What's new
@ the Library

Hello Lighthouse

Alma and How She Got Her Name

A Big Mooncake for Little Star

The Rough Patch

Merci Suarez Changes Gears

Night Diary

The Book of Boy

Fun, Fun, Fun!

I Love You More Than...


Harold Loves His Wooly Hat

Hip-Hop Lollipop

Coding With Anna & Elsa

Small Walt and Mo the Tow



Brick Building 101

The Ultimate Book of Sharks

The Big Book of Blue

DC SuperHero Girls

When Your Llama Needs A Haricut

Minecrafter Architect

Children of Jubilee

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald: The Original Screenplay

Little Fox in the Snow

The Raging Storm

The Story of Tantrum OFurrily

Winter is Here

No Slam Dunk

Fly With Me

I Lost My Tooth!

Dear Sister

Children's Page

Build Your Own Book Buddy

Saturday, March 16
10:00 - 11:00 am

Stuffed fox

Children will get to choose their animal and stuff it. During the workshop, children are first read a story, and then children bring the plush characters to life by hand stuffing them and wishing on a star. Our theme is Winter Animals/Birds. There will be a limit of 25 children who can participate and the program is for children age 3 to ten. Please call the library at 235-3162 to register or register online here.

A big thank you to Bremer Bank for help in sponsoring this event!


Bringing Stories to Life

Children with their storybook pictures and crayons.

Tuesday evenings: Mar 19, April 16, May 21
6-7 pm

Early Childhood Family Education and Willmar Public Library are working together to bring you and your 2 1/2 to 5 year old an evening of fun. Each night there will be a new story, which will be brought to life with the help of your child. There will be music, activities and much more for you and your child. Please call Community Education at 231-8490 to register.


Little People Storytime

Thursdays, March 21 - April 25
10 - 10:30am

No Class March 28 or April 11

Children sharing a book

For infants - Kindergarten. Let the fun begin! Ms. Kathy and Ms. LaRae are ready to have a delightful morning of books, music and movement at the Willmar Public Library. Parents: if you have any parenting questions, LaRae will be available after class to visit with you. Please call Willmar Community Education & Recreation at 231-8490 to register your child(ren).


Board Game Afternoon

A checkerboard and checkers

Wednesday Afternoons from 4:00 - 5:00 pm:
March 20, May 15

For children K - 6th grade. Come join us to play traditional board games and enjoy refreshments. Please feel free to bring your own board games. This program is recommended for K - 6th grade, so bring a friend or two!


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Spring Story Hour

Story Time

Fridays, March 29 - May 3
10:00 - 10:45 a.m.

Story Hour is an opportunity for parents/grandparents and caregivers to introduce their children to reading and language in a fun way. At story hour, children have an opportunity to do activities that promote development and learning. Preschool-aged children are curious about everything. Story Hour is a perfect way for preschoolers to listen and learn about the questions they ask. Kids love singing familiar songs and doing fun activities. Parents/grandparents and caregivers are invited to play along. Children and their grownups will explore stories and activities to encourage children to develop a lifelong love of reading and learning. These 45 minute programs are designed to promote language and listening skills, expand children's imagination and arouse their curiosity about the world around them. Library story hour incorporates the early literacy skills, such as vocabulary building, phonological awareness, and letter knowledge, that children must master before they can learn to read.

Story Hours are for families with young children.


Children's Matinee

The Incredibles

Friday. March 29
3:30 - 5 pm

Come to the library and watch a movie and enjoy popcorn, movie snacks, and beverages. You may bring your blankets and pillows to relax with while watching the movie. If you want you may dress as your favorite Incredible character or bring your favorite stuff toy with. Synopsis - Mr. Incredible is left home with the kids when Elasticgirl become the new face of superhero.

Rated: G. Run Time: 112 minutes


Lego Club

Wednesdays: April 3, May 1
4:00 - 5:00


Join us to make some wonderful Lego creations. The sky is the limit for your imagination. You will create a new structure each time that may be put on display. Legos are provided for this club. The library received funds to buy new Legos, thanks to the Willmar Eagles Club. If you would like to donate Legos or money to buy more Legos, please contact the library at 235-3162.

