Plan Your Topsham

Have you heard? The Town of Topsham is updating the Comprehensive Plan and they want residents’ input. Between Thursday, October 19 and Monday, October 23 there are a series of activities in which residents may participate and give their feedback about what they want Topsham to be. Below is a schedule of events.

For more information go to: or or

See you there!

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Topsham Public Library

You’ve been visiting Topsham Public Library for years. Your next door neighbor is a staff member. You bring your grandchildren to the storytimes. You knew us when we were still in the house. You think you know us pretty well, but below are 10 things that you might not know.

  1. Did you know we once sponsored and hosted Topsham Public Library Teen Idol? We did! It was quite popular through its run! From 2006 – 2010 an audience of upwards of 65 teens voted on 10 contestants (the contestants qualified through auditioning) to be the next Topsham Teen Idol.
  2. Did you know that if you are a Topsham resident, a Topsham Public Library card is free? That’s right! If you want a library card, and I don’t know why you wouldn’t want a library card, bring a photo id and a piece of mail or car registration that has your Topsham address on it, and we can get you set up. If you are not a Topsham resident you may purchase a library card for $54 a year.
  3. Did you know Topsham Public Library has a Books on Wheels program? If you are a Topsham resident and you have a library card, but you are unable to get out, we can deliver books to you thanks to our volunteers.
  4. Did you know you can borrow video games from Topsham Public Library? There are games for wii, xbox one, xbox 360, ps3, ps4. There is a limit of two games per card, and they are checked out for three weeks and can be renewed once for an additional two weeks if no one else is waiting for them.
  5. Did you know you can borrow binoculars from us? Yup. Binoculars, and telescopes, and fishing poles are all available to borrow. You must be a patron in good standing, and in the case of the telescope, you must have had a Topsham Public Library card for at least six months and you must fill our a survey before checking out and after checking in the telescope.
  6. Did you know you can get discounted passes to local attractions? Through Friends of the Topsham Public Library, you can get a one-day discount pass to either Maine Maritime Museum, Children’s Museum of Maine, Portland Museum of Art, or the Maine Wildlife Park. It’s easy to reserve your pass. Simply pick a date and contact the library to see if the pass is available. When you stop by the library to pick up the pass make sure to bring your library card. Passes can only be issued to card holders in good standing. We are only able to issue one pass a day for each attraction so if your plans change let us know so that the pass may be used by others. The pass may vary for each attraction, but they are money savers, so check it out.
  7. Did you know there is an online database you can access with your Topsham Public Library card? Go to our website ( and click on “Resources & Materials” that is along the top of your screen. A drop down menu will appear, click on the “Online Resources” option. Scroll down until you see Marvel! Your library card gives you access to Marvel! Maine’s Virtual Library. Marvel! provides every resident of Maine with access to a collection of full text articles and abstracts from magazines, newspapers, journals and reference books. Some other online resources available (accessed by that same page) are Mango (learn a language), cloudLibrary (download audio books and ebooks to your device using your Topsham Public Library card), and more. Don’t miss out!
  8. Did you know we have an interlibrary loan service? If we don’t have an item you want, we can request it from another library and have it delivered here for you to pick up. And it’s not limited to just books – we can request audio books, music, movies, magazines, and video games.
  9. Did you know our programming is paid for by Friends of the Topsham Public Library? Music in March, the various children’s programming, the Joy of Art, Joy of Pen, Joy of the Lens, all these plus more would not be possible without them. Consider joining them and supporting them as they support us.
  10. Now, this next little unknown tidbit you can give or take. There is a mixture of feelings even amongst our staff, but did you know that there are some that think that Topsham Public Library may be haunted? So far the ghost has been friendly, spooky but friendly. A whispered conversation between two women when the library was empty of all but staff. A piano being played after the piano had been removed from the library. Books falling off the shelf for no apparent reason. Someone coughing when, again, the library was empty except for staff. I have not witnessed the spectral events, but there are some who believe.

Banned Books Week 2017

This week is Banned Books Week. Libraries are dedicated to your right to read. Everything is not for everyone, but there is something for each one of us.

