COLUMN: Nelson library starts radio show

From library columnist Anne deGrace...

This year, Kootenay Co-op Radio celebrates its 15th year on air.

It’s also the year that the Nelson Public Library will launch its first-ever radio show. For me, these two milestones are wonderfully circular.

I was on the founding board of KCR, back in the days when Zoe Creighton had a dream that ignited the imaginations of other courageous local community radio pioneers.

Our first test broadcast took place in an empty basement space that is now Bloom Nightclub. It was all new, daunting, and tremendously exciting. Community radio in Nelson was born.

Five years later I compared KCR to a mirror, writing that “KCR reflects our precious chaos of optimism, celebration, tribulation, activism, pacifism, joy, anger, respect, information, co-operation, communication. And when we hold up the mirror, we shine.”

It feels perfect that a community radio station-cum-mirror should host a Nelson Public Library radio show; the library’s collections, programming, and resources aim to reflect the needs and the people of the community we live in.

Similarly, the radio show entitled Check This Out will shine a light on the library and on readers in a half-hour monthly program (time and day TBA) hosted by me, with technical assistance from the library’s own technical services co-ordinator Heather Dhalgrin.

We’ll have special guests, including librarians, authors, book enthusiasts and others.

On the program are readers’ advisory book chats, on-the-street spot interviews (“What’s the saddest book you’ve ever read? What book have you read more than once? What book would you recommend to your best friend? Your worst enemy?”) and more.

And I’m thrilled to announce that our theme song will be Nelson musician Rose Nielsen’s toe-tapping musical composition about love and libraries, “Check Him Out (“My baby, he loves books!”).

If you want to know more about KCR shows past and present, check out their travelling historical display featuring Fred Rosenberg’s gorgeous black and white photographs and watch for special events all year. There’s a lot to celebrate.

The air waves seem to be a theme this month. On Tuesday, media consultant Wayne Kelly is offering a free mini-workshop called Self-Promotion for the Faint-of-Heart.

Recognizing that many authors, entrepreneurs, and other creative types are good at creating but daunted by self-promotion, Kelly will help open doors to the airwaves. How to pique media’s interest, give a great interview, and where to take that newfound momentum are some of the topics he’ll cover.

He knows his stuff: his clients have been featured on CBC, CNN, Good Morning America among other radio and TV shows and outlets.

I’ll be there taking notes from both side of the mic.

The Nelson Public Library is 96 years old. I’ve been working at the library for 30 years of that, Co-op radio has reached the ripe old age of 15, and a new library radio show is about to be born.

We are multigenerational, tuned in, and look pretty darn good in that mirror, if I do say so myself.

Anne DeGrace is the adult services co-ordinator at the Nelson Public Library. For more information go to nelsonlibrary.ca.

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