Monday, February 20, 2017

Ashe Library Hosts a “Day in the District”

The library will host a “Day in the District” open house from 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. on March 4, 2017. As you may know, the state legislature’s appropriations committees will soon begin drafting their 12 annual spending bills to fund the government for the next two years. Local and state elected officials will be visiting to see how our library serves its community.   Providing access to information, literature, and lifelong learning are the fundamental goals of American libraries. This is true now more than ever, and citizens must use their voices to ensure our library legacy remains viable and fully funded.   We invite you to come speak to your elected officials about the importance of state and local funds in maintaining a high level of library service in Ashe County.
 

During the month of February, Ashe Library has been celebrating National Love Your Library Month.  A special reception is planned from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. on February 24 to thank the community for all the support received in the last year.  At the reception an unveiling of the library’s new MindKare Kiosk is scheduled.  This unit was granted to the library by VAYA Health and will provide free and confidential screenings to pre-assess mental health conditions.  The public location for this kiosk will prompt increased visibility and ease the process of checking in on one’s mental health, making it as easy and accessible as checking in on one’s physical health.  Next time you are in the library, visit the kiosk for quality care through provision of local treatment referrals.

Some of the comments collected this month, from local patrons of all ages, show how much the public library is appreciated:
  • "I love the library because of the wealth of information contained for all age groups. Not only reading material, but education classes are offered or discussions of different subjects are offered."
  • "Wonderful place to be! It's hard to leave!"
  • "Because it takes me places I can't afford to visit."
  • "Excellent facility! Great programs! Friendly librarians!"
  • "It is a safe place. It's friendly. My home away from home."
  • "Friendly staff! And what an important community resource!"
  • "I love you library because you guys help us when we need help." (child)
Save the date for Ashe Library’s Love Your Library Reception (February 24), and Day in the District (March 4).  Anyone can speak up for your libraries—your voice counts!

Dates to remember in March:

 Children’s Programs

  • Baby Bounce meets every Friday at 10:00 a.m. for ages birth to 2 years.  Enjoy stories, rhymes, bounces, and songs with a stay-and-play social time afterwards.
  • Tot Time meets every Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. for ages 2 and 3.  Wiggle, giggle, laugh, sing, and create!  This is a fun-filled time featuring stories, art, and music.
  • Story Time meets every Thursday at 10:30 a.m. for ages 4 and 5.  Join us for ABC adventures with stories, art, and music.
  • Move to the Music is an active engaging time for youth to explore music, movement, and learning. This program is for ages 1-7 and meets on March 3 at 10:30 a.m.  A moving child is a learning child.
  • The Lego Club meets on March 23 at 4:00 p.m. for grades 1-5. Build, create, and make new friends.
Tween Programs
  • ·     Tween Takeover! Gamers Unite! Tween gamers meet at 4:00 p.m. on March 9 for food and fun with friends to play Minecraft, giant games and various board games.

Teen Programs
  • T for Teen, Gamers unite! will meet at 4:00 p.m. on March 7.  Xbox 360 and laptops available for gaming.
  • Teen Art Studio meets at 4:00 p.m. on March 14. Come and create! We provide the supplies and you make the art in this open choice art studio.
  • Board Game Café meets at 4:00 p.m. on March 21.  Come alone or bring a group to enjoy a variety of board games, hot coffee from local brews, and sweet treats.
  • The Teen Advisory Council (TAC) meets at 5:00 p.m. on March 21.  Tell us what you want to see in YOUR library.
  • Teen Craft Club meets at 4:00 p.m. on March 28.  Join us for our monthly art workshop to make origami bookmarks.
Adult Programs
  •  For all your tech troubles, book and appointment with our friendly reference librarians.  Call 336.846.2041 x227
  • Yoga Club meets in the library’s downstairs meeting room at 5:30 p.m. on Mondays.
  • Read Around the World Book Club meets at 5:45 p.m. on March 15.  Take a literary journey to far-flung locales with this monthly book club, focusing on titles set in other countries. Ask for this month’s selection, The Elegance of the Hedgehog, at the circulation desk.
  • The Library Matinee features Loving (PG13) at 1:00 p.m. on March 18.  Watch the story of Richard and Mildred Loving who violate a Virginia law that prohibits interracial marriage and take their case to the Supreme Court.
  • Brouhaha Book Club meets at 5:30 p.m. on March 27 in Boondocks Restaurant for “Books, Beer and Bookworm Babble.”  Come and find out what everyone has been reading lately!
  • Come out for a Pink4Lunch at 12:00 p.m. on March 29 to eat, meet, and educate. In partnership with Susan G. Komen Northwest NC, the library will host a lunch and learn session to raise awareness of importance for the early detection of breast cancer. Registration is encouraged.

