Blair County Libraries Now Live!

Scott ThomasUncategorized

Blair CountyWe are pleased to announce that all of the libraries in Blair County are now live on SPARK! This includes the Altoona Area Public LibraryBellwood-Antis Public Library, Claysburg Public Library, Hollidaysburg Public Library, Martinsburg Community Library, Roaring Springs Public Library, Tyrone-Snyder Public Library, and Williamsburg Public Library. They went live in sequence over the course of the summer. Thank you for all of your hard work and welcome!

Scott ThomasBlair County Libraries Now Live!

A Salute to the Brave Pioneers: Scranton and Montrose Libraries Explore Resource Sharing

Scott ThomasUncategorized

Lackawanna Montrose Resource Sharing Report (pdf)


The Burden of Brave Pioneers

Many SPARK libraries think this way: we are all on SPARK. We share the same ILS, and we share cataloging. Why don’t we share our collections to the benefit of our patrons? Two libraries in SPARK, the Lackawanna County Library System in Scranton and the Susquehanna Library and Historical Society in Montrose decided to do just that and embarked on a pilot project to test resource sharing. Did it improve service to patrons? It did. Was SPARK up to the task of handling books and other materials that went from library to library? Absolutely. Did it go perfectly? No. There were challenges as there sometimes are with new endeavors. Did we learn a great deal? Absolutely. Will it serve as a foundation for future resource sharing endeavors in SPARK? Yes. For more see the report which can be downloaded via the link above.

Scott ThomasA Salute to the Brave Pioneers: Scranton and Montrose Libraries Explore Resource Sharing

Spotlight on…Milton Public Library

Scott ThomasUncategorized

This week I had the pleasure of visiting the Milton Public Library in Northumberland County. Founded in 1923, it relocated in 2012 when the library purchased an old stone house and built an addition to create 11,000 square feet. The architects and builders did a beautiful job integrating the old and new to the point where I could not tell the two apart. Features include a water wall, an antique wall safe, and a gorgeous, 6 acre lawn with many cherry trees. It is definitely worth a visit if you are passing near Milton. I learn a great deal by visiting SPARK libraries and hope to visit as many as I can as soon as I can.


Scott ThomasSpotlight on…Milton Public Library

2016-2017 Migration Schedule

Scott ThomasUncategorized

SPARK is growing! Here is our Migration Schedule for the rest of 2016 and 2017:

Bellwood-Antis Public Library: 9/1/16

Remaining Blair County Libraries: 9/15/16

Pocono Mountain Public Library: 11/3/16

Eastern Monroe Public Library (Stroudsburg): 12/8/16

Bedford County Library System: 3/17

Memorial Library of Nazareth and Vicinity: 5/17

Bangor Public Library: 6/17

Tunkhannock Public Library: 8/17

Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton: 11/17

Blair County Libraries

Blair County Libraries


Scott Thomas2016-2017 Migration Schedule

Tunkhannock Public Library Joins SPARK!

Scott ThomasUncategorized

More great news! The Tunkhannock Public Library will be joining SPARK. Locating in Wyoming County, the addition of this fine library strengthens the presence of SPARK in Northeastern PA as they join their neighbors the Lackawanna County Library System and the Susquehanna County Library. This creates great possibilities for sharing and cooperaTunkhannocktion! They will be migrating in just about one year.

Scott ThomasTunkhannock Public Library Joins SPARK!

PaILS Is Sponsoring Two Development Projects

Scott ThomasUncategorized

One nice thing about open source software is that, if you don’t like the way it works, you can change it. PaILS, on behalf of its members, is sponsoring two software development projects. The first, Digital Book Plates, seeks to address the problem of how to show that an item was donated in memory or in honor of someone. Unlike the current solution, Digital Book Plates will be searchable by public and staff. We are also sponsoring a project to add the Search Patron function to Place Hold in the staff client.

Digital Book Plates

Digital Book Plates will improve on this current, unattractive solution.



Patron Search in Place Hold

The Patron Search function will be added here.

Scott ThomasPaILS Is Sponsoring Two Development Projects