Book Delivery Service Interruption

There will be an interruption in the statewide book delivery service beginning July 1 and anticipated to last at least six weeks. The service interruption is the result of a competitive bidding process that is now proceeding through an appeal. Patrons can no longer request materials from other libraries through MILS or MaineCat but can continue to place holds on items in the SPL collection. Please read below for more information from Maine InfoNet and for a link to an FAQ about the delivery service.

“Sharing between libraries is one of the best and most valuable services that libraries provide to their members.

“The ability to smoothly deliver materials between libraries is what makes this work.  The contract for the book delivery service is held by the Maine State Library and is subject to state procurement laws and procedures. This contract was required to go to through a competitive bidding process (Request for Proposal, or RFP) this year since all contracts that use public funds have to ensure competitive bidding at the state level.

“Contracting as a result of this RFP for book delivery is currently working its way through a legal appeals process. Because of this transition to a new vendor who won the competitive bid, and an appeal to overturn that decision by an unsuccessful bidder, there will be an interruption to book delivery between libraries at the end of the current contract which expires on June 30th.

“We do not currently have firm dates for the length of this interruption, but we expect that there will be no delivery for at least six weeks this summer, starting on July 1.

“In anticipation of this interruption, the Maine InfoNet Board and the Minerva Executive Board have made the difficult decision to turn off all requesting between libraries within the MaineCat environment, including Minerva, MILS and URSUS, as of June 4th.

“Patrons will still be able to request and place holds on locally owned items, but will not be able to request materials from other libraries. 

“Turning off requesting between libraries will allow materials currently in transit to be delivered and will reduce the flow of new material entering delivery. This will help get as many items back to their owning libraries as possible and will help ensure materials are not stranded in the delivery system.

“We know that this is a challenging situation that we are all facing. We recognize and feel the same frustration with this situation that you all are feeling. Your local library provides many other valuable services to your community, and we encourage everyone to explore those many services.

“If you would like more details regarding this, please visit the FAQ that further explains this situation: Van Delivery FAQ.”

Seaside Series 2024

Seaside Series returns to Small Cove Park. Our 2024 lineup features artists, poets, journalists, and novelists with everything from an island-original picture book to the lights of Broadway and from an Asian brush painting demonstration to a Georgia O’Keeffe mystery. Seaside Series starts Wednesday, July 3, 12-1pm, and runs every Wednesday, 12-1pm, through August 28 in Small Cove Park, 6 Atlantic Avenue, Stonington (behind Camden National Bank). We’ll bring the shade and chairs, you bring a curious mind.

Frederica Marshall

Sumi-e Painting Demonstration
July 3, 12-1pm

Frederica Marshall will present a demonstration of the ancient art of sumi-e, Asian brush painting. This medium uses the Four Treasures: ink stick, grinding stone, brush, and paper. There are 270 brushstrokes in the sumi-e artist’s tool box. The basic strokes were originally used for Chinese calligraphy then adapted for painting subjects. This simple and elegant method can be used for painting every subject.  It is practiced around the world. She loves to paint Deer Isle in sumi-e. It reminds her of her home in Japan.

Frederica Marshall lived in Japan for 28 years and gained a deep understanding of Japanese art and culture. She teaches sumi-e, watercolor, Asian calligraphy, ikebana, and haiku, and she is a kamishibai storyteller. She has taught more than 23,000 students across many institutions, including for LA Metro College and Ringling College of Art. She serves on the board of the Sumi-e Society of America and is a founding member of the Haiku Project and an active member of the Deer Isle Writers’ Group. She has won international and national awards for her sumi-e and watercolor paintings. She has a gallery and art school at 81 North Deer Isle Road, where she finds great enrichment in developing the creativity of her students. Learn more about Frederica on her website.

Kathryn Lasky & Tom Ricks

New Mysteries from Bestselling Deer Isle Authors
July 10, 12-1pm

Kathryn Lasky and Tom Ricks, two bestselling Deer Isle authors, have changed genres late in their writing careers. Kathryn Lasky, beloved children’s and young adult author, releases her second book in a new Georgia O’Keeffe mystery series for adults, Mortal Radiance, this summer. Tom Ricks, renowned military historian, switches from nonfiction to fiction with a new Maine coast thriller, Everyone Knows But You. Come hear the authors read from their new novels and discuss the rewards and challenges of a late career pivot. The event will conclude with a book signing; copies of their books will be available to purchase.