The most challenged books for 2016 are:

Top Ten for 2016

Out of 323 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. This One Summer written by Mariko Tamaki and illustrated by Jillian Tamaki
    Reasons: challenged because it includes LGBT characters, drug use and profanity, and it was considered sexually explicit with mature themes
  2. Drama written and illustrated by Raina Telgemeier
    Reasons: challenged because it includes LGBT characters, was deemed sexually explicit, and was considered to have an offensive political viewpoint
  3. George written by Alex Gino
    Reasons: challenged because it includes a transgender child, and the “sexuality was not appropriate at elementary levels”
  4. I Am Jazz written by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings, and illustrated by Shelagh McNicholas
    Reasons: challenged because it portrays a transgender child and because of language, sex education, and offensive viewpoints
  5. Two Boys Kissing written by David Levithan
    Reasons: challenged because its cover has an image of two boys kissing, and it was considered to include sexually explicit LGBT content
  6. Looking for Alaska written by John Green
    Reasons: challenged for a sexually explicit scene that may lead a student to “sexual experimentation”
  7. Big Hard Sex Criminals written by Matt Fraction and illustrated by Chip Zdarsky
    Reason: challenged because it was considered sexually explicit
  8. Make Something Up: Stories You Can’t Unread written by Chuck Palahniuk
    Reasons: challenged for profanity, sexual explicitness, and being “disgusting and all around offensive”
  9. Little Bill (series) written by Bill Cosby and and illustrated by Varnette P. Honeywood
    Reason: challenged because of criminal sexual allegations against the author
  10. Eleanor & Park written by Rainbow Rowell
    Reason: challenged for offensive language


Banned Books Week Recap

In honor of Banned Books Week (which is next week) we take a look back at past Banned Book Week blog posts.

Banned Books Week

It’s Banned Book Week!!


The Banned Book I Bought at the Book Sale by Emma


The most frequently challenged book of the decade by Lynne


My Favorite Banned Book by Dale


A Banned Book I Read Recently by Helen


Banned Books in the News by Bernardo


My Favorite Book is a Banned Book by Julie


The value of banned and challenged books by Cyndi


One of my favorite banned books by Susan


Most memorable banned book by Mariah






Calling All Writers

It’s that time of year! Topsham Public Library is now accepting Joy of the Pen submissions.

For those of you who are not familiar with the contest, the Joy of the Pen is a writing competition that is free to enter for year-round Maine residents, both amateur and professional. Prizes are awarded in the following categories: fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, Maine-related nonfiction and teen authored. Submission is online at Winners and honorable mentions are published on the Joy of the Pen online journal and also receive a small honorarium!

A reception will be held on Saturday, November 18th at 1:00PM to announce the winners. Joy of the Pen is sponsored by The Cryer, The Friends of the Topsham Public Library, Just Write Books and the TPL Teen Room.

Donation Drop-Off Deadline Drawing Nigh

The annual Friends of the Topsham Public Library Book Sale is almost here (September 29-October 1), and that means you are running out of time to drop-off your gently used books, dvds, and cds. Saturday, September 15 is the last day we are taking donations. (We have a deadline so the wonderful volunteers have time to sort and organize the various items.)

If you have a few items to donate, bring them to the Friends shed (to the right of the Topsham Public Library). There is a book drop where you may leave your un-boxed donations. We cannot accept magazines, condensed books, VHS or cassette tapes, textbooks, dictionaries, encylopedias, old medical books, or old law books.

If you have two or more boxes, or are unable to drop them off yourself, email (or call the library to get Kim’s phone number) and arrangements can be made.

And don’t forget! Friday, September 29, Topsham Public Library will close at noon to prepare for the special preview sale for Friends of the Topsham Public Library members (Friends’ memberships will be available at the door). The preview sale is from 5:00PM to 7:00PM. On Saturday, September 30, the book sale will open from 9:00AM to 4:00PM and on Sunday, October 1 we will have a $5 Brown Bag Sale from 10:00AM to 2:00PM.

Clean your shelves, sort through your books, and join us during the book sale and restock! See you there!

