Noam Chomsky, world-class streaming video, and a beautiful day at the park: It was a wonderful year!

Happy 2019!

At the start of the New Year, we're looking back and sharing some exciting achievements and events from 2017–2018. Did you experience something magical at your Library this past year? We'd love to hear from you. Email your story to



  • Bordando por la Paz y la Memoria/Embroidering for peace and for memory is shown at Joel D. Valdez Main Library. The art installation, curated by local artist Hank Tusinski, offers a heartrending depiction of lives lost to Mexican drug violence.


  • The Flowing Wells Library closes for a major renovation led by Tucson architecture firm, Line and Space LLC. The 5,000 square foot library was expanded to 13,000 square feet.


  • The LGBTQ+ Services Committee hosts Todd Parr, children’s book author and illustrator, for their annual author talk. Hundreds gather at Himmel Park to meet the author and listen to their favorite stories.
  • The Library helps spark a love of astronomy when it begins circulating a telescope gifted from the Tucson Amateur Astronomy Association. A Moon Viewing Party is held to mark the occasion.
  • Renovation begins at Sam Lena-South Tucson Library with the goal of creating a more beautiful and useful space for customers.


  • Deputy Director, Michelle Simon, begins tenure as President of the Arizona Library Association.


  • The Library hosts its second annual pet supply drive to benefit the Pima Animal Care Center.


  • Woods Memorial Library hosts its 9th annual Freecycle Post-Holiday Swap, a community favorite offered in collaboration with the Freecycle Network and the Tucson Ward 3 Council office.


  • The Library puts the world’s finest cinema at customers’ fingertips when it launches Kanopy, a streaming service the New York Times calls, “a garden of cinematic delights.”


  • A series of FRANK Talks explores timely topics with a focus on information warfare. Talks throughout the year cover fake news, global hunger, and school choice in Arizona.


  • Noam Chomsky delivers free lecture, American Exceptionalism Reconsidered, at the Joel D. Valdez Main Library.
  • In the midst of the #MarchForOurLives movement, the Library hosts the 3rd annual Rising Voices Youth Summit, where teens come together to share opinions and ideas about the issues they are most passionate about from gun reform to environmentalism.


  • 10th anniversary of the Wheeler Taft Abbett, Sr. Library!
  • The Library demonstrates its ongoing commitment to LGBTQ+ programming when it launches The Stonewall Series commemorating the 1969 riots the Stonewall Inn.


  • Summer Reading helps curb summer slide and once again delights young readers with hundreds of special events like Wild About Waila and How to Build a Rocket.