ALA Midwinter 2009 – YALSA Mixer and Gaming Night

Friday night, following the first evening of exhibits at ALA Midwinter 2009, the team headed over to the Centennial Ballroom at the Hyatt Regency Denver for YALSA’s ever popular gaming night.

And what a night it was!

Open bar…a room full of YA and Teen librarians…fun games showcasing tools for librarians…and a booktalking contest/Twitter microblogging extravaganza.

It was wonderful to see so many FOT.c’s (friends of at the event. One great surprise was to see Beth B, a senior mentor at, who is also a YA librarian at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, FL, a subscriber to Live Homework Help®. Beth B started as a tutor almost four years ago, tutoring a wide range of subjects including Algebra, English and Essay Writing. She went on to become a mentor and recently was promoted to senior mentor. Congratulations Beth!

The author and senior mentor, Beth B at the YALSA Mixer, ALA Midwinter 2009

The highlight of the evening was the booktalking. Christopher Shoemaker, YA Specialist at the New York Public Library, hosted a slamming event: America’s Next Top Booktalker. Although booktalking is a core skill of teen librarians, this was the first time I had seen this in action. I was blown away! The most innovative part was the booktalking Tweets. You can see a couple of them at

And the Mixer Challenge table was busy, busy, busy.  Tom, Gary and I guided participants through a series of challenges designed to showcase the great new features coming to in summer 2009. Thank you to everyone who participated. We enjoyed your drawings, comments, and of course appreciate your feedback.

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