Conference Updates

Exhibit Hall Highlights

Apr 10 2015 - 11:11am

Whether or not you are the one doing the purchasing for your library, and whether or not your library’s budget resembles the budget of a Hollywood Blockbuster or, well, a public library, there are so many things to gain from viewing the exhibits.

1. Learn something new! The exhibitors hall is a unique opportunity to meet a representative from a brand your library already works with and learn something new about an existing product.

2. Create opportunity for partnerships. The exhibits provide you with the opportunity to find new partnerships, or spark an idea for something new.

3. It's all about the networking, right?! Exhibits are a great way to meet people from the organizations that work with libraries and learn more about what they do.

4. Share the wealth! Even if any particular exhibit doesn't resonate with the precise responsibilities of your current job, take the knowledge and connections back to those at your library who DO deal directly with those topics. Plus, never underestimate the power of knowledge and connections that might be useful to you in your next job or position in the profession.

5. Giveaways and swag. :) There is always free stuff in the exhibit hall (and we're not just talking about coffee and ice cream), and there is always a chance to win something even better through the Conference Exhibit Hall Raffle.

Exhibits will be open Tuesday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Wednesday from 8:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. All are invited to join NJLA President Terrie McColl at the Exhibits Grand Opening Ceremony on Tuesday at 11:00 a.m. 

Check out the full listing of exhibitors here, and take advantage of this great opportunity at this year’s NJLA Conference!

Big thanks to the following sponsors for their generous support of NJLA:

Poster Sessions on the Edge

Apr 9 2015 - 12:11pm

Poster sessions at the NJLA Conference are a great place to find out about cutting edge technology projects and hear about new ideas for library programs. This year we have three scheduled one-hour sessions when you can meet the poster authors and ask questions about their projects:

1) Tuesday at 11:15AM, which features library student research

2) Public and special library projects on Tuesday at 2:30PM

3) Final session on Wednesday before lunch at 11:15AM featuring college and university library projects

The posters are up with handouts during the day from Tuesday, April 21 through Wednesday, April 22.

To see a preview of the array of different topics and presenters at this year’s NJLA Conference Poster Sessions, check out the online schedule at:

But you can’t see the posters if you don’t register for the NJLA 2015 Conference. The early bird deadline closes TOMORROW, April 10! Register online at:  and we'll see you at the Ocean Place in Long Branch!

NJLA Conference Poster Session Committee: Mary Mallery, Montclair State University and Adriana Mamay, Middlesex County College


Urban Libraries Food Drive!

Apr 6 2015 - 8:15pm


Here's something to remember when you're shopping and packing for this year's conference: NJLA's Urban Libraries Section will be collecting non-perishable food items and toiletries on behalf of the Food Bank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties.

When you arrive in Long Branch, look for us in the coat check area next to the main doors at Ocean Place. You can drop your donated items as soon as you walk in the doors, and we'll be right there to help! Please remember: No glass containers or baby foods. If possible, please  bring your donated items in a reusable bag, since the Food Bank is always in need of these!

Non-perishable foods:

  • Canned Tuna, Chicken, Salmon (in water)
  • Canned Fruits (packed in juice or light syrup)
  • Canned Vegetables (low sodium or no-added salt)
  • Natural unsweetened applesauce
  • Brown, Wild, White Rice
  • Peanut Butter & Jelly
  • Pasta (whole grain preferred)
  • Canned or dry beans, peas, lentils
  • 100% juice boxes
  • Healthy snacks
  • Unsalted Nuts
  • Hot & Cold Cereal (low sugar preferred)
  • Cooking Oils
  • Ready-to-eat Canned Meals
  • Canned Dry Beans

Toiletries, unopened packages of the following:

  • Toothpaste/toothbrushes
  • Deodorant
  • Skin moisturizer
  • Disposable razors
  • Shampoo/soap
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Facial tissues
  • Cleaning products

Thanks in advance for your generous help!


Librarians on the Edge of Fashion!

Apr 2 2015 - 9:54am

The NJLA Professional Development Committee and Librarian Wardrobe Present: Librarians on the Edge of Fashion

When? Monday, April 20, 2015, beginnng at 9:00 p.m.

Where? Sea View Bar Who

Who? YOU!

Who knows more about fashion than librarians? No one, that’s who! And now is your chance to prove it. Join us on Monday night for an informal fashion show, featuring co-hosts Ingrid Abrams and JP Porcaro of Librarian Wardrobe.