Kathryn Lasky is the author of over one hundred books for children and young adults, including the Guardians of Ga’hoole series, which has more than eight million copies in print, and was turned into a major motion picture, Legend of the Guardians. Her newest book, Mortal Radiance, is the second in her Georgia O’Keeffe mystery series. The first in the series, Light on Bone, won the 2023 Maine Literary Book Award for Crime Fiction. Follow Kathryn on Instagram or learn more about her on her website.

Thomas E. Ricks, a former resident of Deer Isle, is the military history columnist for the The New York Times Book Review. He is the author of nine books, including Fiasco, First Principles, andmost recently, a thriller titled Everyone Knows But You. His latest is set on the coast of Maine and involves drugs, sharks, and the killing of a rogue lobsterman. Follow Tom on Twitter.

Ben Shattuck

The History of Sound
July 17, 12-1pm

Ben Shattuck will read from his new short story collection, The History of Sound, followed by a Q&A and book signing. Written with breathtaking humanity and humor, The History of Sound is a love letter to New England, a radiant conversation between past and present, and a moving meditation on the abiding search for home. In the collection’s final story, “Origin Stories,” the protagonist travels through Stonington and visits a woman living on Isle au Haut. The event will conclude with a book signing. Copies of his books will be available to purchase.

Ben Shattuck is also the author of Six Walks: In the Footsteps of Henry David Thoreau, which was a New Yorker Best Book of 2022 and nominated for the Massachusetts Book Award. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he lives in Massachusetts, where he owns the oldest general store in America. Follow Ben on Instagram and read more about him on his website.

Melissa Jones-Bayley and Rosalie & Gavin Bayley

The Friendly Maine Lobstermen
July 24, 12-1pm

The Friendly Maine Lobstermen: A Voyage of the Kieran Scott is the first picture book by Melissa Jones-Bayley, the author, and her children Rosalie and Gavin Bayley, the illustrators. The book is a sweet tale about cooperation and sharing in the lobster industry, focusing on kindness and helpfulness. The art is inspired by the island’s landscapes and the ever-changing Atlantic Ocean, and the story draws from family history and shared experiences. They will present a reading and a discussion of the creative and collaborative processes from inspiration to publication. The talk will be followed by Q&A and a book signing. Copies of the book will be available to purchase.

Melissa Jones-Bayley is a native of Stonington, where she lives with her husband Chris and their two children, Rosalie, 15, and Gavin, 13. She and her husband are both business owners and active in community service. She is fulfilling her dream of raising her children on the island and immersing them in its vibrant artistic community. The book features Gavin’s intricate pencil sketches and precise ink lines combined with Rosalie’s evocative watercolor palette, resulting in captivating illustrations that bring the story to life.

Siri Beckman

The Art of Wood Engraving and Woodcut
July 31, 12-1pm

Siri Beckman will talk about wood engraving and woodcut with book signing to follow. She recently published The Prints of Siri Beckman: Engraving a Sense of Place with Down East Books, which includes an introduction by renowned New England art critic Carl Little. Copies of her book will be available to purchase.

As a long time resident of Stonington, many of her prints were inspired by experiences on the island throughout the years. Siri is a mid-westerner by birth, and Maine became her adopted home in 1975. She joined other artists and craftsmen in forming a co-op gallery in Stonington in 1976. She taught classes in the adult ed program at Deer Isle-Stonington High School, and worked at Haystack for several summers. She also served on the Memorial Ambulance Corps and the Stonington Planning Board.In 1992, she earned an MFA in Printmaking and Book Arts at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia. For many years, she ran a picture framing business from her home studio where she also sold her prints. Learn more about Siri on her website.

Susan Tobey White & Genevieve McDonald

Lobstering Women of Maine
August 7, 12-1pm

Susan Tobey White was so captivated by the sight of a woman working hard on her fishing vessel in perfect light that she took lots of photos. It planted the seed of a new series, Lobstering Women of Maine. A former student, who had fished with her dad and now has her own boat, introduced Susan to other women and girls fishing on the Maine coast. The portrait series became a book featuring 18 women with brief stories about each. Many of the women knew of each other but had never met in person until the reception at Penobscot Marine Museum. Susan is exhibiting her artwork, including portraits from this series, August 6 through October 19 at SPL.

Genevieve McDonald, one of the women painted in the series, will join Susan in Small Cove Park to discuss the collaborative process. Their conversation will be followed by a Q&A and book signing. Copies of Susan’s book will be available to purchase.