This club is for children in grades kindergarten through sixth. Snacks are provided. No registration is necessary.


Creative Kids Art Club

Wednesday. April 17
4:00 - 5:00 pm

Graphic image of two children at an easel with paints

Paint a rock and Basquiat-chalk-on-black paper drawings

Children ages six and older are invited to come draw, paint and learn about art history. Art Club will help to promote creative thinking and creative expression. We will do a project each time. If there is time left left over, children will be able to draw and paint their own art projects. If they have art projects they want to share or talk about they may also do that.

No registration is required and art supplies are provided for the projects. You may bring your own projects and art supplies to work on after completing the assigned art work. Come share art ideas and projects with other creative kids artists!


Family Yoga with Candice

Woman and child doing yoga

Saturday, April 27; 10 AM
Saturday, May 18; 10 AM

Have you wanted to try yoga but haven't had the chance? Have you already tried yoga and want to involve other members of your family? The Willmar Public Library will hold two yoga sessions in April and May for families (watch for adult sessions in June and September). The sessions will be taught by Candice Clemens and are brought to you with funding from Healthy Together Willmar. Wear comfy clothes and bring a water bottle if you would like. Registration is required. Register here or call the library at 320-235-3162.

Healthy Together logo


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Somali Folktales
on Ebooks Minnesota

The Lion's Share: Qayb Libaax, A Somali Folktale retold by Said Salab Ahmed, illustrated by Kelly Dupre

Thanks to the Minnesota Humanities Center and the Somali Bilingual Books Project, Ebooks Minnesota now includes four Somali folktales. Written and illustrated by local talent in both English and Somali, the books help to fill a gap in culturally and linguistically appropriate books for Somali children and their families, while they also advance understanding of Somali culture. Please contact Jen Verbrugge (651-582-8356) for more information.


Caldecott & Newbery Award Winners

Hello Lighthouse illustrated and written Sophie Blackall

The Caldecott Medal is awarded to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children during the preceding year. The medal was named in honor of the nineteenth-century English illustrator Randolph J. Caldecott. The 2019 Caldecott Medal Winner is Hello Lighhouse illustrated and written by Sophie Blackall, published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

Masterful ink and watercolor illustrations illuminate the story of a lighthouse and the family inside. Stunning images of the lighthouse in all kinds of weather alternate with views of intimate interior detail and circular motifs. Blackall's skill with composition, line and close attention to detail have created an exquisite book. "Children will delight in immersing themselves int he captivating discoveries each new look at Hello Lighthouse will bring," said Caldecott Medal Committee Chair Mary Fellows.

Caldecott Medal

Four Caldecott Honor Books include: Alma and How She Got Her Name, illustrated and written by Juana Martinez-Neal, A Big Mooncake for Little Star, illustrated and written by Grace Lin, The Rough Patch, illustrated and written by Brian Lies, and Thank You, Omu!, illustrated and written by Oge Mora. For more information: Caldecott Medal Home Page.

Merci Suarez Changes Gears, written by Meg Medina

The Newbery Medal is awarded each year by the American Library Association for the most distinguished American children's book that was published the previous year. The award is named after the eighteenth-century English bookseller John Newbery. The 2019 Newbery Medal Winner is Merci Suárez Changes Gears, written by Meg Medina, published by Candlewick Press. Using humor and grace, Merci, a charming and plucky protagonist, cycles through life's challenges with the support of her intergenerational family. This richly nuanced novel tackles the complexity of navigating a multicultural identity amidst changing family dynamics. "Meg Medina's warm and honest novel masterfully depicts one Cuban-American family's life with authenticity and empathy," said Newbery Medal Committee Chair Ellen M. Riordan.