Selected categories are (drum roll please!):

1. "The Librarian"
2. Most Original
3. Charming & Dapper
4. Inspiring & Chic
5. Bold & Daring

Sign up for the show as you walk in, then grab a drink and relax with your friends. Not interested in being part of the show? No worries! Come hang out anyway and enjoy the sartorial splendor. Judges will roam the bar while you catch up and mingle with friends and colleagues. At the end of the night, the winners will be awarded fabulous sashes that will loudly proclaim your awesomeness to everyone at conference.

Don’t miss out on this inaugural event. Register for conference and book your rooms at Ocean Place before early bird rates expire next week!


Authors & Signings!

Mar 27 2015 - 11:43am

Meet the Authors!

There are going to be some fabulous authors at the 2015 NJLA Conference, with a little something for everyone! Each of these authors will be offering an opportunities to have your book signed and personalized, and the NJLA Store will have limited copies of some titles available for sale. But this year you are encouraged to come prepared! By shopping through this link - - a portion of each sale will go directly to supporting NJLA, and you'll be guaranteed to have the titles of your choice in-hand. To help you out, we've created an Amazon Wish List

Our own CL Quillen and Ilene Lefkowitz will be presenting on readers advisory for romance readers (and probably some titles for those who don't think they like romance novels, too!). Attendees will get a crash course and learn how to break free from stereotypes. Plus, resources for librarians and assorted annotated reading lists will be provided. Afterwards, they'll be happy to personalize copies of Read On . . . Romance: Reading Lists for Every Taste. There will be plenty of copies of this publication for sale at a discounted cost in the NJLA Store at the conference!

Three NJ authors will be sharing their knowledge about NJ's lively history, including Thomas Edison, New Jersey Diners, and the Civil War’s “Brunswick Boys," and will all be available for some Q&A and book signings during their regular session program.

Children's and youth services librarians: get excited for a great list of authors this year, too. Those excited for 2015 Summer Reading will not want to miss the special double-session program featuring author/illustrators discussing the theme of heroes in their work! Also, the Garden State Book Award Luncheon will feature a keynote by young adult librarian and author Sandy Hall, who will share insight about the processes of book-writing, publishing, and promoting her first book A Little Something Different and the upcoming All Signs Point to Yes. YA author Alethea Kontis (Enchanted) and children's author Tedd Arnold (There's a Fly Guy in My Soup) will also be accepting awards that Wednesday afternoon, and all will be available for book signings immediately following the luncheon.

If you really want specific titles signed by these popular authors, make sure to get copies of their books ahead of time; children's titles sell out of the NJLA Store fast!

And finally, the College and University Section Luncheon will be featuring Dr. Edward Tenner and a presentation of "Information: From Scarcity to Abundance," followed by a book signing.

Networking is #1

Mar 23 2015 - 6:58pm
Networking opportunities are available at almost every turn at the NJLA Conference; you just need to put yourself out there during luncheons, between sessions, at the NJLA store, in the exhibit hall . . . There are many chances for you to make connections, both formally and in more informal settings.
Are you on the hunt for a job? Don’t miss Resume Speed Dating on Monday evening in the Seaview Bar. Experienced professionals will be on hand to critique your resumes and give sage advice to those just starting out or others wishing to make a career change.
Looking to relax after a long afternoon and wanting to talk to peers about that great pre-conference you attended? Head over to the Librarian Mixer at the Wine Loft in Pier Village for some happy hour fun on Monday evening after the preconference programs.
Are you seeking something new and different? You won't want to miss Librarians on the Edge of Fashion at the Seaview Bar after the President’s Program on Monday night. Dress to impress and you may be one of the judges’ favorites!
Tuesday evening is also jam-packed! Just before the Honors & Awards Reception, take some time to attend the informal New Librarian, Library Student and Mentor Happy Hour at the Seaview Bar, or head to the Directors’ Meet-up at the Seaview Restaurant. After the reception, don’t miss the Bonfire on the Beach – there will be s’mores!
Don't forget about time spent in the Exhibits Hall during any free time that you have. Exhibits are not only good opportunities for mingling with colleagues (especially during the ice cream and coffee breaks!), but they are also a perfect time to network with vendors, those with whom relationships could be mutually beneficial to you or other professionals in your library.
If you are looking forward to these events, but you just don't know how to get started in making yourself available to network with colleagues you don't know very well, take a look at a great Library Journal article called "Schmoozing for Beginners," compiled by Patrick Sweeney for ALA Midwinter. It's got all the basics, plus some great tricks, tips, and guidelines for mingling and making connections. Regardless of the rest of your Conference plans, take advantage of any opportunities to catch up with old friends, spend some time getting to know new colleagues, or embrace any available networking opportunities – and be sure to have fun, too!


It's All About the Programming . . .