Susan Tobey White, an artist and educator living in Belfast, Maine, worked as an elementary art teacher for 15 years and participated in art shows during the summers. When she stopped teaching, she opened High Street Studio & Gallery, where she showed her own work and that of other artists for 17 years. She now has a smaller studio and gallery in downtown Belfast which is open by chance or appointment. She has taught painting workshops on the East Coast during the past 17 years. She is known for her acrylic paintings of faceless dancers, over-large food series, and Maine scenes. Her most recent body of work resulted in a book, Lobstering Women of Maine: Paintings and Stories of Women and Girls Who Fish the Maine Coast. Learn more about Susan on her website.

Kristie Billings & Libby Edwardson

Poetry & Prose in the Park
August 14, 12-1pm

Local authors Kristie Billings, Sea Witch: Photographs, Poems and Forget-Me-Nots from a Mainer Growing Up, and Libby Edwardson bring distinct styles to their crafts from poetry and fiction to photography and painting. They will share published and unpublished poetry and prose, discuss their work, and talk about the community of writers throughout the Blue Hill Peninsula. Their reading will be followed by a Q&A and book signing. Copies of Kristie’s book will be available to purchase.

Kristie Billings, a Stonington native, comes from a long line of lovers of the sea: fishermen, clamdiggers, and sardine packers. The ocean is home. She is a poet, a photographer, and a year-round swimmer. Kristie is also a collector of both the tangible—wigs, albums, scallop shells—and the intangible—stories, emotions, memories. She currently lives in Ellsworth, Maine. Kristie is married to her best friend, Ed. They share a home with their rambunctious cats. Kristie is a collector. Her first book, Sea Witch: Photographs, Poems and Forget-Me-Nots from a Mainer Growing Up, was a finalist for the 2024 Maine Literary Award for Excellence in Publishing. Follow Kristie on Instagram.

Libby Edwardson is a multimedia artist who has called a lot of places home. She has been a cabaret singer in Dublin, a dog walker in NYC, and driven a bookmobile through the hills and hollers of eastern Kentucky. Now she lives on the coast of Maine, where she paints ghosts, writes about monsters, and wanders seaside cemeteries. Libby is writing her first novel, a quiet horror called Diving at the Starlite, which is set in the Appalachian mountains she came to love so well. Libby has six children, an embarrassing number of pets, and dreams of visiting Roswell, New Mexico. Follow Libby on Instagram.

Jack Viertel

Broadway Melody
August 21, 12-1pm

Jack Viertel’s new novel, Broadway Melody, is a show business romance crossing 7,000 miles and 70 years. Broadway Melody lands securely in the confines of Times Square and the Theater District, as a crackerjack trumpet player and a blue-collar spotlight operator vie for the love of an aspiring ingenue who holds them both in thrall for their entire lifetimes. Jack will read from his novel, talk about his Broadway career, and end with a Q&A and book signing. Copies of his books will be available to purchase.

Jack Viertel is a theater producer who worked on Broadway for 35 years and spent 20 of them also running the ENCORES! program of musical revivals at New York City Center. He has worked on such memorable productions as Angels in America, Hairspray, Dear Evan Hansen, and The Outsiders. His first book, The Secret Life of the American Musical, was a New York Times bestseller. Follow Jack on Twitter.

Colin Woodard

What Holds Us Together? Rebooting the U.S. National Story
August 28, 12-1pm

Historian, author, and journalist Colin Woodard describes how the United States became unraveled—putting the continued survival of the republic and federation in doubt—leaving many Americans wondering what can hold us together. He shares the results of his team’s in-depth research revealing a way forward via a revitalized national story tied to the ideals laid forth in the Declaration of Independence.

Colin Woodard is the director of Nationhood Lab at the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy at Salve Regina University and the New York Times bestselling author of six books, including American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America, Union: The Struggle to Forge the Story of United States Nationhood, and The Lobster Coast. A veteran foreign correspondent and investigative journalist, he received a 2012 George Polk Award and was a finalist for the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting for his work at the Portland Press Herald. A native of Maine, he is a graduate of Mt. Abram High School, Tufts University and the University of Chicago and a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. Read more about Colin on his website.

Downeast with SPL

You could fill many libraries with things that Mainers make by their own hands. Around here, you’d be hard pressed to find a person here who doesn’t grow or craft or build or cook or paint…or otherwise create. In a new fundraising series, Downeast with SPL, Stonington Public Library is showcasing local makers, producers, and artists. These small, intimate gatherings are a chance to meet the people and businesses behind the tastes and beauty and moments that we love about Downeast Maine. Our partners are generously donating their time and services and handmade goods to support Stonington Public Library’s mission, because pitching in and helping our neighbors is another trademark of our island and the peninsula.

