish), promoted the “Day of the Dead” family program, distributed library promotional materials, and gave away various prizes and activity sheets to all children who attended.


Children’s Services staff attended a number of workshops, seminars and institutes to keep abreast of current public library issues and to develop new skills, and they participated in networking groups to share information and expertise with colleagues.

  1. Rob Reid’s Workshop: Creative Ways to Make Literature Come Alive
  2. Dr. Peggy Sharp’s presentation: What’s New In Children’s Books
  3. Dr. Michael Stephen’s presentation: Tame the Web
  4. Children’s Literature Conference at Northern Illinois University
  5. LACONI: Gaming Workshop
  6. Beyond Storytime: Early Literacy Activities in Public Libraries
  7. Staff Institute: Black Belt Librarians
  8. Lincoln Story League
  9. Red Cross CPR and First Aid Training


Some notable improvements to the Children’s Services department were made this year.

  1. The installation of the custom-framed Authors Quilt on the north wall of the department
  2. The addition of a public computer workstation, bringing the total number of full-service computers available to patrons in the Children’s department to seven (excluding the two workstations in the private computer labs)
  3. The remodeling of the Children’s staff workroom, which provided a new desk for professional staff, a book range, and above-counter cabinetry

Circulation Services Department

  • Circulation staff assisted many patrons with the FlashScan self check out machine, resulting in a record number of users (8,714 patrons checked out 25,964 items – up 70% from the previous year).
  • E-Pay: With the assistance of the Illinois State Treasurer’s office and the Administration Dept., patrons were able to pay library fines & fees, pay for Friends of the Library memberships or make donations thanks to E-Pay. This year, 81 patrons used e-Pay to pay a total of $2,322 in fines, fees, or donations.
  • Food for Fines – During the holiday season, the Circulation Department administered the Food for Fines program. The library was able to recover many delinquent items and this also helped to replenish the local Food Pantry.
  • Library Card Sign Up Partnership:  A record 135 businesses partnered for the annual Library Card Sign Up. Four Hundred Seventy Eight (478) new patrons were registered as a result of outreach to the new developments (Liberty Lakes, Orchard Hills) as well as school visits and open house table registrations

Library Automation and Technical Services

  • Completed 3-year technology plan (2008 - 2010)
  • Added a new 42-inch HDTV promoting library services and programs, paid for by the Friends of the Library.
  • Installed web-based program registration Evanced Events Calendar
  • Continued weeding of CD collection and re-labeling of collections with larger type labels.
  • Withdrew 14,846 items from the collection.
  • Added 16,072 new items to the collection.