Mar 23 2015 - 6:12pm

Here's a sampling of the awesome promotion happening around NJLA. If these programs are half as good as they look, we're in for quite a treat at the 2015 Conference in April! Early bird registration has been graciously extended to April 10, so make sure you register ASAP! And remember, if you are looking to share a room at the Ocean Place Resort & Spa or to share a ride to Long Branch, we've got a really easy way for you to make that happen right here.

Don't miss out on the event of the year! #NJLA15

Also, thanks to the Member Services Committee for some fabulous, funny reminders to make sure you REGISTER! Can't wait to see you at #NJLA15.


Mar 23 2015 - 5:21pm

Share your passion with your colleagues!

Do you have something you want to talk about? A topic of interest or successful endeavor to share?
Just until Friday, April 4, you'll have the opportunity to sign up to present at the Ignite Session on Wednesday afternoon! Don't delay! In this exciting presentation format, each speaker is given five minutes of presentation time accompanied by 20 presentation slides. Each slide is displayed for 15 seconds and then automatically advanced. We are currently accepting proposals from speakers -- so, go to and click on “Submit your ignite proposal now!”
Let’s plan to end the Conference on a high note. Last year, there was standing-room only. The Ignite Session was one of the highlights of the 2014 Conference, appearing multiple times in post-Conference feedback as one of the best programs attended. But we need you! This is your time to share your knowledge and passion with others and talk about something new and innovative: YOU can be the star of your own show!
Questions? Let us know at

Need a visual? Check it out:


Let's Eat!

Mar 19 2015 - 12:35pm

NJLA Conference Luncheons

Have you registered for the 2015 NJLA Annual Conference yet? Don’t forget about the luncheons! On Tuesday, from 12:30-2:00pm, the NJLA President’s Inaugural luncheon will take place in Atlantic I and II. Come and hear what plans incoming president James Keehbler has for the 2015-16 NJLA year while dining on grilled chicken with roasted baby potatoes and green beans or vegetable medley pasta with marinara sauce. (You won’t leave hungry – there’s also salad, bread and dessert!) Sit with old friends to catch up, or choose a table where you can meet someone new!
On Wednesday, there are two wonderful choices for lunch: the Garden State Book Awards luncheon honors authors chosen by New Jersey children and teens as their favorites, and this year, our own Sandy Hall, author of A Little Something Different (Swoon Reads/Macmillan, 2014) will be the keynote speaker. The GSBA luncheon will also be welcoming authors Tedd Arnold and Alethea Kontis, both of whom are accepting awards. This luncheon will be held in the Seaview Restaurant overlooking the beach! The College and University luncheon, which will be held in Oceanport South, will feature Edward Tenner, and his talk Information: From Scarcity to Abundance sounds fascinating! Both luncheons will take place from 12:30-2:20pm and you can choose from pan-seared chicken breast in a Chardonnay sauce with risotto cake, asparagus and baby carrots, or vegetable lasagna. The hard choice, of course, will be deciding which luncheon to attend!
For those who are attending either the Garden State Book Awards luncheon or the College and University luncheon, prepare to be compelled to stick around for some book signings! The NJLA Store will have some copies of the authors' titles for sale, but you can also be sure to have your books already in-hand by shopping through this Amazon link, which allows a percentage of sales to be donated straight back to NJLA. It's a win-win! (Full listing of authors who will be at Conference is coming soon!)
Also, early birds, don't forget that the State Librarian hosts a breakfast each year. All are welcome to join NJ State Librarian Mary Chute for a coffee, breakfast, and conversation about what's new and exciting in the state of NJ libraries right now! The State Library will also present its annual awards ceremony, honor winning libraries in the Best Practices in Early Literacy, Multicultural Program, and Innovation award categories. This will be held on Wednesday, April 22 at 8:00 a.m. in Oceanport.
Keep in mind that there is also an ice cream break on Tuesday from 2:30-3:00pm and there is a coffee break on Wednesday from 11-11:30am – both in the exhibit hall, both well-loved traditions! Those of you with a sweet tooth and caffeine fiends welcome!


Tips for Successful Conference Live-Tweeting

Mar 16 2015 - 8:36pm
One of the best, most useful ways to get more out of a conference experience is by participating in a back-channel conversation using the official conference hashtag on the social media platform of your choice. It's also a great way to see Twitter at its best: hashtagged conversations from conferences are rich, fast-moving, and provide opportunities for people outside the conference to learn from what's going on. They're also a good way to find out what's happening at sessions you can't attend (unless you've got a Time-Turner) and for presenters to continue the conversation with participants once a given session is over. 
Participate along with us during the 2015 NJLA Conference by using #NJLA15.
If you're new to Twitter or just want to brush up your live-tweeting skills, this handy one-sheet should point you in the right direction. See you at Ocean Place!


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