Holiday closure

The library will be closed Thursday, November 11, in observance of Veterans Day and again from Thursday, November 25, to Friday, November 26, in observance of Thanksgiving. The library reopens on Saturday, November 27. During the closures, the dropbox will be available 24/7 for all returns. If you would like to renew/reserve materials, please go to and click on the catalog.


Great River Writes

Great River Writes announces the fifth annual writing series to inspire writers of all levels. In conjunction with National Novel Writing Month, public libraries and literary organizations in La Crosse, Wis., and Winona will host writing workshops and author chats throughout November 2021.

Community workshops, author talks, and expert tips support both published and yet-to-be-published writers of novels, poems, short stories, and more. Upcoming workshops include:


Environmental Writing Workshop

In this workshop, two writers—Kim Alan Chapman, conservationist and ecologist, and James W. Armstrong, professor of English and Winona’s first poet laureate — will help you sharpen your approach to nature writing by deepening your understanding of the human and natural history of a place you know and love, and telling that story. See page 8C for more details.

This event is on Saturday, November 6, 2021, from 12:30-2 p.m. at Holzinger Lodge in Winona. This workshop is open to the public. Because space is limited, participants must register. To register, go to or call the Winona Public Library’s Reference Desk at 507-452-4860. The event is co-hosted by the Winona Public Library and the River Arts Alliance.


Self-Publishing: A Practical Guide

This virtual event is on Thursday, November 18, from 4:30-5:30 p.m. via Zoom. An in-person version of Karsten’s presentation will be held on Saturday, November 20, at 11:30 a.m. at the Winona Public Library.

Is self-publishing the right path for your work? In this presentation, Terri Karsten will explain some of the different models for self-publishing and discuss the pros and cons. Using her own publishing experiences as examples, Terri will share information on how to navigate the self-publishing journey.

Registration is required for this event. 

To register for the virtual event, go to or call the La Crosse Public Library at 608-789-7100. This workshop is sponsored by the La Crosse Area Writers Group.

To register for the in-person event, go to or call the Winona Public Library Reference Desk at 507-452-4860. This workshop is sponsored by the Winona Public Library and Great River Writes.


‘Waking Up White’ Regional Read

Interesting title for a regional read, right? The full book title is ‘Waking Up White: And Finding Myself in the Story of Race.’ The book is written by Debby Irving, and it’s the book she wishes someone had handed her decades ago. By sharing her sometimes cringe-worthy struggle to understand racism and racial tensions, she offers a fresh perspective on bias, stereotypes, manners, and tolerance. As she unpacks her own long-held beliefs about colorblindness and being a good person, she reveals how each of these well-intentioned mindsets actually perpetuated her ill-conceived ideas about race. She also explains why and how she’s changed the way she talks about racism, works in racially mixed groups, and understands the racial justice movement as a whole.

Why was this book chosen for the read? The book is about unlearning biases, dismantling white privilege, and creating inclusive communities. The regional read was created to spark anti-racism conversations across neighboring cities through public presentations and book chats.

The next Winona event is on Saturday, November 6, 10 a.m. at Holzinger Lodge in Winona, and is a book chat entitled "Why Being Color-Blind is Not a Good Approach.” Register online at or call 608-789-7145.

For a full list of public presentations and book chats, go to

Interested in learning what the book is all about? Grab a copy from an area Little Free Library or stop by the Winona Public Library’s Reference Desk to receive a free copy of the book.

This read would not be possible without the generous sponsorship from individuals across the region as well as the following organizations: Bridges Church, city of La Crosse, Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration, Friends of the Winona Public Library, La Crosse Community Foundation, La Crosse Public Library, Mayo Health System, Minnesota Arts, Culture, Heritage Fund/SELCO Legacy Dollars, and the Wisconsin Humanities Council. The ‘Waking Up White’ Regional Read was funded in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Humanities Council, with funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this project do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment of the Humanities. The Wisconsin Humanities Council supports and creates programs that use history, culture, and discussion to strengthen community life for everyone in Wisconsin.


Jewels of Minnesota Artist Exhibit, Talk, and Painting Class

Stop by the Winona Public Library during its open hours from Tuesday, November 9, to Thursday, December 2, to see Rita LeDuc’s paintings in the exhibit, “Jewels of Minnesota.” An artist talk, in conjunction to the exhibit, will be held on Friday, November 12, at 3 p.m. in the Library’s Bell Art Room.

In addition to the exhibit and talk, LeDuc and her husband, Paul, will host a painting class on Friday, November 19, at 3 p.m. in Sobieski Park Lodge (next to Gabrych Park.) The class will cover both basic and midlevel skills with one-on-one support while participants create a painting to take home.  Registration is required for this class. To register, go or call the library’s Reference Desk at 507-452-4860.

LeDuc is a regional nature artist who uses her oil paintings, photos, and life experiences to inspire others and to promote mindfulness in making everyday decision.

Rita LeDuc is a fiscal year 2021 recipient of a Creative Support for Individuals grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board. This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to the legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.


Friends of the Library Participate in Give to the Max Day

Give to the Max Day, Minnesota’s annual day of online giving, is Thursday, November 18. It’s a day to give to your favorite Minnesota nonprofit. Please, consider supporting the Friends of the Winona Public Library at Like last year, 30 percent of the total donated on Give to the Max Day will be put toward the Dolly Parton Imagination Library. The Dolly Parton Imagination Library allows children ages birth to five to receive a hand-selected, age-appropriate, high-quality book each month, free of cost.


Craft ‘n Things

Craft 'n Things is a craft kit from the Winona Public Library for adults ages 18-plus. Kits contain necessary supplies, instructions, and a link to the YouTube tutorial. Each month on the second Monday of the month from 12 p.m. until gone and following Tuesday from 9 a.m. until gone, the library will have these kits available outside at the Johnson Street entrance for people to grab and go. Craft activities and dates are:

November 8, 9 — Pipe cleaner corn

December 13,14 — Melted snowman tea lights


Great River Writes – Winona Writers Group

Do you like to write fiction or non-fiction? Check out the Great River Writes – Winona Writers Group that meets every second Friday of the Month at 3:30 p.m. The next meeting is on November 12 at the Sobieski Park Lodge in Winona.

Registration is not required but if you would like to receive the monthly writing prompts go to