Community Interest

Start Your Holiday Shopping at the Library. (Really.)

By Tiffani Stewart
St. Charles City-County Library 

Think back to last year’s holiday season. When your loved ones opened their gifts, did you see faces full of glee or benign smiles? Did you get huge hugs and cheers or half-hearted thanks? If you have struggled to find great gifts in the past, the Library is here to help. 

It’s true! Finding the perfect gift may begin with a visit to the Library. Where else can you try something before you buy it? Where else can you find personalized recommendations? Where else can you get help learning to use those gifts that you give (and get)? 

Here are some suggestions for ways that the Library can support your gift-giving during the holiday season. 



Library staff can recommend books that will wow readers of every kind. Know an 8-year-old who loves robots? A guy with a woodworking habit? A grandma who enjoys mysteries? We can suggest titles that will entertain, teach, and surprise the book lovers in your life. Want to make your gift even more unique? Come to an upcoming “Meet the Author” event and get your gift book autographed and personalized.



Considering an Instant Pot, Spiralizer, Food Dehydrator, or another new gadget for the cook in your life? First check it out from the Library and give it a try. Steam, cook, cut, slice, and dice at no cost! Once you know that tool is exactly what you had hoped it would be, buy with confidence - after checking free with your library card, of course. The Library also has a huge variety of cookbooks to check out, just in case the person who opens that new Air Fryer is you!



You’re thinking about giving someone you love a new device, but you’re not sure he’ll know how to use it. Include a list of Technology Open Labs (with times and locations) in the package. He can bring his new tech toy to the Library and learn to use its features, then get help downloading Overdrive, Hoopla (and more!) to access all of the eBooks, audiobooks, and music that his new tablet can handle.



Thinking about taking the plunge? If you’re considering a video game system, a musical instrument, or a new T.V., the Library is here to help AFTER the presents are open and the party is over.  

-A new Nintendo Switch or Playstation 4 requires games, and plenty of them. Don’t buy new games. Take a trip to the Library with the kids to browse the games we offer for checkout. Borrow a few at a time to keep the new game system fun and your wallet full. 

-She has always wanted to learn to play the guitar. If this is the year that you make her rock star dreams a reality, don’t forget about lessons. You could hire someone…or simply use our eLibrary to find video-based classes that will help her learn to play - free! 

-That new T.V. is big and beautiful, and it’s waiting to display in full color all of the T.V. and movies that you can buy for it. OR, you can use your library card to stream T.V. and movies with Kanopy at no charge. Don’t see what you want? Browse our extensive collection of DVD and Blu-Ray movies and T.V. series, available at a branch near you. The Library can keep you entertained with movies and television shows for years. 

Give glee this holiday season! Present presents confidently with help from the Library. Ask staff about Library resources that can assist you in making smart purchases and help your grateful recipients make the most of all that they receive. While you’re at the Library, check out some of these festive classes and events happening at the Boone’s Trail and Augusta Branch Libraries.



  •  Family Fun: Ribbon Tree Ornament (Augusta), , Dec. 2nd, drop in all day

Make a delightful tree ornament using ribbon and fabric strips. Supplies provided.

  •  Candlelight Christmas Walk (Augusta), , Dec. 6th and Dec. 13th, 5:00-8:00 p.m.

Start a Christmas tradition in the historic town of Augusta, MO. Enjoy over a thousand luminaries as you visit shops and local artisans, then stop by the Library for hot spiced cider and cookies.

  •  Santa Visits the Library!* (Boone’s Trail), , Dec. 17th, 6:30 p.m.

Santa is coming to the library! Enjoy a story, songs, and candy canes, then talk to the man in red about your Christmas wishes. Parents, bring your camera to capture the magic.

  •  Tech Time: Future Coders Poppin Pictures (Augusta), , Dec. 30th, all day

Activities that require sequencing, problem solving, and logical thinking help develop the skills that lead to computer coding. Create fun pictures using these pre-coding skills.



  •  I Love Quilts (Augusta), , Dec. 3rd, 10:00 a.m.

The name says it all! See demonstrations, bring your Show and Tell project, and don’t forget Block of the Month.

  •  Make It Sew: Car Trash Bag* (Augusta), , Dec. 5th, 4:30 p.m.

