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Librarian of the Month: Martha Boksenbaum

This month’s featured librarian is Martha Boksenbaum, Youth Services Librarian at Randall Library in Stow, MA.

Martha learned about Mutt-i-grees in the Library last spring, just as she was brought on board as Youth Services Librarian. Since then, she has embraced the program whole-heartedly!

The library kicked off their Mutt-i-grees programming during National Animal Shelter Appreciation week last November and continues to increase awareness of Mutt-i-grees throughout the year by displaying posters and promoting circulation of Ruff, the library’s Mutt-i-gree puppet and mascot. Families can check out the puppet and children take him on adventures. Check out photos of Ruff’s adventures here:

Families love taking Ruff home with them for a week and children have been very excited to show Ruff their homes and their schools. Ruff has also made special appearances during a shelter dog storytime, where children listen to stories about shelter dogs.

The library has also invited local yoga teacher, Maureen Trunfio, to lead a Mutt-i-grees yoga class, hosted and author visit by Jonathan Hall, author of Toto the Tornado Kitten, and consistently offers a popular Reading Dogs program, where children can read to a dog.

When asked what tips she would give to other libraries interested in implementing Mutt-i-grees programming, Martha says, “I would encourage librarians to think about the community they are working with a choose the programs that are similar to what they already do, or something they know the community would embrace. I took my time figuring out how to implement the [program]…and once I knew more about my community, I was able to implement a successful and popular program that the patrons appreciate. Mutt-i-grees programming encourages the community to see libraries as more than just a place for books. It allows libraries to be a place to learn and explore as well, and it is fairly easy to implement the ideas in the curriculum binder, while still allowing for personal creativity.

Keep up the great work, Martha!

Check out the article: Randall Library in Stow has a mutt around town.