 All Ages
  • A family program, Book and a Bite, takes place from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. on March 4. Create a hand puppet, pick up a recipe and browse selected books for dinner table conversation starters.
  • Get Crafty and make Quick Knit & Crochet Gifts at 10:00 a.m. on March 11.  Instruction available for beginners and project materials are provided.
  • The Community Drum Circle meets at 5:30 p.m. on March 14 and 28.  Join the celebration of drums, while exploring the soul and spirit of music!
  • Mountain Music Slow Jam will meet from 5:30-7:00 p.m. on March 3 and 17 in the downstairs meeting room (after-hours access through side door on lower parking lot).  Get together with other musicians and jam.  Songs are explained as to timing, breaks, etc… and played in slow time.  Designed for beginners, all skill levels are welcome.

Special Events:

  • Kevin Hining, NC Wildlife Resources Education Specialist, talks about Citizen Science projects with native wildlife at 4:00 p.m. on March 2.
  • Visit between 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. with our elected officials at the library’s “Day in the District.”
  • Hear young local talent perform a Celtic Music Concert at 4:00 p.m. on March 16.


Monday, January 30, 2017

Technology is Creating a Reading Revolution!



Reading has never been easier, and we keep seeing breakthroughs every year. Without a doubt, we have the capacity to be the most well-read generation in history.  Providing digital resources for entertainment, information, and inspiration is a big part of Ashe Library’s mission to promote knowledge, reading, and lifelong learning.   The library offers a large online collection of eBooks and is excited to introduce NC Kids Digital Library, its newest online resource.  This service provides instant access to over 3,700 eBooks, audiobooks, videos, and Read-Alongs for young patrons.  Library cardholders will be able to borrow 5 titles, for up to 3 weeks, at a time.  Some special features that come with these eBooks include highlighted read alongs and definitions. And text can be converted into wonderful OpenDyslexic font, so that dyslexic readers can read text easier. If you don’t have a library card, drop in the library to get registered now.  Library staff are ready to sign you up and introduce you to this wonderful online collection.  


Another motivation for reading is the Ashe Library 2017 Reading Challenge.  This year Ashe Library remains Appalachian Regional Reading Champions, again outdoing Wilkes and Watauga Counties in a bit of friendly reading competition.  During the year 2016 over 1,200 books were read and reviewed by challenge participants, doubling previous year’s numbers.  The challenges offer a good mix between the general (so you can include many of the books you would have read anyway) and the specific (so you have to read some books you never would have chosen on your own).   Our library sponsors this challenge for two very important reasons: to promote literacy in our community and have fun doing it!  Our community has been very supportive in sponsoring our literacy efforts by donating gifts as incentives to reward our readers.  We would like to extend public thanks to the following local businesses: Boondock Brewing, Rose Mountain Butcher Shoppe, Art of Oil, The Vintage Locket, The Hotel Tavern, Bobby D’s Pizza, The Log House Restaurant, Carolina Country Wines, Ashe County Arts Council, Parkway Theater, Food Lion, The Quilt Square Girls, Bohemia Coffee Shop, Walmart, Mountain Outfitters, Florence Thomas Art School, Sweet & Savory, Osaka’s Chinese & Japanese Restaurant, and Ashe County Friends of the Library.  Information about joining the 2017 Reading Challenge can be found on the library’s website and at the library.  Above all just READ - explore new things - play with your imagination- widen your horizon- heal your soul - brush your opinion and you will become a better person!  Research proves that “deep reading" is vigorous exercise for the brain and increases our real-life capacity for empathy.
Dates to remember in February:

Children’s Programs
  • Baby Bounce is every Monday at 10:00 a.m. for birth to two year-olds.  Bring your young ones for stories, rhymes, bounces, and songs with “stay and play” social time afterward.
  • Tot Time is a fun-filled time for 2 & 3 year-olds, featuring stories, art and music at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesdays.
  • Story time for 4 & 5 year olds feature ABC Adventures at 10:30 a.m. on Thursdays.
  • A special story time for daycare classes takes place at 9:30 a.m. on February 3.  Call 336.846.2041 x223 to register.
  •  Move to the Music takes place at 10:30 a.m. on February 17.  This is an active engaging time for youth to explore music, movement, and learning.
  •  Build, create, and make new friends at a Lego Block Party at 4:00 p.m. on February 23.

