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The City Journals

Sandy Library celebrates Year of the Ox with take-home crafts for patrons

Apr 05, 2021 12:04PM ● By Heather Lawrence

Sandy librarians assembled hundreds of take and make puppet, origami and lantern crafts to help people celebrate Lunar New Year. (Liesl Seborg/Sandy Library)

By Heather Lawrence | [email protected]

The Sandy Library continues to host fun activities for the community, despite not being able to have gatherings in the library. During February, they bagged “take and make” crafts to celebrate Lunar New Year. 

“We’ve been celebrating Lunar New Year for many years. We love the diversity in our community and want people to learn how the holiday is celebrated in different cultures,” said Liesl Seborg, Adult Services librarian at the Sandy Library.

The library is open for limited numbers of patrons to pick up holds and materials. However, in-person learning programs have been on hold for the last year due to the pandemic. 

“We needed to figure out a way to continue our tradition of celebrating Lunar New Year. So we created hundreds of ‘take and make’ craft bags for kids and a lucky home bag for adults in early February. At the end of the month we did it again with a lantern take and make craft,” Seborg said.  

The crafts included paper bag puppets of an ox to celebrate the Year of the Ox. There was also an accordion-folding dragon craft. 

“They went really fast. We had something for adults, too. It was a surprise ‘lucky home’ bag. Inside was origami paper to make an ox, a lucky charm for your car or keychain and a recipe for fortune cookies,” Seborg said. 

Though sometimes called Chinese New Year, Seborg said that Lunar New Year is a more appropriate name as the holiday is celebrated in many cultures. “It may have originated in China, but it’s also celebrated in Korea and Vietnam and all over Asia.”

Seborg said the kits were a hit and they are already planning a St. Patrick’s Day craft. “We regularly get people who comment on how they love the take and make bags, and we get positive feedback every time we do something like this.”

Typically, the library would also have events for Black History Month during February. But with gathering restrictions in place, options were limited. 

“We had a Black History Month display in February, where we pulled books written by members of the Black community. Other branches also had small displays. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to do a lot because we’re not doing in-person programming now,” Seborg said. 

Seborg knows that in-person programming is something many in the community enjoy and look forward to. It includes story times for younger kids, art shows and group events. The library also has several events each month in collaboration with their partners at the Clark Planetarium and the Natural History Museum of Utah. 

“Right now we’re not planning any in-person programming until August at the earliest. Check our calendar to see what events we have planned, including more take and makes,” Seborg said. 

If you missed the Lunar New Year fun, don’t worry—the library’s activities are ongoing. “We’re planning a St. Patrick’s Day craft, but we don’t list all of our craft distribution dates in the calendar. That way we’re able to surprise and delight our patrons with serendipitous opportunities,” Seborg said. 

Seborg hopes everyone takes advantage of the opportunities and programs at the library. Go to their website at www.slcolibrary.org to see their current calendar, which includes daily virtual activities like storybook time for kids, Facebook yoga or Dungeons & Dragons groups for teens. 

“We have familiar faces that come in and pick up holds and families with kids we see at least every other week. We’re still doing our best to offer programs to everyone in the community,” Seborg said.