SPL is deeply grateful to collaborate with Adell Donaghue, Deer Isle Oyster Company, 44 North Coffee, Isle au Haut Mail Boat, Modernmaine, Oceanville Flowers, and Northern Bay Organics in our first Downeast with SPL series. Read more about each tour below, and continue to follow SPL’s newsletter and social media (@stoningtonpubliclibrary) for updates, new tours, and other library news and events.

Downeast with SPL tours have limited space and will be filled on a first come, first serve basis. To make reservations and for payment information, email with the tour(s) and number of spaces.

44 North Coffee

Thursday, June 6, 12-2pm
44 North Coffee Roastery, 56 Church Street, Deer Isle

Get hands on roasting experience. Taste amazing coffee. And go home with a freshly roasted bag of coffee of your choosing.

See behind the scenes of 44 North Coffee. Join Alix, Head Roaster and Production Manager, during an active roast day. Learn about how 44 North sources coffee, how coffee travels all the way from origin to Deer Isle, and how coffee is transformed “from bean to cup.” See the coffee roasting process in action. Participate in a coffee cupping, a system of evaluation via sniffing, slurping, swishing a sample of coffee. Learn how to apply language to your tastebuds.

44 North Coffee was born in 2010 on a small island off the coast of Maine by Megan Dewey-Wood and Melissa Raftery. Founded on the principle that fresh and ethically sourced coffee sips best, we custom roast organic Arabica coffee beans in Deer Isle. We honor the hard work of the farmers who grow our coffee by fairly purchasing seasonal organic beans and roasting to levels that highlight the best tasting notes in each cup. Enjoy at your own line of latitude!

Alix has been the head roaster for 6 years and has a deep love and respect for coffee. Come feel and learn from her enthusiasm for these magical beans.

Learn more about 44 North Coffee here.

Limited to 10 people

$75 minimum donation

Northern Bay Organics

Saturday, June 15, 10am-12pm
58 Western County Road, Penobscot

Tour a small-scale, no-till, no-spray market garden—and go home with fresh veggies.

During the farm tour participants will learn about our farm, operation model and growing methods, such as no-till agriculture, cover cropping, composting, crop rotation and animal husbandry. Participants will have the opportunity to stroll through the woods on our newly established nature trail and visit our farmstand.

Established in 2020, Northern Bay Organics is a small-scale, no-till, no-spray market garden in Penobscot on the Blue Hill Peninsula growing mixed vegetables using regenerative / no-till farming methods. In 2024 our farm transitioned from commercial production to a fully not-for-profit operation model.

Learn more about Northern Bay Organics here.

Limited to 20 people

$75 minimum donation


Saturday, July 13, 1:30-3:30pm
Modernmaine Studio, 10 Memorial Lane, Stonington

Visit the studio where inspiration is transformed into contemporary artist-made lighting. Take home a Modernmaine votive holder.

Studio visit with Modernmaine founder and designer Julie Morringello. Learn how she creates unique light fixtures for homes and businesses. Her work crosses traditional boundaries, in that it is both functional and sculptural, and created from a combination of digital and handmade processes. Most pieces are made from a very thin, translucent wood veneer, to which color and pattern may be applied. Take home an original Modernmaine votive holder.

Learn more about Modernmaine here.

Limited to 12 people

$75 minimum donation

Oceanville Flowers

Thursday, August 15, 3-5pm
Oceanville Flowers Studio, 10 Church Street, Stonington

Flowers, tea, and refreshments all while taking in a panoramic view of Stonington Harbor. Take home a bud vase with garden flowers.

Join farmer/florist Alicia Condon in the Oceanville Flowers studio for a floral arranging demonstration and tour of the garden. Then enjoy the view of Stonington Harbor with tea and light refreshments among the flowers. Take home a bud vase with flowers from the garden.

Alicia Condon moved to Deer Isle five years ago to pursue her dream of becoming a farmer/florist. Her small town garden produces an incredible number of flowers, which she arranges for local customers, a CSA subscription and weddings.

Learn more about Oceanville Flowers here.

Limited to 12 people

$75 minimum donation

Deer Isle Oyster Company

Thursday, August 22, 4-6pm
Mariners Park, Sunshine Road, Deer Isle

Slurp, sip, bask: freshly shucked oysters, wine pairings, and a view of Long Cove.