Tween Programs
  •  Tween Takeover! Gamers Unite! Tween gamers meet up to play Minecraft, giant games and various board games at 4:00 p.m. on February 9.  This month there will be a hot chocolate bar! 
Teen Programs
  • T for Teen – Gamers unite at 4:00 p.m. on February 7! Xbox 360 and laptops are available for teen gaming. 
  • Visit the Teen Art Studio at 4:00 p.m. on February 14. Come and create, supplies are provided.
  • Board Game Café is open at 4:00 p.m. on February 21. Come alone or bring a group to enjoy a variety of board games, hot coffee from local brews, and sweet treats.
  • Help plan upcoming events at the library with the Teen Advisory Council at 5:00 p.m. on February 21.
  • The Teen Craft Club will learn about finger knitting at 4:00 p.m. on February 28.
Adult Programs
  •  For all your tech troubles, book an appointment with our friendly reference librarians.  Call 336.846.2041 x227
  • Yoga Club meets in the library’s downstairs meeting room at 5:30 p.m. on Mondays.
  • Brouhaha Book Club meets at 5:30 p.m. on February 27 in Boondocks Restaurant. There is no assigned reading for this club.  Join our lively discussion of recent reads. 
  •  Stop the library from 2- 4 p.m. on February 24 for a “Love Your Library Reception” and find out about all the reasons to love your library! 
All Ages
  • A family program, Book and a Bite, takes place from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. on February 4. Create a centerpiece for the table, pick up a recipe and browse selected books for dinner table conversation starters.
  • Get Crafty and make Quick Knit & Crochet Gifts at 10:00 a.m. on February 11.  Instruction available for beginners and project materials are provided.
  • The Community Drum Circle meets at 5:30 p.m. on February 14 and 28.  Join the celebration of drums, while exploring the soul and spirit of music!
  • Mountain Music Slow Jam will meet from 5:30-7:00 p.m. on February 3 and 17 in the downstairs meeting room (after-hours access through side door on lower parking lot).  Get together with other musicians and jam.  Songs are explained as to timing, breaks, etc… and played in slow time.  Designed for beginners, all skill levels are welcome.
Special Events
  • An ABC Hunt will take place during the month of February.  Visit our display and try your hand at identifying items which represent letters of the alphabet. There will be challenges!!!
  • February 16 is World Read Aloud Day.  Stop in at 4:00 p.m. to hear stories read by special readers and visit with Arly the Library Fox.
  • Meet Lisa Muir, the author of Taking Down the Moon at 3:00 p.m. on February 27.  This book is a collection of short stories full of quirky and compelling characters. 
The library extends gratitude for donations given by Morris Walker on behalf of Ms. Alda Perkins.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Grandma's Favorite Book: Gone with the Wind

This year my reading and writing resolutions will involve family and friends in conversations and experiences that surround various books.  The books we choose to read will come from Peter Boxall's compiled list of “books that must be read before you die.”  Peter Boxall is a Sussex University literary professor and his list contains contributions from many of his colleagues.  Had I known about this list earlier in my life, I feel I may have been able to tackle completing the required life reading much easier.   At my current mid-life stage, I find the most pleasure in reading when I can share discoveries found in the pages of books with others. So now as the year 2017 begins and I consider again the daunting task of reading all of Boxall's recommendations, my plan this year is to match books with friends and family.  I hope to compile our conversations, thoughts, and experiences that reflect on these selected reads in my own sort of bookish memoir. 

