Rochester Library to Host Virtual Discussion on Gender Identity

ROCHESTER – There’s a lot going on at the Rochester Public Library for families this summer. Our kids room has been working overtime to prepare for the great programs and other activities they will be presenting. Plus, there are summer reading programs for everyone from kids and teens to adults! Continuing our celebration of PRIDE Month, Reference Librarian, Beth, will present a virtual discussion on gender identity.

Virtual event on gender identity

Join the Rochester Public Library on June 30 at 6 p.m. for a virtual gender identity discussion. Librarian Beth Nerbonne will speak with trans and gender non-conforming guests, including Rochester City Councilor Palana Belken, New Hampshire’s first openly trans councilor. Belken’s extensive LGBTQ-centric work has included organizing trans and gender non-conforming people with the ACLU of New Hampshire, managing Teatotaller, now queer cafe, and one of the project’s many co-founders. Affirming Spaces, a new, non-profit, non-organization project aimed at making New Hampshire a more assertive place for people of all gender identities.

This virtual chat will take place through WebEx Meetings and will last approximately one and a half hours. There will be time and space for questions from participants (questions are encouraged), which will be submitted via the chat function.

Registration is compulsory. You can register by sending an email to [email protected] The link to the virtual event and instructions on how to use WebEx (it’s like Zoom) will be sent to all who register. Space is unlimited, so tell your friends. We hope to see you there.

Virtual art exhibition

Melissa, Main Office Librarian, shares: “The Rochester Public Library is pleased to present the artwork of artstream studios students as a virtual exhibit. A diverse collection of paintings, sculptures and mixed media pieces is on display, representing the talent of students of varying ages and artistic backgrounds. To view the exhibition online, visit:

artstream offers art classes for children and adults. Susan Schwake has been teaching in the Grand Seacoast region for 20 years in her own school, in community settings and in residences in public and private schools. For more information on artstream studios, please visit

Summer reading for adults

Reference Librarian Beth says, “All you need to do to participate in this year’s Adult Summer Reading Program is read! Read whatever you want: read for fun, for comfort, to explore new genres or to learn something new. You can read novels, non-fiction, graphic novels, YA, college, picture books, magazines, articles, essays, whatever. Reading is great for your brain, and we want to reward you for doing it! Track your reading using the Beanstack app (or website). All you need to do is keep track of how many minutes you’ve read (print journals will also be available in the library and on our website). The Beanstack app has a built-in stopwatch, but you can also use any form of timing and then enter that number of minutes into your Beanstack account. In the app, you’ll earn badges, prizes, and raffle tickets as you go. Some examples of possible prizes include Friends of the Library tote bags, protective book sleeves, a super soft and comfortable reading pad, and the grand raffle prize of a Samsung tablet (compatible with Overdrive / Libby and hoopla).

For more information and to register, visit the Library website: We hope to see you all summer!

Summer reading in the children’s room

All our programming will be done outside on the lawn. We will follow NH’s best practice guidelines. Our schedules will depend on the weather, so we will announce our events before 9:15 am on our Facebook page, or you can sign up to receive email notifications:

History Walks: These will take place on two dates, each at a different location in Rochester. All families are welcome.

Could you survive in the wild? : We’ll read a “You Choose” book and see if we can survive. This program is for children 8 years and older.

Shadow Puppet Show: Watch a shadow puppet show on our YouTube channel! Find out how the bear lost its tail followed by a short tutorial on how to make your own shadow puppets.

ASL (American Sign Language) Workshop: an informal program where we will learn the ABCs and 123s of American Sign Language. We will start with the manual alphabet (spelling) and numbers.

Crafts: Porcupine modeling clay: from 2 years old.

Woodland animal masks: from 2 years old.

Photo Fluffy Skunk: from 2 years old.

* Children can come and do crafts. Older children can attend independently, but younger children under 10 must be accompanied by an adult. “

Walk-In Story Times: We will be offering walk-in story times suitable for ages 2 to 6, but all families are welcome. Bring a blanket and get out on the lawn.

Summer reading program for teens

The Teen SRP, Tails & Tales, runs until August 6 and is free for all teens entering grades 6-12. Pick up a reading journal at the library or on our website. Read at least 2 hours a week for a small prize and a chance to win the weekly raffle. You can read anything, including books, magazines, newspapers, and graphic novels. Read to yourself or read aloud to someone. You can even listen to an audiobook. And don’t forget, there are PRIZES! Answer Trivia questions and do candy book reviews. Reading logs are entered into a raffle at the end of the program. The more weeks you participate, the more you increase your chances of winning!

Technical help

Anyone needing help with library technology can call the library to make an appointment.


The Rochester Public Library is now open to walk-in browsing. We are open Monday to Wednesday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Thursday to Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Contact RPL

Visit the Library’s website: or email the Reference Librarian: [email protected] Message the library on Facebook: or or Instagram:

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