From the library catalog: Merci Suárez knew that sixth grade would be different but she had no ideas just how much different. For starters, Merci has never been like the other kids at her private school in Florida, because she and her older brother Roli are scholarship students. They don't have a big house or a fancy boat, and they have to do extra community service to make up for their free tuition. So when bossy Edna Santos sets her sights on the the new boy who happens to be Merci's school-assigned Sunshine Buddy. Merci become the target of Edna's jealousy. Things aren't going well at home, either: Merci's grandfather and most trusted ally, Lolo, has been acting strangely lately-- forgetting important things, falling from his bike, and getting angry over nothing. No one in her family will tell Merci what's going on, so she's left to her own worries, while also feeling all on her own at school.

Newbery Medal

Two Newbery Honor Books include: The Night Diary, written by Veera Hiranandani; The Book of Boy, written by Catherine Gilbert Murdock, illustrated by Ian Schoenherr. For more information: Newbery Medal Home Page.

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Past Events

Summer 2018

Winner of the girl's bike for the 2018 Summer Reading Program.
Winner of the girl's bike for the 2018 Summer Reading Program

Winner of the boy's bike for the 2018 Summer Reading Program.
Winner of the boy's bike for the 2018 Summer Reading Program

Sibley State Park visits the library
Sibley State Park visits the library

Annette Fragale and Friends Legacy Program
Annette Fragale and Friends Legacy Program

Ralph's Word Legacy Program
Ralph's Word Legacy Program


Cow Stories With the Dairy Princesses
Cow Stories With the Dairy Princesses

Science Tellers
Science Tellers

Prince & Princess Story Hour with Willmar Fest Royalty
Prince & Princess Story Hour with Willmar Fest Royalty

Yoga With Candace
Yoga With Candace

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Ongoing Events

Learning Kits

These kits include books, cd’s, scarves, and laminated sheets with ideas and activities. Preschooler can be unstoppable – running, spinning, leaping, and climbing at every opportunity. Their desire to move, move, move makes this a great time to cultivate fitness habits that will last. The activity sheet will help you in making simple movement props and exercise that can be done with them. We encourage you to also use props you many already have at home, such as balls and scarves, to promote movement and activity to your kids. These kits were donated to the library by: Kandiyohi County Public Health Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP). See all kits available.

1: I Am Moving, I Am Learning – Tumbling, Rolling, Crawling and Climbing

2: I Am Moving, I Am Learning – Rhythmic, Movement and Balance


1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

This program is for children in Kandiyohi County 0 - 5 years old. This is an exciting new reading program designed for pre-school children and their families. Many people believe that children learn to read and write in kindergarten or first grade. Developing literacy skills begins at birth through everyday interactions - sharing books, telling stories, singing songs, talking to one another, or pointing out and naming objects. Families-parents, grandparents, and older siblings play a powerful role in preparing young children for future school success and in becoming self confident and motivated learners.

How it works:

  1. Register your child and receive a FREE book bag and reading record to take home.
  2. Write down the title of each library book that is read.
  3. Receive a stamp for each 25 books read.
  4. Receive a prize after every 100 books read.
  5. Each child who completes 1,000 books will be invited to a graduation party and will receive a diploma, t-shirt, and book.

This program is sponsored by:
Willmar Public Library
Bremer Bank
Jennie-O Foods Inc.
Willmar Area Early Childhood Initiative

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Children's Services:
Kathy Torkelson


Willmar Library Children: FacebookWPL Children on facebook

TwitterWPL Children on Twitter

InstagramWPL Children on Instagram

Links for Kids

Sponsors for the 2018 Summer Reading Program

The Barn Theatre

Bergh's Fabricating

Bremer Bank

Concorde Bank

Crayola Experience

Cub Foods

Dorothy Olson Aquatic Center

Fraternal Order of the Eagles Willmar Aerie No. 2334

The Goodness Coffee House

Hawk Creek Animal Shelter

Jake's Pizza

Jenni-O Turkey Store

Kandiyohi County Area Family YMCA

Lake Region Bank

MN Twins

MN Vikings

Qdoba Mexican Grill

Stages Theatre Company



Thank you to
our local sponsors!
Copyright © Willmar Public Library