Learn about small-scale oyster and kelp farming on the coast of Maine, enjoy a half dozen freshly shucked oysters with wine pairings presented by Deer Isle Oyster Company founders Abby Barrows & Ben Jackson.

“Our oysters grow in the productive and cold waters of Long Cove, Deer Isle, Maine. Located in Penobscot Bay, the cove has a longstanding history of seafood harvesting, and today supports a community of lobstermen and clam diggers. The farm floats above a soft seafloor, catching nutrient-rich tides while remaining sheltered by the surrounding islands.”

Learn more about Deer Isle Oyster Company here.

Limited to 10 people

$75 minimum donation

Adell Donaghue Studio

Sunday, October 6, 2-5pm
Old School, 53 School Street, Stonington

Inspiration, creation, illumination: inside the artist studio. Take home an Adell Donaghue tiny print.

Studio visit with artist Adell Donaghue. Take a behind-the-scenes tour of her creative process from tools and techniques to inspiration and application. Adell has worked as a painter and printmaker, a teacher and mentor, a graphic designer, art director, interior designer and set designer. She exhibited her artwork, 40 Years in Maine: Drawings, Paintings & Prints, at SPL in summer 2022. Take home an Adell Donaghue tiny print.

“I use light to illuminate our shared humanity. I believe the highest achievement for an artist is the transformation of physical materials into light, be it graphite or charcoal on paper, paint on canvas or the projection of images through film onto or through a surface. For me, this transformation of materials is a deeply spiritual experience because it suggests that both singularly and collectively, we are made of the same materials as stars. This idea is central to my work. I create art by funneling the world through my psyche in peculiar ways. The secret for me is to remain open to exploration, allowing the soul of a place to reveal its magic.”

Learn more about Adell Donaghue here.

Limited to 10 people

$75 minimum donation

Coming Soon!

Isle au Haut Mail Boat Tours

Details to be announced soon
27 Seabreeze Avenue, Stonington

Isle au Haut Boat Services will partner with Stonington Public Library this summer to offer two Downeast with SPL tours. Captain Garret Aldrich generously volunteered to charter fundraising trips for the library. For the past three years, Captain Aldrich has collaborated with SPL to offer Story Time Aboard the Otter as a Wings, Waves, and Woods activity for kids and their families. This year we were lucky enough to see several pairs of seals with their pups.

Learn more about Isle au Haut Boat Services here.

New Catalog, Expanded Access

SPL joined Maine InfoNet Library System or MILS, familiarly. MILS is a shared library system that brings together small libraries of all types from across the state. Our participation means immediately expanded access for SPL patrons from thousands of titles to hundreds of thousands of titles—and millions more through MaineCat. Read on for an outline of how to tap into all the new resources at your fingertips, and check back for upcoming information sessions both in person and online.

First, a little about MILS: patrons can now access their own account to request and renew titles, update account information, save reading history, and more. Your login credentials are your library card barcode and PIN. You can request your information by phone, 367-5926, or email, Or drop in for help any time during library hours!

SPL patrons have access to nearly all materials in MILS across all ages, all genres, all formats, including newly released titles. By teaming up with small libraries statewide, SPL can give you more new titles, more large print, more picture books, more audiobooks—simply, MORE! Search MILS for titles/authors/subjects that interest you, and when you find something you want to borrow, click “Place a Request” to get the next available copy or “Add to List” to remember it for later. Once you complete a request, all you have to do is wait. You will receive email or text notification when it is available to pick up at SPL.

Old fashioned browsing is still possible. Come into the library and let serendipity have a hand in the next book you pick. SPL staff are also happy to help you navigate MILS and/or place requests. If there’s an available copy of a title you want somewhere out there, we will work with you to get it into your hands.

MaineCat has millions more titles available to SPL patrons. It works a little differently than MILS. MaineCat is a statewide catalog that combines and links library collections across Maine. You can search the catalog by title, keyword(s), or author, and you will get results for all participating libraries from the small town public libraries to large research collections at university libraries.

SPL patrons can borrow anything from MaineCat that shows as “AVAILABLE” in its request status. To process a request, click “Request This Item.” You will then “choose your home library” from a drop down menu and “submit above information.” To complete the request, you will enter your name, library card number, and click “submit.” When completed, MaineCat will redirect to a page that displays your request status and the lending library.

It’s a lot to process at once, so remember: we are here to help. Call us at 367-5926. Email us at Visit us at 64 Main Street.