On Dec. 13, 2014, I had my first library program! Many woo-hoos and happy dances for me and FT! Our program was Mosaic Art. We had a full house! We were really worried when the program first went live on the website that no one would want to come to a craft program, but they did! I learned a lot during this process. I had to write-up a proposal with a budget, and it had to be approved. Then, I had to create a flyer and have that approved and sent to all the branches for posting.
We went out to buy the supplies for the program, armed with coupons and our budget. We ended up going over budget, but it was a lesson learned. Next time, if I do a craft program, I know to ask for at least $20 more than I think I’ll need. That way, I have a bit of a cushion. Of course, there’s no guarantee that I’ll get the budget I ask for, but it doesn’t hurt to try. Which is actually a good plan for all budgeted programs, I think.
The day of the program went really well. Like I said, we had a full house. We started on time, but had actually given ourselves more time than we needed for set up, craft, and clean up. We learned, in the case of craft programs, either buy more than we need or set rules for how many crafts per person. We found that people wanted to make more than one craft or one of each rather than one or the other. We also realized that we forgot to add a photo release to the registration form, so we couldn’t take pictures of the participants or their crafts. Bummer, but definitely something to remember for other programs.
The examples above are what FT and I created when coming up with the program. Originally, we wanted to do traditional mosaics, with tiles and cement/grout. However, it was very cost prohibitive and would have severely limited the number and type of people we could have in the program. For this first program, we wanted it to be an all ages deal.
Behind the scenes, I learned how to reserve a room for my program, set up registration, create the flyer (harder than you think it is), present and collect program evaluations, and keep track of statistics (total #, # adults, # children, category). It did feel a bit thrown together, but it’s a craft program. You show an example, explain what you’re going to be doing, and let them run with it. There’s not much instruction that needs to happen.
The participants enjoyed themselves, and that’s what I care about.
Until next time, my lovelies!