Gone With the Wind, by Margaret Mitchell, was chosen to make a connection with my maternal grandmother, Hilda Hartman, who just turned 94 years old this month.  My grandmother was a children's librarian in her younger years and passed on her love for books to me.  This epic novel is her all-time favorite and raised a lot of discussion while analyzing the story and characters at our last visit.  We both feel that understanding the character's feelings, actions, and motives is what makes reading books so enjoyable. Grandma remembers that after reading GWTW she had to see the movie.   Before granddaddy went off to fight in WWII a special date night to the movie theater was planned.  Grandma was pregnant at the time and months later while granddaddy was away at war she gave birth to my mother, her firstborn.  Knowing the impression Mitchell's story had on her, explains why she named her daughter Bonnie.  For those who may not know, or remember, Bonnie Blue Butler is the name of Rhett and Scarlett's daughter.   Scarlett was a headstrong and impulsive character who exhibited a lot of gumption when dealing with situations in GWTW.  I personally can relate to these traits, although I have never had to endure the extreme conditions that played out in Mitchell's story.  Both my grandparents lived through the Great Depression and knew exactly what Scarlett felt when she utters one of the most well-known lines from GWTW: “as God is my witness, I'm never going to be hungry again."  Granddaddy, as a boy, even experienced the loss of his family's home and business in a horrible fire.  When granddaddy returned from fighting in the war, he worked several jobs to secure land and a home for my grandma and mother.  He bought an old house that he spent years restoring and worked hard to raise a significant garden that kept his family fed.  Grandma stocked the pantry every year with canned goods.  They also raised chickens, and goats too.  My parents have always been hard workers and good providers, setting an example for me as well.  In my own life I have been there, working multiple jobs at once while maintaining a garden and raising children.

 Even through times when money was tight, there was always plenty to eat.  Doing what needs to be done was a way of life that built a strong work ethic in me. Scarlett seemed to find strength in working to restore Tara, her home place, after the war.  She dove right in and rolled her sleeves up to get back what the Yankees stole.  Life on southern plantations wasn't easy following the war. Mitchell's description of the determination Scarlett and the South had for restoration left a legacy of inspiration for her readers. 

In regards to the romantic feelings of these characters, grandma would have been a great confidant to Scarlett.  If she could have, she would have encouraged Scarlett to trust in the Lord for guidance and prayed for her to change her manipulative ways.  Scarlett was a flirt and used her beauty and charm to get what she wanted.  Although with Ashley her heart was broken, and with Rhett her actions were so transparent she couldn't fool him.  Grandma had a “que sera sera” sort of philosophy and if she was in the story, she would have tried to get Scarlett to let up on the need for total control.


It is also puzzling about Scarlett's deep love for Tara.  Yes, we should feel that family comes first. But Scarlett seems to put Tara before Ashely, Rhett, and her children.  She remembers her father's words that land is "the only thing in the world that lasts..."  I recently struggled with the loss of my father's boyhood home.  I had so many good family memories there, visiting as a child.  Once my paternal grandparents passed on it seemed that keeping the land and house where they lived was so important. I mourned the loss of that place when unable to finance the purchase and keep it from falling into hands of “outsiders.”  My Grandma Hartman solaced me by sharing how she felt sad to leave behind the house granddaddy worked so hard to make into a beautiful home.  She explained that in their older years the house and all that land was too much for them. They needed to downsize and move to a warmer climate.  But the memories are always there and family does last … something else grandma would have shared with Scarlet.  Yet I realize now that a story changes meaning for us if read at different times in our lives.   And like Margaret Mitchell's last words in GWTW, “Tomorrow is another day.”

