Waukesha Public Library and the City of Waukesha celebrate 125 years!

Please join us as we celebrate this historic event with activities for all ages!

Historical Photo Display, April and May
Take a stroll back in time as we celebrate our 125th anniversary! A collection of historical photographs showcasing Waukesha Public Library and the City of Waukesha will be on display in our community art space. The photos were obtained and annotated through the efforts of John Schoenknecht in recognition of Waukesha’s 100th anniversary in 1996. Seventeen photos will be on display in April, and they will be replaced by 17 different photos in May.

National Library Week
April 4-10
Visit the Library this week to share your favorite library memory. Stop by on Thursday, April 8 to receive a special celebration treat and see our staff dressed up in period costume!

Adult Take & Make Kit
Genealogy Boot Camp
April 5
Interested in learning more about genealogy, but don’t know where to begin? The Waukesha Public Library is teaming up with the Waukesha County Historical Society & Museum to provide all you need to get started exploring your family history. Starting April 5, come to the Reference Desk to get worksheets, brochures, and information on resources available in the community to help you on your way. Kits available while supplies last.

Kids Take & Make Kit
Quill Pen and Ink
April 5
Stop by the Children’s Reference Desk starting April 5 to pick up a Quill Pen and Ink Kit. See how people used to write before we had things like pens and computers! With this Maker Kit, you will be able to write or design your own artwork with colorful feathered quills. Directions will also be included to help you create your own homemade ink. Kits available while supplies last. Kits available while supplies last.

Your Library: Past and Future!
Tuesday, April 20, 11:00 AM
Join Waukesha Public Library for a discussion about our colorful past and exciting future! Ellen Langill and Library Director Bruce Gay will present.
Ellen Langill is the author of A Window to the World: A History of the Waukesha Public Library 1896-1996. She is a renowned local historian and will share highlights of our 125 year history.  Bruce Gay is the current Director of Waukesha Public Library and will share plans for the Library’s future. A Q&A will follow the presentation. Registration is required to get the Zoom connection information. Register on the Library’s event calendar or by calling 262-524-3682.

Día de los Niños
Saturday, May 1, 10:00 AM-12:00 PM
Cutler Park
Join us in our annual bilingual celebration that connects children and families to a love of reading through a focus on diverse stories and family heritage. This year, help celebrate our 125th anniversary  with music, activities, and free books! Stop by the Bandshell in Cutler Park for a safe outdoor celebration. This event is hosted in collaboration with the Waukesha Hispanic Collaborative Network.

Discounts for National Library Week (April 4-10)

The Friends of Waukesha Public Library worked with Spring City Wine House and Mama D’s Coffee to arrange some special discounts for National Library Week! From April 4-10, show your library card at either business to receive the following discounts:

Spring City Wine House: 10% off your purchase

Mama D’s Coffee: 5% off your purchase

These offers (at both places) are not available with other coupons or discounts. Enjoy!


Teen Zone open for browsing

Our Teen Zone Collection is now open for browsing! To help keep everyone safe, we ask that you continue to limit your time in the Library.

New services!

Waukesha Public Library is thrilled to announce two exciting service changes!

1) We will be open on Monday evenings until 8:30 PM! We hope this extra time will make it easier for you to use and enjoy our services.

2) Most of our collections on the first and second floors will be open for browsing! For safety reasons, the Teen Zone, the Carnegie Room (magazines and newspapers), and 321 Alphabet Square will remain closed. Staff members will be available to assist you with getting items from those collections, so don’t be afraid to ask!

Masks are still required inside the Library, and we request that you limit your time in the building to help keep everyone safe. We hope you enjoy these service changes, and we’ll see you at the Library!

Step up for Wisconsin public libraries!

Bridges Library System is working with several other library systems in the state to start a postcard campaign supporting public libraries in Wisconsin. We need YOU to let your state legislators know how much Waukesha Public Library improved your life, and this community, in 2020. Stop at any WPL service desk and fill out a “Libraries Step Up” postcard to tell your elected representatives why you’re thankful for the library services offered in Waukesha. We’ll make sure the postcards get stamped and mailed, so just leave your completed card at any service desk. Our future funding is at risk because many legislators incorrectly believe that libraries have been closed throughout the pandemic. Please help us change this perception by letting your legislators know that WPL has been important to you and your family during this time. Thank you for your support, and we’ll see you at the Library!

Incorrect Overdue Notices

Oops! The catalog had a hiccup this morning and sent out incorrect overdue notices through emails and texts. If you received one, please disregard it. If you have questions, please check your online account or call our Public Services Department at 262.524.3684. Thanks for understanding!

Tax Forms have arrived.

Tax forms are here! The Library is a distribution point for basic federal and state tax forms. Forms can also be printed from the IRS and the Wisconsin Department of Revenue websites. If you need help printing tax forms, please stop at the Reference Desk and a staff member will be happy to assist you.

Currently, the Library has copies of the following forms:


1040 / 1040 Instructions

* Spanish copies of the 1040 / 1040 Instructions have been ordered, but we have not received them yet.


WI-1 / WI-1 Instructions
Schedule AD / Schedule AD Instructions
Schedule SB / Schedule SB Instructions
Schedule H / H-EZ (Homestead)
Rent Certificate
Schedule WD / Schedule WD Instructions (Capital Gains/Losses)
1NPR Form (Nonresident and Part-year Resident)

New! Puzzle Exchange

Are you a jigsaw puzzle fanatic? Why buy new ones when you can trade used jigsaw puzzles with others in the community for free? If you’ve been doing puzzle after puzzle to pass the time while social distancing, you’re not alone! Stop by the BRAND NEW jigsaw puzzle exchange at the Library and pick up a new puzzle. How does it work? You bring a puzzle in, and take a puzzle home. No need to stop by the checkout desk. When you’re ready for a new puzzle, bring it back and trade again. We hope you enjoy this new service!

Our Reference Desks are now combined.

WPL now has one Reference Desk for all ages! Please stop by the Reference Desk on the first floor to have all your questions answered. You will see the faces you recognize from both the adult and children’s areas all in one place. Our temporary Children’s Services Desk has been removed.