Fall Sports Season

M T A !

M T A !

M T A!

If you are anywhere in the vicinity of Mt. Ararat High School this fall, you might hear enthusiastic fans chanting and yelling in support of their athletes. The nights are cold, but the enthusiasm is infectious, and the feats are daring. There are many talented student-athletes at Mt. Ararat High School.

Being a spectator at these high school sporting events is a great way to become involved in your community. Games are affordable and a great way to support the community. (There are entrance fees. It’s $4 per adult, but there is a discount for senior citizens and students. The fees go to support Mt. Ararat High School Sports, so you are contributing to the community with your attendance!) Take in a football game under the lights on Friday night, or a soccer match – men’s or women’s, or maybe golf is more your thing, and there is also field hockey, and cross country. For a schedule of events click here.

Not only does Topsham Public Library service community members of all ages, but community members of all ages also service Topsham Public Library as volunteers, and some of those volunteers are Mt. Ararat High School athletes.

Grab your hat, coat, and mitts (temperatures can drop quickly on the fields), put on your red, white, and blue and support Mt. Ararat High School Athletics.

Go Eagles!

You Need A New Bookmark!

At Topsham Public Library, we are always trying to find ways to keep you connected with books you might like to read. Bookmarks with lists of book suggestions are our newest way. Each bookmark has a theme or read alike suggestions.

Currently we have one holder, but we are looking to add another holder with even more themes and ideas.

There is also a bookmark asking for your suggestions of what lists you would like to see.

So, come on in and check it out!


Staycation Pictures! Thank you, Keith Spiro!

Here is just a sampling in pictures of Staycation 2017! The sun was out, the ice cream was delicious, and the smiles contagious! Thank you to all who came out and enjoyed their day with us! And thank you, Keith Spiro for the great pictures. To view the entire gallery, click here.



Mr. Rich Roedner, Topsham Town Manager, started off the festivities reading some of his favorites to children.






A little later in the morning, Principal Randa Rineer, representing Williams-Cone School joined, in the fun.



Here’s Police Chief Lewis telling a story!


And Principal Dedek (Photo by library staff)!











Master storyteller Carol Birch shared her gift with us and entertained us with her talent.




Everyone enjoyed the grounds at Topsham Public Library while we picnicked and played.

The afternoon was filled with poetry and mystery, as Maine poet Gary Rainford, and Maine author Paul Doiron, were with us to share their love of words and stories.











Thank you also to U.S. Cellular and Friends of the Topsham Public Library for sponsoring this event.

Say Hello to a New Staff Member!

If you have frequented Topsham Public Library in the past few weeks, you noticed a new face behind the desk. Cat is our newest member of staff, so please stop by and say hi!

Cat grew up in Wolfboro, NH, but she has Maine connections as her grandparents lived in Topsham. As much as we love Cat’s knowledge of graphic novels (she prefers DC over Marvel, Batman over Superman, and Wonder Woman over Isis), we especially appreciate Cat’s experience as a chocolatier for six months at a five star establishment on St. Lucia. There’s nothing we like better than when Cat comes through the door and says, “I’ve been playing in the kitchen,” or “I made some chocolates. Would you be willing to taste test them for me?” Does the earth revolve around the sun?

As someone who enjoys cooking, Cat has some very definitive tastes. First of all, at our next cookout, we will not offer Cat any condiments. She hates them! No ketchup and no mustard for her! She might do a little cranberry sauce, but other than that – nothing. She is in a bit of a quandry though when it comes to deciding whether to eat cake for dessert or cake for breakfast, she’ll probably do both, but she does prefer pie to cake. Pizza is also a no-no for Cat as it has tomatoes. Cat doesn’t eat tomatoes or bacon. But Skittles. There is never a bad time for Skittles.

When Cat is not here, she likes to knit, play in the kitchen, sculpt with gumpaste, read comics (not just superhero ones) and listen to The Thrilling Adventure Hour which is an old-style radio play podcast. But you will not find her hiking. She hates hiking. Swimming is ok, but hiking not so much.

So come on over to Topsham Public Library and give Cat a big welcome!