~ Suzanne Moore

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Circulating Unusual Items

There is a growing trend of adding “unusual items” to libraries’ circulating collections. For example; circulating cake pans, post- hole diggers, ukuleles, soil testers, bread machines and more. Ashe Library is exploring options for its own unique collection. In the coming months, we will survey our community to determine which types of items are of the most interest to our patrons.  One goal of our strategic plan is to see that the personal education and information goals of library users of all ages and backgrounds will be supported by up-to-date and relevant library collections.  An objective to meeting this goal includes adding non-traditional items to our library’s circulating collection.
The idea of circulating unusual items is a tangible representation of the future of libraries. I once heard that libraries can be considered to be “The People’s University’ and I really believe that is right.  There are books, yes, and DVDs for entertainment, but the notion of circulating items other than these can offer patrons the chance to take their interests off the page.  When household budgets are tight, patrons are relying on their public library in different ways. In our regional counterparts (Watauga / Wilkes), circulation of Wi-fi hotspots, fishing poles, and seeds are popular.  Ashe Library already has SPECK air-quality monitors that will soon be available for check-out.  And, in partnership with NC Candid Critters, the library plans to be part of a statewide Citizen Science camera trapping project.  This project will provide several motion sensitive camera traps that patrons can check out and use on their property to help in a wildlife study.  The wildlife pictures collected by these cameras will help to map trends in animal populations across the state.  We encourage our community to participate in user surveys and to provide suggestions for items they would like to borrow from the library.  With the New Year just around the corner, why not visit the library and make new discoveries. 
Dates to remember in January:
The Library will be closed for New Year’s Day on January 2 and for Martin Luther King’s Birthday on January 16.
Children’s Programs
·         Baby Bounce is every Monday at 10:00 a.m. for birth to two year-olds.  Bring your young ones for stories, rhymes, bounces, and songs with “stay and play” social time afterwards.
·         Tot Time is a fun-filled time for 2 & 3 year-olds, featuring stories, art and music at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesdays.
·         Story time for 4 & 5 year olds feature ABC Adventures at 10:30 a.m. on Thursdays.
·         A special story time for daycare classes takes place at 9:30 a.m. on January 6.  Call 336.846.2041 x223 to register.
·         Build, create, and make new friends at a Lego Block Party at 4:00 p.m. on January 19.
Tween Programs
·         Tween Takeover! Hangout, eat, laugh, and play games at 4:00 p.m. on January 10.
Teen Programs
·         What’s your geek? What’s your game? Meet, hang out, game, and eat every Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. with the Geeks & Gamers. 
·         Help plan upcoming events at the library with the Teen Advisory Council at 5:00 p.m. on January 17.
Adult Programs
·         For all your tech troubles, book an appointment with our friendly reference librarians.  Call 336.846.2041 x227
·         Yoga Club meets in the library’s downstairs meeting room at 5:30 p.m. on Mondays.
·         The Deep Focus Film Club meets at 5:00 p.m. on January 26, for the second installment of Malcolm X.  See the biographical epic of this controversial and influential Black Nationalist leader, from his early life and career as a small-time gangster, to his ministry as a member of the Nation of Islam.
·         Brouhaha Book Club meets at 5:30 p.m. on January 30 in Boondocks Restaurant for “Books, Beer and Bookworm Babble.”  Come and find out what everyone has been reading lately! Try the new Ashe Bookworm Porter!
·         The Coloring “Book” Club celebrates reading (and coloring) as a group experience at 5:30 p.m. on January 31. Relax with adult coloring books while listening and discussing a different short story audiobook each month.
 All Ages
·         A family program, Book and a Bite, takes place from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. on January 7. Create a centerpiece for the table, pick up a recipe and browse selected books for dinner table conversation starters.
·         Get Crafty and make Quick Knit & Crochet Gifts at 10:00 a.m. on January 14.  Instruction available for beginners and project materials are provided.
·         The Community Drum Circle meets at 5:30 p.m. on January 10 and 24.  Join the celebration of drums, while exploring the soul and spirit of music!
·         Mountain Music Slow Jam will meet from 5:30-7:00 p.m. on January 20 in the downstairs meeting room (after-hours access through side door on lower parking lot).  Get together with other musicians and jam.  Songs are explained as to timing, breaks, etc… and played in slow time.  Designed for beginners, all skill levels are welcome.

Special Events
  • If you participated in our 2016 Reading Challenge, or if you want to learn about what we have planned for the 2017 Challenge, please join us! The 2016 Reading Challenge Wrap-up and 2017 Reading Challenge Kick-off will take place at 5:00 p.m. on January 5.  Play games for the literary-minded, vote for the Best Reviews of 2016, and check out recommendations from this year’s challenge. Participants in the 2016 Reading Challenge are eligible to win prizes. You do not have to be present to win, but your attendance is strongly encouraged!
  • Stop by to meet Lisa Muir, author of Taking Down the Moon, at 3:00 p.m. on January 30.  Her finely-wrought collection of short stories is inhabited by characters who are at once quirky and compelling. Lisa works as an English instructor at Wilkes Community College. This is her first book.

The library extends gratitude for donations given to the Youth Service Department by the Skyline Membership Corporation’s Board of Directors and Polly Hughes who also gave an unrestricted donation.