Bring an empty two-liter soda bottle (and your sewing machine if you have one) and turn it into a trash bag for your car that you’ll actually love to look at.

  •  Social Security Strategies Workshop* (Augusta), , Dec. 7th, 9:30 a.m.

Find out how Social Security benefits are calculated, how they work, and how they are taxed. We’ll also explore how to maximize your income. Bring your questions!

  •  Game On! (Augusta), , Dec. 10th, 5:30

Play at the library! Drop in and choose your favorite from a variety of board games.

  •  Make It Sew: Tile with Words* (Augusta), , Dec. 12th, 4:30 p.m.

We'll supply tile and the vinyl'll make a personalized gift. Come create.

  •  Augusta Book Discussion* (Augusta), , Dec. 16th, 2:00 p.m.

When a weary, cash-strapped journalist is banned from flying, he must take the train if he has any chance of getting home for Christmas. Pick up The Christmas Train by David Baldacci, then join us for a holiday-themed discussion.

  •  English Paper Piecing* (Augusta), , Dec. 17th, 4:00 p.m.

Learn a quilting technique that allows for beautiful and intricate designs.

  •  New Melle Nonfiction Book Discussion Group* (Boone’s Trail), , Dec. 19th, 10:00 a.m.

Bill Bryson was born in the middle of the American century in the middle of the U.S. in the middle of the largest generation in American history. Read The Life & Times of the Thunderbolt Kid, then join our discussion about a guy in the middle…of a very successful writing career.

  •  Make It Sew: Hooded Bath Towel* (Augusta), , Dec. 19th, 4:30 p.m.

Make a hooded bath towel for a little person! This is a great gift idea that requires simple materials (list available at registration) and easy sewing. Beginners welcome.

  •  Let’s Play Crazy Rummy* (Boone’s Trail), Mondays at 10:30 a.m.

Ready for rummy? Kick off your week with fun and friends at the library.

  •  Write Your Life Story* (Augusta), Tuesdays, 1:00 p.m. or 7:00 p.m.

This weekly group will help you write your life story. Stay motivated by sharing your progress at each session. Don’t let your memories slip away!

  •  Coffee at the Library (Augusta), Thursdays at 9:00 a.m.

Join us for coffee, conversation, and a great selection of books and movies to browse every Thursday morning.

  •  Hand and Foot Canasta* (Boone’s Trail), Thursdays at 1:00 p.m.

Make friends and have fun while playing a fast-moving game with two decks of cards (a hand and a foot).

  •  Yarn Arts* (Augusta), Thursdays at 2:00 p.m.

If you knit, crochet, embroider, or cross stitch, join us to finish your yarn art project.



  •  Discovery Kids: Lava Lamp* (Boone’s Trail) , Dec. 2nd, 6:00 p.m.

Make a groovy lava lamps to learn about density.

  •  Story Time (Boone’s Trail), , Dec. 5th, 10:30 a.m.

Engage in stories, songs, and crafts to enhance early literacy. Story time is open to kids ages 3-6.

  •  Let’s Create: Wax Craft Stick Art (Augusta), , Dec. 9th, drop in all day

Bend and twist your imagination to bend and twist these wax craft sticks.

  •  Tale Waggers: Read to a Dog* (Boone’s Trail), , Dec. 10th, 6:00 p.m.

Did you know that students can gain confidence by reading to a dog? Bring a book (or choose one of ours) to share with a friendly attentive dog from “Love on a Leash”.

  •  Let’s Explore: Avid Adventurers* (Boone’s Trail) , Dec. 12th, 5:30 p.m.

School-age kids will explore ancient and modern day Ireland through reading and exploration. (Grades K-5)



  •  Let’s Create: DIY Snowglobe* (Augusta), , Dec. 14th, 9:30 a.m.

Create your own winter wonderland in a mason jar. Supplies will be provided.


*Register at or call Boone’s Trail at 636-398-6200 or Augusta at 636-228-4855.

The Boone’s Trail and Augusta branches are open Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday from 9:00 a.m.- 8:00 p.m. and Saturday, 9:00 a.m.- 12:00 noon.        

**All library branches will be closed on Tuesday, December 24 and Wednesday, December 25 for the holidays. Branches will close at 5:00 PM on Tuesday, December 31 and will be closed all day on Wednesday, January 1 for the New Year’s holiday.