News Archive - 2010

Winter Newsletter



A Call for a Library that lets Ottawa Shine


On Monday, November 29th the Ottawa Public Library Foundation held its annual literary evening at the National Gallery of Canada. Architect Moshe Safdie returned to the structure he designed to share stories about how cities have used remarkable libraries to instill pride in residents and bring people together in community structures that increased library use and group outings. He explained that the creation of great libraries reinvigorated cities and made them better.

Click here to read an article about one writer's thoughts on how Ottawa fares in comparison to cities with exceptional libraries.

You can also watch a video of the event here. Moshe Safdie, the architect of Habitat '67, comes in at the 14 minute mark.

pot-pourri 2010 Book Launch

Pot-pourri 2010 Book Launch Kids
Some of Ottawa’s youngest published authors gather for a picture at the pot-pourri launch

On Thursday October 7th the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Association (FOPLA) held the official launch of pot-pourri 2010. This bilingual anthology contains the winning poems and short stories from the Awesome Authors 2010 Youth Writing Contest.

This year, pot-pourri features 52 works from 37 of Ottawa’s talented youth, and many of these young authors attended the pot-pourri book launch with their friends and family members in tow. The evening event was festive and fun, and all who attended enjoyed cookies, juice, words of encouragement to young authors and a couple of book readings.

After the readings, Awesome Authors and their fans (younger siblings who aspire to submit their writing to the competition once they become eligible) read stories and poems from their new books and hunted for autographs from the writers in the room.

2011 submissions to the Awesome Authors contest will be accepted  by the Ottawa Public Library until January 31st, 2011, so please encourage Ottawan authors between the ages of 9 and 17 to send in their writing. Perhaps their works will be featured in next year's edition of pot-pourri.

Click here for pictures

Raising Awareness of the Library and What it Means to our Community

Love Our Libraries 2010

Please join The Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Association and The Ottawa Public Library Foundation in the Love Our Libraries 2010 campaign to raise awareness of the library and what library programs and services mean to the community.

We offered several tools to help people spread the word and be informed and active during the municipal elections. Thank you for your support. By spreading the word about library services and what they mean to us, we can keep our libraries and the communities they serve strong.

Love our Libraries 2010 fact sheet
Download our fact sheet and share it with your friends and colleagues. It provides information about the library and the organizations that support it.

Love our Libraries 2010 All-Candidate Survey

We conducted an all-candidate survey to determine where the candidates stood on each of the 16 priorities in the Strategic Plan prepared by the Library’s Board of Trustees. We share the responses from the candidates in a report published on this website here. You might consider asking your representitives if they support the library priorities.

Download a copy of the questionnaire to see what we asked the candidates.

Strategic Plan 
Visit the library’s website to read the Strategic Plan and learn about library challenges and goals.

Stories from Library Users and Supporters

If you would like to share your story about what the library has meant to you, please send an email to the communications specialist for the campaign at We may publish your story in Love our Libraries campaign materials.


Sunnyside Re-opened with a Fresh New Look


Click here for a story about the re-opening of the Sunnyside branch of the Ottawa Public Library. FOPLA was happy to contribute to this brighter, more accessable library.

/A\ Morning Book Drive


The Friends have agreed to participate in /A\ Channel’s month-long book drive. The project is collecting new and gently used books, for children from 5 to 12 years old, to be donated to local school libraries.

Participating in this drive will support literacy in our community, promote the use of libraries, and provide FOPLA book store managers with a chance to donate excess inventory to a worthy cause. We’re happy to be on board!

It’s Environment Week in Ottawa


On Wednesday of last week Mayor Larry O’Brien proclaimed May 30-June 5 Environment Week in the City of Ottawa.

Environment Week is an annual national event, which aims to increase public awareness of the importance of building a cleaner, greener, environmentally sustainable community. This year’s national theme is “Embracing Life on Earth.”

The Friends of the Ottawa Public Library would like to encourage you to embrace environment week by visiting one of our 15 used bookstores and self-serve bookshelves.

By dropping off your gently used books to FOPLA or purchasing one of our books, you will be saving that book from the recycling bin and saving another tree from being cut to print a new copy. Add to that the savings for your wallet and the support you will be providing to your community library and there is no more gratifying way to show your Environment Week spirit. 

Click here to view our list of bookstore locations where you can visit to drop off or purchase used books.

Mammoth Used Book Sale Results


The 15th annual Mammoth Used Book Sale was held on April 17th and 18th and the results were gigantic. Almost $14,000 was raised for the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Association to support enhancements to Ottawa Public Library services.

FOPLA thanks all the book lovers and library supporters who came out to the sale and purchased books.

FOPLA also thanks the many dedicated volunteers who collected and sorted books throughout the year as well as those who organized and ran the sale itself – the funds raised through your hard work will mean great things for our community and the Ottawa Public Library.

A special thanks to Barrhaven Moving & Storage Ltd. as well, who moved all of the books for the sale to the Nepean Sportsplex at a reduced rate.

More information about the 2010 Mammoth Used Book Sale will be available in our June newsletter.

Winners of Awesome Authors Youth Writing Contest Announced

The winners of this year's Awesome Authors youth writing contest were announced on March 31 amid much fanfare in The Chamber at Ben Franklin Place.

Prizes were handed out to honour Ottawa-area youth between the ages of 9 and 17 who submitted poems and/or short stories in French and/or English. Local authors Brenda Chapman, Michel Lavoie and JC Sulzenko judged the submissions.

The winners' works will be included this fall in pot-pourri 2010, an anthology of short stories and poems published by the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library (FOPLA).

The Ottawa Public Library (OPL) holds the contest annually, with sponsorship from FOPLA.

A list of this year’s winners is available here.

To pre-order a copy of the new pot-pourri, available in October please click here.

pot-pourri Granted Worthy Of Support

The Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Association (FOPLA) has just been given an Ottawa Citizen Literacy Foundation grant, which is awarded by the Community Foundation of Ottawa, to support its much-loved book pot-pourri.

pot-pourri is an annual anthology of the winning bilingual children’s poetry and short story submissions from the Ottawa Public Library’s Awesome Authors Youth Writing Contest.

Though book reviews, sales and participation in the Awesome Authors contest, pot-pourri has been gaining recognition throughout the local community as not only a fantastic way to support local youth, local authors and the Ottawa Public Library, but a great read too. This significant grant adds a new level affirmation to the project, as an endeavor worth investing in. 

The 2010 Awesome Author’s YouthWriting Contest is alreadyunderway. The deadline for entries passed in January and now contest judges are busy choosing the lucky winners. Those winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on March 31 and asked to be included in pot-pourri 2010

Click here for more details about the contest. 

Committee of the Whole – Presentation in support of the OPL 2010 Budget


Speaking for all Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Association (FOPLA) members, FOPLA President Cindy Streefkerk spoke to City Council on January 26 during the city’s Committee of the Whole.

Using a real life story of one FOPLA volunteer and statistics from several studies of library investment return Cindy voiced FOPLA’s commitment to its library and advocated for council support of the 2010 library budget. 

Following Cindy’s presentation the Mayor took a moment to thank her for the clarity and brevity.

FOPLA member Alayne McGregor also spoke to council on January 26 as a library user and supporter.  Showing unique initiative and an inspiring commitment to the library Alayne deserves, and has, FOPLA’s sincere thanks.

Dusty Jackets Now Open

FOPLA has just opened a new self-serve location. Dusty Jackets opened this month within the Elmvale Acres library branch. 

This new location is now open during regular library hours.  An official opening is being planned and details are soon to follow.